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This is my first diary although I have been a member of Daily Kos for a few years.  One of the things I have been struck with is the wide spread knowledge of Daily Kos readers and their willingness to share that knowledge and so I find myself turning to all of you for information.  

I suffer from severe recurring suicidal depression and am now facing eviction from my apartment due to a forced retirement that left me unable to pay the rent here.  My court date was today.  There is a real possibility I will end up on the streets sometime in the next few weeks and join the ranks of the elderly mentally ill homeless.  I am 62 and physically very weak - I can barely climb a flight of steps, - so I do not anticipate lasting long and find myself terrified at the prospect.  I have no family I can call on for help and none of my friends live in the area.  If I had the means at hand to end my life in a painless way, I would do so, I have accepted that my useful life is over and am peace with the idea of death.  However I do not have the means and find myself unwilling to try some of the more painful approaches at this time so I guess I must live for awhile longer.  I wanted to be gone before actually seeing all my belongings thrown out on the streets but it seems I will have to go through that very stressful experience.  I really dread that.  

The main reason I face homelessness is not really the money - I get $1050 a month from a pension - but the fact that my illness and physical weakness affect my ability to function.  Furthermore I suspect there is something neurologically wrong because I   can not think straight and my memory has deteriorated significantly.  My brain always feels frozen, like it’s atrophied or something.  The anxiety alone is paralyzing me, every time I try to function I am flooded with a wave of anxiety that makes it impossible to think at all and that causes a sense of overwhelming panic in my chest.   It is very hard for me to push through even to do simple things like take a shower or feed myself.   I feel like I am watching a train bearing down on me and I can’t get out of the way.  I was recently hospitalized and they said I needed assisted living but I don’t know where to start getting such a thing on $12K per year.  I do have medicaid, although I can’t find the card, and will have Blue Cross Blue Shield coverage for several months while my employer is still paying it.  After that I will have to start making a contribution I won’t be able to afford so will probably have to let it lapse.

I have 2 grown daughters, but they have let me know my problems are too great for them to deal with and that I am causing them unbearable stress by sending them emails about my situation and asking for help.  Yesterday I received an angry call from my youngest reminding me that I am the parent - I’d sent an email letting them know how bad things really are.  I emailed them that I would not bother them again and have not heard back from either one.   They have both done what they could in the past, but I think they are just burned out and have had to cut me loose for their own protection.  I understand this.  Both daughters are bi-polar and in fragile states of health themselves.  They both lead demanding lives and have limited resources.  I don’t expect them to help me at great cost to themselves.  Also, they live 2.5 hours away and one of them doesn’t drive so it is not like they can just pop over to help me pack or help me with daily living activities.  Dealing with the mentally ill can be really difficult - depression is such a selfish disease -  and I would minimize that burden.  

Over the years, I’ve read many diaries on the homeless in Daily Kos - often people who have been homeless themselves write comments sharing tips about things that made their lives less difficult while they were on the streets.   Other comments have come from people who know about the places people go to when facing homelessness - places that can help one find a place to live.  My credit, which was already marginal, is going to be destroyed with an eviction and judgement for back rent on my record so finding a place will be difficult, plus $1050 doesn’t go very far in the suburban DC area where I live.  I have substantial medical expenses that cut into that.  I would really appreciate any advice and information Daily Kos readers could share with me to help me prepare for the coming ordeal.  I don’t even know where the closest shelters are but have read that shelters are very dangerous places so am not sure what the best thing is to do.  I don’t even have a car to live in.  I am trying to put an action plan together to prepare the best I can.  Such preparations must be minimal, considering my disabilities.   I thank you for reading this and sharing any knowledge you can.

Originally posted to Margd on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 01:50 PM PDT.

Also republished by Kossacks for the Homeless Person and Maryland Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  You need to go talk to a Social Security disabilit (25+ / 0-)

    y specialist pronto. You should be eligible for Medicare as a co-pay for the treatment you need. You may be eligible for help with assisted living under Medicare. Don't wait. Go talk to someone NOW.

    LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

    by BlackSheep1 on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 01:57:25 PM PDT

    •  Thank you (14+ / 0-)

      Good advice.  I am not sure I qualify because I haven't contributed anything to SS for the last 35 years.  I have a federal pension.  But I will try this.

      I do have Medicaid now.  I just got it and it is my understanding they pay the co-pay.

      •  talk to them. Seriously. (7+ / 0-)

        I suspect that your disability makes you eligible for Medicare too.

        LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

        by BlackSheep1 on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 05:09:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I agree with BlackSheep (5+ / 0-)

        When you said pension, I was going to ask if you meant Social Security Disability, or SSI.

        Don't let anxiety get you down. Be pro-active.

        I don't know anything about this organization, but it couldn't hurt to check out the link or give them a call, email, etc. The National Coalition for the Homeless - If You’re Homeless or Need Help
        Here's good Social Security Links. From their website.

        United States Social Security Administration

        Benefits For People With Disabilities

        Apply For Social Security Disability Online

        How Social Security Decides If You Are Disabled

        Frequently Asked Questions How Do I Apply For Medicare?

        National Organization of Social Security Claimants' Representatives Lawyer Referral Service 1-800-431-2804 Social Security Basics

        Established in 1979, the National Organization of Social Security Claimants' Representatives is an association of over 4,000 attorneys and other advocates who represent Social Security and Supplemental Security Income claimants.

        Our members are committed to providing high quality representation for claimants, to maintaining a system of full and fair adjudication for every claimant, and to advocating for beneficial change in the disability determination and adjudication process.

        I think it might be harder to get approved without a lawyer, and I don't know if most people, can get approved for Social Security Disability, without a lawyer nowadays. A lawyer may be necessary at some point of the application process, and I think that if your original application gets denied the first or second time, having legal representation from there on, would be the smart, easy way. You get what you pay for, especially with the law! Legally, social security lawyers are only allowed, to take a fee of, about 16% and only after one is Approved and receives their retroactive check that pays them since the first date they applied. I think the fee is reasonable.

        (See the Social Security Websites (above), or call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213, For more information about applying or how to obtain a SSDI/SSI, attorney).

        If you've been denied, keep applying. The longer you wait the bigger the retroactive check will be! (for all the months you waited since you're first application).


        Subsidized Housing HUD Department of Housing & Urban Development How To Get Into HUD Housing

        HUD's Mission; is to increase home ownership, support community development and increase access to affordable housing free from discrimination. HUD sponsors housing counseling agencies throughout the country that can provide advice on buying a home, renting, defaults, foreclosures, and credit issues. This page allows you to select a list of agencies for each state below. You may search more specifically for a reverse mortgage counselor or if you are facing foreclosure, search for a foreclosure avoidance counselor.

        There Is A Waiting List For HUD Programs, But if you never put your name on the lists, your name can't move to the top of the them.

