Healthcare Crisis

us healthcare crisis

I will use two different videos to illustrate my thoughts on the state of health care for the poor and working classes. I am a medical assistant in a low income clinic. I am not a doctor and I am not an expert. These are simply my thoughts and observations.


This person is evidently not an American. However, the thoughts she is expressing are thoughts expressed by lower income people in the U.S. who have been diagnosed with cancer. Chemotherapy is not a guarantee, and the cost is prohibitive for those even in the middle income brackets. A person finds themselves in the situation of having to decide whether it is worth it to incur debt of such magnitude that even if the treatment does help them go into remission in the long term, they may be left unable to pay for the costs of housing. Is it worth it to be given what may only amount to another year or two of life at the risk of leaving oneself and one’s family homeless?

This is a question that no-one should ever have to ask, yet many people have to ask it. One should never have to choose between treatment that could possibly save their life and risking not having a home because the monetary cost is so dear.

Breast cancer still kills, even with treatment. In modern times, it is one of the more treatable cancers, but for lower income women it is often a death sentence because there is no way they can afford to pay for the necessary medical care. This is wrong. Nobody should have to make that choice.


I give the caveat that the above video was made by a right-wing political group. I utilize it because it presents “straight from the horse’s mouth” statements only. I prefer news sources that are politically independent, however, I didn’t have the patience to cherry-pick and this one suited my purposes.

The political right wing in the United States at this point is so extreme that they make their icon Ronald Reagan look like a liberal. This makes it difficult to criticize any of the current administration’s policies or behaviors without risking sounding as if one has an extreme right-wing bias, which I do not. I also do not claim to understand everything that is happening with regards to the changes in health care at this time. I only know that they have been little to no help for the majority of people with whom I have come into contact.

President Obama is only one person. He signed the current bill into law. It can be argued that this is the only way he could get any kind of positive change through. I would be quicker to look to Congress as being the ones at fault for the sorry mess that currently plagues the healthcare system. Obama should not have made sweeping promises such as the ones recorded here. However, he is not the sole person responsible for the negative state of U.S. health care.

I am appalled by the laws which make having insurance mandatory and levy a penalty upon those who do not have insurance. This is not a solution. This benefits only the insurance companies. It is highway robbery, and leaves many people in a worse bind than they were in before.

No small portion of the people who come into the clinic fall into the working poor demographic. They are barely able to keep a roof over their heads and afford food. Those who have illnesses that require medications are often not compliant with their medication regimen. It is not that they are “stupid” or “obstinate.” They are unable to afford the medication, even with insurance. These people get lectures from doctors about the necessity of being compliant to treat their conditions. It is not that they are unwilling, it is that they are unable.

It is not so easy to get on a drug company’s free medication program as some individuals would like everyone to believe. Many people who are barely scraping by “make too much money” to qualify. They also make too much to qualify for housing assistance and food stamp benefits. As for the poor being lazy, it often comes down to a person having to make the choice between working and keeping the benefits which allow them to survive. I see many of the people who have fallen through the cracks in the system or who are at risk of falling through the cracks. They are not lazy or shiftless. They are desperate and distressed.

In my own case, I see the doctor but have not been to the dentist in almost ten years due to the prohibitive cost. I work forty hours a week at eighteen dollars an hour. Most of my income is spent on the modest condominium in which I live. The payment on this place is $900 a month, and I’m “getting off easy.” The going rate on a two bedroom apartment/condo/townhome in the metro area where I live is $1000-$1200 on average. This is almost half of my paycheck.

I cannot afford to live in the city, and the costs of moving are prohibitive. The area where I live is a bedroom community of the major urban area. The mass transit to this community is spotty at best. It doesn’t begin early enough to get me to work on time. Thus, it is necessary for me to have a car. Because my credit is less than stellar, I pay more for insurance every month. If there was ever evidence of a conspiracy to keep the poor poor, factors like this point towards it.

I am a forty year old single mother. Groceries for myself, my 18 year old daughter who graduates high school this year and will be attending community college in the fall, and my sixteen year old son who is a smart and kind young man with psychiatric problems which may make it difficult for him to work in adulthood, use up much of the rest of my income. I will be able to keep my kids on my insurance plan until they are 26, but having them on my insurance raises it by $225 a month. According to others I have spoken to, I’m getting off easy.

My point in sharing my own personal story is that I make well over minimum wage, but am still barely scraping by. A major health crisis could devastate my family and leave us homeless.

Something needs to change drastically, and I do not see steps going in the right direction. All people deserve access to good health care, regardless of ability to pay. It might make the difference in a person being able to lead a productive life. It might even make the difference in a person being able to have a chance at life at all.

Thanks for “hearing” me out.

