Why behaviors and emotions can change after TBI
Depending on what part or parts of a person’s brain are injured, the individual may experience significant behavioral and emotional changes. The frontal lobe, for example, helps govern personality and impulsivity. If damaged, there might be no “braking mechanism” for self-control. A person may find he cannot control his anger or aggression. He may also make inappropriate comments to friends or strangers not realizing they are off color.
Or the opposite might happen … someone’s personality may become muted or seemingly emotionless. This is called “flat affect.”
Some of the most common behavioral and emotional problems people with TBI can experience include:
- Verbal outbursts
- Physical outbursts
- Poor judgment and disinhibition
- Impulsive behavior
- Rigidity and inflexibility
- Risky behavior
- Lack of empathy
- Lack of motivation or initiative
- Depression or anxiety
Some people call them mood swings because for people after TBI, emotions can often be hard to control. Because of the damage to the brain, a TBI can change the way people feel or express emotions. A person may feel she is constantly on an emotional roller-coaster — full of glee and excitement one moment, devastated the next. Another person may experience unpredictable bouts of laughing or crying, which have nothing to do with how the person is actually feeling or what is going on around her.
It’s crucial for people with TBI and their families to understand that these behavioral and emotional changes are a result of the brain injury; they are not the injured person’s fault. That said, dealing with these issues can be even more difficult, especially for family and friends, if the person with the brain injury is unaware of the fact that he is different from how he was before his injury.
What to do
Consulting a neuropsychologist or behavioral therapist is a good place to start. They can help with strategies like learning to breathe deeply when you feel you are getting angry or intolerant or like redirecting your thoughts and actions to more positive choices.
With support and patience, people with TBI can learn to take action to regain a sense of control over their moods and behaviors. Here are some practical suggestions for people with TBI who experience emotional highs and lows:
- Let friends, family, and coworkers know about your difficulties with behavior control. Enlist their help and support. For example, they may be able to help you better understand what triggers inappropriate behavior or emotional responses and help you learn how to avoid those triggers.
- Confide in friends or family members. Sharing your worries helps lift the burden.
- Clean up your messes. If you have acted inappropriately, apologize.
- Tell people to walk away from you if you have an emotional outburst. They can talk to you once you have calmed down.
- Avoid people, places, or situations that trigger inappropriate responses.
- Join a support group or find a peer mentor. Talking to others who have “been there” can help.
- Get regular exercise. It’s good for the body and calms the mind.
- Try learning to meditate to keep your mind clear.
Please remember, we are not able to give medical or legal advice. If you have medical concerns, please consult your doctor. All posted comments are the views and opinions of the poster only.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
My husband suffered a DAI TBI from a motorcycle accident 3 months ago, he was not wearing a helmet. The ICU doctor told us he was a walking miracle due to the condition he was brought in to the ER in; he had a GCS of 3 upon arrival to the trauma bay. He sees a neurologist and has OT/PT/Speech therapies scheduled for the next 3 months to help him overcome the dizzy spells, vertigo, blurry vision, severe headaches, unsteady gait, etc etc. He is refusing, however, to see a psychiatrist for his untreated bipolar schizophrenia that he has had for decades. Add to that the damage done to his brain pre-accident from drug abuse, and we are stuck inside a tornado that doesn't seem to be ending. Since his accident he really has no desire for alcohol or drugs, thank God, and I am grateful for that. But the angry, paranoid, accusing, verbal and emotional abuse that he dished out pre-accident are back and stronger than ever. We were on the verge of divorce when he had the accident, but as soon as I saw him laying in ICU all of that disappeared. I forgot about the past, the only thing that mattered was him and that he was still alive. I stayed day and night with him while he was in the ICU for 2 weeks. He was supposed to then go to IP rehab which he refused so we came home. From there, I had to return to work. I have spent time out of every day getting his disability application submitted, keeping up with all of the medical bills and making sure they are accepted and paid by the insurance company, keeping a binder of all his medical records, calling and making dr. appts. It has been emotionally draining taking all of this on, in addition to being the only income and managing the household expenses and chores. Don't get me wrong, I would do it all again in a heartbeat, I love this man and would do anything for him. But it would be nice to at least be appreciated for all that I have done, instead of being verbally assaulted every day. To be told daily that you are a failure of a wife, there are so many women out there he could choose from, and being accused of the most ridiculous things as saying I am meeting a "boyfriend" every time I leave the house. I've never cheated on him, ever, yet this goes back to the good ol days pre-accident of him deciding to literally destroy his brain cells and turning into a paranoid violent angry person. Everything I have found to read about TBI says that personality change is inevitable and is out of their control. Yet, the things he does and says now are the very same things as before, only now they are worse and more often. When I try to explain to him that he shouldn't talk to me this way, he gets angry and says that he is brain damaged and he can talk however he wants. He was the one that wrecked and is going through this. My point is if you can acknowledge the fact that you are doing something wrong, and you know what you are doing/saying as you say it, then don't use your injury as an excuse for your behavior. I love my husband, we were high school sweethearts and married for 30 years now. I just don't know how much longer I can deal with the stress of all of this. I was at my breaking point before, but now feel like I would be this horrible horrible person if I left while he is still going through recovery of his TBI. Thanks for listening to me vent my frustrations, it helps a little bit even typing this out.
