There are searches for origins and those for solutions, regardless of the source. One hears about the “source of the Nile” or of the Mississippi river; or of the origin of the species, how Man came about to become who he or she is, why and what of the destination. To ask, “From where?” is quite different from the query, “How?” The former inquires as to the source of X, while the latter is more concerned with the rationality behind the origin.
There is thus a difference between the physical or spiritual source of the matter as opposed to what Aristotle deems as the fundamental principle that explains the ultimate and elemental foundations. For example, for Federal and Postal employees who are considering filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, the question one might ask may concern the source of one’s despair. Is it the medical condition itself? Likely.
But is there a more fundamental principle – like the work that one engages in, the harassment and pressures one is exposed to, etc., that better addresses the concomitant query concerning the “how” question? The origin of one’s despair may be due to the medical condition one suffers; but if one could focus and prioritize upon one’s health, would that not “solve” a great portion of the despair itself?
In order to do that, it is often necessary to prepare, formulate and file an effective Federal Disability Retirement application with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, precisely because the source of despair cannot be searched for within a vacuum of a medical condition exclusive of all other contributing origins.
There is, in addition to the medical condition, the realization that one cannot continue with one’s chosen career with the Federal Agency or the U.S. Postal Service because you are no longer able to perform one or more of the essential elements of the Federal position or Postal work; and, further, a contributing factor may be the stress and pressure placed upon the Federal or Postal employee by the workplace itself, the hostility shown and the adversarial attitude of the Federal agency or Postal service.
Federal Disability Retirement may not be the full and complete solution to one’s source of despair, but it may be a necessary step in resolving the question as to “How” the burdensome source may be alleviated.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire