Help Me Feed My Kid & Find A Lawyer
My daughter is four. As I write this to you, I'm wondering how I'm going to feed her tonight and tomorrow and the days that follow.
My daughter gets a check from Social Security every month. It's fifty percent of our income. Four months ago, her check was held at the office while I completed a payee report for her, due annually. For the following three months, her check was sent to the office on account of an error within the Social Security computer system.
As someone with PTSD-related agoraphobia (a panic disorder) and a personality disorder, I don't get out often at all. I don't get out often because large crowds can trigger panic and dissociation. That is how I got involved with Social Security. When triggered, I can't be held responsible for my actions. Knowing this, I've called in advance since the very first time I sat three hours waiting for them to rectify the situation.
When calling in advance, I've always spoken with someone who directed inside the building when they were ready to serve me. I'd walk to window one and the representative would hand me my check and I'd sign a piece of paper and walk out. It took less than five minutes. This time, I did just that.
The lady on the phone was wonderful. She knew the situation, she had my account open, she saw the same thing happened the month before, and she advised me she'd talk to the lady at window one and alert the security guard to expect me.
It was hard to walk in, but I did. The place was so crowded people didn't have a place to sit! The employee designated to wait on me was the same person who caused the error four months ago when she did her job incorrectly. I waited ten minutes for the person before me to leave. Then, she intentionally took her time staring at her computer, doing nothing but changing screens for ten minutes as I told her (and she knew!) I had called and taken care of it in advance. Then, she told me she needed to go get my check and a form for me to sign. She stood fifteen feet in front of me while holding my check in her hand... and laughed and talked with another co-worker for ten minutes! Meanwhile, in rhetoric to myself at the window, I said the word "f*ck."
After being lectured by another female employee as if I am a 5-year-old child, who had not clearly informed them I had a panic disorder, the original employee returned to her desk. As my panic disorder kicked in, I questioned why she was intentionally taking her time when she'd been informed of the situation. She hummed while I spoke. She threw her hands up. When I asked if wasting our time was fun for her, she responded, "It sure is!" With a smile. I said "f*ck" again as I told her she sucked at her job.
Following that, two male employees flew up in front of and behind me as I was quietly sitting in my chair. Trapped in the window with no place to go and two males raising their voices at me, I asked them to stop. One pointed his finger at me, the other was a security guard standing above me with no way for me to escape if I wanted to at all! When they noticed I might be recording the whole thing, I was removed from the building. The security officer was so close as he walked me out that when I turned around to say "f*ck you" in a state of dissociation, I almost ran into him. He even tried to follow me to my car until I raised my voice and told him he absolutely would not! I told him our electric was due and the only reason I was there was to get our check, sent to them in error and questioned how I would do that. He said it wasn't his problem but I wasn't getting it.
He was right. Two days later, I got certified mail from Social Security declaring that I've been banned from every location because my "offensive language was unacceptable." Their behavior is unacceptable. It's also abusive and discriminative.
It's the end of the month and her check was due by the third. But they didn't send it certified mail. They're flexing their power. I'm not very good at asking for help, and I'm pretty long-winded, I know... but my kid needs food and diapers. So, I'm reaching out for help.
Please know, any funds over $700 or that exceed the goal will be applied towards obtaining and funding a lawyer. We've already started calling around. Those costs can be anywhere from $200 to $1000 an hour. Pro bono lawyers aren't very popular in Oklahoma. So, the struggle will be real! And, of course, we will need the means to retain one. (This was section updated 9-29-17.)
No one should be treated abusively when they visit Social Security, and no one should be intentionally placed in crisis.
I'd be so grateful and humbled by any support! A donation, a share, a word of encouragement, a referral to legal counsel, etc. We're struggling.
Thank you so much. Love from our home to yours. ♥
Being unfamiliar with the way GoFundMe works, I wasn't sure how we would retrieve the funds. So, today I learned the platform keeps five percent of each donation, and unfortunately, actually accessing this money may take until October 4th.
In the event of learning this, I'm sad to know we will lose things and be playing catch-up for a month, if not more, just like we've been doing for months now. You'll notice a change in the amount being raised. I want you to be aware of why that has changed.
By the time we get this money, we'll be paying re-connect fees, past due balances, penalties, etc. Any pennies of credit we had left have been maxed. So, I must keep going. I have also reached out to two local lawyers. I'm waiting to hear back concerning the cost of representation.
I really can't thank you enough. And thank you doesn't seem like much! But for us, tonight, with a little help outside of this campaign, it meant my daughter finally got her "scetti" (spaghetti), and that just means to world to me. So, thank you.
Love from our home to yours. ♥