Disability & Advocacy Information
When the word disability is mentioned, most people assume it's a visible physical condition. But what about biological mental illnesses such as Bipolar Disorder or Depression? Can they be debilitating? Of course, but most people don't think of it in that way. Mental illness can be seriously debilitating. How can you explain to someone that you are so depressed that you can't function, can't get out of bed, can't cook, eat, laugh, concentrate, sleep, read, take a shower, or even perform the simplest tasks of daily life. What about mania? How can you explain to someone that your thoughts are racing so fast you can't speak correctly or think clearly, you can't sleep and feel so alive, you have hundreds of fabulous ideas floating around your head but cannot perform one of them, you feel a compulsive need to shop, or even worse, your suffering from fearful delusions. You may even be very irritable and experience explosive rages. What if you suffer from rapid cycling or mixed states? These are things that a doctor simply cannot bandage or put a cast on. It doesn't work that way unfortunately! So what if you cannot work, what happens then?
These are some very complex issues. Where do you go for answers? I have listed several links below that I hope will offer you assistance with your needs.
Filing for disability can be quite a maze of paperwork. I have heard many stories as to how laborious it is getting disability and that legal counsel may be necessary. I have also heard that Social Security may decline a case on the first presentation. However, they do offer an appeals process. Listed below are sites to help you through the details of filing for disability or perhaps answer some of your other questions. Prepare yourself and read as much as you can about filing, what laws protect you, etc. Try to do your "homework." Learn what choices you may have and DON'T give up! I have also listed some other useful links regarding advocacy, The American with Disabilities Act, etc., that may help you in research regarding disability and advocacy.
Social Security Online
Disabilities State by State Guide
Disability Resources On The Internet
Americans With Disabilities Act Information
The Government Information Xchange
Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law
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