Support Group and Therapy

I’’ve been referred to support group therapy by the IME psychiatrist to help with my bipolar, depression and anxiety to start in 3 weeks. My insurance said if I don’t do it they will end my benefits, and after my GP agreed I should try it but I feel sick to my stomach if I have to. I already do individual therapy and I have social anxiety and I don’t feel comfortable at all in group settings.

They want me to do a program with CAMH. Has anyone done the program? I’ve received very little information so far on the program, except it’s likely weekly and in person and they have medical professionals observing you. I would like to know your experience and any details about the program and if it was helpful or if they are just trying to help insurance cut you off?

If you can’t convince your GP that you shouldn’t do it then you have to.
I don’t anything about the program.

Have your GP refer you to a service that isn’t tied to your insurance company. If it considered appropriate treatment for your disability then you should go to maintain your LTD benefits, however I doubt there is anything in your policy that says you have to go to the service that your insurance provider wants you to go to. Pick a different one.

If you do decide to go to the one recommended by your insurance company make sure to get in writing that all documentation about your medical status this service generates for the insurance company must also be sent to your doctor at the same time, every time…

If after a few session your medical teams thinks it’s making you worse then document that and send it to your claims adjuster.

Hi your only obligation is to give it a try. If it doesn’t work then you will be in the same place you are now. If it does help a lot, then you will be lucky enough to return to your previous life. And if it helps only a little like my rehabilitation program did, well, I’m not back to work, but my quality of life is a little bit better for having gone through the program. Even if it doesn’t get you back to work there will probably be a few things you can use to make your life easier.

I did the CAMH group program for Social Anxiety. It’s very similar to individual CBT but in a group setting. They want people in the program to participate and get more comfortable speaking and participating in groups through exposure. Nobody will force you to speak if you are unable to due to your anxiety. Remember everyone there is in the same boat to varying degrees.

That is brutal. I didn’t even know that was a thing. Is group therapy a proven thing, or is this some kind of way that LTD companies get out of claims, hoping people have too much anxiety to participate? I am very pessimistic when it comes to stuff like this (I’ve been burned so much, it’s just the way I am, I don’t trust anyone anymore). I would be scared as hell to go to something like that, I don’t blame you at all. The problem here is your GP - if he/she says you are medically okay to do it, then you have to convince them you are not ready. To be honest, if it were me, I’d probably go to one group session, have a panic attack in the middle of it and end up calling the ambulance. Then when your GP gets your emergency room documents you can explain to them what happened, maybe then they will understand. That’s kind of how I handle stuff, like, if you want to see how crazy I am fine, if you force me to do something I will show you how nuts I am. The threats of “cutting off disability” are so tiresome. And the whole IME thing is a fraud, these folks are supposed to be independent but they know if they don’t give the answer the LTD company wants then the LTD company will find someone who will and they want the $$$.

Support groups definitely help a lot of people and they definitely don’t help everyone. You won’t know until you try.

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I’m concerned because the IME doctor referred me. Is CAMH private or government? Confused if it gets paid and would give their reports to the IME doctor or insurance only?

@RaptorsFan did you get referred there by the insurance company? If you weren’t able to talk much did your insurance threaten you about ending your benefits? Did you find it helpful?

I have hard time talking at all to people I don’t know so this brings me a lot of anxiety already to talk about my problems with strangers but makes it worse that the insurance referred me. My doctor thinks I should try it and said she would’ve referred me to CAMH as an alternative but since that’s the place they already referred me to she doesn’t have another option right now. It’s so hard to get a doctor and one you’re even sort of comfortable with so I’m worried to change.

It also feels like another way to try to capture me on video outside. I know I’m not doing any wrong but I hate the thought of surveillance and them twisting things if I have an odd good day.

I wish my insurance would leave me alone for more than 2 weeks at a time.

CAMH is a regular hospital but deals specifically with mental health issues. I was seeing a psychologist (paid by the insurer) who referred me to the CAMH program. In my opinion, if you don’t talk much at the sessions because of your condition that would show the insurer that you are trying but it is causing you too much anxiety. I don’t see how they can hold that against you. I found it somewhat beneficial. l and not as bad as I thought. Speaking up is encouraged but you don’t have to say much and no one will hold it against you. Likely some people in the group will have more extreme anxiety and others will have less. The insurer did get a brief summary of my progress during the sessions

Video tape you? Surveillance ? Speak to a lawyer. Sounds like they are looking for reasons not to pay you. I believe you need to consent to any assessments however they are conducted. And if you feel you are being assessed indirectly speak to a personal injury lawyer because that is
just not right that would cause more damage and trust issues.

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