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  1. #41
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    Okay. An update!

    1.) It feels like my husband and I are moving super-slowly, like swimming in jello to get to our goals. Iím pretty sure it feels like this because my ADHD usually wants me to go at light speed. However the world doesnít operate on my preferred speeds very often. lol So the key to me not losing my mind about how ďslowlyĒ we are moving toward our goals, is that I need to accept that getting to the destination quickly might not be the best, and it certainly isnít the ONLY way, of getting there. Are we there yet? How Ďbout now?

    2.) I was ahead of the game: submitted my required forms for long term disability benefits from my employerís insurance/benefits company, Great West Life. It took until yesterday for these ridiculous people to follow through with my claim!!!

    They received my psychiatristís 2-page form in which she provided ample information. She even printed off an extra written note as a sort of summary. This isnít my first dance with Great West Life. I must say that the case worker who helped me while I was on short term disability was great. But THESE people in this department are not good listeners.

    This GWL department then demanded/expected my psychiatristís Consult Notes, which are very very private. They even tried to get her notes from my physician, but because they were marked ďPrivate and Confidential:
    Please do not distribute,Ē my physicianís office could/would not provide them either.

    To prevent myself from several panic attacks, I emailed instead of phoned GWL... And also to provide a paper trail for myself. I felt I was communicating with idiots! lol

    My psychiatrist finally went above and beyond. I had gotten so exhausted (yet revved up at the same time) that I requested a manager from Great West Life. This didnít seem to work. I tried passing on Dr. Papishís instructions. I explained what she had told me: Dr.
    Papish couldnít ethically
    just fork over all the consult notes. She required GWL to provide a list of specific questions that she could then answer.


    So finally, Dr. Papish got ahold of the manager of my caseworker. And apparently, the manager went along with my doctor. No need for further emails, no need for consult notes. No wonder my head became detached!

    2 months of GWL stubbornly refusing to process my claim because my psychiatrist wouldnít fork over what they wanted. And then, after speaking to my manager, suddenly everything is magically fine and dandy and my claim will be processed!!! Hallelujah!!

    Iím trying to just feel relief, and trying to let go of being angry at people who think they are doing a good job when they are being JERKS!!!

    3.) Our federal financial advisor recommended David and I change banks due to our credit cards being maxed out and sent to collections.

    I did not realize it would take over a month to get all the different companies (ie: car payments, City monthly house tax payments,
    mortgage, etc) all set up on a new banking system.

    Again, this is something that I couldíve gotten done in a week, maybe 2, if I had made back-to-back phone calls all day long for a couple of days. I donít know why some companies are happy to take our new banking info over the phone, whereas others require us to fill out forms. However my psychologist told me NOT to do it all by myself: my husband David had to help. Iím not supposed be doing all these types of things all by myself anymore. My husband, David, is supposed to help!

    Well, GOOD NEWS! I filled out the last form on Friday. I called more than half the places and filled out al then different forms. But David did make a few phone calls: and weíre DONE! THANK GOD! Next week we call our case worker and she can dive in and really help us by talking to the credit card companies and hopefully cut us a good deal!!!

    4.) My husband is wonderful! Heís slowly but surely getting things done. Weíre going slow like molasses, but weíre still moving forward. Heís even been surprising me by doing little sweet things around the house that I didnít expect him to do!!!

    Whew! Just writing that was rather tiring! lol But I wanted to let you know the good news/details!

    5.) David has applied for physio and heís on a waiting list.

    6.) just have to get him evaluated by a psychiatrist so that

    7.) hopefully he can apply for benefits from social assistance or the government, so that on Davidís end, he will have a more equal share of income. It will take the pressure off of my shoulders, for sure!

    8.) I would LIKE it if David and I could be adults and deal with this on our own, however, his mom has offered to provide the extra income we need to get by. David has had two guitar students quit. Well, one is moving to another city. The other one might guy come back in the fall. So, although Iíd like David and I to work on our own finances, it is very sweet and generous of his mom, and the income is welcome!!!

    9.) If David is going to get assistance, he has to be evaluated. He was resistant to go to a psychiatrist, but he will have to in order to get some financial support.

    10.) Rewarding ourselves...

    11.) Fantastic neighbours next door!!!

    12.) Getting out into nature!

    Whew! The End for now! Thank you for listening!!!






