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Financial worries and guilt

jim and i's picture
jim and i
Posts: 1659
Joined: May 2011

As Jim's condition continues to decline I feel guilty about worring over my financial situation when I am alone. I will not be able to stay in our home on my retirement and Social Security alone. Rent is higher than my current payment. We live in a manufactured home, which is paid for but lot rent goes up every year. We can not get a home financed (payments would be substantially less and I could afford them) because the cancer diagnosis caused me to retire early which resulted in a move within one week so he could recieve treatment. Jim like the thought of me living in this park when I am alone because it is safe, but reality is I would have to give up transportation of my own and use buses if I stayed here. There is a facility for low income seniors but in a bad neighborhood and feels like a nursing home. This will be my only recourse if I have to sell. I have applied for numerous jobs but as soon as a walk in they say the job has been filled or if I apply online they can tell by my work history or education record that I am a senior and I get no response.

All that said; does anyone know of assistance for the spouse of a Vet of the Korean war?  And, I just needed to vent and cry. If nothing else, pray that I can practice what I preach and rely on God.

Debbie

debbiejeanne's picture
debbiejeanne
Posts: 2540
Joined: Jan 2010

debbie, i'm so sorry to hear this.  cancer takes so much from us in so many different ways.  you should not feel guilty.  unfortunately, when something happens, you have to go on living. 

i don't have any info, i just wanted to say, keep ur faith and keep praying.  God will take care of you.  u r n my prayers.

dj

jim and i's picture
jim and i
Posts: 1659
Joined: May 2011

thanks dj

fishmanpa's picture
fishmanpa
Posts: 1120
Joined: Jan 2013

Hi Debbie,

I'm so sorry you find yourself in this position. I did a quick Google and found the American Veterans Aid for vets and surviving spouses. Might be worth a call. http://www.americanveteransaid.com

Positive thoughts and prayers

"T"

 

katenorwood
Posts: 1853
Joined: May 2012

These are all issues we need to discuss while we still can.  Have you told Jim how you're feeling ?  Please remember, this is a guilt free conversation you need to have.  Oh my dear girl, I wish I could take this away from you.  As far as the VA....call your local office.  There are groups for Korean war vets.  My Father is also a Vet of this war, Navy served on a destroyer.  I know he reached out....but was shot down on any help because of assets at the time of Mom's dx.  Boy was he pissed, never ever asked for help in over 50 yrs....and told too bad.  I would also check into Federal housing for seniors in other areas if this is a possibility.  They have lists that you can pull off the net.  You have so much going on in your life....so overwhelming, and frustrating.  As far as a job.....well you kinda have your hands full right now....and are doing an amazing job !  Take this one step at a time, but continue to research your options.  All the hugs I can muster sent yours and Jims direction !   Katie 

jim and i's picture
jim and i
Posts: 1659
Joined: May 2011

I have tried contacting VA but either get no return VA website not much info other than Agent Orange related. My sister in Ohio had a great local VA rep who helped her a lot but I can't seem to locate anyone in Florida. She found she qualified for a lot of things she didn't know about, Of course her husbands cancer was agent orange related. Korean Veterans seem to be forgotten. I do however appreciate the prayers and encouragement. As for talking to Jim about this, it would only upset him and there is nothing he can do so why worry him. I want him to enjoy life as long as he can.

Debbie

osmotar's picture
osmotar
Posts: 954
Joined: Jul 2011

Debbie,

 

While I don't have any information about the agencies you mention , I do get e-mails from the Cancer Legal Resource Center, not sure if they can provide any input or assistance , but it doesn't hurt to check with them..the e-mail address their mail comes from is;

cancer_legal_resources_center@mail.vresp.com

Disability Rights Legal Center
800 S. Figueroa St.
Suite 1120
Los Angeles, California 90017
US

I didn't see a tel # on the most recent e-mail.

 

Linda

 

 

Ruben and Jude's picture
Ruben and Jude
Posts: 154
Joined: Apr 2013

Debbie, please don't feel guilty for your thoughts. I've had the same conversations in my head as well. It can be overwhelming. Like you, I want my faith to be strong enough to really rely on God. He is the faithful one. With everything we've been through, one thing I know for sure is He hears our prayers.