Lisa replied on Permalink
Hi I'm at my wits end with my boyfriend he is 55 years old and he has severe trauma head injury his behaviour is so bad that he has been in trouble with the law. His relationships with other women have failed he was in 3 different relationships with women in the last 10 15 years and they did not last long. I'm in a current relationship with him his temper outbursts behaviour problems is getting out of control. He has regular support from support workers and social worker both from lincolnshire and Sheffield. He has been in very serious trouble with his manager at support housing association council property he goes around threatening people neighbours and ringing up his manager at this housing for disabled people intimidated and threatening them over the phone. He has had one written warning after another his housing team been around to see him to have words and he has had his manager from the housing team to have serious words and fill in behaviour orders he is on his very last warning now from his housing team he could face eviction if he continues doing this intimidation and making threats to his neighbours myself and people in the street. He been to see his gp and his support workers also reported him for abusive violent aggressive behaviour in the past. He is saying he cant controll his behaviour and that sometimes he doesn't know what he is saying doing. He is now on last warning now from his housing association and from the police. He reduced his eldery neighbours to tears and in some of them in really fear of going out opening the door to anyone no kidding here the police had had words with him and gave him so many warnings now I've lost count. The way he goes up to his neighbours and threatens to punch them hit them he been told about this so many times I've lost count now. His neighbours are in their late 60s 70s 80s and 90s. I'm really at my wits end with this very aggressive very nasty and offensive person my boyfriend as become he never really used to be like this he used to be so loving and kind then overnight he changed and it's scaring me so much what he can do. My boyfriend has reduced me to tears so many times lately I have considered leaving him but I cant because he not got any family they died he is ostracized by from the local community because of him constant swearing making terrible remarks commets to others and making threats to people no one wants to speak to him or go near him. For the last 2 and half years my boyfriend been reported by his neighbours because of his behaviour. Its embarrassing mortifying and very humiliating at the same time it me his girlfriend and his neighbours having to pick up the pieces and explain to strangers that he cant help his behaviour. It's making me depressed and my well being isnt very good dealing with this 24 7. I would love to get advise or help please thank you
Anonymous replied on Permalink
Hello and prayers to everyone who has posted! My son is 27 years old. He has had multiple head injuries. He was unconscious for a few minutes after 2 of his head injuries. The last injury was in 2015. He went through a car windshield! He is struggling daily with voices he hears. He is taking antipsychotic medication, anti-seizure meds and phenobarbitol for the anxiety that the antipsychotics cause. He is very sensitive to most medication now. He has suffered tremendously and has lost all but one friend. This one friend rarely comes around because my son, reportedly, slapped him one day when they were in a restaurant having lunch. My son was most likely agitated from alcohol because he reportedly drank 3 beers, even though I asked his friend to refrain from taking him around alcohol because my son now tends to want to self-medicate. The voices he hears are negative mostly. He has been to about 7 or 8 psychiatrists. It seems none of them agree with a diagnosis. One says, TBI, PTSD, and anxiety disorder. Another says TBI, agoraphobia, and addiction issues. That one wasnt board certified but we didnt realize this at the time my son was seeing him. Yet another diagnosed my son with Schizophrenia, anxiety disorder, and possible TBI. Another said schizoaffective disorder and anxiety disorder. He was diagnosed with TBI by a physiatrist/TBI specialist. He said my son has all the classic symptoms of TBI. I think that most psychiatrist want to throw in schizoaffective disorder or schizophrenia because my son began showing symptoms (hearing voices) shortly before his 21st birthday. This is the usual age of schizophrenia onset. We do not think he has schizophrenia because his symptoms began abruptly within 6 months of going through a windshield. We also have no history of schizophrenia on any side of our family. It is so frustrating not having a definitive diagnosis. To make matters worse, my son was only given a CT scan at the hospital, right after the auto accident, then he was sent home. I wasnt allowed to even speak to the hospital staff, only a police officer at the hospital. My son was drunk when he crashed. Thank God, no one else was involved in the accident, except a cousin who had his seatbelt on, who was also drunk. The cousin reportedly begged my son to take him home, knowing he was drunk. Both are to blame but blame doesnt make anything better. The cousin had a few scratches but he is fine. My son now will suffer from now on for his poor decision making. He had ADHD prior to the accident which I’m told can cause very poor decision making. He had taken ADHD medication on and off for several years but hated the way it made him feel. He still has ADHD now, of course, which further complicates his condition. He said he has wished a million times over that he had never drank alcohol but he cannot change things now that happened then! I am stating this in hopes that someone else might read this to their teenaged kids and that it might have a positive impact on them so they might choose to refrain from drinking alcohol. We recently had neuropsychological testing done in hopes we can find some treatment that will help. My son has done short term counseling in the past but never stuck with it. Shame on the hospital staff for their negligence in stressing what we needed to do after my son’s accident. He should have had immediate care and followed a strict protocol for a year but we didnt know at the time. We are still praying that God will help him find the right physicians and the right treatment that will help him in the near future! This has been devastating to our family! Our son had a fling with a woman on drugs and she had his child 9 months later. We have custody now and our grandchild is such a blessing to us all! He wants to raise his child but he cannot! He wants a family but he isnt well enough to have a family yet. This is one of the hardest things to accept! Please pray for him and for all the others who have posted on here and I will do the same. May God bless us all and help us find the best treatment available for our loved ones. I have received many frustrating comments from others regarding my son’s treatment or lack of treatment and I am still trying to help him! I am his best advocate. My husband tries to help but he hasnt read enough on TBI, in my opinion. I urge others who have a family member or friend with TBI to keep researching, keep trying different specialists, and above all, to remember that your loved one is still a person with their own voice and they are still a very valuable human being to us and to God!