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  2. #42
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    I agree with your assessment of GWL they are ridiculous why hsb job decided to go with them i don't know but really they do not CARE. I am glad you pushed forward and glad you had a great doctor that helped you get them to listen. Great work.
    Words always stay inside ones soul

  3. #43
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    Quote Originally Posted by forgetmenot View Post
    I agree with your assessment of GWL they are ridiculous why hsb job decided to go with them i don't know but really they do not CARE. I am glad you pushed forward and glad you had a great doctor that helped you get them to listen. Great work.
    Thank you, FMN! Yes, I donít know why my employer went with GWL, either. I have heard that some people quit altogether rather than deal with the company.

    My husband used to work for Workers Compensation Board: that place is so toxic. Youíd think if one of their own employees was suffering from a really painful repetitive work injury that theyíd be empathetic and concerned, but no. David was told to ďstop being such a babyĒ from co-workers. And when David was getting evaluated (at a city about 3 hours away!) they wanted to do a psychological assessment. But he didnít want the psychologist to put the findings into his file because WCB processes their own employees claims. Anyone could just pull up his file and spread gossip about it. Some claims seemed to be a subject for the water coolers. WTF? Whereís the respect for privacy? Whereís the compassion??

    What they should do is tear down all these organizations and start over from the top down... Case workers should have some kind of medical training, maybe psych nurses.

    Maybe it would be better if these private companies were somehow integrated into the whole process of signing in to hospitals. A person whoís never been injured before could get guidance on how the system works: a liaison, if you will.

    It seems ridiculous that people who are already stressed out by physical pain or mental unwellness currently have to navigate the current system WITHOUT a liaison. I mean, itís akin to torture! Instead of helping you, it feels like they want to set you up to fail. Youíre chasing a moving objective, and if you donít have an advocate or are incapable of advocating yourself, then itís detrimental. Might as well come to me trying to keep my body afloat in 20 foot waves in a cold ocean. Unknown creatures below, water crashing down on you, youíre flailing around trying to inhale air instead of water... And then someone hands you an anchor!!!!


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  4. #44
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    Most if not all insurance companies have the same policy and I'm not convinced any of them is really better than the others.

    The starting point for all of them is "how can we avoid paying out on this claim?", not "how can we help this claimant?".

  5. #45
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    Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    Quote Originally Posted by David Baxter View Post

    The starting point for all of them is "how can we avoid paying out on this claim?", not "how can we help this claimant?".
    I know. It sucks! The company is SUPPOSED to be there, or most claim, for the customer first. Another sign of a corrupt/sick society - making money off sick and vulnerable people. Thatís not insurance, IMHO. Thatís ďHey, you pay us money and weíll pretend to help you save it for Emergencies, but when you really need the money, weíll search and search until we find some kind of legal loophole or that somehow itís a pre-existing condition, and weíll point and laugh and call you ĎSUCKER!íĒ Iím sure their CEOS enjoy making money and not letting them use their own money. I mean, not until theyíre dead, anyway. They withheld needed funds so the person dies, and THEN they give out the money. Maybe. Unless a pre-existing condition caused the death perhaps. Theyíll think of something.

    The BEST insurance companies do give out money, but itís like pulling teeth. First you have to go on 7 quests.

    You must slay the Beast of Red Tape, and burn a Giant Paper Tiger... There is the Room of Doors where if you choose the wrong one you keep finding yourself in the Purgatory Lobby over and over. The Bureaucreatures that roam about, looking as lost as you are, try to take you down tunnels, chasing rabbits or shove you down into slides where you end up in a pit full of other lost souls like yourself.

    And all you have with which to help navigate is the Misleading Map: a water-stained tome with missing pieces, invisible ink, seemingly contradictory instructions, and ridiculous riddles. All this goes on while somehow youíre trying not falling through the ancient floorboards of Archaic Policies or through the walls of the Pretentious Procedures.

    Compasses donít work here and no one can hear you scream.

    It seems the only way you can get through the BS is by finding survivors who are far and few between. And quite understandably some of them have gone a bit mad because of what theyíve been through. So good luck finding someone whoíd want to go back in there with you to help you.


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  6. #46
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    Great to read you are goig to get your long term disability. It's really sad that some people have to go though all the crap when they are entitled and need that what they pay insurance policies for.

    But before you blame it on the company you have to look at the reality of the amount of insurance fraud that happens all the time and to which insurance companies lose enormous amounts of money every year. Just the admistrative costs alone are huge. Claim verifiers and inspectors that they have to pay to go around and then see John Doe doing heavy yeard work when he claims he can't even walk because of his back injury. Others on disabilty doing work under the table. Crooked people are so creative that the list of different insurance fraud schemes would make most people dizzy.

