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About BuddyLoveAK

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    E-3 Seaman

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  • Military Rank

Previous Fields

  • Service Connected Disability
  • Branch of Service
  1. C-File completed?

    The FOIA for my C-File showed up as Gathering of Evidence under "open claims" until 11/30/17, when it moved to the completed section. Does anyone know approximately how long it'll take for them to finish processing my C-File now that it's "completed" under eBenefits and send it to me? Do they get mailed right away? Or do they get put into another stack where I have to wait another 6 months for it to get mailed? Also, my NOD got denied so I filed a substantive appeal. However, the substantive appeal has been sitting at the originating VA office for the past several months. Does anyone know approximately how long it takes for substantive appeals to be moved from the originating VA office to the board and get a docket number? Thanks!
  2. Thanks for the response RootBeer. PTSD seems a lot easier to find a nexus event for since everything is based on that traumatic event. I guess my problem is trying to establish a nexus for bipolar, which doesn't really have an "event" that caused it. It's like how do you find a nexus for schizophrenia? Is the diagnosis of another psychological disorder enough to be considered a nexus if over time that diagnosis changes? It's confusing me.
  3. I'm trying to understand what a nexus could be in my situation. I am currently diagnosed Bipolar 1 and my docs say it started in the Marines, but I was discharged with a personality disorder. My SOC essentially says my nexus is weak. In my military medical records I was diagnosed with anxiety disorder before it being changed to personality disorder. Is having the anxiety disorder diagnosis at that time a nexus? In my SOC they said there wasn't any sign of psychological problems, and thus the personality disorder diagnosis. My docs all concur that my bipolar started in service but was misdiagnosed at the time. Can someone please throw out some hypothetical examples of a nexus that would apply to my case so I can better grasp the meaning of the term and how it applies to me? And also if the anxiety disorder could be a nexus? I'm also currently diagnosed with anxiety disorder, should I apply for that now or wait for my bipolar case to finish?
  4. UPDATE: Unfortunately, I got the SOC in the mail today. Looks like it's on to the BVA. They essentially said that the letters from my docs weren't sufficient enough to invalidate the original diagnosis. So I'm going to get a real IMO that's a lot more substantial.
  5. I'm waiting for a DRO review. I submitted letters from my doctors, is that considered new and material evidence? I'm waiting for my c-file so I can have a more comprehensive IMO written up.
  6. I'm still waiting for my c-file, so I don't know what exactly is in it. But this section in my C&P exam leads me to believe that it says I had a mood disorder diagnosis from 11/06 - 03/07. If so, that's a great thing for me. But how it's worded leaves me unsure what exactly is being said. Will someone tell me what you think the examiner is saying?
  7. I just applied for voc rehab but am unsure what to expect. I have 20% for chronic foot pain and depression (38 USC Section 1702 active psychosis) that has developed into a pretty serious bipolar 1 disorder with psychotic features . My chief problem is the bipolar, but it isn't rated yet. I haven't been able to work for 3 years now, and prior to that all I could manage were part-time jobs which lasted a few months before my symptoms worsened and I had to quit. Will voc rehab recognize the depression/bipolar during their evaluation, or only the foot since it has a service connected rating? I'm currently appealing my bipolar claim to the DRO, in what ways could voc rehab hurt or help my case? My bipolar depression has been debilitating. I rarely leave the house, and when I do I become extremely anxious in social settings and can only leave for short periods at a time. Once home the anxiety eases up but I still feel worthless, guilty, unmotivated, SI, and random crying fits. I spent a week at the mental health unit last month to try and get some improvement, but it didn't really help much. I'd ultimately like to try and finish my degree, but I have failed or withdrawn from every class I took the past 3 years (knocking my GPA from 3.78 to 3.2) so I don't think that's a viable option right now. Any input or advice would be greatly appreciated. I'm 32 by the way, not the normal college age if that matters.
  8. I'm confused about nexus. What would a nexus be for depression/bipolar? Would erratic behavior/cutting be a nexus? Because there is no one incident I can point to and say "here, look that caused bipolar depression", it's more like a combination of behaviors/symptoms that occurred inservice and then reoccurred several years later.
  9. Here is what they wrote in the documentation about the depression. They don't mention whether or not it's SC. The 20% is for my foot, a separate issue. The VA diagnosed me with depression after discharge and several years later changed it to bipolar disorder following a manic episode. I was discharged with a personality disorder, but that was a bogus diagnosis so they wouldn't have to compensate me after giving me a real diagnosis. My current doctors say I was most likely having a manic episode and that's what led to my discharge. But this is the only documentation I've received from them regarding depression.
  10. Here is a screen shot of what it says on my eBenefits page. Yes, that is the information I saw when I looked it up. Thanks!