        What are housing choice vouchers?

        Housing Choice Vouchers Fact Sheet

        The housing choice voucher program is the federal government's major program for assisting very low-income families, the elderly, and the disabled to afford decent, safe, housing in the private market. Since housing assistance is provided on behalf of the family or individual, participants are able to find their own housing, including single-family homes, townhouses and apartments.

        Housing Choice Voucher Program Guidebook


        All the best Margd♥

        I'm 64. I was in the shape you're in, but I went back to a dr. Got some pain control the fentyl patch, not those terrible pills. Going to physical therapy too. I feel better, able to stand up, do more.

        You need to get on Medicare. Medicare pays 80% of the medical bills. Medicaid just picks up the balance. It's not good on it's own, doesn't pay enough.

        I got these links from a diary of mine. See for even more links. Just The Links Man ♥New And More Social Services Links For Civilians And Veterans♥.

        Remember this poem when it gets too hard.



        Out of the night that covers me,
        Dark as the pit from pole to pole,
        I thank whatever gods may be
        For my unconquerable soul.
        In the fell clutch of circumstance
        I have not winced nor cried aloud.
        Under the bludgeoning's of chance
        My head is bloody, but unbowed.
        And yet the menace of the years
        Finds and shall find me unafraid.
        It matters not how strait the gate,
        How charged with punishments the scroll,
        I am the master of my fate:
        I am the captain of my soul.
        By William Ernest Henley (1849–1903)

        Keep us informed about how you're doing Margd. We all care about you. Suicide is stupid! It's homelessness forever. Suicide is not an option. Getting well and safe in a home is the answer. You need Medicare and a good doctor. A good doctor makes all the difference.


        Brought To You By That Crazed Sociologist/Media Fanatic rebel ga Be The Change You Want To See In The World! Gandhi

        by rebel ga on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 07:32:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Good info - thanks (8+ / 0-)

          I have a federal pension and have not paid into SS for 35 years so am not sure how much help is really available to me but it is definitely worth finding out.   I did have a good union job at a grocery store for 8 years before I got the federal job so I should get something.  I had not really considered filing for SS disability before tonight, not sure why.

          Yes, the fentanyl patch is great.  I was on that for a few years while dealing with some chronic pain issues and it enabled me to keep working.  The pills were worthless.  Too bad it's so darn addictive,  I used to go through withdrawal every time the patch ran low.

          I do need a good doctor.  I don't have a GP right now.  They assigned me one when I was accepted for medicaid a month ago but I can't find the name or number so have to contact them for that info.

          I'll try to write a diary in a week or two letting everyone know how I'm doing.  I've gotten so much help tonight, it's unbelievable.  

          I really appreciate all the links and the poem and the good wishes.  I will definitely check out those links.

  •  Nursing home (13+ / 0-)

    You might be able to get yourself admitted to a nursing home.  The first step is to see a doctor and get yourself diagnosed as having dementia.  Or, you might call a nursing home and ask to speak to the social worker to advise you on this matter.

    •  That's an idea (11+ / 0-)

      I guess because I have Medicaid now and no assets a nursing home would be covered.  I am not sure I really qualify as having dementia though - the shrinks seem to think this is all depression.  Thanks for answering.

      •  Unfortunaltely, (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Margd, LSophia, Lujane

        I could be wrong. But a nursing home will charge you to stay there. I don't think medicaid covers it.

        When my Father was very old and in bad shape, my Mother inquired about nursing homes. One of them, wanted her to give them her house in exchange for taking care of my Father. Whether he would be there for years or a couple of months. Didn't matter.

        But calling and talking to a Social worker there is a good idea. Social workers will always help.

        Also, most hospitals have Social Workers on staff. So you could call your local hospital and ask to speak to one.

        Brought To You By That Crazed Sociologist/Media Fanatic rebel ga Be The Change You Want To See In The World! Gandhi

        by rebel ga on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 07:43:41 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I have worked with and advocated for homeless . . (21+ / 0-)

    people, and particularly those living with disabilities, in several different cities, and the resources vary widely and change frequently.

    If you are comfortable doing so, you may KosMail me with the city in which you live (you don't need to publicly post such info), and I'll see what state, local and private resources might be available to you.

  •  Ok. (16+ / 0-)

    I'm no expert but you need to either find that Medicaid card or take steps to get a new one.

    If you feel your brain function is diminished, you need to see a doctor to find out what is going on. You need a formal diagnosis not just "it feels like'.

    I don't understand why you would be evicted if you are making your rent payments, however. That doesn't seem right. There has to be more to the story. Has the property fallen into disrepair because of possible illness? Is something else going on?

    In our criminal justice system, a Republican is presumed innocent until the 2nd Coming. - Gooserock

    by ExpatGirl on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 02:08:01 PM PDT

    •  You're certainly right (10+ / 0-)

      about that Medicaid card.  I do need to send off for a replacement.  I'll try to do that tonight.

      I started to see a neurologist but found myself unable to deal with going back for all the tests and the process of getting the MRI's he needs from a hospital stay last year when I was being checked out for a stroke.  So yes, somehow, I must get it together to go back to him and get the MRIs.

      I haven't paid rent for 2 months.  My annuity isn't enough to cover my rent.

      Thanks for answering.  I appreciate your advice.

      •  If you have had a stroke, (11+ / 0-)

        your concerns about lasting complications are very valid. I understand feeling overwhelmed but you need to make sure the follow-up happens.

        I'm loathe to suggest this here but churches can be very helpful resources in terms of connecting with people willing to help.

        In our criminal justice system, a Republican is presumed innocent until the 2nd Coming. - Gooserock

        by ExpatGirl on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 02:22:52 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  WAIT (10+ / 0-)

        Go to court for the hearing.

        There are very few housing courts that would allow an eviction under these circumstances,

        They will suggest you go to mediation and work out a plan to pay the arrears over time.

        You must go to court

        If you need to, ask for a continuance to obtain counsel.

        most housing courts have volunteer lawyers who can give you general advice, or point you towards an agency that can help you

        You must go to court

        •  It is too late (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          codairem, rebel ga

          The hearing was today.  My landlord, who seems to be a decent guy, told me he'd tell the judge he was still working with me and not to bother going since I was not feeling well.  It sounded like he would get the eviction and judgement anyway but might tell the sheriff to hold off on the actual day.  This came after I told him that I had an auctioneer scheduled tomorrow to sell everything I own and that I was willing to sign over the proceeds to him but I don't think it will net enough to pay the back rent. I did not realize my illness might persuade the judge to give me more time.  I wish I had known that.  Thanks for the info.

          •  WRONG (9+ / 0-)


            It is not too late.

