I'm 62, male, ripped off by state with police disability 11 years ago. Now VA says PTSD. I am cracking molars from clenching jaw. Two days ago had to have a molar yanked because it was cracked and painful. Very complicated situation. Partial disability, dentist says more to come.
I'm living on the west coast now, I'm from back east. Have a couple of good police friends, current and retired, "Walking Wounded" that I keep in touch with. Domestic partner is handling pretty good, and am now undergoing VA care. Thanks for asking.
The prior military service qualifies any of us to be seen at the Va or VetCenters (in the US).
Proving “service connected” …anything… on the other hand, is a whole ‘nother walking naked through fire over broken glass. @Freida (Yo! Dispatch! You around?) has done it, recently. My own self I’ll occasionally use Vet Centers, as I can do so anonymously, but won’t touch the VA with a 10’ pole. I didn’t even use my GI benefits for school. Applying for any other benefits, when I won’t even use my education credits? Pfft. Ain’t gonna happen.
My therapist with the VetCenter doesn’t give a good goddamn if the military was only where my trauma history started (followed by contracting, NGOs, Disaster Response, an abusive marriage, etc.). He’s just keen on helping me unf*ck my head and my life.
Did the dispatch thing for 23 so I'm happy to boss you around and tell ya where to go
Yep -- just finished up a five year fight with the VA. Totally worth it once it was over but made me pretty suicidal a couple times during the fight. This place has been a godsend for keeping me together and I truly don't know what would have happened if I didn't have my pack here.
First up, if you don't already have one get a VSO (veteran service officer). You can find them thru the VA but mine were thru the American Legion and the Local Vet Center. They can walk you thru the whole process. Work with them to get your application in ASAP because that will be your start date- which also means it's the date you will get back pay for once you win the case.
Know going in that it's going to be a shitshow. As in your approvals will depend on if the person looking at your file got laid the night before and are in a good mood. Ya. Seriously.
That's the one thing my VSOs didn't really prepare me for -- but a couple of them said my case was a cluster from the very beginning so yours might not take as long or be as complicated.
Try to think of EVERYTHING that you can track back to your military days that might hit what could cause ptsd. Don't do the "oh it wasn't that bad" thing that we in public safety always default to. I only got past that block when my T said " I want you to write down every single time you have said "oh ya, this happened" with a laugh and the person talking to you has looked at you with the WTF DID YOU JUST SAY? face."
Cause ya, that's a thing.
Who knew? LOL
I'm usually around so lemme know how I can help.....