Barbara replied on Permalink
My heart goes out to you and all those caring for a loved one with TBI sequelae. I am a physician parent with a son who has ADHD, multiple concussions/mTBI that led to abusing alcohol and then to a psychosis at 18 yrs old. It was (appropriately) diagnosed as Schizoaffective disorder because of the mixed features of Bipolar Mood Disorder and Schizophrenia-like symptoms, and the persistent impairments between episodes of psychosis. I'd like to share with you some important things to know about psychiatry, mental illness and TBI, in case it is helpful for you.
1) TBI is one of many risk factors for developing Schizophrenia or Schizoaffective Disorders
2) In my 37 yrs of experience caring for patients it seems clear that many with TBI have a heightened sensitivity to medications (much like they develop sensitivity to sounds and bright lights). This is seldom appreciated by my psychiatric colleagues, unfortunately, resulting in the prescribing of typical dosages of anti-psychotic medications which may cause unbearable side effects (in anyone, but especially those who are extra sensitive).
3) Treatment-resistant psychosis, such as my son and your son have, can respond to Clozapine. It has been extremely helpful for my son, so long as it is prescribed in a very low dose and is ADDED to another antipsychotic (in my son's case, Aripiprazole a.k.a. Abilify, which is one of the best tolerated, especially for those with ADHD).
4) ADHD can and should be treated, once the psychosis is optimally treated and IN REMISSION (voices MAY remain to a degree, but they are recognized as hallucinations by the patient and they are no longer troubling).
5) It is very under-appreciated how frequently those with Schizophrenia and Schizoaffective Disorders also have ADHD. Sadly, the ADHD is almost never treated in this population of patients.
6) Remember that in psychiatry diagnoses are based solely on the patient's symptoms. There is no other field of medicine that does not use lab tests or medical imaging/scans to assist in the diagnosis. For this reason, many patients get different diagnoses from different psychiatrists.
In summary, I would gently make the following suggestions for you to consider:
1) obtain a functional brain scan, such as a SPECT scan. This shows the areas of the brain that are under-functioning or over-functioning and can guide diagnosis AND treatment. The Amen Clinics offer SPECTs and provide a holistic approach to treating based on these scans. (Sometimes, as in my son's case, there are underlying causes of the mental health symptoms in addition to TBIs - such as chronic Tick-borne infections - which may have specific patterns on SPECT scans).
2) Ask your son's psychiatrist about Clozapine. It is a medication with potentially serious/life-threatening side effects, but these can be detected with regular blood tests and monitoring, and are reversible upon stopping the medication (so not to be feared). Also, ask his psychiatrist about the newer antipsychotics aripiprazole and it's "cousins". Ask if they would consider ADDING a low dose of Clozapine to one of these, rather than switching one for the other. (There is preliminary published evidence from psychiatrists in Calgary, Alberta that this may be helpful.) Hopefully, his psychiatrist will be open to "treating the patient rather than the blood levels" when it comes to this or any other medication.
3) A physician trained in Functional Medicine should be able to do a comprehensive assessment of your son and recommend both medical and nutritional interventions, etc.
4) Neurofeedback training should be strongly considered, once his Schizoaffective disorder is stable, as there is an abundance of published science to support this intervention in TBI, seizures as well as many other conditions.
Finally, thank you for not giving up on your son! It is so very challenging and heart-breaking at times, but there is always hope for some improvements - large or small. May God's love give us the strength, courage and compassion to continue to support our loved ones who have suffered so much trauma, including TBI.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
I just wanted to reach out and say I am so sorry you, your son and your family are going through all of this. God bless you.
Laura Smith replied on Permalink
I feel your frustration totally. Hi, I'm Laura, and went through a windshield in 2004 also due to my drunk driving. My then husband was with me and only dislocated his shoulder, thank the Lord. I pulled in front of a van that was loaded with people and going 60 MPH. My small Saturn (brand new) vehicle flipped 3 times resulting in my TBI. There was minor damage to someone in the other car and thank God no one was killed.
After months in the hospitals I went to I went through the Challenge Rehabilitation Program at the TIRR Group at Herman Hospital in Houston, Tx (my wreck happened in Galveston, Tx) and their number is 1-800-447-3422. I had great car insurance with Aetna at the time so they paid for my rehabilitation. The main gist I remember from it all was learning about Compensatory Strategies-how to do things to compensate for TBI shortcomings. I especially had a problem with my memory so I used stickies profusely around my house to label where things were located, etc. and I use them to this day still. I had a great job at The Boeing Company in Clear Lake, Tx then so had a wonderful support group who said my job would be waiting for me, but I, of course, never returned there. Instead, I worked at Good Will and Walmart, both of which are required to hire a certain percentage of handicapped employees. I worked there 4 & 1 years respectively. That helped pay some bills.
I hope your son is doing well. My heart goes out to you and your family.
Ursula replied on Permalink
I had a head injury from a motorcycle accident. Doctors put me on anti-seizure meds afterwards and it gave me auditory hallucinations. It was very scary hearing things and voices that were not there. The medicine was causing these problems!!! Thank God I found a good doctor that helped me out so much. I also did my own research to find out as much as I could about brain injuries. Unfortunately you have to fight sometimes to get the care you need. I had to do that with my head injury and it wasn't easy and I still struggle with things, but I have come a long way. Also help him to get connected to a life changing therapist, and don't just trust anyone because they have a degree. I also was diagnosed with PTSD but I had a great therapist that used EMDR as one of the treatments. It helped out immensely!! Just wanted to share this, research it a find doctors and therapist with great reviews not just anyone. Sending prayers for his healing and freedom from the torture he is going through. I pray he comes out stronger. He is still here for a reason. ❤️
InSC replied on Permalink
Living with someone who suffered TBI just over 20 years ago. Unfortunately his TBI has never been fully explored, treated or to be honest barely acknowledged by anyone in the medical community.
