Relationships are important for everyone. Everyone needs to feel loved and valued as a person, and we all need people to talk to and spend time with. Having positive relationships helps people to feel satisfied with their lives and gives people a sense of belonging and self-worth.
After brain injury, relationships become even more important. Positive relationships can help with recovery in many ways. When people are facing many new challenges, they need to have people they can talk to about their thoughts and feelings. Talking with a close friend or relative is a great way to cope with and come to accept injury-related changes.
- Talking with people you trust is a helpful way to sort out all of the new and difficult problems you are facing. They may be able to help you figure out solutions to your problems.
- Close family and friends may be able to give you feedback about how you are doing in your recovery and what problems you still need to work on. Knowing what your problems are will allow you to keep getting better and to avoid further problems.
- After brain injury, many survivors feel like no one understands what they are going through. They may feel isolated and alone. Talking with close family and friends may help you feel less lonely and misunderstood. Having positive people in your life may also help you feel like you are part of a team. Having a team behind you is easier than trying to handle everything on your own.
- Positive friends and family members will encourage you to do things that help you — like exercise, eat right, take breaks, have fun, take care of yourself, or ask for help when you need it. They will also encourage you to avoid things that might hurt you — like alcohol, drugs, smoking, and dangerous activities.
- Spending time with people you care about is a great way to manage stress and frustration. Managing stress and frustration effectively will help you focus on recovery and handle your responsibilities better.
There are many reasons why relationships are important for everyone. Spend some time thinking about the positive changes that may come about in your life when you have good relationships. Talk to the important people in your life and find ways to tell them how much they mean to you.
From the National Resource Center for Traumatic Brain Injury, Virginia Commonwealth Model Systems of Care. Reprinted with permission. www.nrc.pmr.vcu.edu.