Guilty until proven innocent

Doubts. They come from parents, friends, children, siblings, doctors, co-workers, classmates, bosses, teachers, and strangers.

I get dirty looks when I park in a handicapped space. Doctors have questioned if it was “all in my head.” My sister thinks I exaggerate my problems.

And then there’s the government and insurance companies. I was denied long term disability insurance, but incredibly, I won the appeal. I applied for the disability version of medicaid and was denied. Luckily, I qualified for and received the low income version. I applied for social security disability insurance and was denied. I appealed and was denied again. Now I have a hearing coming up very soon.

I know this is considered standard practice, but it’s not right. They are so concerned about fraud that truly sick people go without the benefits we deserve. There was another article in the paper today about a massive fraud scam. These people are scum. But just because they fraudulently got SSDI, does that mean I should be scrutinized so much harder? There will always be assholes and criminals in this world, but I’m tired of being treated like one just because others exists. I’m tired of so many people assuming I’m not truly sick. They seem to assume I’m guilty of lying to them, of fraud, until I convince them otherwise. The burden is on me to convince them that I’m sick, even as I’m too sick to do so properly.

The system is broken. Anyone who has tried to get through it knows this. And I’m so damn tired of being punished because other people  get away with fraud. Don’t punish me for their guilt. I didn’t do it. I’m innocent. And I deserve to be treated as such.

If only others felt the same way.

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11 Responses to Guilty until proven innocent

  1. Megan S says:

    This is so true. I’m trying to plan something over the next year or two that will hopefully raise public awareness of invisible illnesses so we don’t always be treated as a liar or crazy. My insurance company won’t pay my income protection insurance because the doctors won’t put their names to an actual diagnosis. The system is so frustrating!

  2. Jess says:

    I agree. I had to fight tooth and nail for my disability…despite the fact that my parents had received special tax benefits for me the entire course of my life. I was denied the first time and had to have a hearing.

    It’s definitely ridiculous. I’m sorry you’re struggling so much with it. Hopefully your luck will change soon!

  3. Karen J says:

    Agreed! So many “hoops” to jump through – some of them flaming, even!

    A big part of the problem is “one hand doesn’t know what the other is doing” – between agencies, and even between programs from the same agency.

    Other parts include “there oughta be a law” thinking; “quick fix” rule-making (and -revising) without any “and what then?” answers; and “reactionary responses to noisy outrage”, in turn based on lies, inaccuracies, misunderstandings, or even true things taken out of context.
    Also, complete failure to consider that there are real live human beings, with real lives involved, all along the way!

    Here’s hoping those issues are more regularly addressed… (and not with more micro-management, either!)

    Hugs and Happy New Year!

    • chronicrants says:

      Karen, you put that so well! I especially feel a lot of that last one, that they forget there are real human beings involved. *sigh* For now I’m just working within the system the best that I can, but if I can ever get my health back enough, I’d really like to work to change the system.

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