For the myths to persist …

Fairy With Staff, 3D Computer GraphicsThe myths of Social Security disability are that … it is easy to obtain, rife with mildly-impaired scammers, and a good life once received.

For the myths to persist, the public cannot know …

– the many, many years it takes to obtain Social Security disability benefits,
– the invasive nature of the personal information disabled people must divulge to Social Security,
– the shame and fear of going before a court to disclose personal incapacity,
– how arduous life is with no money for the years of waiting,
– the penetrating shame most disabled people bear….Treasure

And, for the myths to persist, the public cannot know how little is the financial gain … with the average disabled person eligible for Social Security Disability living on just $ 1,232.00 per month, or a disabled person on Supplemental Security Income receiving, at the most, $ 721.00 per month.

4 thoughts on “For the myths to persist …

  1. Jeff C.

    It took 3 years for me to obtain my benefits and it’s been a year and a half since then and we are nowhere near, nor will we ever be back to the standard of living we had before I became disabled. We lost our home, a car and were literally selling our personal posessions to pay for food and medications. Disability is by no means the “easy way” to live. I still struggle on a daily basis and am lucky to have a very supportive and understanding spouse. Thank you Julia for being there to guide and at times pull me through a very difficult time and process.

  2. Laura Hernandez

    Yes – and the poverty level in 2013 was $1,900. I don’t know about most people, but I certainly wouldn’t want to live under the poverty level all the while dealing with chronic illness and social scrutiny.

    1. Russ

      As an attorney who has represented disability clients for 25 years, what bothers me the most are the MYTHS held by ALJ’s, which then affect their rulings. This is especially true of the newer classes who Commissioner Astrue’s policy allowed to be elevated from being attorney advisors and decision writers to become ALJ’s. Most of these people graduated from law school and handled paperwork for the Social Security Administration (SSA). Then they became ALJ’s without ever having had the experience of representing an actual human being. In conversations with some of them, they ACTUALLY BELIEVE that someone who has worked diligently and has paid for 25 years on a 30-year mortgage will kiss off their home equity and will let their home undergo foreclosure and their car(s) be repossessed–just to scheme so they can get a measly $1,000 disability check. Real people don’t act that way! [I practice in a somewhat rural area where wages are low, so the credits my clients have accumulated in their working lives will usually entitle them to $800-$1000 monthly benefits–try to live on that!.]

      ALJ’s are SUPPOSED to be objective and unbiased, but much of their understanding of the pathologies and resulting functional deficits seem to be based on MYTHS drummed into them. I can understand the ignorance on the part of the general public, but I find it difficult to accept that supposedly educated ALJ’s carry the irrational prejudices we hear and often see in decisions.


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