He is getting progressively worse yet he doesn't see it nor recognize his behaviors. The main issue is he's flipping things constantly scrutinizing everything I say and do but changes what actually happened to fit into his narratives. It's gotten so bad that I'm starting to think I'm losing my sanity, maybe I am the problem.
This is something you can't really discuss with friends and family. Plus he also has very bad anger and aggression problems. He's always had a tendency to play the victim and most conversations with anyone he manages to always twist them around where no matter the situation it's happened to him or it circles around to focusing on only him. It's as if he has to be the center of attention to gain sympathies but he's adamant he doesn't like to be the center of attention.
I'm at my wits end and don't tink I can handle much more. I have lots of medical problems of my own and I refuse to live like this the rest of my life. I don't want to be miserable and completely pessimistic and mad at the world like he is. I am and always have been a complete optimist whose motto is stay positive.
Any ideas to help my situation?? Anyone else gone through this??
Carol replied on Permalink
I’m going through the same Situation myself right now not knowing though what to do so if somebody could help us to understand what to do in the situation it would be greatly appreciated thank you
Anonymous replied on Permalink
5 or 6 years ago I suffered a TBI. I was visiting my neighbor house. I was sitting on a white lawn chair and it might have broken, I’m not sure. When the chair broke I fell backwards hitting my head on the concrete driveway making this the fourth time hitting my head within 6 months.
I didn’t go to the hospital because it didn’t hurt, I felt no pain at all. I remember hearing someone saying my name and it sounded like it was really far away when in fact they were right over me. When I started to open my eyes I saw the world in shattered pieces, not fun at all. I did not understand what was going on in my head. I had vertigo, headaches, anger or cry issues and memory problems, which I still do.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
Are you familiar with narcissism, and Narcissistic Personality Disorder? Listen to Dr. Ramani and see it that fits your situation.
My ex-husband caused me to live the same way. But I would never have left him, as per the other person's comments regarding our responsibility to God, to be the kind of steward he wants us to be of each and every person he places in our lives. I could see why God had chosen me for my ex, so I stayed. But he ended up leaving for another woman. He sinned, but God turned his sin around for my good, to be freed from him of his own volition. (Romans 8:28)
I was enlightened and really understood the situation much better after learning from Dr. Ramani. If it applies to you, I hope it is helpful. I pray that our generous and gracious God bless you abundantly with healing from all wounds, wisdom in how to handle the situation, strength to endure it/long-suffering fruit of the Spirit, and great blessings and reward. Amen.
Regina replied on Permalink
I totally understand where you're coming
from. My ex is the same he had an accident in 87, long before I knew him. Anyway to make long story short, notice I said ex I divorced him a few yrs back we were split up a year and a half before divorce then 6months after he convinced me to try again this time. The whole time he was constantly calling, emails,, texting, running into me everywhere. This is why I decided maybe he really did want to try again. This is when I learned of his head injury and that he was in a coma for a while after it happened. After talking with some of his family members they informed me of alot of things he has done that fit right into the syptoms of a traumatic head injury.
His behavior has caused problems between me and my family, him and his children, his job and his friends.
Like you I'm at my wits end. I'm 67 and have my own physical medical problems to handle. It's like you love them and want what's best for them. But if you stick around you'll go crazy.
I was just letting you know you're not alone.
I just wish there was a cure for them. I knows there is help, but getting mine into a doctor is almost impossible.
Tammy replied on Permalink
I AM DEALING WITH THE EXACT SITUATION. EVERYTHING GETS TURNED ON ME. HE DONT EVER TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR HIS ACTIONS. HE GETS PAIN MEDICATION AND IT MAKES HIM DO AND SAY THINGS OUT OF THIS WORLD. HE DONT EVEN KNOW WHAT HE IS SAYING OR DOING. SO I HAVE RECORDED HIM AND WHEN I SHOW HIM HE MAKES UP EXCUSES OF WHY HE IS DOING THE THINGS HE WAS. EVERYTHING YOU HAVE MENTIONED IN YOUR POST I HAVE EXPERIENCED ALL THE SAME. ITS SO SAD BECAUSE AS MUCH AS YOU LOVE THE PERSON AND TELL YOURSELF THAT ITS THE BRAIN INJURY NOT THEM. ITS VERY VERY DIFFICULT TO KEEP TELLING YOURSELF THIS. SPECIALLY WHEN THINGS THEY SAY OR DO TO YOU HURT LIKE HELL MORE AND MORE SO AS THE TIME GOES BY. I AM ON THE EDGE OF BREAKING OFF A 10 YEAR RELATIONSHIP BECAUSE OF THIS. THEN I THINK HE ONLY HAS ME AND I KNOW HIM AND KNOW THIS BEHAVIOR IS NOT, AND I THINK WHO WILL TAKE CARE OF HIM AND LOVE HIM IF ITS NOT ME ANYMORE. NO BODY WILL WANT TO TAKE ON THIS ROLE. SPECIALLY IF THEY DID NOT KNOW HIM BEFORE HIS ACCIDENT AND T.B.I. ITS A HARD AND DIFFICULT RD TO BE ON WITH SOMEONE WITH SUCH A INJURY. BUT YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT IT FROM A DIFFERENT ANGLE AT TIMES. TELLING YOURSELF THAT GOD PUT YOU IN THIS PERSONS LIFE FOR A REASON. AND THAT IF HE DIDN'T THINK YOU COULD BE THE ONE TO HANDLE THE DIFFICULT TASK, THEN YOU WOULD OF NEVER BEEN FACED WITH THEM IN THE FIRST PLACE. I GIVE EVERYONE ON HERE WHO IS DEALING WITH THE SAME ISSUES. A HUGE PAT ON THE BACK. DONT GIVE UP JUST YET ON THE ONES WE LOVE BECAUSE SOMEONE HAS TO BE THERE FOR THEM. AND YOU ARE THAT RIGHT PERSON. STAY STRONG EVERYONE. ITS NOT EASY, BUT IT COULD BE WORSE. THEY COULD BE GONE COMPLETLY. AT LEAST THIS WAY WE CAN STILL HUG AND KISS THEM EVERYDAY
