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I wrote the essay below the squiggle for my English Comp class in 2010. It's a huge part of the reason why I will vote for Obama again in spite of having difficulties at times with his Presidency.

A woman is rushed by ambulance to an emergency room in Fargo, ND, her face a mass of bloody contusions so severe that her own mother would not recognize her.  She tastes the coppery, metallic blood in her mouth coming from the empty cavities where her teeth used to be.  She vaguely smells the sweat of the men in the ambulance with her and she goes in and out of consciousness as they work frantically over her broken body.  Once in the emergency room, she is rushed into a small area surrounded by white fabric walls and the EMT’s help the nurses move her from the stretcher to the ER bed as the woman screams out in pain.  Doctors are shouting orders and controlled chaos fills the room.  The woman slips into a coma from the head wounds she’s received.  The doctors rush the woman into surgery and are able to relieve the pressure on her brain but the woman remains in the coma and is admitted to the intensive care unit. This woman is the victim of a vicious attack inflicted on her by her husband.

After several days of operations she finally begins to show signs of responsiveness.  Two weeks later she comes out of the coma and after several more months of treatment and physical therapy she is released from the hospital. The woman stays with her sister while she recuperates as returning home to her husband is no longer an option.  This is the second time the woman has been hospitalized due to the terrible beatings inflicted on her by her husband.  Her face is still a mottled purple, black and blue and she faces months of reconstructive surgery on her face and teeth.  She suffers from constant pain and it encompasses every facet of her life.  It will take months, possibly years, to regain her health.

She receives the bills from the doctors and the hospital and submits them to her health insurance company.  She thinks she is fortunate because she has excellent insurance that she pays several hundred dollars a month for.  She believes she will be fully covered.  What she doesn’t know is that in her state it is legal to classify domestic violence as a preexisting condition.  She receives a letter from her insurance company stating that her coverage has been denied due to a preexisting condition.  She’s horrified and feels as though she has been victimized all over again.  She writes to the company imploring them to reconsider her case but the law in her state is clear and the insurance company is unbendable.  She has months of physical therapy, medical treatment and medications ahead of her. She is now on disability due to her injuries and is receiving $1,056.00 per month.  She has no way of paying for the care that she needs.  Her family tries but is unable to raise the necessary funds.  She is forced to do something she swore she would never do; she declares bankruptcy because she cannot pay the $115,000 in medical bills that have been racked up.

The woman wonders how it’s possible for this to happen in this great country.  She wonders how it can possibly be legal for an insurance company to deny coverage to a victim of domestic violence.  She wonders how her government could allow that kind of inhumanity.  She paid her insurance premiums and felt secure that in the event of a health catastrophe she would be covered.  When the time came that she needed that coverage the most the insurance company turned its back on her and forced her into a situation that made her feel demeaned and victimized.  The woman cannot see any difference between the insurance company and the husband who brutalized her.  There is no difference and this type of situation happens to Americans every day when insurance companies put their financial bottom line ahead of the care required by the people who pay to keep them in business.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (13+ / 0-)

    "We can do no great things, only small things with great love." Mother Teresa

    by Pam LaPier on Tue Jul 31, 2012 at 07:52:26 PM PDT

  •  May I ask ... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pam LaPier, splashoil

    Is this a re-telling of a true story? One based on the truth or a story that could very easily be true? (and probably is for someone)

    I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
    but I fear we will remain Democrats.

    by twigg on Tue Jul 31, 2012 at 08:12:19 PM PDT

  •  Single Payer (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Oh I forget Obama threw that and all of us supporting it under the bus.  What a heart wrenching, lame diary.
    Perhaps we all should be required to post such stuff in tribute to big brother...

    •  What a lame comment! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pam LaPier

      Please describe a realistic path to Single-Payer, that faced Obama, and which he rejected.

      You do not get to walk into the diary of another and make irrelevant and obnoxious comments that do not relate to the Diary content.

      Big Brother? That nearly earned you a Hide Rate.

      I hope that the quality of debate will improve,
      but I fear we will remain Democrats.

      by twigg on Tue Jul 31, 2012 at 10:04:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We all wanted single payer. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I think they did the best they could. It took me awhile but I get that now.

