Thursday, January 30, 2014

Soul Crushing Humiliation....Please Help!

Today has been about as humiliating and soul crushing as any day I have had in awhile. You think I jest? Today I was made aware that my income (which is social security survivors benefits) has been cut by $700/month starting February 3rd! Why? Because the government can't handle paperwork and because they are so full of red tape and BS...that even their own workers know it.

So the story goes....Z turned 18 the 20th of this month and when a surviving child on social security that is not disabled turns 18, that means they no longer receive benefits UNLESS they are still in high school. Z is. In November after hearing nothing from SS I contacted them to ask them what I needed to do to ensure Z did not lose his benefits until May. They said "nothing." I knew that wasn't right but after speaking to several people...they told me that if they needed anything from us that they would have sent it to me already. I also took that moment to ask if Z's money would then be divided between David and I (this is the way it has been done in the one child falls off their money is divided between the other survivors). I was told it would be. Fine. My bases were covered.

Then the last of December I received paperwork from SS saying that I needed to have the enclosed verification paperwork filled out by the school. The first day back after break it was filled out and mailed. Today I find out that Z is being cut off as of I call. Apparently they have lost the paperwork but I can have knew paperwork filled out and send it back in. All should be back on track then within 60 days....after of course I payback my overpayment to SS. WHAT overpayment I heard myself ask in a shrill voice. And this is what I was told:

Currently the boys and I all receive the same sum monthly. We will say $500/month each or $1500 total. We live on that total amount. Since Z is no longer or at least temporarily not receiving his....then David and I will each receive not $750 each but $600 each which totals $1200. So obviously we won't be having Z's money divided between us. We get a much lesser amount ($700/mo lesser to be precise). However, the real kicker is this....when Z's money is reinstated, before he can receive it, I must pay back the extra $100/person/month that David and I receive in Z's money's absence because that is considered "overpayment" of what we should be getting....but aren't! How am I suppose to pay back money when it is not even enough to live on???? The guy told me he knew it made no was the government. I would have laughed if it had not been so tragic for mine and my children's livelihood.

After getting off the phone and realizing that between past due medical bills (mine), bills that I just haven't had enough money to pay and past debt, I was royally screwed. I can't work....remember....I am unemployable....I can't pay my bills and now my income is being cut even further. I just wanted to throw in the towel. I have always been able to stay afloat....if not actually swim, but today I realized that I was sinking fast with no life jacket in sight. Then I remembered someone awhile back telling me to go to At the time I never imagined myself doing this. The person suggesting it told me at the time to lay it all out there, be honest with my need and see if others wanted to help. Absolutely NOT! screamed what was left of my pride. So I baked cheesecakes morning, noon and night and made almost enough to cover Davids upcoming out of pocket physical therapy. Of course I had no idea what the future had in store. Today I realized, after spending the morning checking out job sites, grants and a multitude of other places.......that I was pretty much at the end of my rope. My pride had hit rock bottom and I went back and gave gofundme another look.

So here it is. This is me feeling like a failure and being emotionally raw and completely exhausted after trying to take care of everyone and making everything work for everyone by myself for years. I guess I just can't anymore...maybe I never could. The worry alone is taking a toll on my health and since cheesecakes alone aren't going to pay the bills....this is where I stand. I am embarrassed and humiliated and is soul crushing asking for help. I can only imagine my mother turning in her grave at all of this. All I can hope is that at the end of this shame filled storm that there is a rainbow overflowing with amazing life lessons. It is all that is getting me through as I write this. I am also assuming that I will be spending the rest of my life doing community service and giving back. Perhaps that is one of the lessons!


MarniJ said...

Lisa, as I stated earlier today, YOU ARE NOT A FAILIER!! Not even close. There are times in our lives something that we just have to step back and realize that we need help. You have done such an amazing, wonderful job of raising and taking care of your children. You are an amazing friend and are always willing to step up to the plate and help when others need the help.
Now its your turn to ask for it and there should be nothing humiliating in asking help. I know this was very hard for you. And to the fact as to your mother "turning in her grave" yeah....this is not one of those reasons.....shes proud of you!

Anonymous said...

I will definitely pass this along.

Anonymous said...

Ok, (friends of Lisa) lets roll up our sleeves, start shoveling coal into this steam engine and see if we can't get the locomotive moving in the right direction!

First lets see if we can get to go viral. That would be a down payment on a nice stack of coal to start shoveling into the steam engine.

I say it is time for Karma to start coughing up. You can't be all that Lisa has been for decades without building up a lot of good GOOD karma.

Any businesses out there that want to make a matching donations pledge?

Who knows how to make a wish list/registry on Maybe get her stocked up with cheesecake ingredients or other needs?

That's my 2¢. I'm fixed income and fatal illness so won't be able to get to until after the 3rd.

Any other ideas?

Anonymous said...

44 Then they also will answer, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?” 45 Then he will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me."
I wish there was some sort of charitable organization that could help you, one that takes in billions in tax-free donations from its congregants each year and ships it off to Rome. (rant over).
That being said, I will try to help out when I get a check.