Anonymous replied on Permalink
I have a double brain injury, the first at 13 months old i fell 17 foot out of a window though a disfunkshenal mother. Landed half on the grass and half on the concrete + a fractcherd Skull. I had problems though school then got shipped of to boarding school that lasted 3 years. I left at 15years old. Bed sit after bed sit. I had my nan which
Was my mum" my nan was born in india and could speak fluent hindi. And moved to England my nan and grandad. I
am now 46 and i learnt aĺl my life skills from my nan. The most loving and caring nan + mum i will ever have. It was not about gifst money. It was about garding walking the dog over the fileds cutting up the fire wood maintaining the cycles cleaning out the fire place baking cooking playing board games. My nan worked for the red cross and was incharge. Moving on to my terwenties i was mixing with the rong people drink drugs, i have nothing in comon
With these people. Just like my nan said fair weather freinds! There only about when you have money. In 2010 i was at a party same old turn out drink drugs. I fell off a thirty foot wall. And can not remember what happend! I have made a freach start i dont have any freinds or partner people who concentrate on there own lifes live far happier one,s.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
My husband hit his head at work and has a TBI .
He has said the most horrible things to me and leaves me repeatedly, cheats ,lies and definitely twisted everything to fit him .
It has been a year and a half of hell .
Since the accident he has obsessive thoughts all night about killing 10 different people very specific people. Now he is having obsessive thoughts about harming me hurting me as bad as he can .when I was in Mexico and had surgery and was bleeding out that is when he told me the horrifying things I've ever heard him say in my life. That was a month ago and he just told me that he felt so horrible and guilty because he actually enjoyed it. He tells me he loves me and he wants us to have our marriage back the way it was right after he told me about wanting to obsessively hurt me. I love you more than anything and he was always a really good man and a thousand percent trustworthy now he twisted turns everything so that he can have everything his way but still wants me to be sweet and compliant I don't know what to do anymore.
Melk replied on Permalink
It is like you have just described what I have been trying to articulate. My husband had a head injury just before I met him so I don’t know what his personality was like before the head injury but the characteristics that you mention seem to be becoming more pronounced as the years go by. It is nearly 30 years now and I am finding it increasingly difficult to keep up the unconditional love. Where can we get help?
JJ replied on Permalink
My son has endured several head injuries in his 20s. He is unable to support himself. He has severe anxiety is working. He has anger outburst. He turns everything on me and makes me out to be the bad guy. I try to avoid confrontation but it just never happens. We can’t live in peace. I’m totally supporting him. His father is deceased. And there’s no one else to help him, he has no friends he has severed his relationships completely, he can’t even have a work relationship without coming home super stressed and full of anxiety and full of anger. I’m at a loss what to do with him and if I even mentioned that he needed help he would be furious. He’s waiting on some miracle to happen to get out of my house, but we can’t stand each other. And he’s constantly making me out to be an evil person all the while I’m helping him. He can’t continuously bites the hand that feeds him and conversations never go in a good direction. I’m at a loss what to do so I can certainly relate. I need my sanity too I am almost 70 would love to retire but where to go for help and who to talk to? I really don’t have the answers. I wish I did it’s depressing, frustrating, negative, makes me feel bad about myself, and bad for my son, and it breaks my heart. I pray every day that God will give us an answer. It seems there’s more of us out there dealing with the same issue. I pray for all of you that you have answers to your own family issues. Peace.
Nicole replied on Permalink
I am right there with you. I deal with this daily from my TBI husband. I have no advice but I wanted you to know you are not alone.
Ray replied on Permalink
Hello, I've been searching for this link
This is the first time I feel like I've connected with others in the same situation as me. I'm having a tough day.
Tevy replied on Permalink
I feel the same way. I’m frustrated every trying to care for my tbi husband. I have no one to help me. He’s always negative and cause me pain. I’m praying that he gets better.
