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I have a Facebook friend who can never seem to catch a break. She has a multitude of health problems due to her shitty immune system. She recently figured out that she has Asperger's, and believes her son and granddaughter also have it. The NHS is apparently run by crackheads, so she's always having to deal with their idiocy, such as prescribing medicines that they KNOW she's allergic to, or the doctor being at the wrong location for an appointment. She can't drive or get out much because of her bad health, so just going to an appointment is a huge, stressful ordeal that sets off her anxiety. Her husband is her sole caregiver, and he's a real gem, thank God. Recently, her son announced that he had broke up with his wife. My friend is scared she'll lose contact with her three grandchildren, whom she babysits frequently even though her health is bad and she often can hardly walk. She adores those kids and would be absolutely devastated if she could no longer see them. 

That's just a few of many, many problems, with both her health and her family, that she's had over the years. Every time one bad thing ends, another one hits. I wish there was something, anything, I could do to make things better. I do send her gifts occasionally to cheer her up. Other than that, I feel kinda helpless. :(

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Yesterday I found out that a co-worker's son (son is 16--co=worker is my age) broke his neck trying to do a back flip while back country skiing.   According to the GoFundMe, he shattered his E5 vertebrate and will never walk.  She had him in a school for students with ADHD because he was so impulsive.  I literally got the text while talking to a guy on a lift about the only reason he was at Purgatory (the ski resort) yesterday and not back country was because the snow is bad and he couldn't find anywhere safe. 

I am in the awkward position of asking if she is taking FMLA or whatever.  I really am shit at handling these situations.  I try not to say anything so people assume I am kind of aloof in these situations.  The truth is, if I open my mouth I will say something really stupid that makes me seem a lot worse than aloof.  These are the situations I literally have to write a script and get input from people and the rehearse it. 

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Yeah I think Fozzie's suggestion is pretty straightforward.

1. What can we do to help?

2. Here is how to apply for/contact FMLA. (If you can give her the forms yourself, great. If she has to call a company, get her the number, at least.)

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I'm gonna be THAT guy. It would have been the C5 vertebrae he broke not E5. Spine is divided into Cervical, Thoracic, and Lumbar regions. C5 is pretty middle of the neck. The little bump in the spine at the bottom of the neck you can feel and see in most people who are lean is C7 (incidentally it's a great landmark on the back for figuring proportions out when drawing a back pose). So two vertebrae above that is C5. 

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