            You will be getting a notice of default judgement in the mail

            When you get it, or no later then Friday, go to the clerks office and ask to file a motion to vacate a default judgement.

            This is a one page form, fill it out stating you could not attend the hearing due to a medical condition.

            This will give you a new hearing date.  At that new hearing you can ask for mediation.  Hopefully by then you will have
            identified an agency or nonprofit that will help you,,,,every community has one.  Many communities even have organizations which focus on your specific problem...people at risk of becoming homeless

            They will even help you find sources of funding to help you with your back rent.  As much as I loathe them for their anti-gay bigotry, the Salvation Army is particularly good in this area.

            You will also find the public housing agency for your area and apply for elderly and disabled housing, this is your real long term solution.

            You don't realize it, but there is a whole universe of people willing and able to help you...but you need to take the first step.  If you have difficulty finding these resources contact local government or even the social worker at the hospital you went to.

            You also don't realize that the court system at this level really is tilted in your favor, but you have to show up.

            Also, make sure you pay July's rent, as that will be a giant point in your favor.

            •  Ok! (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              LSophia, rebel ga, greengemini, nachtwulf

              That's good to know it's not too late.  I really wondered if I was making a huge mistake by not going.  I'll do exactly as you say.

              That's an excellent idea to contact the social worker at the hospital.  He was very helpful while I was there and would probably be willing to send some phone numbers and web sites.  

              The problem is:  I don't know how I can pay ANY back rent and still afford another place on my income.  So I'm not sure what I have to offer at mediation.

              Thanks for all the info.

              •  wait (6+ / 0-)

                why would you have to find another place, the object is to keep you where you are until a more permanent solution is found, like subsidized housing.

                Hopefully you will find an agency or organization that will help you pay part of the back rent, if not all of it. If you go into mediation with a plan like that, it is in the landlord's interest to accept payment over time, as a monetary judgement is basically a worthless piece of paper.  This is why it is important to pay July's rent, the judge will like that too.

                I really want to disabuse you of the notion that you can solve this by making a few phone calls and looking at websites though.  You need to get out and do a substantial amount of networking in a short time.  Go in person to see the social worker and anyone else you find...if they can't see you right then, make an appointment while you stress how this is an emergency.

                I can tell you that these people get lots of "inquiries" but the people who get help are those who show up and who follow through.  It is difficult to get someone interested in helping you with your problem if you don't display much interest yourself.

                Don't forget about the Salvation Army, if there is one near you, go see them.

                As an aside, if you are paying a substantial part of your income to your landlord, you certainly qualify for food should apply for them as they can make a big difference.

                You can do this!

                •  Can't pay July's rent (5+ / 0-)

                  My income doesn't even cover my rent.  I rented my current apartment in much better times, when the rent was much lower and my income much higher.

                  I know it would be best if I could see all these people in person but I have no car.  I've pretty much been relying on cabs because the walk to the bus stop is more than I can handle.  Cabs are so expensive - they really cut into my available funds, which are so few.  It cost me $40 just to go to the local social security office today, and it turns out I have to go back tomorrow, so that's another $40 blown.  I just don't have the money to go to a lot of people and don't have anyone I can ask to ferry me around.  So I will have to rely on phones for some of this.  However, I do agree it would be best if I could stay here until I had subsidized housing so a few cab rides will be worth the money.

                  I don't think I need to see the social worker in person.  I think he will be willing to help, at least a little, even though I am no longer a patient.  He did say I could email him, but I forgot about using him as a resource.  That's half the problem - can't keep stuff in my memory.

                  Several people have suggested the Salvation Army - I don't know where the closest one is, but will find out.

                  Thanks for the "You can do this!"  I have to admit it sounds a bit overwhelming so it's nice to have a cheering section.

            •  I'm so happy to read your comments! (7+ / 0-)

              Margd - Your landlord is taking you to court to evict you and you are taking advice from him?

              No. No. No.

              Listen to Igerard instead.

              In our criminal justice system, a Republican is presumed innocent until the 2nd Coming. - Gooserock

              by ExpatGirl on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 05:33:39 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Can I add that I am freaking out at this?!? (6+ / 0-)

                Do what Inerard said.
                Get your Medicaid card.
                Get to the doctor.
                Stop listening to/taking advice from the person trying to put you on the streets as if he has anything in your best interests to say.

                No. No. NO. NO. NO.

                And your children. I'm speechless. Maybe there is a lot more going on here but, OMG.

                If you don't have community around you, build it. If church is the easiest way to do it. Do it.

                In our criminal justice system, a Republican is presumed innocent until the 2nd Coming. - Gooserock

                by ExpatGirl on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 05:46:29 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  You're probably right. (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Metric Only, LSophia, nachtwulf

                  I have really wondered about the wisdom of believing everything my landlord says.  Even if he is willing to hold off putting me in the streets until I can resolve the housing issue, I know he has at least one business partner who is not so patient.

                  It is okay about my daughters.  They have helped a lot in the past, but have health issues of their own and I can understand if they have finally reached the limits of their ability to be stressed out by my problems.   I do think they are being influenced by my ex husband, their father, who has become very hostile to me over the last few months but that is another story.  I don't think they can allow themselves to really accept things are so bad.

                   I don't have community around me.  I do sometimes envy church going people who have that. but I am not sure I am willing to go to church to get it.  I really am an agnostic at heart.

                •  "And your children. I'm speechless. Maybe there... (4+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Margd, ExpatGirl, LSophia, nachtwulf

                  "And your children. I'm speechless. Maybe there is a lot more going on here but, OMG."

                  ^ My thoughts exactly. Regardless of any issues your kids have, you are family and it's shocking they will let you end up homeless. I understand one may not drive, but could she not buy you a bus ticket and allow you to live with her? Surely, your pension will help her "limited resources" stretch a little farther as you can quite obviously contribute to the household. It's horrifying that your kids won't help. I wish I could help. Do you have a paypal account? Perhaps we could have a fundraiser here. I would contribute.

                  •  My kids are ok (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    They both care for me very much and would do more if they had the personal and financial resources.  But I can't stay with either one. They are both living in very small places with 2 people - there really isn't room for me.

                    I think they are having a hard time believing me when I describe the situation and it just seems to stress them out to the point where they can't function and I don't want that.

                    I do have a paypal account but the purpose of my diary was not to solicit funds, only info.  Thanks for the thought, though.

            •  Great Advice, lgerard (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              LSophia, Margd, nachtwulf

              It only costs about $35 to file that motion to vacate a default judgement. So it's worth it to get a few more months and a chance to work things out with the landlord. I know I've filed motions in the past. Had landlord problems.

              Brought To You By That Crazed Sociologist/Media Fanatic rebel ga Be The Change You Want To See In The World! Gandhi

              by rebel ga on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 07:52:00 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Were you married to your daughters' father(s) (13+ / 0-)

    for at least 12 years, and you are unmarried now?  If so, you can claim on his benefits (I think up to half of what you would receive as a spouse).  You need to check with SS, in any case.

