The world for me has changed dramaticly from when I started writing this blog. After many injuries and many times I toughed it out (for some macho idea) without seeing a doctor when getting injured at the time. Some advice to the younger alpha males, there is no shame seeing help when injured. Even if someone insists you are only "hurt" not injured. Putting mud on it or using duct tape never works.
I do not cry wolf, in fact, I was literally dragged in to see a doctor. I have many injuries ranging from loss of dexterity to seeing things that no one else sees. At the VA's count 40 plus injuries, 14 for the Marine Corps. What I have cried for is help. The hope was my brothers would take care of me if it gets bad, that is not the truth. But that is another story, I'll tell it some other day.
I need AACs, Augmented and Alternative Communication devices. I'm using a voice to text currently, but it sucks. It takes me 5 to 10 minutes to "write" a sentence they way I just said it, and don't get me started on punctuation. My wife types most of my things for me nowadays.
I need work done to my home and I don't need to tell you that the money fairy doesn't visit me and my wife. I can't work, she can't leave me for long periods to work. She does my ADLs, activities of daily living. For those layman's out there, eating, bathing, peeing, number 2s, brushing my teeth, shaving my face, I think you get the idea( I hope.).
We live in a home built in the 40s, so we have old home problems. I can only using my motorized wheelchair in half the house, in the rest my wife transfers me to a small stool with wheels and hope for the best. Doesn't always work as planned. We have roof that should have been replaced 8 or so years ago, we have electrical problems in two rooms, we have plumbing issues, and many others. I listed the big ones for your reading pleasure.
Now, getting help. It would easier if (these are all and/or situations, I listed this way for ease) we made less than 20 grand, not white, civilian, lived on a farm, bought the house after 2009 but before 2011, lived in a crappy neighborhood, blind, deaf, missing (visible) limbs, have parents that are dead, came from a broken home or couldn't pay the mortgage. Again, those are the big ones.
Now let's say my long lost uncle died and gave me 10 large ones. Do we spend it on a new roof or get a new wheelchair (which we need also)? Or save it because hoping for the best has not worked out for us either. Getting someone else to do a job, that could have done prior to injury, is horribly expensive. And my wife could probably do most of it, if she didn't have care for me. On to itself is a double edged sword, if she is injured then we're both screwed twice as hard.
Now here is the kicker, everytime we have asked for help it backfired on us. I have been threatened several times, my wife has been threatened and I have been warned if I keep asking for help I may lose my rank or worse administratively separated. Everytime I think I we should go to the IG (inspector general) we are reminded of the incident in my last unit, nothing happened to the bad guys and we were sent away to this unit with no result.
The only good part of my unit is the Wounded Warriors. Not the staff or the officers or the civilian horde. Only the injured Marines. We have recieved more help and heart via my injured brothers. Got to think that's funny, if you weren't injured.
As far as Organizations go, the Semper Fi Fund has been awesome! The DAV has helped! That's it.
The Wounded Warrior Project is a Ponzi scheme. As much money that is funneled to them, you would think they would help, NOPE, got a T-shirt and once a year we get stickers. Not that we haven't asked. And if they do return our call it'll be an email 6 months later, but no help just lip service. If you look at their Financials you can see the top 6 get millions a year, and the top 20 get hundreds of thousands. Not a one of them are in a wheelchair or missing an arm or missing a lung. It pisses me off!
So long story short, don't give in to the peer pressure and give to an organization that doesn't really help. You don't have to take my word, do your own research. That's what Google is for. My advice is to go to Charity Navigator. Lots of information, lots of reviews and lots of insight.