Not sure if this is the right place to ask but here it goes.
As a disabled person, I assumed you are not working. How do you pass your time? As a recent disabled person due to blindness, I am out of work for only for 4 months and I found myself bored to dead. My typical day start with breakfast then a hour long walk with my guide dog. Watch some TV or listen to audo books then lunch. Watch some more TV and listen more audio book and an other walk in the afternoon. Try to keep myself busy until my wife come home for dinner. Do more of nothing until time to sleep. I found myself mentally even more disabling than my blindess. Tried to look for voluneetering but can't find anything that I can handle yet.
I've been out of work for 14 months. I had a long period before my back surgery and then after as well.
There are times of boredom, but I have a few TV shows I watch, some radio shows I listen to (satellite radio carries book radio and old time radio shows which I love). It's the new normal.....not quite used to it yet. These past few weeks the process of beginning the application for Social Security and another disability policy I have has taken up much of my time.
How about working out? Even if it's something really simple, getting your body moving gets those chemicals in your brain going and will enhance your sense of well-being. There's a ton of stuff you can do at home if you can't or don't want to go to the gym. Listen to a yoga instructional video if you've never done yoga before. Ride a stationary bike. Try tai chi.
Physical activity has been shown to help people suffering from depression as well as a number of other medical problems. In my own experience, if I'm feeling down or my body doesn't feel good it always helps to get moving.
Please keep in mind that in order to retain any employer disability benefits (STD/LTD) and SS you are expected to be unable to perform work or work like activities.
I wish I could volunteer but that would put my benefits at risk and thus I have to be careful about what I do and how those activities can be interpreted.
Oops! Point taken, I sometimes forget that others qualify for employer benefits, etc. That is because I was an infant at the time of my initial disability and have been fortunate enough to be employable all these years.
It's really too bad that disability benefits, in a way, discourage someone from doing activities like volunteer work. My fear is I volunteer to do registration for 2 hours at some "walk for heart disease" and my name is now on a list of volunteers and then often available via internet searches.
My mom was stunned to know I could find information about her on Google. Being 75 she's not into the computer beyond e-mail. But she volunteers for Habitat in the participant selection committee and when I search for her name it pops up under "Thanks to the following". So now I fear my name will end up out there and visible even if I do the smallest activity. I fear this more for LTD than for SS. SSDI actually allows someone to earn some income every month and if that's all they can earn they can remain eligible. But it's a slippery slope there too. You don't want to jeopardize SSDI so many people lay low to avoid any issues.
I would love to be doing some kind of work but my LTD would possibly end and I don't know if I can make what I used to make. But even a few hours a week would make me feel more productive.
That being said the information you provided is VERY GOOD. For those who can return to work or are considering it and it's financially viable for them it's a good thing to have those resources and ideas you gave. If I didn't have my employer LTD I'd likely be out there hustling to find something to bring in income even with all my meds, pain, and limitations.
Too true. A rock and a hard place for sure. I can understand the economic reasons for being concerned. If my micro-business (small businesses include a million dollars in revs and mine has been in 4 and 5 figure size before expenses, it makes enough to live on) then my widow benefits are decreased or disappear and I have been told I would have to reimburse SS for the money recd during a year earning more than the allowable.
God has blessed me in a lot of ways...although I haven't always recognized those blessings in the moment.
I live in a rural area, where hiring weekly housekeepers etc is not available but good friends help with fix-it-chores that I cannot reach.
The welfare check group I mentioned earlier didn't have a formal organization. Cannot remember how they got started, I think some just met at a doctor's appointment or through other venues and just promised to keep watch on each other. I remember one gentleman had to call the long distance operator to dial his numbers for him each time he called someone. Boy, does that date how long ago I lived there! I also remember that he spike VERY fast and I know that he often repeated the numbers for the operator to be able to hear it correctly.
Obviously the folks who make up the eligibility rules for disability programs are TABs. Or they would realize that idleness is the enemy of health. Being able to be as mentally and/or physically active as a condition permits promotes health and a sense of human worth.
I was an electronic engineer early in my carrer. When my poor vision prevented me from doing my job, I got a new job as programmer. When I vision got even worst, my employer offered my a desk job pushing electronic paper work for the last few years. Because I had to spent so much time in front of the computer reading stuff, my eyes got strained easily and got daily headach from that. So I decided to get on disability.
I didn't realize that I couldn't do volenteer work while I am on disability. I am only disabled, I am not dead. Am I suppose to sit at home all day doing nothing. I was hoping to teach computer skill in our near by senior center.
The problem is that SS could see that as a potential career path for you. There are some strong organizations out there who work extensively and exclusively with people who are blind. Their staff may have some insight on what you can do and what SS may see as reasonable. I understand how you feel! I am torn between meeting the requirements of "being disabled" under SS and my LTD while not becoming too much of a couch potato. And even though I'm bringing in household income at a reasonable level I feel "guilty" that my hubby is working and I'm not.