They’re Talking About My Family

talkingaboutusThe U.S. House of Representatives voted yesterday to strip away financial protections for people with pre-existing conditions. Those people include, tucked away in the millions affected by this legislation, my own family. Here’s what they had to say about me (asthma, allergies), my older daughter (congenital kidney condition and severe menstrual cramps) and my younger daughter (congenital heart defect).

They said we weren’t their problem.

Sorry Jimmy Kimmel: your sad story doesn’t obligate me or anybody else to pay for somebody else’s health care.” – Former Rep. Joe Walsh, IL

They said we should adjust our priorities.

And you know what, Americans have choices. And they’ve got to make a choice. So maybe rather than getting that new iPhone that they just love and they want to spend hundreds of dollars on that, maybe they should invest in their own healthcare.” – Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT)

They said we weren’t “good people.”

My understanding is that it will allow insurance companies to require people who have higher health care costs, to contribute more to the insurance pool which helps offset all these costs, thereby reducing the cost to those people who lead good lives, they’re healthy, they’ve done the things to keep their bodies healthy, and right now those are the people who’ve done things the right way, who’ve seen their costs skyrocketing.” — Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL)

They said if we were poor, we wouldn’t want health care anyway.

Just like Jesus said, ‘The poor will always be with us,’…There is a group of people that just don’t want health care and aren’t going to take care of themselves…Just, like, homeless people. … I think just morally, spiritually, socially, [some people] just don’t want health care.” – Rep. Roger Marshall (R-KS)

They lied to us.

“JOHN DICKERSON: So I’m not hearing you, Mr. President, say there’s a guarantee of pre-existing conditions.

“PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: We actually have — we actually have a clause that guarantees.

“JOHN DICKERSON: Okay, excellent. We got there.

“PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: We have a specific clause–

“JOHN DICKERSON: Let me ask you–

“PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: –that guarantees.”

They said we could just leave.

People can go to the state that they want to live in…States have all kinds of different policies and there are disparities among states for many things: driving restrictions, alcohol, whatever…” – Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-NC).

They said we didn’t exist.

Less than 10 percent of people under 65 are what we call people with pre-existing conditions, who are really kind of uninsurable.” – House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI)


This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post. This week’s sentence was “They call me…” and is hosted by the thoughtful, speculative, inspiring Kristi at

twitterby feather
Facebooktwitterredditpinteresttumblrmailby feather

16 thoughts on “They’re Talking About My Family

  1. I guess that all of those good “Christians” forgot — “I am my brother’s keeper.”

  2. Debi, I’m not sure I can even find the words to describe how I feel about this. Shocked, sickened, angry, disgusted. What is wrong with the world we live in when profits come before people, when people no longer care about those in need? When people see sickness as a punishment for not living a healthy life? Or just think the sick people should go elsewhere? Whatever happened to compassion and humanity? Sending you and your family big hugs today xx

  3. Once again, I don’t even know what to say about any of this. It’s cruel. It’s sad. And it shows a complete lack of compassion or concern for others. I find myself over and over feeling angry with tears in my eyes. I live with a whole bunch of their un-insurable pre-existing conditions. I wonder every day – rather frightened – what will happen if this all changes.

  4. I am so angry about this. It’s disgusting. And yet THEY keep their insurance, their boner pills, it’s just horrible. I so very hope that the senate says NO. I mean, it doesn’t even make sense. And that one guy – who says that people who live healthy don’t have pre-existing conditions?? Pregnancy is a pre-existing condition. Autism. Cancer. Most people who get cancer get it randomly. One of the healthiest people I know is fighting cancer right now. Ugh. I’m glad you wrote about this and linked up.

    • The fact that erectile dysfunction is not listed as a previous condition is especially galling — not surprising, but galling nonetheless.

  5. I can’t imagine living with this hanging over my head. We’re so lucky here in the U.K. we have healthcare for all. OK it’s not perfect, we have to wait for months to get treatment for things that won’t kill us, but we get help while we’re waiting and get there in the end. Hugs to you, your family and an uncertain future.

    • I’d love to learn more about what kind of help you get while waiting. We are always told here that the countries who have healthcare for all have “bad” healthcare where they die waiting for treatment. I’m sure that isn’t true, but don’t have any personal experience. What’s it like as you wait? What happens in emergencies or for everyday stuff like kids’ ear infections and bronchitis?

  6. Thank you. You’ve captured so much about this moment in history. And how it feels to know that my own government is acting toward my child in ways that were unthinkable not long ago. Unthinkable. And, yet, here we are.

    • It’s such a helpless feeling to have kids in this moment, isn’t it? I’m working on a piece to be published elsewhere about exactly that feeling.

  7. for commenters who are upset about this.. contact your representatives and let them know that your vote goes to candidates who support all families as all families are going to deal with preexisting conditions at some point, and if you get another chance note that high risk pools didn’t work, were underfunded before the ACA and the AHCA does not fix this problem.

    grrr! our youngest has had six brain surgeries and is uninsurable in the pre ACA market but I’m not sure the two kids with just migraines are not much better off in a post ACA market.

    • Thanks for reminding us about this, AJ! For people in the states, you can use the web site to get call scripts and phone numbers. It’s really easy. I start every morning with my 5 calls. In my state, our reps are very aligned with my values, but they still need to hear from us!

  8. I thank my lucky stars everyday for being born in Canada. I have several preexisting conditions and I would be in debt if I lived in the US. There are myths that you must here there, about how the care we get here is second rate. I have never had a serious problem with it, in all my years. I have had to wait, sure, for appointments with certain specialists. This is to be expected. Anything serious and I received the best of care. Nothing is perfect, but so many countries have decided that healthcare is an expense worth sharing, for all citizens. I hope with all my might that your country will learn this, sooner than later. It’s a lot of me me me. Selfishness and greed keeps anything from changing. It’s the most unfair thing I’ve seen.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.