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  • 14 Questions about VA Disability Compensation Benefits Claims

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    When a Veteran starts considering whether or not to file a VA Disability Claim, there are a lot of questions that he or she tends to ask. Over the last 10 years, the following are the 14 most common basic questions I am asked about ...
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  • Can a 100 percent Disabled Veteran Work and Earn an Income?

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    You’ve just been rated 100% disabled by the Veterans Affairs. After the excitement of finally having the rating you deserve wears off, you start asking questions. One of the first questions that you might ask is this: It’s a legitimate question – rare is the Veteran that finds themselves sitting on the couch eating bon-bons … Continue reading

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hedgey

So My Clinic Has Hired My Old Shrink... *maybe Triggers!*

Question

I tried searching on old and former therapists, shrinks, etc., and couldn't find any threads about it. I'm sure it's happened to others here, and I hope someone can help me at least calm down.

My VA clinic has just hired a new psychiatrist to replace the one who quit. Found out today that it's one I used to see privately, years ago. Many years before I knew anything about PTSD or had started tracing my problems to what happened to me in the military.

He's non-military (as non-military as you can get, not even any family in uniform) and when I saw him he had nearly zero experience working with vets for any reason - heck, he was only a few years out of medical school. Anyhow, he wasn't just my MH meds guy, he was my therapist. Since he was trying to find an answer to my extreme difficulty with intimacy, he zeroed in on the likeliest suspect: my father. Now at the time, I was so desperate for answers that I was right there with him, thinking of all the times that maybe my dad looked at me funny, or times that I'd been left alone with him as a child... it makes me sick to think of it now. I'm sure that my dad never did anything like that, but in my state of mind, my paranoia took on some ugliness. Thank God I never followed the shrink's advice and confronted Dad with any accusations. I quit going to him when I realized how off-base it all was. When I tried to tell him I thought we were barking up the wrong tree, he said I was just refusing to accept the truth. We had quite a heated discussion about it.

My military experiences, those I remember. I didn't suppress them to the point I couldn't remember them, I just avoided the heck out of them and sort of skirted them (well, okay, there are some parts where there are black holes in my memories, but I sure know they happened). I told him about them, but how could I get deeply into military trauma with someone who actually asked me why I didn't just quit and go home (seriously, he asked me that).

I started writing this yesterday afternoon and just walked away from my computer. Needless to say, I didn't sleep and I'm still just as crazy worried as I was yesterday.

I'm really freaked because I'm afraid he's going to put in my records that my problems stem from a bad childhood, not from the things that I witnessed and had forced upon me in the military. And I'm afraid that the raging hostility I feel toward him is going to show through, and I don't think it's ever good to alienate your VA providers if you can avoid it. And I'm afraid he's going to judge me with his ego on full, with bias because I refused to accept his analysis of my problem.

Can a civilian shrink use his old records of your sessions against you as a VA provider? I didn't give the VA permission to procure records from any of my civilian shrinks because none of them were vets, none of them understood anything that didn't have to do with parents who got divorced or siblings who called names. Although, I often talked about my first marriage, to the soldier who was controlling and cruel. I can't bear to think that my VA records could possibly include accusations about my poor father.

Sorry, I'm rambling. Rattling. I don't know who to turn to.

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On the other side of the coin maybe he will be easier to deal with now. I think that if it were me I would ask for some ground rules and pretty much tell him that you do not want to mix up your private relationship you had with the current.

There were many hapless Dads who got blamed for things cause so called professionals like to blame sex for every problem patients have.I know of several older men who were falsely accused and recanted. I even worried about changing diapers on my grand daughters when they were infants but I finally decided that if a diaper needed changing I would do it.

I had a bad VA C&P Doc and when Social Security was doing a review they scheduled me to see him and I refused. They finally just used my VA records.

Finally my two cents is I have gotten much more help on the internet and with groups of people who have the same problems I have than from any Doctor although I accept that I need medication and need to see a Doc for it.

Good Luck but to wrap up I think that if you are going to use this guy you need to establish some ground rules and if not ask for someone else or fee service to see someone local

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Pete, as always, thank you so much.

Yeah, I'm really torn about this. On one hand it was 10 years ago and he was a young pup looking for textbook answers. On the other hand, well, grrrrr!

I'm not expecting mental health help from him, he's just the only psychiatrist the clinic will have on staff, and if I want to see a MH professional about my meds it will have to be him. I feel stuck because I don't have any faith that a PA is qualified to handle MH issues & medications.

Can I get fee-service? My husband was able to get it for his colonoscopy, but he's 50%. I'm only 10% and my PTSD claim is still pending.

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