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Thursday, January 17, 2008

Adding Insult to Injury

Last year, I wrote about an unpleasant phone conversation with a representative at Social Security. News flash: obnoxious people still work there. Take my conversation today with a woman named Betty, for example. The purpose of my call was to report income I had made from September to November, but for which I received a paycheck only a few days ago. From the start, she had a rude, condescending tone and interrupted every time I tried to explain my situation.

Betty: "How long have you been working?"
Me: "I'm no longer working, but the job began in September."
Betty: "No, listen to me! What DATE did you start?"
Me: I don't have an exact date.
Betty: "Well, you have to report when you start working."
Me: "I'm sorry, but I didn't have any specific information at the time because I'm a consultant."

When I asked Betty to repeat something I had not heard her say, the conversation quickly deteriorated.

Betty: "I'm speaking loud enough. You're the one that's quiet."
Me: "Ma'am, I'm on a ventilator, so--"
Betty: "Well, it doesn't say that here."

That's when I lost it.

Me: "WHY THE HELL DOES THAT MATTER!?! SINCE WHEN DO I HAVE TO REPORT THAT!?! NOW I'M YELLING, WHICH IS VERY DIFFICULT FOR ME!" I screamed at the top of my lungs, "You've been rude and you've talked down to me the whole time; I'm not stupid, just disabled!

Never had I felt so insulted in my life. My heart now racing and with tears in my eyes, I demanded to speak to a supervisor. However, the apology I received was somewhat half-hearted, saying she was sorry if that's what Betty had said to me.

Social Security has some work to do in the area of customer service. Need I say more?


Kimi said...

SSA = Some Stupid Assholes not Social Security Administration

To bad we don't have Betty's last name. We could make the fact she is RUDE go viral...I'm mean, haha

Moggy said...

Sounds like the SSA... I'm figuring that when I need to call them, I'm going to use the free online TTY service. It does match some of my disabilities, but the best value is that it throws the other person a little off-balance so they're more, er, compliant... *grin*

Though even if you did have an intellectual impairment of any degree, it wouldn't be okay to be an asshat towards you. People with that kind of disability (or with a disability like chronic fatigue or autism, which can cause drastic swings in cognitive ability) don't like being shown a lack of respect any more than anybody else.

Lori said...

That is ridiculous! Good for you for opening the can of whoop ass! All I can say is that Betty sounds like she is living a miserable life. And if that is how she treats someone while working at a job FUNDED BY TAXPAYERS, then I really wouldn't want to know how she treats her friends (if she has been able to make any) and her family (if they haven't disowned her).