Erin replied on Permalink
I can completely identify with your situation. My marriage has been destroyed by my husband's tbi. It has been 2 years, he's in excruciating pain everyday and he is a completely different man. Modern medicine seems to continue to throw mounting doses of medication at him which I believe are making him worse. He has moved out, is living in a trailer and left me with all the expenses (not something he would ever do before his accident). Every discussion is an argument that has now put added stressors as we are a blended family. Although I am happy to know others are struggling this silent struggle, I would really enjoy advice as I'm not looking for commiseration. I am looking into a TBI clinic. Anyone have thoughts on this?
carricab replied on Permalink
My marriage of almost 20 years was destroyed by a TBI. I'm certain of it... and my ex husband has gone on to prove me right. He went from a pretty normal guy to someone I didn't know, who had no empathy for me or our kids, who would hit the kids and do inappropriate things in inappropriate places. He destroyed his career by watching porn on his work computer. He was supervising a kid who died by pulling a table on top of himself. He was married a second time for about a year and she divorced him when he was fired from another job. Recently he resigned after being charged with assault and child endangerment for touching a 16 year old students butt... these are things I would NEVER have believed 25-30 years ago. He played football in school as a lineman. When our youngest daughter was about five he fell off of a roof and cracked his head open above his left eye in the hairline. There was a bone ridge. He REFUSED to get an MRI or Xray. He was never the same after that.
Neil replied on Permalink
I have TBI, my wife has built up the same defenses as my brain did to deal with the symptoms. We end up fighting for one simple reason, her own ignorance and righteousness has gotten in the way. I’ve actually got a handle on the symptoms using yoga and meditation. Takes a lot of work.
She has decided the change in me is too drastic, now I seek the love and peace angle, but stand tall when she says I’m too dramatic.
You have to work together on solving the triggers. Only then will things get better. My wife won’t research anything really about my TBI. She says she has too much going on. Understand this, the number one cause of death for TBI patients is suicide 2nd is drug overdose. This is mainly because people do not take the time to truly study mindfulness.
That is the “cure” for everyone involved.
Once you’ve both dropped this outer shell of self and start looking in, you’ll realize your life will never be the same. And the anger and doubt is silly.
Since I’ve started learning this, my anger, headaches, anxiety, almost all symptoms have returned to manageable.
Essentially, you wouldn’t get upset at a turrets patient. They can’t help it
You wouldn’t get upset at an ALS patient because they’re moving too slow.
You wouldn’t get mad at a patient with Down syndrome. I hope this helps, look inside. Work with him to find peace. He’s a human with an invisible sickness. He needs you.
Joseph replied on Permalink
First of all I wanted to introduce myself my name is Joseph I live in Florida years ago over 30 years ago I suffer from traumatic brain injury due to a car accident it was not my fault someone ran into me he put me in the hospital I suffered very much from severe headaches seizures I didn't even know did I hide brain injury it wasn't until seizures and vomiting it was awful at one time there was a place here in Florida Brain Injury Association of Central Florida I believe now they're all closed I was a member for a while now I cannot even get ahold of them people who suffer from brain injuries have severe change of moods I can talk about it myself when I was first diagnosed has traumatic brain injury I was like a yo-yo one day I was happy the next day I was sad crying Beyond My Control I cannot stop my emotions it was horrible it still is from time to time they put me on medication one of them was Dilantin which only control the seizures my wife have helped me tremendously I've gone through hell surviving this I felt many times like I wanted to give up but I believe in God please do not give up on your spouse or a loved one just like anything else is there a condition that's beyond the person's control a lot of doctors all they want to do is give you medication it's some kind of medication makes it worse I've gotten a little bit better I went to a neuropsychologist there are received biofeedback therapy meditation still after all that play just the two of you living 30 plus years being injured it's been a difficult Journey if you can try to find neurologist because brain injury affects the mind and the spirit it affects your emotions depression they had me on so much medication at one time it was ridiculous. Sometimes for no reason either I'm angry or severely upset for no reason news makes it worse everything that normal people can handle when you have a severe brain injury it makes it worse for the person who has a brain injury I speak for myself about it it's hard for me to watch the news on TV to see the chaos in the world I become isolated from time to time thanks to my wife who has been very patient try to help me the deal with these situations sometimes you take it off on the closest person to you so I advise you as someone who was in Survivor of traumatic brain injury to Never Surrender and let that person know do you're there for them no matter what I wish there was more research out there to help people who are suffering from traumatic brain injury without being judged it's something that you cannot control something that happened to you so you have no control of I hope you find a good doctor also counseling can help I had a good doctor get retired a few years ago this injury happened to me when I was on the job getting hit by another car the car must have been doing to be 75 miles an hour I'm lucky to be alive sometimes I have real bad vivid dreams sometimes I can't sleep I have up and down all the time I want to stay locked up in the house I don't want to be hanging around a bunch of people 4 people make you upset because of some of the things that comes out of their mouth seems like everything is Amplified 100 times so you become overwhelmed with feelings and emotions severe depression not wanting to live these are all normal feelings when you suffer from traumatic brain injury at one time back in 93 I went to a place called the Florida Institute for neurological Rehabilitation en wachula Florida I went there for three weeks it was a quiet place where you can think he tried to meditate the best you can right now I'm living in the city it didn't used to be this way when I first moved in here in this little town in Volusia County it's become more hectic environment has to do a lot with the condition he could be easily have a relapse do to the environment it takes a long time for your brain to rejuvenate itself and to heal itself there's so much to learn about this my blood pressure has yo-yo back and forth and I know it's got to do with my brain injury also some of these medication they put you on do not help the condition sometimes it makes it worse I myself am looking for someone that can help me more to help me with my mood swings it might even cause you to have bipolar affective disorder also a d h d where you want to do multiple things I never get nothing accomplished it is very frustrating I'm glad I found this website to be able to share with others what some people are going through I will have you in my prayers know that God loves you I know they're reading the Bible has helped me alot but sometimes I suffer from horrible dreams