  •  Where do you live? (7+ / 0-)

    You don't have to post it, but where you are will make all the difference in what resources you'll have available to you.

    Is it possible that some of your diminished function is due to stress? I know when I have a ton of things going on---even when my house is too messy---my ability to make decisions and remember what needs to be done is severely diminished.

    I'm really sorry to read this. I sincerely hope something works out for you.

    •  MD county outside of DC (9+ / 0-)

      and they are really strapped by the demands on their services.  I am steeling myself for the necessary trip to their offices but first must get a replacement SS card.

      You're absolutely right about the effect of stress on functioning.  I have thought of that, too.  I was under a great deal of stress when I had the breakdown that ultimately forced me to retire.  Sometimes I can feel the stress chemicals flood my system and then I can't think at all.

      •  Yikes. (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ladybug53, Margd, jgilhousen, LSophia, rebel ga

        Yea. I actually had to take a vacation this entire week just to get stuff done because it was stressing me out so badly.

        I envy people who can just let it all fall to the side, but I can't. I suffer some of that over-responsibility nonsense. I can totally see it driving me to a breakdown.

        I wish you were closer. I have 1 (or 2, if you count the room with the 40 year old carpet that needs to be pulled) extra bedroom. I'd make you help me repaint the place, lol, but ...  It would be nice if you could find an arrangement like that where you are, but they're hard to come by.

        •  Well it's a nice thought! (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jgilhousen, LSophia, indubitably, rebel ga

          I used to do a pretty good job painting molding.

          There were just a lot of things I'd procrastinated on until they became too big for me to cope with, including loss of my transportation.  And the illness had been slowly creeping up on me.

          I wish I suffered from that over responsibility "nonsense"!  I might not be in this pickle.

  •  A few may be. Many aren't. (10+ / 0-)
    have read that shelters are very dangerous places
    And most have staff who are knowledgeable about what resources are available in the area and how to tap into them.

    Also, check with this organization:
    DC Office on Aging

    “Texas is a so-called red state, but you’ve got 10 million Democrats here in Texas. And …, there are a whole lot of people here in Texas who need us, and who need us to fight for them.” President Obama

    by Catte Nappe on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 02:39:26 PM PDT

  •  You are in a really tough place. (10+ / 0-)

    All the best to you.

    Supple and turbulent, a ring of men/ Shall chant in orgy on a summer morn...

    by karmsy on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 02:45:45 PM PDT

  •  Here's a resource for you and others who may be (8+ / 0-)

    reading who feel they could benefit from mental health services, but are reluctant to enter the "system" on one's own because of potential for loss of control over one's life, stigma, etc.

    The National Empowerment Center is a national network of Consumer-run Mental Health advocacy and support groups.  A state-by-state list of affiliated organizations is available on their website:

    In addition to general advocacy work, most of them have direct service programs available, including peer-support, and can often provide a peer counselor/advocate to help identify resources and even walk you through some of the application procedures.

  •  first thing (9+ / 0-)

    is to locate the public housing agency for your area and apply for elderly and disabled housing.

    You do not have to be on SSDI to be considered disabled, a bit of documentation from a doctor should be sufficient

    This is really the only long term solution for you if you are unable to return to work and considering your age.

    Your age, disability and homelessness are all categories which should give your application priority status.

    Look around for a housing advocate or agency who can help guide you through this process, there is certainly one in your community.


    •  I called an office awhile back, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jgilhousen, rebel ga

      don't remember which one, and they told me there was at least a 12 month waiting list for low income assisted living.  I do have an application in for senior low income housing but my income is probably too low even for this place.  

      I am not sure how to find a housing advocate or agency to help guide me through the process but maybe teh google will help.  This is good advice - thank you.

      •  Forget about sitting at home and googling (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Margd, Metric Only, rebel ga

        This is an instance where you need to get out and network.

        Every city, town or county has a housing advocate...go talk to them and get a list of organizations from them.

        Every city, town and county has a disability rights advocate, find out who that is and go talk to them.

        Most places have pro bono lawyer organizations, call the local bar association or even the housing court clerk to find out how to get in touch with them.

        When you were told there was a 12 month waiting list, did you apply?  If you did you would be closer.  These lists have priority  categories for things like disability and homelessness/danger of homelessness, as well as for those whose rents are more then 50% of their income.

        They are all federally funded to some degree, which means your rent is 30% of your income.

        PS  Do not take legal advice from your landlord

        •  How do you find (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Metric Only, rebel ga, LSophia

          a housing advocate and a disability rights advocate?  I don't even know where to start.

          No, I didn't apply for the low income assisted living facility and now I can't even remember the office I called to get that much info.  You're right - I would be closer to getting housing if I had applied.  I'm not sure why I didn't, now.  I have kind of put off dealing with this until the last moment because it is all so overwhelming.  Not the wisest course of action, I know.

          One problem with actually going to all of these places is that I don't have a car and probably couldn't handle the walk to and from bus stops, plus standing and waiting, so I have to take a cab which is really expensive and cuts into what little I have for moving and finding a place to live.  

          You're right about taking legal advice from one's landlord.  Even if he means me well, which he genuinely seems to, he has business partners who are much more cut throat.

          •  Here are some places in your state that might help (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:


            At least a few places to start, and if they can't help, ask who can. Most people in jobs like these are there to help people, which i found out by having to ask for it myself. Give them a chance to help you, you deserve it!

            •  Thank you (0+ / 0-)

              I briefly checked out the site - it looks like it might be very helpful.  Have to run to the SS office this morning so it will be awhile before I can make any calls but I appreciate the info.

      •  I Live in HUD housing. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LSophia, Margd

        I pay $92 a month plus heat (but I get fuel assistance every winter and a discount on my electric because I'm low income).

        Brought To You By That Crazed Sociologist/Media Fanatic rebel ga Be The Change You Want To See In The World! Gandhi

        by rebel ga on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 08:10:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Incredible (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rebel ga

          It would be fantastic if I could get an arrangement like that!

          •  You can. All HUD housing is the same. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Gwennedd, Margd

            About 1/3 or less of your monthly income. I apply for fuel assistance around Sept. and they can tell you about the electric discount for low income. Being a senior (as a 62 yr old is. 60 plus is a senior citizen). Is in your favor. As is being disabled.

            The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

            Brought To You By That Crazed Sociologist/Media Fanatic rebel ga Be The Change You Want To See In The World! Gandhi

            by rebel ga on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 10:35:19 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Thanks for the link (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              rebel ga

              My electricity could be cut off any day now so it would be fantastic if I could get some help with it.

