Hello. Initially, I found AidPage last year while searching for some kind of resolution for my dental problems. My dental problem has continued to compound itself and affected me in so many ways that I never really imagined in the beginning…
I live alone and have always suffered from depression but before recent years, I seemed to be better at coping with it then. I know that I have manic depression and the last few years, I have preferred to stay in the house and only go out in the public when I have to or someone makes me. I never used to be like this and sometimes I feel like I would like this to change because I am very lonely. But I will never meet anybody until I get my teeth fixed anyway and haven't been with anyone in over 3 years, so I figured I would wait for that until after I got my teeth fixed.
My teeth started degenerating rapidly 3 to 4 years ago and I think it was something genetic as I have always been very good with oral hygiene and hygiene in general. We tried initially to slow the process down and fix some of the damage but it kept progressing horribly.
I was told that I would need dentures and of course I was devastated. I was at the University this day and one of the dental instructors came to check my teeth and he made a rude comment and I never saw him again. He was probably around 75 years old and he looked at me and then my teeth and said – DRUGS! I was so offended and told staff that I had never done drugs and that I didn't drink alcohol much either.
Before my teeth started going downhill, I used to go out maybe once or twice a month and would sometimes have a drink and other times just a pop depending on my mood. I guess when teeth go bad in someone that looks young, they commonly assume that it's drugs and because I am way too young to be getting dentures it also bothers me that people make that assumption. If that would have been the case, then fine. But why should I have to be labeled as a drug user when I have to deal with all the other common and degrading assumptions that go along with dentures?
2010 was also the same year that I lost everything to someone that I once trusted very much and because of greed, they were successful. Maybe I'll write more about that some other time, but I'll just say that greed and money can bring out the worst in some people and they managed to bring me down in one fell swoop and I never suspected it.
I thought that I would start over and be fine. I like to learn and so I went back to school to start a program in something I really liked and have since earned my certification and begun to take an advanced class in the same area. I've been unemployed about 1 year and 9 months now and it has continually gotten worse. For the last 2 years, I have been trying to find a way to get dentures and I have come a little way but have no idea what I'm going to do. I know that this is the reason I can't find a job. I've been willing to do anything to try to get out of this mess but the good jobs I've applied for will not hire me because of this and the entry-level jobs will not hire me because they know that I will not stay because they think I will move on eventually.
About 2 months ago, I would have had a great job but they told me to come back once I have dentures and they will give me the next position open. It was for a really good job. I had no idea what to do and I think it was the start of a nervous breakdown. I could feel it coming on that day as I hung my suit in my closet and I don't remember much of the rest of the day.
I am able to get very limited healthcare if I drive 103 miles one way to get it and I am thankful that I have it. It is the only assistance I have received but I just canceled an appointment with 2 specialists on July 3 because I did not have enough money for gas. I would never have imagined that I wouldn't have enough money for gas or that I would be saying those words. But, as it's a 206 mile round-trip drive, I had no way to get there. It's at the University and it’s the only place where I can get healthcare for things that are covered. Not everything is covered and so I have 2 other monthly Dr. appointments for significant problems that I keep and have to pay for myself.
The extractions are covered and that is the good news. However, they will not pay anything towards the actual dentures. The last time I seen them, they said I could pay $3000 upfront for dentures and I told them that this was not possible. After I told them that there was no way I could come up with that kind of money, they wanted me to make the appointment to have all of my teeth extracted and then get the dentures later when I could afford them. They wanted to do this because I have had a really hard time with pain and still deal with infections to this day. I told them I was not comfortable with extracting all my teeth because I knew I would never get a job without any teeth in my mouth. They were a bit dismayed at my refusal to extract the teeth but I told them I would let them know if I could find them cheaper elsewhere.
I ended up finding a place (a well-known franchise) where I could get them for about $1400 and I hoped for a couple months that I could come up with the money to get them. Things have financially continued to get worse with being unemployed and I don't know what I'm going to do so I thought I would ask if anyone knows of anything. I've searched for grants and have made several phone calls and haven't been able to find anyone that knows much about dentures. So the University will not cost me anything if I can come up with the $1400 for the dentures and I can take them with me when I go for the extractions and they will put them in the same day. They said they do not recommend this and recommend extracting all teeth and then waiting 3 months before doing anything else. I don't have 3 months to sit around waiting and I know it would not work out for a job.
Over the last 2 years, I have pretty much stayed inside my house, attended college via the Internet (which has been one of my few enjoyments in life) and have only left for doctors’ appointments or to go to Wal-Mart at 3 AM which is the best time to go if you don't want to be seen by anyone. The last year has been worse and I can't remember any time I have left unless it was for either of those 2 reasons. It does get lonely but I don't want anyone to see me like this… I'm embarrassed for the way I look. I've been told that I am a good-looking guy but with the way my teeth are, it has wrecked my looks or any chance of finding companionship. Yes, I would welcome companionship at this point even if nobody wanted to look at me.
I have thought of seeing a counselor or therapist but I went there for only 3 months maybe 6-7 years ago and when I was done, the intake counselor and I became friends most likely because we have several friends in common. We don't talk much anymore, but he still socializes with people I know and one of his best friends is a real gossip monger, so I can't bring myself to go there as I think he would be sure to update him on my life. It's the only place around here so there's nothing I can do about that and there's no way around it (he's the intake counselor and even if I went around him he would find out why and it would probably make it worse).
It is now July 2012 in the first month that I have $0 in income. I'm so scared and I have no idea what I'm going to do. I've started to have bad panic attacks wondering how I'm going to keep my house and how I will ever get out of this mess. I can’t get a job because of my teeth and I can't afford teeth because I don't have a job… I think that sentence goes around my head 1000 times a day and I can't get it to stop. My sleep pattern is so messed up and I don't sleep sometimes for 2-3 days until I'm so exhausted that I sleep for one day and then the vicious cycle starts again.
