on N

N asked us about providing health care, so I did some research on the subject.  What I found is basically stuff I already knew, but it’s very frustrating.  N has health issues she’s had since childhood.  Because she doesn’t have children and she’s not old, she’s not eligible for Medicaid or Medicare.  Our state has something called the Bas.ic Health Plan which is typically very affordable.  However, many it’s too affordable, because they have a waiting list, and N may or may not be eligible anyway since she’s not a US citizen.  (She’s been here since childhood and has a visa that allows her to work.)  Since BHP is likely out, I looked on this online health insurance brokerage.  Friends of mine used it to buy their insurance.  Insurance from reputable companies starts about around $100 per month but I didn’t have a chance to see exactly what it covered.  $100 / month is not bad, the problem is that N really wants insurance because she has a health issue which she’s had for a while.  Read pre-existing condition.  Fortunately, the health care law will, I think, take care of that problem starting January 1, 2014.  In the meantime, I don’t think there are many good options.  There are some clinics around here that apparently charge reduced fees to people without insurance.  (They are charitable organizations and take donations.)

Because she is not a citizen and is obviously not making a ton of money, N is in a difficult situation.  I believe it’s possible for her to live the American dream and “overcome.”  To do so, she’d have to work harder and be much smarter than L or I have to be.  And that is probably too much to ask.  I want to mother her and boss her around in terms of getting through the college degree she’s working on parttime and choices about buying a car versus health insurance and so on, but it is of course not my place and I don’t want to be obnoxious.  So I won’t do anything.   As a woman who clearly loves children and no doubt will want her own, N’s challenge is much harder than a man’s.  If she wants to secure a place in the middle class, she needs to get through her degree and sort out her citizenship problems before having children.  Even if she waits until age 30, she doesn’t have all that much time.