It’s only 9 days into the brand new year and I have questions.
My end of 2013 blog stats told me that What Can and Can’t Be Bought With Food Stamps was the most viewed of the past year. I think I only a lot of those views to Upworthy (thank you so much for your support, Brandon) but it’s more than that.

Take a look at this new year’s search terms that have brought people to Poor as Folk.
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I’m betting the searches for alcohol came from people trying to debunk that myth (I say this because people have told me in the past that’s why they shared that link) but the other searches…. do these people not have caseworkers and a support system at their DSS to answer these questions?

I have limited personal experiences with caseworkers. I lived in a neighboring county for awhile and being on food stamps was awful in that county. Caseworkers seemed to kinda like it when they made you cry and it was nearly impossible to get real assistance or answers. In the county we live in now, the caseworkers are awesome. They return all your calls in a short time and if you pop in to the office ,someone will generally be able to take time to see you.Also, in this county they have budgeting,cooking ,and meal planning workshops. I used to teach these,so I haven’t felt like I have a real reason to attend them …except for maybe the purposes for blogging material. (us writers are weird like that)

So, I’m wondering …how common is my former experience?
If you’re receiving assistance ( SNAP or TANF) or have in the past, what was your experience with case workers? Were you giving all the information you needed or did you feel like you had a lot of unanswered questions.

Because I realize not everyone wants to comment publicly on something like this, I’ve included a comment for that will go straight to my email. Public comments can still be left by scrolling to the bottom. It would be great if you could also include the state you live in.

Also, I’m long overdue for a commenting policy here but just a reminder: when I ask for welfare/food stamp recipient’s experiences, that’s who I am asking. It’s not an invitation for someone to explain all the reasons they don’t think people should get food stamps or why the program is bad or any other derailing commentary.