More frustration with the system Leads to Creating a Business:
In 1984.Bruce started a business. He would rather have become part of the establishment if that had been a reality especially since he had done all that should be required of anyone for such acceptance. Two things were responsible for this. The first was frustration, and the second was the prospect of a new family and the needed extra income. The business started was lawn and landscaping and it grew so that he began to feel that he would finally become part of the establishment. Then disaster struck. He injured his back in September of 1988 and was told that he could not do this type of manual work again.
Because of his injury and because a lawyer suggested that he do so, he returned for help to the same state agency from which his father had solicited help in 1955 & 1965. He did this reluctantly because every time he had gone to this agency since graduation from college he had been told that his problems were his own creation or that he did not want to work. This time his request was different. He was seeking specific help- brush up courses- that would enable him to use his paralegal training. The attorney who referred him had promised to help him with employment when this additional training was accomplished. None of this materialized for this agency again denied him real help. All they offered was to enroll him in their chronic pain program and then tell that he did not want to work.
When he enrolled in this course back in September of 1991, Bruce had been informed that there was a four months waiting period. So in January of 1992 he returned to seek enrollment only to discover that he had been enrolled in December of 1991. Janurary was exactly four months to the date when he had been told that another chronic pain program would begin. However his counselor informed he had been recorded as not being interested since he had failed to show up that December. December was only a three-month waiting period and he had been informed that it was four-months. How could he have known that he had been was enrolled in December when he had been informed that there was a four month waiting period, not a three month one. Still he was accused of not wanting to take advantage of their program. One month later, no four month waiting period required, Bruce finally entered the chronic pain program. While there he spoke to the staff psychologist and told him that he had sustained Traumatic Brain Injury in 1955. This staff psychologist appeared to be interested and preformed further tests. The testing preformed was a complete Neuro-psych. It is designed to reveal if there were cognitive impairments that could still be attributed the accident.
Before beginning the testing, this psychologist noted that there were only sketchy references to the Traumatic Brain Injury in the Bruce's folder that in 1992 would have been 37 years old. He further noted that the client supplied all such references and that no councilor had ever followed up on these allegations to see if they were actually true. This psychologist noted that all references to Traumatic Brain Injury appeared to have begun sometime in summer of 1965. This was the exact time that Bruce's father had gone to this agency asking it for help in placing his son at the University of South Carolina.
Testing at this agencies Comprehensive center revealed the following deficiencies: 1. Social and Communication deficiencies. 2. Aphasia. 3. Bilateral hearing impairment 4. Cognitive dysfunction 5. Short term memory loss 6. Poor abstract reasoning abilities
Bruce had previously complained about many of these problems but had always been told that he was the cause not some residual stemming from TBI.
Besides the above this test revealed exactly why Bruce had experienced many difficulties in procuring and maintaining employment, It revealed that there was enough residual damage to negatively impact upon his ability to keep employment. For THIRTY-SEVEN years, this agency had maintained the opposite. Because of this new information, Bruce felt that they would be bound to help him obtain employment. This was not to be the case for they still maintained that his employment problems were his causing. This should not have surprised Bruce because they always resorted to this tactic when they were backed into a corner. It always worked because they had the distinction of being the best agency of its type in the nation.