I don't know where they come from I've also become more sensitive two things that didn't affect me before not long ago I lost my son to suicide that took a toll on me tremendously top of the brain injury I lose my son to suicide this has been a real difficult situation for me I hope that me writing this information down can help somebody no that is always help out there so you can reach out to people in talk about these situations it always helps to talk someone I hope that you find someone that can help you and help your loved one because of Survivor or traumatic brain injury it has been one heck of a Journey but I will continue to fight forward never giving up ever since the pandemic hit being locked up in the house didn't help the situation also the doctor that I was seeing at the time retired he was located in Winter Park Florida dr. Falcone a very good neuropsychologist unfortunately he retired now I'm having trouble with the insurance company because this happened to me when I was working on a company truck already has suffered from severe depression previous to the injury and a broken back now on top of all that came to traumatic brain injury please never give up always know that someone's out there to help you if someone who cares there for some reason I found this article that I was able to write to let you know that I have you in my thoughts after reading your article I wish nothing but the best for you and your husband he has gone through a lot and so have you my wife has been a gift to me. Sometime for no reason the smallest things in affect me and I'm making her upset I catch myself always asking for forgiveness because that's not the way I am traumatic brain injury it's a serious matter one moment you could be happy look for me you can be furious so we could say the wrong thing to you you can go off the wall also difficult managing stress sometimes Hotmail expressing yourself sometimes you can become confused sometimes you might have memory problems difficulty managing stress problems learning or speaking may become agitated for no reason know that you're not alone forget the grammar and all the typos I'm doing this voice activated I have trouble writing stuff sometimes I have to be in a complete quiet environment and sometimes you get severe migraine headaches you think you're having an aneurysm lately I've been having severe headaches had an MRI found out that I had a little bit of white matter also sometimes I have serious heart palpitations sweating like never before just know you're not alone may God bless you and keep you safe Especially Yours Joseph
RS replied on Permalink
My husband has TBI and was a service member. I COMPLETELY understand how you feel. I am going through the same exact things. I remind myself that I married this man for better or worse, through sickness and through health. It gets scary, exhausting, and sometimes I think it would be easier to walk away but I wouldn’t. We have to stay strong. I didn’t realize that there were others going through the same things until now. Sending hugs your way!
Deborah A Joy replied on Permalink
My husband of 20 years has TBI and I totally agree with you. Our wedding vows said in sickness and in health, for better or worse do death do us part.
Dean Arnold replied on Permalink
Keep going its not easy I'm from England and I have cptsd and tbi rely on yourself it's a tough battle and life changing but you'll never know how strong you are until strong is all you have God bless take good care :)
Anonymous replied on Permalink
hi my name is Dean Arnold and I have cptsd and a tbi study it take control as best you can I've been living with cptsd for 46 years and a tbi for 3 years
I'm from England and were very behind with the above keep going rely on yourself and don't give in
With the life changing experiences be strong and keep going you will thank yourself to study it.
I wish you all courage peace and positivity never let it define you huge hugs to y'all :)
Anonymous replied on Permalink
Hello. My name is Cristi and my husband has TBI. I also have a form of it as I was in a car accident where I hit the windshield of a car and damaged my frontal lobe. I never realized that head trauma caused aggression. Every story and comment here assures me that I am NOT alone. After 17 years I finally understand that these things are 1. Not my fault and 2. I really need help with these TBI issues.
Kimberly replied on Permalink
On January 5th of 2020, I was homeless at this time unfortunately, I was asleep in my tent in Tent City in downtown Houston by Minute Maid Park when a man, during morning rush hour traffic at 8 am, was texting and driving and ran a red light, hit a car, then a ruck, and then t-boned another vehicle and for some reason made a sharp left and ran up under the freeway and ran over me in my tent. I was immediately awakened in horrifying pain, feeling like my legs were being ripped to shreds and twisting and rolling everywhere. I thought a bomb had gone off because of the smoke and fire from the undercarriage of the truck setting my tent and belongings on fire. It lasted I'm told for over 2 minutes because he got hung up on trash cans and wood and fencing. When he finally stopped his truck, I was at the bottom of everything and had to be dug out by other folks there.
My left leg was broken in 6 places with the bones protruding from my leg, my left knee was shattered and my left ankle was so shattered that my left foot was turned around facing backwards. My right leg had a huge hematoma that would eventually within a month, turn into a very large hole that went more than half-way into my right, inside of my calf. I was in a wheelchair for months. I spent almost a month in the ICU and hospital and was then transported to a skilled nursing and rehabilitation center in Houston where I spent almost all of 2020 learning everything again. Learning to walk, bathe, dress, etc. It was devastating because I have always taken care of me.
Almost immediately, I knew something was not right with me though mentally. I would look at pictures on my FB that I had taken at Christmas in downtown Houston and of other places and could not remember being there, however, I know for a fact, I was. There was something else though that was going on that took me a minute to put my finger on and it happened in a weird way that I figured it out.
You see, I was that mom. I did, went, what, where, and didn't matter how, but did everything I could to make sure that all 3 of my children had a childhood because I did not. Every morning and every night, I told my children I loved them. I was always there. Now, on the day of my accident, no one came. The hospital staff and doctors as well as the patient advocates called all my family and left messages, no one showed up. But whats weird is that when I woke up 4 days later and they told me this, I was completely unemotional about it and did nothing to reach out to anyone...not even my children. It was after I went to the nursing home at the end of January and was there a week, I finally realized that I was seriously fucked up in my head. Mothers don't just stop caring or loving their own children, that is not normal behavior. I know this but I remember a few of the nurses asking me if I had any pictures of my children and I pulled up my FB on the computer and began showing them but I realized I didn't care about those people, my kids, my family, my friends...it was as if I had some sort of "emotional amnesia"?? I can remember that I had feelings for these people but its like I don't anymore at all. I haven't reached out to anyone really in my past, not my children, my siblings, even my best friends. Its like I don't care about any of them and it doesn't matter to me where they are or that I am not involved in their lives at all.