~Carrie~

The Key to a Lasting Marriage

I caught the Armchair Psychology bug after talking with my son regarding his dad. I’m not on bad terms with my ex husband. Our divorce was very civil, and we had joint custody of our sole child. While we had disagreements over the years, sometimes nasty ones, we were a family. Although I haven’t spoken to him in almost a year, it isn’t out of animosity. He lives in another state, and we really haven’t had any pressing reason to speak to each other.
I’m not pining for my ex husband. I’m the one who ended the marriage. No matter how vile things were, he never would have. He doesn’t care enough about himself not to live in an intolerable situation. From a retrospective position, it’s likely that he has Asperger’s syndrome. Because I have conditions such as bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder, I tend to be very emotionally volatile. We were an oil and water combination. Plus, there is a certain shameful admission on my part. I really never loved the guy. I married him because it seemed the logical thing to do.
I was not forced into marriage. I was not pregnant when we got married, in fact I thought that I couldn’t have kids. I reasoned that I tended to get too hung up on guys that I fell in love with, so it would be better to marry one that seemed sensible. He presented a calm exterior. It seemed likely that he would be monogamous. He was intelligent, so I reasoned that he would probably be able to get a decent job. If it sounds like I was choosing a business partner rather than a spouse, that was, to a degree, the logic I was using when I made the decision to marry him.
In researching the topic of how marriages deteriorate, I found plenty of videos and articles stating rote ideas such as “men aren’t made to be monogamous, they want to bang as many women as they can get their hands on.” Or, “the problem these days is that women are not subservient to their husbands.” Yuck. Both of these are terrible opinions involving unnecessary sexual stereotypes and outmoded gender roles.
SOME men want to bang as many women as they can get their hands on. If one is this kind of man, he should be honest with himself and any potential partners and not get married. Not all women are wired for monogamy either. Unless both partners would truly be okay with an open marriage, the folks who are still sowing their wild oats should not be putting a ring on it. Period.
Regarding the “women should be subservient” chestnut, 1300 called. It wants its ideals back.
Nobody should be subservient to anybody. Everybody should be respectful of those with whom they have any kind of relationship. In a working marriage, communication is the key. Both partners need to be flexible. No one person should be calling all the shots.
Marriage takes work, and perhaps too many of us still have the whole starry-eyed “happily ever after” idea trapped in our psyches, as if it happens magically. People need to make their own magic, both in choosing a partner and making it work with that partner.
I guess I’m glad I didn’t know this 30 years ago, because I did get my son out of that ill-advised relationship, and he is everything to me.
Personally, I gave up on the whole “finding my prince” thing a number of years ago. My psychological problems are too severe for being in a romantic relationship to be a positive thing for me. I tend to be drawn to chaotic men who are charming on the surface but when their true nature comes out, it is revealed to be abusive and controlling. Chasing a storybook romance is not worth ending up in the E.R. with bloody wrists.
My marriage to my ex husband did not end with bloody wrists. It ended fairly decisively. He had become emotionally abusive, and it wasn’t worth it to stay in the relationship any more. I was a mess psychologically, with a trifecta of undiagnosed conditions. There was no way it could possibly have worked. We both agreed that our son was better off if we divorced.
May I say that I hope all of you find your ideal partner. Make sure you bring your head into it rather than letting your lust do the talking, but don’t let the head be the sole decider. Marriage without desire and without that intangible quality of romantic love is a life-draining thing. Marry someone whom you truly like. This is the advice that I give my son. It isn’t as if I’m an expert on love by any means, but the marriages that I’ve seen which have lasted all have this quality. Both partners truly like each other.
Peace,
The Cheese

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Judgmental Jackwagon Proclaims Those Who Have Only One Child Selfish

dynamite

This judgmental jerkwad seriously managed to piss me off, and now I need to blow my stack. I’ll share with you the comment that I left for him on his so enlightened piece of tripe masquerading as an article.

You are seriously judging other people for deciding for themselves that one child is enough? I have two words for you: a$$ and hat.

Who in hell are you to decide that someone else is selfish for deciding to have only one child? Who died and made you God?

If I had more than one child, my resources would have been stretched way too thin. Neither of my kids would have been able to go to college. As it is, I’ve been able to help my son go to college. It’s a struggle, but he has a fighting chance of not having to work a menial job for the rest of his life, thanks to my being so horrible and selfish.

When I was younger, I listened to the judgmental a$$hattery of people like you, and thought that I was a terrible person because I ended up divorced when my son was four and never found a suitable partner. Oh, what an awful person I am for thinking about my own and my son’s welfare and not getting knocked up by some bad choice of a boyfriend or husband.

Gosh, I guess I’d best apologize to my son tomorrow for having been such a horrible mother and not giving him the soap opera life that he could have had. If only I had insisted on giving him another sibling. Just think how things could have turned out