Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury


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You are right about finding out who your friends are and who cares and loves you during difficult times. I hope that you do get to sit with your family to tell them how you feel.

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Pray and talk to God. It really helps. Gob bless you. Hi Sandra, thank you for sharing some of your story as it connects to you and your family. My daughter is not doing well and will not speak to many family members whom she has alienated over the past few years. I know she feels much of what you feel, but she will not talk to myself or some other family members; she has changed.

Your post has helped me see and understand a little more. What a journey for all concerned. I am a survivor of a TBI two years ago and am still struggling. My family grown son and daughter are great to me and help me through my struggles. I can't say the same about the neurosurgeons I had in the hospital who performed the surgery and care afterwards.

I lost at least one week or so of my life, as I have no memory of it, and the neurosurgeons had no understanding or patience with me. I kept asking to go home, and they couldn't understand that. They were so upset with me that I never saw them again after they came to my bedside to ask me why I was so insistent on going home. I couldn't tell them why I had behaved that way, but they should have known I was being governed by my brain injury.

My last exam, after being discharged, was with the head doctor of the dept. He talked about it, too, and seemed to not care about my feelings. It's something that concerns and bothers me to this day. My grandfather had a stroke leaving him unable to speak to us. He never went back home, he will never walk again or string more than 2 words together.

Resources - North Dakota Brain Injury Network

It is so devastating. He was in hospital for 6 months with the stroke and I used to visit him every time I went to work which was a 5 minute walk from his bedside. It made him happy but it broke my heart. Still heartbroken. Finally, someone who understands the loss and grieving a wife feels when her husband suffers a tramatic brain injury. In our case, my husband had cardiac bypass surgery in At that time, he suffered 2 frontal lobe strokes-one on the left and one on the right.

So doctors saved his heart but I lost the person I knew.

The Process of Dealing with Loss and Grief After a Brain Injury

He went into surgery as one person and came out another. The stroke affected what they call his Executive Function, logic, reasoning, judgment, personality, initiation, motivation, impulse control, short term memory, and ability to carry on a conversation. Thankfully he still has movement of legs and arms. I've been through all the grieving stages mentioned in this article.


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During all this, the comment that angers me the most is when someone says "it could be worse" or "at least he's alive. But the grieving is still there. Only those who have been through the "loss" of someone through a traumatic brain injury or dementia truly understand. I even had a cousin say, "Well you should be over it, it's been 4 years! I also lost my mother who had dementia 2 months prior to my husband's heart surgery. I grieved the loss of the mother I knew long before she passed. I've now accepted what is due to my love for my husband, my own strength, research, online forums, counseling, and a caregiver support group.

It does take a village.

Who am I?: Coping with Identity Loss after a Brain Injury

Thank you so much for your article. Thank you for contributing to this, it resonates enormously with me. My husband was assaulted 4 year's ago when he was hit over the head from behind, for a cellphone and a wallet. Life has not been the same since. He is not the same and we are not the same.

He has a front left lobe injury which has affected his executive functioning and he struggles with things that were always easy. I don't feel that anyone truly understands the impact this has had on his and our lives, I feel like I lost the husband I knew and my children have lost the father they adored - the sparkle has gone out of his eyes and his wonderful sense of humour no longer exists.

Although we are 4 years down the line it hasn't got easier and at times I'm not sure I can do this. Which I feel really bad about. Wondering if you ever feel that way. This is one of the most powerful articles I've read on grief and brain injury. Thanks for sharing it Brainline. You are the very best at helping others understand us, and us understand ourselves. Our baby boy at 3 years old when he became ill and got encephalitis. We don't know how or why but 5 months of being in a hospital last year they told us he sustained a traumatic brain injury.

He will never get better, walk, talk, or eat again. We slowly saw him disappear. As a mother I cried so much and I cannot explain the anger I felt. At god, at myself, at family, even sometimes I felt angry like "come on son. I believed the doctors when they said he didn't have much time I broke.

Coping With Grief

We went through so much with our son and watched him suffer but I feel like I can not and will not bear to lose him. To lose him would mean my world is over.


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I'm glad he's still here. I stopped questioning why and just love him everyday. I know being positive can only last for so long for the journey does get weary. The care he needs exhausts me and we cannot find good help that he needs like from us as his parents. I often refused to remember my baby running playing and talking to me.

Stories of life after brain injury

I'm just grateful at least I have those memories. For me it was just adjusting to this new person. And to look past all those expectations I had for him. I love him and some days it feels like it's not enough but oh well, there's always a new day to try and pick up the love.

Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury
Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury
Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury
Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury
Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury Overcoming Grief and Loss After Brain Injury

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