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Reassessing relationships after TBI

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Unread 12-27-2012, 03:06 PM   #1
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 375
Default Reassessing relationships after TBI

After a long recovery (over a year and a half), I am consistently feeling a lot better. I am not yet fully recovered, but am doing pretty well most of the time. My symptoms have significantly lessened, pretty much across the board, and I am gradually adding more activities to my routine.

My question is, how should I approach those relationships (friends, family, co-workers) that basically went by the wayside during my recovery? Many people completely bailed, with few making an effort to offer even the most basic support, encouragement or help. (On the flip side, a precious few people really rose to the occasion and helped me.)

I know most people do not understand the nature of concussion/mTBI, as it is in many ways an invisible injury, but I feel I've learned a hard truth, which is that some "friends" and "loved ones" simply can't be counted on when the going gets tough.

Strangely, I think the best plan might be simply not to worry about it, keep the faith, be grateful for my recovery, such as it is, be the best friend / family member I can, and look to help others when and where I can. In other words, focus on what *I* can do to keep a positive attitude, move forward, and live with integrity.

Any thoughts?
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Unread 12-27-2012, 04:13 PM   #2
mg neck prob
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: ohio
Posts: 478

Hi greenfrog;

I agree best to look forward to the postive. I understand how u feel and I think going thru surgery and cancer ---made me know who I can count on and who I can't anymore. I also was guilty of hiding my thoughts during that time. Looking back because I always saw myslef as strong and independent . I ended a very long term relationship because I had to face the fact when things went south so did the relationship. I always felt during my illness --- if the shoe was on the other foot I would have been the polar opposite. It was a hard reality to face. Some people like u said dont even extend the most basic gesture of support they flee when things go bad. For me it was a learning experience and I realize I dont want to waste my time on superficial realtionships,be it love,friendships, even family. I just learned to invest my heart (not to sound corny ) in the people I know love the same way.
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Unread 12-27-2012, 04:22 PM   #3
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: East Coast
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As you seem, at the end of your comments to have gotten on track, I will just say:

Do Onto Others..........

I am not religious, I have only followed that in my life; both professionally and in practice.

I give as I wish to receive....
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Unread 12-27-2012, 06:28 PM   #4
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Location: Saskatchewan
Posts: 237
Default Already an eye opener

Only two months into this and I can tell its going to be the great relationship overhaul catalyst.

Some people are just amazing and their love and care brings me to tears with gratitude. My husband is my rock. He is an example to me, of what love in action looks like.

Some people have been just... disheartening. I chalk it up to not understanding the nature of these injuries but sometimes it still really stings. Turns out some folks are just not cut out for reality and they prefer the "old" me who was funny when they needed a boost, or who was smart when they needed advice. I serve no purpose to them in this state, so... I guess I accept that.

You asked for thoughts....mine are very similar to your own near the end of your post. We can only be our best, and I believe that's all we can answer for. I try to assume the best of people until they prove otherwise and then... Shrug.

I can only hope to heal, and become a better version of myself so that I can be there for someone who needs me. I'd like to pay forward all the goodness I've found in the majority of people since my injury.

I think you're on the right track!!
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Unread 12-28-2012, 07:57 PM   #5
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: virginia
Posts: 484

I learned long ago that what most people think of as friendship and what is realistic is rather far apart. Many people are friendly but for whatever reason can not BE THERE when the relationship is tested. That said it does not make them bad or less than.

One need only decide what we are willing to give to a relationship. For myself I strive to honor and respect all, give kindness and understanding. However I will not consider someone a friend just because they can be friendly.

For those who prove they are willing to truely commit and be able to be relied upon I will do anything I can to help them. I find it unfortunate that there just are not that many I can do that for. I refuse to be in a one sided relationship. I, we, you deserve people who truely make our lives fuller and richer.

For me quality is more meaningful than quantity.
49, Male Married, PCS since June 2012, headaches, Back pain, neck pain, attention deficit, concentration deficit, processing speed deficit, verbal memory deficit, PTSD, fatigue, tinutitus, tremors.

To see the divine in the moment.
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Unread 12-28-2012, 11:10 PM   #6
Theta Z
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Location: GulfCoastSouth .... April 2014 rudely displanted to the cold wet windy gloomy NW coast.
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Even my passenger the night that night that we were rear-ended, has not kept in contact with me ... but for 2 weeks post-collision.

"Most" of my then-local "supposed-friends" certainly "fell away" in my own time of need.

My own considered "Friends" nowadays consists of those lifelong, longdistance-friends ... who truly were/always are "there for me", even from afar ... and those very few post-injury/TBI/PCS friends now (locally/relocated Over The Bay x 4+ yrs post-injury) who have proven to be indeed enduring and mutually-supportive Friends.

The rest/remainder ... I have no concern whatsoever, no thought nor useful concern.
One such left a year-later voicemail message for me ... of course, they were "in need" ... I without shadow of doubt or concern, simply did not reply/respond.

Sometimes in life, ya simply have learned that it's better to "cut your losses". I'm simply not capable of "ante-ing UP" for those who have proven "short" of responsibly "showing up" reciprocably in years past. Life is not a one-way thoroughfare.

50s Babyboomer; 2008 high-impact rear-ended/totalled-MVC, closed-head injury->pcs ... "Still dealing with it."
1993, Fell on black ice; first closed-head injury; life-altering. // 2014 Now dealing with Peripheral Neuropathy, tremors, shakiness, vestibular disorder, akithesia, anhedonia, yada yada, likely thanks to rx meds // 2014: uprooted to the cold wet gray NW coast, trying to find a way back home ... where it's blue sky and warm!

__________________________________________________ _________
Each and every day I am better and better. I affirm and give thanks that it is so. // 2014-This was still true for me last year, I truly felt this a year ago. Unfortunately it holds no meaning for me now. Odd, it was the Theta mantra for years. Change change change.
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Unread 12-30-2012, 05:09 PM   #7
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: N/A
Posts: 685
My Mood:

I am having a hard time being humble with friendships @ the moment. I feel like I need to try again after I get therapy and correct meds for my emotional state of mind. Also when I get my finances stable....

As time and healing passes maybe some of these friendships will not even be a question if they where ever POSITIVE friendships from the start.
What Happened: In 2011 I was in a MVA

Symptoms: Physical: I am always cold in any season!!I cannot tolerate anything pressure on my head(sun glasses,hats)longer then a hour,Lock jaw/Displaced TMJ, Dropsey, Hands go numb, Arms go numb, back of head numb (when asleep),Muscle spasms in face & upper body,migraines, concentration headaches, dizziness, nausea, neck and back trauma (from accident), tinnitus, extreme light sensitivity, noise sensitivity, EXTREME fatigue, impaired vestibular system, balance off, Pupils NEVER equal, disrupted sleep cycles,speech problems.

Cognitive: Cognitive Behavior, Brain fog, impulsivity, speech problems, word finding problems, slowed processing speeds, impaired visual memory, impaired complex attention

Emotional: Unable to handle stress or overstimulation without getting extremely irritable or angry, easily overstimulated, MAJOR depression, major anxiety, Panic attacks

Treatment so far: Treatment for PCS,PTSD,Depression & panic,Vestibular therapy, Physical therapy, Vitamin Schedule,Walking,No Dairy, No eggs, No caffeine, No artificial coloring, Sleep with 2 pillows, Very little sugars consumed, Eat healthy,No alcohol, Medications, limit stress and overstimulation.

~*~Learn to treasure yourself and your Divinity. Be willing to accept yourself completely. Be yourself, be graceful, be kind, be wild, be weird ... be true to yourself~*~
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