United States District Court, S.D. Ohio, Western Division, Dayton
H. Rice District Judge.
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS 
L. Ovington United States Magistrate Judge.
Lillian Gibbons brings this case challenging the Social
Security Administration's denial of her applications for
period of disability, Disability Insurance Benefits, and
Supplemental Security Income. She applied for benefits on
February 23, 2015, asserting that she could no longer work a
substantial paid job. Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Gregory
G. Kenyon concluded that she was not eligible for benefits
because she is not under a “disability” as
defined in the Social Security Act.
case is before the Court upon Plaintiff's Statement of
Errors (Doc. #8), the Commissioner's Memorandum in
Opposition (Doc. #12), Plaintiff's Reply (Doc. #13), and
the administrative record (Doc. #5).
seeks a remand of this case for payment of benefits or, at a
minimum, for further proceedings. The Commissioner asks the
Court to affirm ALJ Kenyon's non-disability decision.
asserts that she has been under a “disability”
since June 10, 2011. She was thirty years old at that time
and was therefore considered a “younger person”
under Social Security Regulations. See 20 C.F.R.
§§ 404.1563(c), 416.963(c). She has a limited
education. See Id. §§ 404.1564(b)(3),
testified at the hearing before ALJ Kenyon that she has had
back pain since she was nineteen years old. (Doc. #5,
PageID #87). She has constant pain that is mostly
aching but is sometimes really sharp. Id. at 88. Her
pain goes down her left leg. Id. Her leg “goes
in and out from time to time.” Id. at 88-89.
On a scale from one to ten, her pain is usually at eight but
some days it goes above ten. Id. at 88. If it is
cold, she is in a lot more pain. Id. at 103.
tried several forms of treatment. She had eight sessions of
injections. Id. at 89. They helped
“[s]omewhat, but not really. It caused more pain than
it did anything.” Id. She has also tried a
TENS unit. Id. She wears a back-brace part of the
time. Id. at 90-91. It helps support her lower back.
Id. at 91. At the time of the hearing she was
looking for a new pain-management doctor. Id. at 88.
of her back problems, she cannot sit for long periods-usually
her limit is thirty minutes. Id. at 89-90. If she
tries to do light housework, she has to take breaks to lie
down and rest. Id. at 90. She can only stand for
fifteen to twenty minutes before it starts to hurt really
bad. Id. She does not walk because it causes pain.
Id. She starts to feel pain even if she walks two
blocks-from her house to her dad's house. Id.
has a history of seizures. She had her first one in 2015 and
went to the hospital. Id. at 91. The hospital
released her and on the way home, she had a second seizure.
Id. She was in the hospital for a week. Id.
She has not had another seizure since.
Plaintiff has a history of pulmonary embolisms. Id.
at 102. She also has some ongoing respiratory issues; she
gets short of breath at least four times a day. Id.
She uses an Albuterol inhaler. Id.
struggles with anxiety and panic attacks. Id. at 92.
Generally, when she is going to an unfamiliar place with
unfamiliar people, her anxiety is high and she has panic
attacks where she gets shaky and sweaty. Id. at
92-93. She tries to do a breathing technique that her
therapist taught her to calm herself down. Id. at
93. Other than taking her kids to school, Plaintiff leaves
her house two or three times per week. Id. at 92.
Usually, she goes to her friend's house, nine houses down
the street. Id. at 93. If she goes to the grocery,
she gets really nervous, panicky, and always on alert.
Id. She does not go to the mall because there are
too many people. Id.
also has post-traumatic stress disorder. She has flashbacks
of the guy that beat her up about every three days.
Id. at 94. She also has nightmares. Id. As
a result, she takes sleeping medication. Id.
has a history of depression. Id. Some days she gets
sad and does not want to be around other people. Id.
She has crying spells. Id. at 95. In the week before
the hearing, she cried seven different times for no reason.
Id. She has trouble with attention and
concentration. Id. She does not pay attention unless
she is in an unfamiliar place. Id. She can sometimes
pay attention during a thirty-minute TV show. Id. at
96. But other times it is on and she has no idea what is
going on. Id. She has a hard time concentrating to
help her children with their homework. Id. at 95.
She gets frustrated with them easily-within thirty
minutes-and has to take breaks and walk away. Id. at
sees Dr. Ballerene, a psychiatrist, and a therapist, Ms.
Terri, at Samaritan Behavioral. Id. at 99. She used
to see Ms. Terri once a week. Id. When Dr. Ballerene
asked if she was doing better getting out of the house,
Plaintiff told her yes, she was trying to overcome her
anxiety around other people. Id. at 100. For
instance, she took her kids to Dick's Sporting Goods.
Id. However, because there were so many people,
Plaintiff had to go to her car to calm herself down before
she could complete her purchase. Id. She also took
her kids to the park. Id. That went much better
because there were not many people there. Id.
lives in a house with her two children-ages 11 and 15 (at the
time of the hearing). Id. at 85. She and her husband
are separated. Id. She is able to drive except when
her anxiety is really high or she gets depressed.
Id. at 85-86. She generally only drives to the
grocery store or to take her kids to school. Id. at
86. If she is unable to drive, her father drives the kids to
school. Id. at 85.
an ordinary day, she gets up, gets her kids up, lets the dog
out, and then takes her kids to school if she can.
Id. at 98. When she gets home, she does what she can
until the pain gets too bad and then she rests. Id.
It is then usually time to pick her kids up. Id.
does not lift anything heavier than a gallon of milk.
Id. at 96. For the past two years, she has only
gotten between three and four hours of sleep per night.
Id. During the day, she sometimes falls asleep for
thirty minutes to an hour. Id. at 96-97. She is able
to take care of her own personal needs. Id. at 97.
But there are some days where she does not shower because she
just sits, does not move, and wants everyone to leave.
Id. She spends two to three days a week in bed all
day or on the couch. Id. She does some chores during
the day when she can. Id. at 98. But she has to take
breaks when her pain is too bad. Id.
June 2011, Plaintiff has had one job as a cashier at a
drive-through. Id. at 87. They let her go because
the medications she was taking were affecting her ability to
communicate with customers. Id. Prior to that job,
she worked for Action Rubber, running heavy equipment.
Id. at 98. They tried to let her work from home but
eventually let her go because of the medication she was on.
Id. at 98-99.
does not think she could show up for work five days a week
without her mental issues causing her problems. Id.
at 101. She explained that her dad has to take her kids to
school two or three times a week because she cannot.
Id. When she cannot take them, it is usually because
she gets shaky, agitated, and feels like her heart ...