The Wearying Kind of Love
Your husband just left on a 5 month training stint with the navy, which will then be followed immediately by a deployment. You are left with a baby, three children between the ages of 8-11 years old and an adult mentally and physically handicap dependent. The unique part about this particular situation is that the baby and 8 year old are the only biological children of this amazing women. The other 3 “children” are siblings that she has taken in after her mother died of pancreatic cancer. This puts weary in a whole new perspective for me.
On top of being a mother to this motley crew of 5, Michelle McKinney finds herself taking on a fight that she would have never expected. The Department of Defense’s regulations do not permit her to add an incapacitated adult sibling as a dependent. She has tried every approach to get around this particular problem but there is absolutely no way for her to claim her sister without a change being made to the regulations. Without going into great detail, the problems that will arise because of the fact that she is not considered a dependent by the DOD include but are not limited to: financial concerns, medical/insurance issues, not being able to enroll in the military’s Exceptional Family Member Program (without this they will not receive priority house, specific consideration regarding duty stations, 40 hours of respite care per month and many other desperately needed supportive services).
This is a unique situation, there is no answer for this in any handbook. This is a situation that will only be fixed if the “right people” give it a voice. Over 10,000 people have signed an online petition to change the regulations to allow Michelle to claim her sister as a dependent. This issue needs to be given a voice. You can help by signing the petition and sharing it on every social media outlet you have: tag, tweet, text… whatever it is you do, let’s get this out there. Share it with every media source or contact you might have.
Lets help this weary Mom.
This post is part of my Five Minute Friday. Every Friday Kate Motaung posts a word prompt. I think take that word and write about it for five minutes. Then publish it for you to see. I’ve had a wonderful time participating in this group and would love for you to join us (Click Here). To read all my Five Minute Friday posts go to my Notebook Five Minute Friday.