              •  Call your electric co. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                They have a discount for low income customers.  
                The elec co will work out a deal for you to repay what you owe over time and keep your electricity on. They do that too.

                Elec co, made me give them a $300 deposit because I moved to where I am now from New Jersey.

                I had propane when I first moved here and 4 years later when I moved into HUD it was electric and I couldn't find or get a bill from NJ elec co.

                Always keep copies of your bills, and any letters from gov't services you receive.

                Get file folders, and big envelopes, legal size, or larger depending on volume of contents and write the year on top.

                Keep all your bills, HUD, food stamp notification letters, elec discounts letters, social security letters, etc in an envelope marked with the name of agency.

                Keep for the entire year. You will need copies of all these letters every time you have to re-apply (on a six month to yearly basis) or apply for anything new. I make one copy and keep that handy too. This is how I found out the easy way (after having a closet of papers that I could never find. Organize them). You need a ton of documentation to apply for these gov't services.

                The following year write a new date on envelope and start saving these letters again. Keep a copy of your new lease and any other legal or medical papers here too.

                I'd get a cardboard box or a plastic shopping bag, to keep them all in. I keep everything in boxes and bags. I still never unpacked and am moving again next year.

                You should keep your social security card, medicare, medicaid cards in an envelope with these papers too.
                You can get more than one copy of these cards so you have extras.

                Just call your local, Division of Health and Human Services, for a copy of your medicaid card. Ask for two, so you'll have a spare. Contact Social Security to get copies of your social security card. Another biggie when applying. Both are free.

                Here's another really good program for low income people 55 and over. You don't have to be on social security disability or ssi, but you can be.

                Later on down the line, when you're settled and feel better.

                SCSEP is a great, nationwide program. Guaranteed 25 hours easy work a week. For at least two years. To re-train you (and give you some extra cash to save, whatever).

                No penalty for failing at the end of that time. And SCSEP pay is a stipend that Does Not count as income with food stamps or HUD housing. So you don't lose money by working part time. SCSEP Employment Training-Older Worker Program And Social Security Work Incentive Programs-Pass Plan, Ticket To Work

                I don't have a problem with the fenatyl patch. That feeling you got isn't being hooked, it's the pain coming back on the third day. I don't have a problem at all and I'm a nerveous type. I would feel it. It makes a difference between walking and not walking. So I use it. I'm 64 getting hooked is not an issue for me. Just stay away from pills. Pills will get you hooked!

                Brought To You By That Crazed Sociologist/Media Fanatic rebel ga Be The Change You Want To See In The World! Gandhi

                by rebel ga on Tue Jul 01, 2014 at 02:15:47 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Thanks (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  rebel ga

                  I did have a plan with the electric co but can't keep up the payments.  I am saving everything I can for a new place.  I know it will be expensive to move as I might have to pay for a couple months rent up front plus movers.  They'll get me once I move and need the power turned on.

                  Good advice about the need to stay organized.  I am hopeless at this but must somehow do a better job if I am to apply for any kind of assistance anywhere, I know.  I know you need a lot of documentation to apply - I utterly dread getting this together, my papers are in such chaos.

                  It is really helpful hearing from someone who has been there.  And thanks for the info on SCSEP.  I'd never heard of this program.  I don't think I can work actually but this is worth checking out.

                  Thanks again.

  •  Since you've asked for advice, I'll give you (12+ / 0-)

    a few suggestions.

    You still have the ability to communicate very well in writing.  This is good!  And you have Internet and (apparently) phone.  Good.

    I am going to point you to two resources:

    -- Your local 'Area on Aging' (usually 'Area [#] on Aging') and

    -- your local Adult Protective Services (usually part of the County Prosecutor's office, sometimes with different terms, like 'Endangered Adult' services).  You may also need help from --

    -- your local govt-funded, free, Legal Aid provider.

    You can get info on all three by calling 211 (like 911, but for info on where to get help/services).  Or you can call your local library of look online.  Gather those phone #s, email addresses.

    Make a copy of this diary in your word processor, adding your name, address, phone #, and email address.  Then edit out the first paragraph of your diary, and all of the last paragraph except this text --

    My credit, which was already marginal, is going to be destroyed with an eviction and judgement for back rent on my record so finding a place will be difficult, plus $1050 doesn’t go very far in the suburban DC area where I live.  I have substantial medical expenses that cut into that.  I would really appreciate any advice and information Daily Kos readers could share with me to help me prepare for the coming ordeal.  I don’t even know where the closest shelters are but have read that shelters are very dangerous places so am not sure what the best thing is to do.  I don’t even have a car to live in.  I am trying to put an action plan together to prepare the best I can.  Such preparations must be minimal, considering my disabilities.   I thank you for reading this and sharing any knowledge you can.

    [Leave this text in]

    You now have a document that clearly describes your complicated situation very clearly.

    You did not mention whether or not you have friends/work colleagues, etc, who would be willing to help you by reinforcing the message about your situation.  Also doctors, nurses, therapists, the attorney who helped with your eviction case.  Make sure you have their phone #s handy, and emails if possible.

    The process I'm going to provide now area based in my own life experiences, and are geared toward kicking down the gate to the shortest path to getting support now, before the eviction process proceeds.

    Gather the agency phone #s as suggested above, with your revised diary ready to cut/pasted into an email form.  Have paper/pens available to take notes of conversations, and to record the dates/times of any conversations or messages you leave.

    First, call Adult Protective and make sure you are talking to someone who can start proceedings (has the right authority to make others act).  When you have tie right person (or theri voicemail), say:

    My name is XX and my phone # is XX.  I am an [age]-year-old woman having problems with brain function, and I am having suicidal thoughts because I will soon be evicted because the brain problems make it impossible for me to manage my own affairs.  I need help and protection under the Adult Protection or Endangered Adult law, whatever it's called.  Please have your office start whatever proceedings are required right now to help and protect me as the law requires, so I don't have to commit suicide or be put out on the streets.  I have an email ready that I'll send right now.  Other people have read it, and they say that it describes my situation clearly.  I'm going to have to hang up now, because talking about this is so distressing, but please read my email as soon as possible and reply right away, please.  Thank you.
    Now, I wrote this as though it was a voicemail, but even if you're talking to a person, you can go through all this quickly, then hang up.  However, if the person 'gets it' and wants to fill to a form or do an intake, go along with that, but make sure to ask if this conversation will get the ball rolling right away.  Ask who they will contact, what they will tell that party to do, how soon they will act, and what action you should expect.  Make notes of all of these details on paper, with date/time.

    After you hang up, breath for a few minutes, maybe get a drink of water, then send the email.  Put a note at the top, like this:

    [Note:  Ms Jenkins, you and I spoke just now (date/time) [or: 'I left a voicemail [date/time)], telling you about my situation as described below.  Please help me get the help and protection that the Adult Protection/Endangered Adult laws are meant to provide, right away!  Thank you.]

