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Disability Grants To Help PTSD Disabled Patricia With Vehicle And Art Studio

by Patricia Taylor
(Ford City, Pennsylvania, USA)

My name is Patricia Irene Taylor. I am 66 years old, single and have supported myself through teaching, working as a maid, working as a letter-sorting machine operator for the US Post Office, and by selling my art.

Patricia At Her Easel
Patricia At Her Easel

I currently live in Ford City, Pennsylvania (my home town) after having lived in Tampa, Florida for 30 years.

Disability Issues

I suffer from PTSD, clinical depression and psychotic breaks. When I was eight years old, I witnessed an organized crime murder at my family's camp. They shot the man in the head, dismembered him with a chainsaw and floated the pieces down Red Bank Creek.

When I was 16, three of the murderers told me that I must have sex with them or they would murder my parents. If I told anyone, they would murder my parents and me. I believed them based on what I had witnessed when I was eight.

They systematically raped and brutalized me until I left for college at age eighteen. I did not get pregnant by any of them because I am a DES baby and thus infertile. While these brutes are no longer living, their legacy remains that of fear and self-loathing.

I was a successful teacher, head of my department, and well regarded by my peers and superiors. I moved to Florida to be near my mother after my father died. They found us there and reiterated their threats.

I was a time bomb ready to explode. In 1986 I had a complete breakdown, was hospitalized, and have been under psychiatric care and therapy ever since. I filed for Disability and was granted Social Security Disability almost immediately.

Financial Hardship

Living on my own since my mother died in 2001 has been a tremendous struggle. Though I had a part-time job with Kaplan Test Prep as a Law School Admission Test instructor, things were very tight.

A good friend helped my financially, I learned to live within a strict budget and supplemented my income through commissioned artwork.

Two years ago, the Kaplan Center where I worked was closed and I was laid off. This reversal of fortune cost me my home and my car.

Income Efforts

I relocated from Tampa, Florida to Ford City Pennsylvania, where my cousin has a rental property he leased to me.

Ford City is a small town with few businesses and no industries. I am no longer receiving Social Security Disability, but rather regular Social Security now that I am 66.

The $1,043 a month does not cover my living expenses. I am surviving through the charity of my friend and family.

Specific Needs

I am a prize-winning artist. People living in Ford City are more interested in paying bills and putting food on the table than they are in acquiring art.
October -- An Example Of Patricia's Art
October -- An Example Of Patricia's Art

Thus, the income I was accustomed to have to supplement my Social Security through the sale of my art has not been forthcoming.

The plus is that Pittsburgh is only 30 miles away. Most of my commissions would come from the greater Pittsburgh area. To meet with my clients and promote my business, I would need a reliable all-wheel-drive vehicle.

In addition, my studio is located in the basement of my duplex. It is a wet basement with no heat and no natural light. I need to weatherproof the basement, install ductwork to get heat in the basement, and provide natural-light fixtures and light bulbs. My cousin cannot incur that expense; thus I would need to pay for the work.

Business Idea

I believe in myself and my art. I am healthy physically and under medication for my psychiatric disabilities.

I do not want to be a burden to my friend and my cousins. With the help of getting a reliable all wheel drive car and fixing up the basement studio, I am confident that I can stand on my own two feet and make a positive contribution to society.

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Feb 24, 2016
Your story touched me
by: Anonymous

It's like living in a different state of reality from the rest of the world when you grow up with that kind of violence. It's downright mentally crippling in ways no person should ever experience. I am empathetic to what you have been through. I wish I could help you financially. Please don't give up trying to conquer your life. You deserve to own your life AND have something to show for it. Remember though, your worth is not based on what you do, it's based on who you are as a person, as a human being. Thanks for surviving and sharing your story. Hope you don't mind that I'll pray for you.

Feb 06, 2016
Next step... the Workbook
by: Don from Ability Mission

Hi Patricia,

Congrats on getting your story published! You may now access the Workbook, which shows you how use your story as a springboard to getting the help you need.

Best regards,
Don Coggan

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