I'm 37, disabled, can't work or live on own

I'm 37, disabled, can't work or live on own

From Matt Thornton

I have a neurological disorder (Non-24) that makes it impossible to have a normal sleep cycle. I can't work anymore and I now live with my dad. He's poor and his house is condemned. All my clothes have mold.

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I have a neurological disorder (Non-24 Sleep-Wake Disorder) that makes it impossible to have a normal sleep cycle. I can't work anymore and I now live with my dad. He's poor and his house is condemned. All my clothes have mold and we have no laundry. 

Long backstory:

I had been having bizarre sleeping patterns going all the way back into my early childhood, that no insomnia or depression diagnosis nor medication could ever fix.I never got an answer from a doctor that explained my sleep problems.

Essentially, my body and brain think that a day is 25 hours long. If you pause on that fact for a second, what becomes clear is that my sleep schedule rotates around the clock in a never-ending cycle. This had been the case for me from the age of 10, but clinical research studies were few and far between for most of my life.

Then in the summer of 2011 I learned for the first time that my vague sleeping issue was in fact a disorder, although I didn’t yet know the full extent of the limitations it imposed. Which is why for years I kept thinking there would be some way for me to keep working, despite being fired every time I tried to do so. I mostly lived on an annuity until I was 20 ($1047 per month), which came from a court decision when I was little (my mother committed suicide in a hospital and a court found them responsible, granting settlements to each of my family members). I kept thinking I could dance around extreme sleep fluctuations and pull myself up from the ground by my bootstraps, but I only ever fell back on my annuity.

When I was 12, the cops would show up at my house, wake me up, and drive me to school (my dad was a welder and made an early exit to work at 4:30am). Those near-truancies — as well as all the successful truancies! — were a huge obstacle. There was also the despair of losing my mother at the age of 9, which was certainly an important aspect to all of my maladjustment, if not the most central factor. 

But without a cop showing up at my house, I’d wake up around 5PM.

At 13, I was placed in an “alternative school” (aka a program for trouble makers and drug dealers). Most students would sail though the programs towards a diploma, being graded on video game scores, pick-up basketball games, and honest-to-god fantasy basketball gambling leagues (that I several times created for school credit!). I managed to graduate High School easily without my disability playing a major factor. It all felt like being home schooled but with no parents or curriculum to help. Hence why five years into a dedicated leftist education, I can still barely understand Marxist arguments around value theory.

It would still be 11 years from my graduation until I learned about my sleep disorder, so the following years would be spent tossing and turning, going to work and class after being up 24 hours, often crashing at hour 40, then sleeping 24 hours straight to make up for massive sleep deprivation. I’d get fired left and right, girlfriends and family members had no idea what to express to me other than their lack of faith that I could ever get my shit together (and I believed as much myself, because what other explanation was there?) By the age of 30, my body started to fall apart.

SO. Now I am disabled and keep getting rejected from disability (6 times now, but I'v hired a lawyer). Work is out of the question, so I moved in with my dad. He can't afford to move, so we are stuck in his condemned house that our landlord refuses to fix. I a constantly sick and I find it impossible to move most days. I have PTSD and major depression as well, although no drug use beyond antidepressants.

I'm intelligent, I want to get involved in political organizing, I have plenty of hobbies, but I can't make my body and mind fit within a 24 hour cycle.

Any money received will go towards:

-Rent and deposit so my father and I can move

-An exercise bike (I have agoraphobia)

-Clothing, blankets, sheets (all ruined from mold)

-Money to start micro business (I had a small record label once and would like to start up again, although this requires less money than most think)

-Dental work

-...and food!

My father is getting up there in age. If something were to happen to him, god forbid, I would be homeless. I just want to get my life back together alongside while waiting for disability and section 8 housing.

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