    It's the fraudsters that increase the costs and hassles associated with it all. They are also companies not social welfare programs. They have to look out for the financial wellbeing of the company and at the same time pay benefits to those that rightfully need them. If they can't reduce the financial losses they incur due to insurance fraud the other option is to increase premiums to be able to balance benefit costs and profitability. It's also a very competitive field. If they can't offer competitive prices and good service they lose customers and go out of business.

    And then like in every aspect of life there are all kinds of people. WHO has your file is very often the most deciding factor in how you are treated by your company. That can change at any time and is a scary reality. Get one grumpy terminal sphincter or one "I wanna climb the ladder" or one that thinks everyone is a crook and you're in for a hell of a rough ride.

    I'm on disabilty with the same company as you since 2010. Long term Since 2011. First I dealt with someone out of the London, Ontario office. She would call me regularly and check up while on short term. She never harassed me or left any doubt that she thought my claim was not legit and was actually helpful and kind. She was professional and made me go through the legal paperwork and my doctor took care of the important part of the paperwork. Then years back they transferred my file to Winnipeg. It has never been the same name on the paperwork I get from them. I spoke to 1 person once in all those years and it was me that called about changing my marital status.

    But sadly all that can change with one person taking over my file. A major part of my anxiety results from it. I still have over 8 years to go before 65 so anything can change for the worse. So far I have been blessed and every year or two when I go thorugh a panic period that lasts months (Just went through one from December to April) when the paperwork requests come in and my doc always has to respond to my fears with: "There's no possibility of you ever being able to go back to working. Haven't I always taken care of making sure you continue to get your disabilty?"
    ​"A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out." ~ Walter Winchell

  7. #47
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    Well, thatís awesome that you have a kick-ass doctor like mine!

    The hold up for my case was because GWL would not accept what my psychiatrist said until she called them directly and spoke to a manager. She had already faxed, emailed, and called my caseworker but was getting nowhere. I tried over and over on my end: I repeated what my psychiatrist told me. My psych doctor felt she had provided several pages of documentation for them on the required application. She felt it was not ethical to provide them with the private consultation notes. Furthermore, she told them several times: send me a very specific list of any questions you want answered.

    If the caseworker had asked her manager right away, and if the manager had actually looked at my doctors emails and faxes, it wouldíve been done in 2 weeks. I had taken great care to apply well ahead of the deadline. My manager, our Health Services Department, myself, AND my doctor had filled out all the forms and sent them in almost 2 weeks earlier than the actual deadline.

    Sure, there was a delay of a week before the case was sent to GWL because one of the departments was short-staffed (combination of vacations & people calling in sick with the flu)...

    Also I donít have unlimited insurance. I believe there is a limit of three years ( I have to double-check) as this same mental health issue happened to me during the time when David had cancer.

    Once my work insurance runs out, if I am still unable to work, Iíd have to either apply for unemployment insurance, or social assistance, or something like that.

    But Iím not sure of myself. If Iíve muddled through life and somehow managing not to get fired at this job, maybe once things are more manageable, I could go back to work again...

    Itís somewhat stressful, but I now have so many accommodations & restrictions in place at work that the only thing I really need to do is get to work on time, try to take my breaks & lunch on schedule, and leave on time...

    Itís just currently my husband and I had to come to terms with our finances, marriage, and me with my somewhat newly diagnosed ADHD for which Iíve never had coaching/assistance with until now. And also Iíve been so burned out that Iím not sure Iíve completely processed that I have a learning disability. My husband was so sick for so long that Iím trying to unstick myself from the role of doing everything for David, and David is slowly becoming more and more helpful around the house, with finances. I still find it difficult to remember to ask for help from him. I was starting to feel like I was his mother and that he was a child, but now heís definitely stepping up as Iím not trying to control everything including his autonomy!

    Anyway, Iím starting to go off on a tangent here... Again! lol So thanks for listening. I am really glad you have the support you need. Thank you for responding!




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  8. #48
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    That's great that the possibility of having accomodations at work is available. As long as there's life there's hope!
    ​"A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out." ~ Walter Winchell

  9. #49
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    Having a good knowledge on family law is really helpful in this issue.

  10. #50
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    Re: Itís Been a Rough Couple of Weeks

    Yes: I have accommodations. Mind you I donít know if theyíve all been met. Which is why Iím going to hopefully have my ADHD coach come and have a look at where I work.


    Sent from my Hollycopter using SlappaSquawk
    (Formerly JollyGreenJellyBean)

    My dog is a human whisperer.

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