    Let your supporters know that you've made the contact and urge them to call right away and let the office know how worried and scared they are for you, what they've noticed about how your symptoms affect your ability to function, etc.  Although I've made it sound like you need hordes, just a few will make a difference; those who are persistent and insistent will be best.  Former work colleagues, neighbors, etc -- medical-care providers would be great, particularly the doctors you've worked with, who can address brain function.

    Do the same thing with the Area on Aging (their Intake person(s) will be best here, especially their Supervisor), changing the text a bit to fit -- ie, 'I just spoke to/left a message for Person at Adult Protection . . . etc.'  Follow up with email etc, as above, including calls/emails by supporters.

    Rest a bit.  Get a bite to eat that includes protein and complex carbohydrates (like a sandwich).

    Do the same thing with Legal Aid, then call it a day, unless you've received clear instructions to contact another agency with clear instructions on how you are to proceed in getting immediate results.  'Call and check with' advice should be handled differently.

    If any of the three agencies I've mentioned try to put you off by saying 'we don't do that here, you can try call This Agency to see if they can help' -- don't do it.  (I'll give reasons in a bit.)  Instead, make note of the agency, contact info including the best person to talk to, then tell the person:  'Look, I've already told you that my brain isn't functioning well, and it would be a genuine hardship for me mentally, physically, and psychologically, to call a bunch of different agencies and explain myself and be rejected because they don't offer the kind of help I need.  I am identifying myself as an Endangered Adult, and asking your office to help me keep myself alive.  If you can't do that, please put me in touch with someone who can."

    Well, I kinda included 'reasons' in that paragraph, didn't I?  I know from personal experience it is to make call after call after call (for similar problems), especially while suffering from 'diminished cognitive capacity'.  ('Might as well stick your head in a beehive and hope to die' is how I've described having to put myself through that.)  Do not let them put you through that.  

    One thing to know about these agencies, and other bureaucratic offices:  They are all over-worked and under-paid, tired and probably cynical as all hell to boot.  Their under-budgeted office culture has probably trained them to try to turn away people whenever possible, to cut the workload and avoid hassle.  

    The Adult Protection is required by law to respond to complaints such as yours -- it's their legally-defined function.  If that office puts you off or tries to give reasons why your situation doesn't qualify or any other type of off-putting sh!t, ask them for the name phone, and email of the person (usually in the Prosecutor's office) who is responsible for the actions of the AP office, tell the person you're hanging up now to call that person, and hang up (unless they change their tune/actions immediately, in which case stick with them, if they're moving toward action that will take immediate effect.)

    One word I've forgotten:  Advocate/Advocacy.  Throughout all this, also say that you need and Advocate to help you deal with the paperwork, calls, etc you need to do now, because your 'diminished cognitive functions' ( or 'problems with brain function') make it impossible for you to do these things well yourself.

    Legal Aid (at least here) has 'keeping people housed' as a priority.  They may be able to challenge the eviction proceedings on the grounds of brain capacity as a 'handicapping/disabling condition' that made you unable to mount an effective defense.

    In my local experience, both Area on Aging and Adult Protective try to do as little as possible (I could tell you stories!).  AP (at least here) has the authority to light a fire under Area 10 and get an 'intake' done right away; but here, I've had to kick-start AP by contacting the Prosecutor, when trying to get help for a friend.  This is why it's so helpful to have other people call, not just to back you up but to let the office(s) know that other people are 'witnessing' their treatment of you, and could raise a stink on your behalf.

    I know the above looks complicated, but describing things is always more complicated than the processes themselves.  Not knowing what's available in your area, I've pointed you to services that are available almost everywhere, and which could be the shortest path for protecting yourself.

    Here are a few other suggestions:

    Using your computer, the library by phone, or 211 (for social services) --

    -- Look into, and make lists/notes about 'residential hotels/motels -- not the fancy-schmancy kind executives stay in, but the lowest-cost kind (in least-dangerous neighborhoods, insofar as you can).  Get an idea of rates, openings, what appliances are provided/ allowed (refrigerators, microwaves, sinks/cabinets, are open flames of hot-plates allowed, or only specific appliances; the dKos community can advise you on cooking with only a few electric appliances).

    -- Storage facilities/lockers for your household goods -- prices, terms of contracts including length (i month, 6 months, etc).

    -- Local centers which serve the homeless and impoverished, offering a variety of services.  They may have contacts/agreements with Legal Aid, etc, that could get needed attention to you more quickly and effectively than you can, working on your own.  They will also be familiar with local resources, and which ones are the most responsive.  Places like these often have social workers, and becoming part of someone's caseload could be a big help in getting help from other sources.

    Finally, do what you can to take care of yourself.  Eat reasonably, choosing nutritious food that also has a comfort-food quality.  Sleep.  Keep yourself showered or bathed, and don't spend all day in your pajamas -- letting these small acts of self-care go really brings one's spirits down.  Let yourself enjoy small pleasures.

    Best wishes!

    •  Excellent advice (7+ / 0-)

      particularly re leveraging the power of lucid email communication.

      I am thinking about eldercare agencies that provide case management.  Someone to help put all the pieces together:  Social Security, Medicaid, adult protective services, eviction and section 8 housing, all of it.  

      Not sure what's in her area or how to access it, but getting a personal Case Manager would sure be good.

      "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

      by lgmcp on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 05:12:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  PS I looked to see what dKos groups (6+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LSophia, CroneWit, Margd, Nelsons, nachtwulf, mimi

        this might have been republished to, and saw "Kossacks for the Homeless Person".   I wondered if there was a group for Maryland kossacks, and there is:  So I sent them a message calling attention to this diary.

        "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

        by lgmcp on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 05:30:38 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  And one more thought (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CroneWit, LSophia, Margd, rebel ga, Gwennedd

        In my browser's Print Preview mode, this diary plus all current comments is currently about 11 pages.  

        With feelings of brain fog and overwhelmedness,  that's a ton to focus on.

        I'd suggest that IF you happen to have printer capability at home, that you PRINT IT ALL OUT.

        Then you can go through it with a hi-liter or something, and mark the suggestions that seem most appealing and most doable to you.  Mark it up with notes.  Put stars by the things that you'd like to start with first.  And so on.

        Visual record-keeping can help you organize your tired and stressed brain.  Bless you and hang in there.

        "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

        by lgmcp on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 05:38:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No printer (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lgmcp, rebel ga, LSophia

          Not for the first time, I wish I had one.  I too was thinking how much it would help to have a print out.

          You're right it is a ton to focus on and I am a little intimidated by how much I should be doing, worried that I won't be able to do it in my current state.

          Thanks for the good wishes.  They are greatly appreciated.