I don't have any answers for you either, but I just wanted to let you know your voice is being heard and you have my heartfelt empathy.

Jude

luv2cut1's picture
luv2cut1
Posts: 287
Joined: Oct 2010

I am an estate planning and elder law attorney in Colorado, although I do not deal with Veteran's benefits (yet). I belong to a nationwide organization called ElderCounsel which has highly qualified attorneys all over the nation. Many deal with veterans benefits and many offer free consultations. Thorganization is extremely active in Florida. Please note that "elder law" does not mean you have to be elderly. It just means that it deals with many issues that elders face such as medicaid, chronic illness, disability and veterans benefits. You may want to go to www.eldercounsel.com and see if there is someone close to you. All of the attorneys I have met are extremely competent, knowledgeable and compassionate. They may be able to let you know if therstare any benefits available. 

Many prayers are with you as you navigate this very difficult journey. 

Myka

donfoo's picture
donfoo
Posts: 1286
Joined: Dec 2012

Hi Debbie,

I know thinking about your life living alone is frightening and upsetting and it is natural to have such thoughts come and go as you know that someday it is going to likely be a reality. My neighbor was out of work for some time and he had a college student rent a room for awhile to help get by. Maybe the idea of sharing housing with someone could work out for you, maqybe even allow you to stay where you are now. Maybe a relative might make a good roommate, even if you have to relocate, that might be better for you.

Seeking out financial guidance for seniors is very sound advice. There are other tools available that might be of help. I see the TV ads for reverse mortgages, maybe that would work.

Since you are thinking about the future, I encourage you to use the available time now to seek out and evaluate various options so you are educated and have fully thought through the various positives and negatives of each option. When it comes time to decide, you will be far better prepared and sure of your decision. Best to you, don

jim and i's picture
jim and i
Posts: 1659
Joined: May 2011

Thanks for all the suggestions and prayers. I will definately try these sites for help.

Debbie

wolfen's picture
wolfen
Posts: 1196
Joined: Apr 2009

I understand your thoughts of guilt. I knew from the moment of Ron's decline, that I would eventually be in trouble. He knew it too and was very worried about me. I would tell him every day that I would be okay. You have to see this as planning your survival. I had my blinders on and was not prepared when Ron left. When your spouse leaves, you remain stunned for quite some time & it's not a good time for decision making.

The elder council sounds like a good place to start.

I have a couple of tips which might help. Find out if you are responsible for remaining medical bills. Check utility companies to see if there is a discount for widows. If Jim's SS is a higher monthly amount than yours is, you are entitled to the difference. Make sure you get his full amount for the month in which he leaves you. I know these are cold, hard, nasty facts & I'm not trying to sound unfeeling. They are just some of the things I have recently dealt with.

Don's suggestion about a roommate is a good one, if there is a relative or very close friend. In my case, my son & grandson plan to move in with me as soon as they can, just to save me.

Take care & remember "No Guilt".

Luv,

Wolfen

Ladylacy
Posts: 497
Joined: Apr 2012

Being in the same position as you right now, I worry about the future.  I do know that if your husband's SS is larger than yours, you are entitled to the difference.  When you notify SS after he passes, they should walk you thru that.  Right now my husband's medical bills are only for supplies as he even refuses to see the doctor and when hospice is needed, I know that is covered by Medicare.  Don't sign any papers if your husband goes into the hospital, have him signed everything or sign his name.  When my mother was living with us at the end of her life, she signed everything or I signed her name and anything that wasn't paid by her Medicare and supplemental, was written off.  No one ever tried to collect from me for her outstanding medical bills.

I do know that when my neighbor's mother was looking at an assisted living facility she found out that since her husband was a vet, she was entitled to so much money a month to help with the assisted living.  My husband was in the National Guard for 9 years but is entitled to nothing as he was never called up even though his time was extended during the Curban crisis under President Kennedy.

