As a Veteran my greatest fear with my rent ever increasing is joining the ranks of the Homeless I see on the subways every day. It only takes the loss of one paycheck to be out on the cold brutal New York Streets!!

A Lawyer's Prayers

A homeless man outside the UN in New York, Author/Source CGP Grey (CC Attribution 2.0 Generic) A homeless man outside the UN in New York City, Author/Source CGP Grey (CC Attribution 2.0 Generic)

We have learned to ignore them:  the homeless.  Fixtures on every street corner.  Present but, for all practical purposes, invisible.

Population Size

On any given night there are over a half million Americans sleeping on the streets [1].  Slightly under half those are homeless families. Approximately 50,000 are veterans (down from a high of 76,000 in 2010).

About 15% of the total are chronically homeless.

Contributing Factors

“…for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in…” (Matt. 25: 35).

The problem of homelessness is complex.

A significant percentage of the homeless will, when questioned, reveal that they were abused.

A large number are children, made homeless along with their parents.  This creates issues involving…

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18 thoughts on “Invisible

    1. Can’t really say. Only in the beginning stages. Right now I’m doing as much overtime as possible to get enough money to move. Everything depends on having money. Right now all is up in the air. In fact I try not to think about next year. Way too scary.

  1. My stomach is in knots – I think every woman has a secret dread of becoming a bag lady, and most men are fearful that they won’t be able to keep themselves and their families safely housed and fed in today’s economy — EXCEPT, that is, for the privileged unenlightened, who will be in charge ere long and will never get it.

    God help us all!
    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
    – ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
    “It takes a village to transform a world!”

    1. Since I have no family other than my brother Stephen I’m always afraid of falling through the cracks because if something happened to me I have nobody to reach out to. I like being single but God forbid if I should get sick again or my current disabilities worsen that would be the end of me. As I’m getting older the fear of being homeless and dying alone gets stronger.

      1. Pretty much the same here. I have 2 surviving brothers in Florida, but I’m not sure how inclined they would be to help if I were suddenly unable to work for myself. (My sleep disorder has generally precluded working in what many people call “a real job” and that has always been a difficult concept for most of the folks I encounter.)

        I believe we never die alone, so that does not frighten me – but I do worry about what would happen to my puppy if I were to die without another human knowing about it.

        Focus on having a loving Christmas season – I am doing my best to do the same.

      2. November 2014 was the last Thanksgiving with my cousin Bertie. We had all gathered together for the Thanksgiving holiday at our cousin’s house in New Jersey. She called him early December. By mid-December he was dead. His neighbors called because of the smell. He died in his sleep of cancer but because he too was single and childless he died alone and until his body began to decompose nobody knew. I had to work with the police to find out which morgue he was in so his elderly brother could come from Philly to ID the body then have it cremated. I never got to say Goodbye. So we do die Alone.

      3. In that sense, yes of course. And I am so sorry to read about this sad experience – dreadful for all concerned.

        I meant in the sense that I don’t believe we “feel” alone when it happens, even if no other human is around. My belief that God somehow sends guides comforts me, so I am not personally fearful of dying “alone” – except for what would happen to my puppy.

        LIVING alone is quite another story, however – especially homeless.

      4. Yes I do understand that aspect. Also I worry about who would take care of my cat Sylvester unless of course he passed before me. I try to keep in contact with a few friends and of course my job would look for me possibly sending the police to my door for a wellness check. I trust that maybe the police and/or EMS would adopt him or at least find somebody to care for him. Many police do this. It has been documented in the newspapers. I suppose the cops are used to finding people dead. It’s a matter of course in a city as large as New York.

      5. You know, the “check-in” feature is another great reason to sign up for a service like Meals on Wheels. When apts. are close together, it’s a bit easier to find and enroll a check-in buddy or several – where a couple days of silence means CHECK IN!

        Since I left Manhattan, I have been dismayed by the isolation the rest of the country seems to think of as privacy.

        Growing older alone is quite the problem for those of us without family or the means to hire help – but it never seemed to me reason enough to stay in otherwise unworkable situations at the time.

      6. At my previous apartment complex they had a RUOK service. Rochdale Village was a N.O.R.C a Naturally Occurring Retirement Community. Meaning people came their young, married, raised their kids and aged in place so Rochdale Village eventually employed a social working to care for the seniors. Also JASA provided meals in the community center for elderly people since a lot of people never marry or have children. New York City has many services for senior citizens. Other than the fact that my brother Stephen lives here and of course I cannot leave him the programs and services for the elderly help make New York more livable for our aging population. Now I’m not even 60 so I don’t qualify for any of these services/programs however one day I will. Also I don’t know how folks can live in rural areas or out in the suburbs. I had a mini-stroke at the age of 49 losing much of the vision in my left eye which left me unable to drive so I could never live in a city that did not have some sort of Mass Transit or public transportation system. I cannot imagine depending on somebody to drive me everywhere I needed to go!! Fortunately I still have a few years before I can retire. As long as I can work and earn money I will be Okay.

      7. Yup Sister Madelyn We all have a story. Like the old time TV show said, “There are 8 million stories in the Naked City.” I have been telling many of my stories through writing and of course blogging. I find it cathartic. Thanks for your support.

  2. Such scary times our country is heading into. I love how you personalize the homeless, recognizing that we all could far too easily become one of the cold, rejected, unwashed and unloved. It is crying shame and I am afraid that Trumpism will make it worse. Other countries actually have working safety nets for all. I am ashamed of us. I am ashamed of how we deny mental health treatment, how we imprison rather than treat mental illness. I am ashamed of how we throw people to the wolves in urban areas. I heard the male rape rate is so high in NY’s emergency winter homeless shelter’s that people prefer to freeze to death.

    1. We will see what happens. I’m not much of a Christmas observer. I will be working that day. You can check my Empty Chairs post for the reasons I don’t celebrate Christmas. It’s a season of misery for me.

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