          •  No one could do it all (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Margd, rebel ga, LSophia

            You'll have to fish around a little more in your local resources and figure out what looks the most productive.  The ideas here will give you good ideas about what questions to ask.  A long talk with the aforementioned "211 operator" may be a good starting place.

            I suppose in the absence of a printer, that jotting down ideas from this thread onto scratch paper will ultimately help you categorize and prioritize them anyway.   But for sure don't plan on doing ALL this, even if every bit was great!  My hope is that you can hook yourself up with an agency or residential facility that will support you with case management.


            "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

            by lgmcp on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 07:17:37 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Wow! (6+ / 0-)

      Thank you for taking the time to write this!  It is a diary by itself and filled with very useful information.  It does sound a little overwhelming but I will try to follow your very welcome and detailed advice.  I did not know anything about the kind of protective services available.  

      I should be able to get a few people to "witness" for me.  

      That part about eating nutritious food is a bit problematic. I have had a hard time doing so because it usually involves preparation and that seems to be beyond me.  In fact, sometimes I don't eat for days.  I just spent my available food budget on a delivery filled with junk food I figured I would at least eat.  There is a lot of salad in there so that's something.

      Again, thank you very much.  I love your head inside a beehive analogy.  

      •  The fact that food prep is 'beyond you' is one (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LSophia, lgmcp, Margd, Metric Only, rebel ga

        more reason to seek help under the Adult Protection/Endangered Adult law.

        This law is usually used by someone other than the Endangered Adult, but the inability to manage one's own food prep, money/bills, paperwork, etc. brings you into territory included in the law's language about 'protectable' adults.  

        You could even have your 'witnesses' call before you make contact, to pave the way for you, find the right person to talk to & give them your name so they will be expecting your call.  This would take away some of the 'cold-calling' aspect for you.  

        I know my process sounds daunting, but when you look at it, it's mainly (1) make preparations (gather contact info, pen/paper, revise diary into email, etc, (2) make calls, followed by emails, keeping good notes along the way.  The language in my 'scripts' was built (a) to include some terms specific to the law and (b) to demonstrate that you know how to work within the system if employees try to avoid their responsibilities.

        The bit about the beehives -- I learned of a story about how old-timey people who lived in the Appalachian mountains (about 100 years ago, but with a culture that had changed little since they came here fro Scotland 2-3 centuries before).  And outlander who lived among them for a while reported a story he had heard them tell, about how they went about taking out a bad tooth.  The method included a lost of whiskey, an old-fashioned square-cut nail, and a mallet.  They drank the whiskey to prepare themselves, then used the square-cut nail and mallet to (prepare yourself!) to cut a 3-sided hole in the bone at the base of the tooth.  Then they grabbed on and pulled.  The outlander asked, 'What if it doesn't work and you have to do it a second time?'  The Highlanders laughed uproariously, for a long time.  When the laughter had settled down, on old man wiped away his tears of laughter and said, 'Ef ye ha'e to do it a second time, laddie, you'd best just stick yer head in a beehive an' hope to dee!'

        Having had to pull a number of my own teeth, using my own invented method,  before I encountered that story, it made me laugh til the tears ran down my cheeks.  Yeah, the guy was right.  If it doesn't work the first time, it's hell gearing yourself up for that second attempt.

        Hey, as far as food:  Can you get to the free/low cost lunches offered at various places for older folks, usually coordinated by the Area on Aging?  Or a free-lunch/dinner place for poor/homeless?  The town I live in has a Community Kitchen, dinners on weekdays with the option to take home up to two more meal's worth.

        You might do well to start by just calling 211 (which is available almost everywhere these days) and asking them for agencies which help with the issues in your diary, as well as food (esp meals).  While I believe you need some thorough medical testing, some of your brain-related symptoms could be caused or worsened by lack of nutrition.

        And also, you could google 'Area on Aging' + your county/city name, and take a look at their services tonight (I'm hoping they provide Advocacy, which would be a huge help in managing the help-getting process for you!).  They may even have a 'contact us' form, and you could make contact tonight for phone follow-up tomorrow.

        I'm glad you found some helpful things in my comment.  Here's hoping you find the help you need!

        •  Great story (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rebel ga, LSophia

          about the pulling one's own teeth.  I can't imagine doing that - I don't know how you did it.

          It is good to know about the Endangered Adult Law.  I didn't know there was such a thing.  I think I probably do fall into that category.  I do have real problems doing anything, even simple things like taking a shower.  My finances are a catastrophe although some of that is the sudden unplanned- for plunge in income.

          I didn't know about 211 before tonight.  I intend to make good use of it.

          I will follow your advice about googling 'Area on Aging' though am not sure I will get to it tonight.  It is growing kind of late and I am really tired.  So tomorrow.

          Thanks again for all your advice!

          •  'Needs must when the devil drives' - an old (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            saying meaning 'necessity compels'.  Kind of like when Butch & Sundance jump off the cliff into the river. (re: teeth; sorry, should have mentioned that first).

            Good luck to you!

      •  That might well contribute to your stress level (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CroneWit, Margd, rebel ga

        Is there a Meals on Wheels or another similar program out there?  Eating properly could really help you feel better (not that it's a panacea for all of your problems, but not eating certainly can't help!)

        I would also call your local Episcopal church to see what services they have available, or UCC or UU.  

        Salvation Army has a strong track record of helping people with rent and eviction issues.

        I second what everyone else has said.  You need a caseworker or someone to help you navigate this, and protect your interests right now.  Do you have friends or extended family who could help a bit, too?

        •  Meals on Wheels? (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Metric Only, rebel ga, LSophia, CroneWit

          That's a thought.  I really should look into them since I am having such a hard time eating right.

          i will call those churches.  Other people have suggested them as well.  It's good to know which ones to start with - I didn't have the faintest idea before tonight.

          I do plan on contacting the Salvation Army - several people have recommended them as good resources.  I had actually forgotten about them, so this diary has been a good reminder.

          I do need a case worker and thanks to comments in this diary now have some information about obtaining one.  I'm going to start looking tomorrow - it's late now.

          No friends or family to help. I did have a friend who was helping but she cut me out of her life - she doesn't really believe in depression as a medical diagnosis and couldn't understand why I wasn't functioning better.  Mental illness can be scary and frustrating to those around us and I have really learned that lesson well over the last few months.

          Thanks for all your input.  

      •  Are you on Medicaid because 'Disabled'? (0+ / 0-)

        If so, this status could help you now.

        In my state, a childless adult  can only get on Medicaid if they pass the state's stringent standards and are granted, by the state, Medicaid as 'disabled'.

        If this is the case with you, this could help, because the Federal Fair Housing Act requires Landlords to provide 'Reasonable Accommodations' to 'rules, policies, and procedures' to a disabled/handicapped person -- in other words, they must alter their 'PPP' so that a disabled person is able to meet the altered rules.