I feel so sorry for my dogs as I spent the last 3 days in bed and only got out to go to the bathroom or let the dogs outside and they spent that whole time in bed lying next to me. I love them for that but I hate what it's doing to them. I am severely dehydrated and still not feeling very well today. I'm taking antibiotics though and sometimes I wonder how much the tooth infections make me sick every day? I try not to eat so that I don't get an infection and then I have to eat and no matter how careful I am, I get them anyway.
I feel that this severe depression that I have is transferring to them and have noticed effects of it and it makes me feel worse. Some days, I think that they are worried that I'm dying and I wish this didn't affect them so much. They pick up on so much. While I'm quiet, it seems like there are always tears I'm always wiping away whether it's from a stressful moment, the daily depression or loneliness and they see that. They are so perceptive.
What really bothers me is that if things don't get better and I can't keep this house that I won't be able to keep them and they have all been together their whole lives. They are 8, 7 and 5 yrs. and I don't think they will do very well separated and it would kill me to say goodbye to them. I pray to God every day that this doesn't happen.
I never thought my self-esteem would get this low or that I would hate myself so much but I realized the other day that I avoid looking at myself in the mirror and it is totally subconscious. I think the reason I don't look myself in the eye as to avoid crying any more than I do. I'm so sick of living like this.
I have tried so much to fix the situation and have even gone to my mom and dad (divorced) to ask for help or see if they will help me get a loan. I didn't think they would be able to help but I tried. They were young when they had me and I was adopted by my dad anyway and they are very narcissistic. At least my dad is. I had never borrowed any money from my dad since I was 14 years old and my parents divorced. But last month, I ran out of a prescription which makes me ill to go without and didn't have the money to fill it and I asked him to get it for me and I would pay him back. A total of $90. My unemployment ran out and I haven't been able to pay him for the last 3 weeks and he has told me about it 3 times already. He knows the situation I'm in and he could care less. He has money to get by on, I don't know how much he has but he is not broke. And he also has several credit cards that are paid off with high credit limits that he could access in an emergency.
I was talking to my mother about it and told her how bad it made me feel that he was badgering me for the money when he knew I had $0 in my checking account. I planned on giving it to him the minute I had it. It wasn't like I had borrowed money from him before and never repaid. He acted like he didn't appreciate the inconvenience. When I told him that my electricity may be shut off any day now, he asked me what I was going to do. I said that I would try living here without electricity and then he just changed the subject. That hurt quite a bit. I actually just found out how much he cares as before this I was always employed and had the money and was never in this position, so had none of this happened I might not know that he could care less. My first job was for 13 years and my 2nd was for 7 years, so this was the first time I've never had anything. If either of my parents needed anything, even right now I would give them whatever I had even if it meant I did without. He has no idea if I have groceries or anything to eat and he has not even asked ever. Something you think would bother a parent as I know it would bother me.
I believe my mom wants to help me if she could put her husband won't let her. My mom has been remarried for over 25 years and I borrowed from them once and I paid them back. My stepdad doesn't have any kids and so I don't think he understands. Either way, there's no way he will let her do anything for me so I can't be mad at her. I think she would do it in a minute if it wasn't for him.
In a way, I'm okay with it but all any of them would have to do would be to co-sign a loan for me for $5000 and I could support myself permanently. The training I just received in college will allow me to make a good income from home and I know I can support myself but like everything else, it will cost $4,000-$5,000 to get it started. I purposely picked a field where I could work from home if I wanted this because of my situation with the depression and teeth. I do have hopes that I will get it started some day and it gives me a few calming seconds every now and then until a panic attack sets in again and reminds me that it's just a dream.
The only thing that I really need is my house. I can do without a car and I do not have to have much else to be happy. All I really, really want is a permanent roof over my head so that I do not have to worry. I haven't had a day in the last year and a half where I haven't had to spend the day worrying about whether the water or electric & gas company was coming to disconnect or how I was going to make the house payment.
I just feel like I need to find a solution to either problem in order to solve this and I'm not sure if it's possible. Either find a way to get the dentures or find a way to get a personal or business loan for $5000 to start up my own business to support myself. If anybody knows of a direction I can take, I'd appreciate it so much.
I've got a doctor appointment scheduled on Saturday and I have to pay $175 each time I go otherwise they will not let me keep my appointment and its medicine that I have to have otherwise I can get really sick. I always had good medical insurance my whole life up until 2010 so I had no idea what it was like to go without medical insurance. I don't think that a doctor should be able to keep regular medicine away from a patient unless they can pay the bill that day and that it should be illegal. I imagine doctors do it all over the United States and I'm just learning about this practice but it sure makes you feel bad for the poor people and the people that have to go without, especially the elderly.
I'm going to spend the rest of the day trying to advertise some of my furniture on Craigslist and anything else I can find in the house/garage worth anything to try to pay my doctors, house payment, utilities etc. I pray to God I have some luck quickly.
I guess I should have split this post up into a few different posts so wouldn't be so long, but I just got talking and before I knew it, it was really long. I also apologize for the rambling and for my thoughts jumping around so much. I'm much better when I don't have so much stress. Thank you for reading this very long post.
I'm open to any suggestions that anyone might have but also realize that there may not be any. I don't want to apply for Social Security disability. Even though I might qualify, I don't want to give up hope that I could get out in the public again just yet. If I did that, I'm afraid I might not ever leave the house for a long time and somehow I'd like to find my old self again. I pray and also say the St. Jude novena prayer every day and hopefully God will intervene. If you pray, please include me in your prayer from time to time. I would appreciate that very much. I will definitely post if I find any solution. Thanks in advance for all replies.