And don't be upset with youself for how you feel, just remember your are not alone in how you feel and your worries.

Sharon

jim and i's picture
jim and i
Posts: 1659
Joined: May 2011

Believe it or not I thought I was the only one who thought about how I would live financially when my husband was gone. It relieves some guilt to know I am not alone in this worry as you and others have stated. Jim has had a couple of good days so I have been able to relax some. I still find myself on pins and needles worring about every change or pain he has. My main concern is he does not suffer. Thanks for the understanding ear and the encouragement.

Debbie 

Greg53's picture
Greg53
Posts: 830
Joined: Apr 2010

Debbie,

No help from me but hopefully some of the advice above will help.  Wanted to let you know - sending you as much positive energy and good mojo for both you and Jim!

Best

Greg

tommyodavey's picture
tommyodavey
Posts: 373
Joined: Nov 2011

Debbie,

 

I worry about what my wife will do when I'm gone and I'm cancer free right now.  It is a worry we all get as we age.  As far as work goes there are several good websites to look on.  The best one I found to date is "RetirementJobs"  Here is a link to them.   http://www.retirementjobs.com/  If you Google something like "jobs for over 50" or similar wording, different websites should come up.  When I retired I thought a part time job would be fun.  I went on RetirementJobs and found one the first day I looked.  Interviewed and got the job at Macy's.  New jobs come in all the time so don't give up.

 

Is there no children or siblings to help you through this?  This is the time you need to lean on friends and family.  If not, get on the phone and try to get something set up before you're in too much grief to handle it.  I wish we had the resources here on this site to help.

 

Things have a way of working out as you well know.  And it will with you.  It won't be fun or easy, but eventually you'll land on your feet.

 

I am so sorry you are going through this.  

 

Tom

 

 

Grandmax4's picture
Grandmax4
Posts: 585
Joined: Dec 2011

feel alone. I'm the cancer survivor in our family, my husband has rhumatoid arthritis. I often wonder what we'll do when he can't take care of our home place. We live in the boondocks on an acre of land,I'm all for selling and buying a condo,but he doesn't want to live in or near town. I guess time will tell, but don't ever feel quilty or alone in your thoughts, we all have them. My best to Jim 

TracyLynn72's picture
TracyLynn72
Posts: 732
Joined: May 2013

for all that you're going through right now.  I don't have any advice on where to get help, but I wanted you to know I'd be praying for you.  God has perfect timing and works things out that are best for us.  It's hard to believe that sometimes, but that's where our faith is tested.  (trust me...mine has been tested a LOT this year!)  Sending lots of ((hugs)) your way!! 

Hondo's picture
Hondo
Posts: 5868
Joined: Apr 2009

This is the part where life sucks; I know I worry so much about my Wife for when it comes my turn to go to sleep. I try to have everything in order for her but look at all the money it took just to keep me going and how little there will be left for her after I am goon. I do have some death insurance but only if I die while still able to work and will it be enough. I don’t know the answers to all of this but this I do know, God will take care of her until we meet again. I put my hope and faith in the one whom through all my life I have trusted to take my wife in his hands and care for her while I am gone. I pray He will do the same for you.

God Bless

Tim

MarineE5
Posts: 758
Joined: Dec 2005

Debbie,

Have you contacted a Veteran's Service Officer ( VSO)? They are volunteers for the Military Organizations such as the Marine Corps League, Disabled American Veterans, Veteran's of Foreign Wars, and American Legion. Try and contact one of these organizations and get an appointment with one of their VSO's.

Not all VA admin regional offices are the same. Many are helpful, and many are not, so it is better to have a Service Officer that is familar with the workings of that office to muddle thru all the paperwork for you.

There is some help out there with the VA, but like anything, paperwork, and more paperwork. That is why it is important to either have a good advacate at the VA or a VSO that is on top of things to help you out. Here is a link to some financial information for War time Veteran's that may need some help and are over 65.

http://www.military.com/benefits/veteran-benefits/veterans-pensions.html

My Best to Both of You and Everyone Here

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