        Since your disabling conditions (as described in your diary) include a lots of  cognitive deficits, making it difficult to deal with paperwork, the Landlord must, under law, come to an agreement with you that will allow you to meet your requirements as a tenant, with allowances made for you cognitive dysfunctions.  (If you require another person(s) (advocates) to help you, they must allow that.)

        Under housing law on Reasonable Accommodations (RA) for Disability, the RA must apply at ALL stages of tenancy, including during eviction proceedings.

        The disabled tenant must inform the Landlord about the need for RA, but the standard for 'informing' is very gentle and does not require formal language or a written statement.  The disabled person only has to tell the Landlord, in their own terms, that a disabling conditions prevents them from complying, and ask the Landlord to modify the rules to meet the disability-related needs.  

        (Example:  Apartments have parking spaces for tenants, but they are are available on a first-come first-served basis.  A tenant has mobility problems (back knees, weight) that make it hard for her to walk far to her car.  Tells Landlord, 'I know you don't usually assign parking spaces, but with my back and knees so bad, it's just too much for me to walk all the way to the back of the lot, and the neighbor's friends always take the spots closer to my apartment.  Could you please assign one spot for me, right in front of my apartment?' would be considered Informing and Requesting.)

        Even if you didn't bring up your cognitive dysfunctions with the Landlord previously, you may  be able to have a lawyer bring the Fair Housing Act/Reas Accom to bear on the eviction process, beginning now.

        Again, this comment is based in my personal experiences, and is based on the HUD/DOJ Joint Statement of Reas Accoms under the Fair Housing  Act.

        Please talk to a lawyer about this.  It may not be enough to overturn the eviction (although it might, if the court recognizes that you were denied the Reas Accom in the earlier process, which could be seen as a deprivation of Due Process), but it might buy you some time.

        •  Just saw this (0+ / 0-)

          two days after you wrote it, so am late in answering.  

          I don't know why I have Medicaid.  I got a call out of the blue one day telling me I'd been accepted into the program.  I think it must have come out of a hospital stay a couple of months ago, so maybe it is because I'm considered disabled, although I'm not sure precisely what they might have identified as my disability.  Maybe depression.  It's true they recommended I move to assisted living.

          Thanks for letting me know about the rules about RA as relates to Landlords.  I had RA at work for many years due to chronic migraines and depression but I didn't know it also applied to Landlords.  I will have to follow through on this.

  •  My heart feels for you. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Margd, LSophia, nachtwulf

    You have been given some very useful and wonderful help here. I wish I could give you some too. My advice would echo CroneWit's. Do what needs to be done , pacing yourself, and conserving your energy.

    Grab a notebook and write down who you phoned ( date, name of agency, phone # and address, if you know it), what they said, and any contacts they give you. (I tend to write things on backs of envelopes and all sorts of paper and then have to scramble to find a certain paper). A notebook keeps it all organized. That notebook should fit into your purse and you can tape business cards in it.

    In the coming weeks, it will help you to have any of the contacts you've made and their info easily to hand, even if you're away from home.

    I feel sure, that with all the excellent advice that everyone has given you, that your life will improve immensely.

    A door never shuts, without a window opening.

    A fo ben, bid bont. - Welsh proverb. ( translation: If you want to be a leader, be a bridge.)

    by Gwennedd on Mon Jun 30, 2014 at 06:07:48 PM PDT

    •  Thank you for being so caring. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rebel ga, LSophia

      You're absolutely right about all the help I'm getting - way more than I imagined in my wildest dreams.  I'm blown away by it all.

      I actually do have an organizer that fits in my purse, but seem to have had a hard time using it and have numbers scribbled all over the place, which I can never find. After tonight though,  will definitely have to press it into service and make a point of keeping it close at hand.

      Again, thanks for your comment.

      •  Second the idea of keeping phone logs (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Navigating the maze of ANY of these bureacracies takes gumption, and a certain amount of getting-the-run-around is inevitable.  So if you really make a point of keeping a trail of breadcrumbs, as it were, at least you'll have a map of where you've ALREADY been.

        "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

        by lgmcp on Tue Jul 01, 2014 at 05:30:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  One final idea before bed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Ramadan has recently begun. It is an Islamic holy month. I have been reading a lot about it and one of the pillars of the month is helping those less fortunate, including donating to a fund at the mosque to help people in need in the community. It also stresses communicating with those not of the faith. It might be a long shot, but maybe your local mosque might be a source of aid?  

    •  Wait, I lied, one more (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Perhaps you could rent a room from someone in the area? A quick look at Craigslist has them running for around 300-500 dollars a month, and having a roommate might help with meal prep and rides. Just a thought.

      •  Rented rooms (0+ / 0-)

        Yes, I have considered renting a room and my daughters have been a big help with Craig's List searches.  The ones they sent me were running about $600-$650 though.  I might end up having to go this route, at least until I can get subsidized assisted living somewhere.  I've lived in rented rooms before, not a great experience but it was okay.  Thanks for the comment.

    •  Never thought of a mosque (0+ / 0-)

      I'm not sure where the local mosque is around here but it's worth a short.  

      •  You've been given so much great advice (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Margd by all in this wonderful community.

        Many areas, and I do not know about yours, an action for eviction can take up to 6 months or so, after you show up in court the first time.

        I only bring it up if perhaps if you are able to get Legal Aid help or an elder attorney who does pro bono work, that perhaps you could gain some time living where you are for a bit longer to take the time pressure off - If an attorney can step up to file papers to stop an immediate eviction then you will not have so much pressure right now and can then make your plans.

        It is all so overwhelming to deal with so much at one time. But if you could at least have another month or two where you live while you sort out all the rest.

        My heart goes out to you. I wish you well.

        _______________The DOD/ War Department, which consumes 22% of the national budget, is the world's largest employer with 3.2 million employees.

        by allenjo on Tue Jul 01, 2014 at 01:02:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          for your kind wishes.  I think you're right about the need for Legal Aid help in dealing with the eviction. You're also right about what a wonderful community this is.  Before this diary, I felt absolutely lost.  Now I have a much better idea of what to do.

          •  It is one of the most redeeming things about this (0+ / 0-)

            community, that also seems to love those pie fights. ;)

            You wrote a wonderful, compelling diary at a very dark moment in your life that I think touched many of us. I know that it did me.

            I hope Margd when your time and energy permit that you will do a follow up diary and let us all know how you are. ( I am so hopeful that your life will be better soon).

            _______________The DOD/ War Department, which consumes 22% of the national budget, is the world's largest employer with 3.2 million employees.

            by allenjo on Fri Jul 04, 2014 at 05:18:07 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

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