        "We can do no great things, only small things with great love." Mother Teresa

        by Pam LaPier on Tue Jul 31, 2012 at 10:37:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Cost & Life Expectancy Chart (0+ / 0-)

          Health Care Spending
          shows how far behind we are to the rest of the world.  Certainly not much to fluff up for electioneering.  After the votes are counted, in the lame duck, Third Way has a Plan.
          Matt Stoller:

          Barack Obama continues in this fine tradition of Democratic policymaking, and his advisors are quietly laying plans to cut Social Security, Medicare, and/or Medicaid in the second term of his administration. Obama appointed Erskine Bowles, who now works for a Wall Street botique, to head up his commission on fiscal responsibility. Bowles, along with an old man named Alan Simpson, came out with a set of proposals to cut the programs. And while Obama couldn’t get the Republicans to agree to it in 2011, he will try in his second term. Here’s the New Yorker laying out the plan.

              There is a possibility that a second Obama term could begin with major deficit reduction and serious reform of taxes and entitlements. A similar opportunity arose in the second terms of Reagan (who in 1986 signed into law a historic tax-reform bill) and Clinton (who in 1997 reached a significant budget deal with Republicans). Although both victories occurred when the two parties were less polarized, many White House officials regard the successes as encouraging precedents. Several senior Clinton officials involved in the 1997 deal now work for Obama, including Jacob Lew, Obama’s chief of staff, and Gene Sperling, the head of the National Economic Council.

          And sure enough, as Dean Baker points out, a gang of incredibly wealthy CEOs are planning to gut entitlements regardless of which candidate wins in 2012. It’s not just CEOs, of course, it’s also the usual gang of corrupt Democratic establishment folk. Here’s Steven Pearlstein describing one riveting meeting of the designated austerity group.

          Not a pretty scenario.
    •  find another word to use than lame (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pam LaPier

      it's offensive to some people.

      -You want to change the system, run for office.

      by Deep Texan on Wed Aug 01, 2012 at 06:03:31 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thirteen Ways (0+ / 0-)

        Lambert Strether:

        Here at least is one case where American Exceptionalism turns out to be true: The American system of health care is both exceptionally expensive and uniquely lethal. Why can’t we talk about, instead of diverting ourselves by arguing about the misfeatures of a “reform” that mostly kicks in two years from now, and has the main virtue of only throwing some few millions under the bus? And don’t talk to me about meanie Republicans; if the Democrats had wanted to pass real legislation, they would have abolished the filibuster in 2009, when they had the House, the Senate, and a mandate.
        The whole post is worth a read.  Warning any sentient person may be offended.
  •  Excellent diary! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Deep Texan, Pam LaPier

    Heartrending and straightforward.  Honest and painful.  Sick and disgusting.  Yes, all of the above and more.  But, unfortunately, true....or it used to be.  But, as usual, the Rethugs have tried to hijack this issue too and make it part of the big lie!

    Back in 2008, Fri Jun 27, 2008 at 10:57 AM PDT, link below, I wrote a true diary about my friend, and neighbor, who decided to leave an abusive relationship.  At that time, her husband/abuser was a police officer and made a thousand attempts to find her.  He didn't!  Thank God, and I am proud to say I was part of the plan to keep him from doing so.  She is well, thriving, and living a quiet life in a place that appreciates her intellect, wit, thoughtfulness, kindness, and generosity.  I have seen her, spoken with her, and keep in constant contact. I am happy to know that finally, she has gotten the peace that was denied her while she was in that relationship.

    Obamacare is the bomb, and people need to be made aware of what it contains.  They don't know, so they think it won't benefit them.  We need to get the word out!

    Again, thanks for an extremely insightful diary.

    I Lost A Good Friend Today

    "If you want to hear the Lord laugh, tell Him what you've got planned."

    by RO45 on Wed Aug 01, 2012 at 03:12:49 AM PDT

    •  I'm so happy your friend got out! (0+ / 0-)

      I think it's a million times worse for a woman to leave an abusive relationship when the spouse is an authority figure of some sort. The law always seems to err on the wrong side in those situations. I'm so happy she's OK and is living the good life she deserves. She's an example to so many who are afraid to leave. I was stunned that some states actually allowed insurance companies to deem a second episode of spousal abuse an existing condition. Unbelievable!

      "We can do no great things, only small things with great love." Mother Teresa

      by Pam LaPier on Wed Aug 01, 2012 at 08:15:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thank you, (0+ / 0-)

        and I shall happily pass along your good wishes to her.  Oh, and BTW, he has found another young woman to terrorize, but she has brothers, and they are on him like  stink on you-know-what.

        "If you want to hear the Lord laugh, tell Him what you've got planned."

        by RO45 on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 01:14:13 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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