  11. Hello, I was wondering if someone could explain the differences between Depression 38 USC Section 1702 Active Psychosis/GW Mental and SC Depression 0%. I know that 38 USC Section 1702 allows you to get treated for the condition, but how much are they admitting service connection of the condition? With 0% I can just apply for an increased rating, but with 38 USC Section 1702 is it similar? I have 38 USC Section 1702, so do I have to demonstrate service connection in order to get it rated?
  12. I went through my in-service medical records and found 3 instances where the Navy docs were considering bipolar disorder and anxiety disorder vs personality disorder. Attached is a screenshot of one of those. Is that a nexus? Since my discharge I have been diagnosed with both bipolar disorder and anxiety disorder, so is the fact that they were considering those diagnoses at the time considered a nexus? I've been trying to figure out what "nexus" is/means in my case. Thanks for your input.
  13. Thanks for responding everyone! It's nice having someone to talk to about all this. I'm currently waiting for my c file. The FOIA said it won't be until Nov-March before I get it though. That's a good story about your friend and the Ireland offer. I could see myself making that same gesture, that's a big award. And well earned! I don't think the IMOs I submitted have the key words and phrases that the VA is looking for. I didn't find this website until after I turned everything in, so I didn't have a template for them to go off of. Here's a few quotes from my IMOs for those who don't want to wade through all that material: "It is my opinion that he does meet criteria for diagnosis of bipolar 1 disorder and that stress associated with his circumstances within the military may very well have contributed to expression of symptoms associated with this condition." - VA Psychologist IMO (written after she went into private practice) "I see little evidence of borderline personality disorder. His mental health conditions that expressed themselves at the end of his enlistment...were the early manifestations of bipolar 1 disorder, exacerbated by his armed services conditions." - current non-VA Psychologist "That [borderline personality disorder] is clearly not his behavior pattern, and in retrospect, his symptoms at that time were the onset of what is now clear as bipolar disorder." VA Psychiatrist Progress Notes I opted for the DRO review. I have not received a fiduciary appointment letter. I actually had a sleep study done for my insomnia and they said there's no sleep apnea. I did the CBT for insomnia and it helped some, but I think my insomnia is mostly related to my bipolar. I signed up for eBenefits and discovered something about my depression diagnosis. It says that I have "depression (38 USC Section 1702) Active Psychosis/GW Mental". I've been looking into it and my understanding is that since I was diagnosed with depression within 2 yrs of my discharge then the VA will recognize it as service connected in so far as they will provide treatment, but not compensation. Is that correct? Considering depression is part of bipolar, isn't it common sense to connect the dots and say that my bipolar is 38 USC Section 1702 Active Psychosis/GW Mental? Will having this 38 USC Section 1702 Active Psychosis/GW Mental help my case?
  14. Hello, I have been looking through the forums trying to get an idea of what to expect during the appeals process, and I learned a lot! Thank you to everyone on here who shares their past experiences and wisdom. I am hoping to get some advice, feedback, or even speculation as to how strong my appeal is. I have been going through the Schedule of Ratings for Mental Disorders to try and figure out where I might fall on that spectrum, but I fit in several categories. Can anyone share their opinion on where I fall? I know this is all speculation, and each case is unique, so I'm not going to take this as gospel. I'm just trying to get an idea of what other people who have experience with this think of my case. Right now I have no clue whether or not my IMOs, C&P exam, personal statement, and my mom's statement are any good or if I may have included any information that could hurt my case. Attached is all of the evidence I submitted with my NOD. A couple of notes: I didn't tell the C&P exam psychologist that I had a personality disorder, I told him I did NOT have one. However, he wrote that I admitted to having one. Also, the progress notes page with the highlighted sentence is from my psychiatrist's progress notes. One attached file is my personal statement, the other file is everything else. Brief history: I had what I believe was a manic episode in the Marines and was discharged with a borderline personality disorder after some shady stuff with my command and the navy psychiatrist, was untreated following discharge for 7 years, had another episode in 2014 that led to me being diagnosed with bipolar 1, my docs urged me to file for benefits because they think this started in the Marines, denied, appeal submitted. Thank you for your time and input! VA Appeal copy_Redacted.pdf 20170511160843_Redacted.pdf
  15. Hi Berta,

    I am currently waiting for a DRO review of my appeal for denial of bipolar disorder, but I have no idea if what I submitted is any good. I considered posting everything (redacted of course) to get some feedback, but there's some very personal stuff in there and I'm not entirely comfortable with that. I have seen from your posts that you are extremely knowledgeable and I would like to know if you would please look over what I submitted and give me some feedback? If not, I understand. Thank you for your consideration.


    1. Tbird


      Please post your question on the forum. Berta doesn't generally answer one off questions. You don't have to post the personal stuff, just redact it.