I reached out to my PCP and she told me that I needed to get over it...this was a month and a half after my accident. I talked to my nurses about it and they told me to leave it up to God...I put my fist through the wall I was so angry with them. I reached out to my health insurance, my attorney, moved and got new health insurance and talked to them. Got a new PCP and was begging them to send me to a freaking neuropsychiatrist or forensic psychiatrist, and its like I am fucking talking to myself. I know I need help but what the hell happened to my head and my emotions? Its like I have completely disconnected from who I was and I am a completely different person. I don't have the same favorite colors, I dress differently, and one thing is that I don't put up with shit from anyone at all. I am extremely unfiltered now and I wasn't this way before. Does anyone know anyone who has this going on with them after an accident or TBI? I am completely lost here and have completely lost all faith, hope and belief in the medical community as a whole. I don't know what to do or where to go now. Can anyone point me in the right direction or maybe to a website that has information about symptoms like mine because I've started self-medicating to get by and that's not the person I am or want to be.
Thank you for any information or direction in advance, Kimberly
Anonymous replied on Permalink
I hear you, sister! I have been dealing with a TBI for 7 years. Lost all my friends. Talk to three family members and mostly feel unseen, unheard, unknown, not understood. I get frustrated with myself because i have outbursts with my no filter and I quickly go into a rage if i see a change in a person's face or body or vocal tone changes. I end up feeling guilty and apologize- I know they are thinking I am crazy. I am in an extreme fight or fight and catatonic shut down loop. All I know is self medicating is not the answer. I'm struggling with that as well. You are not alone. Breathe. Take a bath. Listen to prosaic, sing-song music, get a weighted blanket. Take walks. Its unfortunately 101 basics for a while.
Chris replied on Permalink
This has also happened to me and worse is I don’t even care ,I’m hurt and no one understands or believes me
All the best
Anonymous replied on Permalink
Kimberly I can say you’re not alone in your battle. Because I am a successful businessman nobody believes me when I tell them what I’m experiencing. I fell from my dad’s roof 12 ft onto concrete. There’s a TBI clinic in Ohio it only took me 9 months to get into lol. Please seek out a TBI clinic and get a complete assessment. I was a single parent and my two daughters that I poured my entire life into didn’t even call or text me after I almost died and they live 10 minutes away. My current wife mentioned something and they of course got defensive. Please hang in there and start meditation from YouTube it’s helping until you get into a clinic. Goodful meditation was a good start
KerryLynn replied on Permalink
I am a long-term "surthriver" of TBI. I had an auto accident in 1989 that left me in a local rehab here called Bryn Mawr Rehab for over a year. Initially, I was like you, very angry and frustrated over all the time and memories I had lost and so very concerned that I'd never be "myself" again. But as time went on, I had to learn and accept that the person I had been might never return when I was able to do that; I became able to make new connections with my family and friends. (those worth keeping, support, and dedication to helping me recover, proved who was a true friend). It's insanely)literally) hard work but so worth it. I'm married now with 5 children and have a life I never could imagine in 1990.
I struggle a great deal with short-term memory loss and the inability to recall my connection to my past. Those relationships can sometimes still be a struggle to forgive myself for and others to remember and understand.
But I want to tell you it gets better. A good Psychiatric and neurological team are crucial, keep looking and until you find the folks that work for you.
Hang in there, soul sister, and please take comfort in the FACT that it will get easier, don't numb your mind to all the beauty that is out there to re-discover.
Matthew replied on Permalink
26 years ago after a motorcycle accident, coma, months/years/lifetime of recovery and the trials and tribulations of TBI daily life it amazes me that even though I have managed to find ways around most obstacles, every once and awhile there are people who still feel the need to point out that ‘Nice scar on your head (subdural hematoma) or neck (tracheotomy) you have a brain injury, that explains a lot’. People are so ignorant and unable to even think of a few of the things those of us with TBI deal with everyday.
Everyday. We can be the most loving, caring people and want to be but the triggers that are common like repeating things to us we ask not to be done, trying to change our routines, moving things we like to have in places for any reason, making comments about TBI in any way other than a question, continuous criticism for no reason and negativity, these are only a sample of on going items I have tried to adapt to, try to keep the same or constant and usually am successful.
Is it really that bad? Is it so hard to try to be positive in life and with us most of the time?
Some of us that have found ways to succeed in life really just want to be accepted as normal not singled out for having scars and TBI.
Pretty sad that instead of being nice and just getting jobs done people you think are your friends still feel the need to criticize something they no little or nothing about. Very glad I do not think or act like that.
Darik replied on Permalink
Just found this page and read your post.. I too had a TBI when younger.. (30+ years ago).. I’m 49 now and had been in denial most of my life afterwords in regards to any lingering issues. Finally went in for service after years of my check engine light being on.
It”s been an eye opening experience to say the least.. I now often wonder what I would have been like or what I would have done with my life if I never had the injury.
I was able to get most everything under control and led a great life (for me and my place in this world) but as of the last 4+ years I’ve been dealing with newly developed and developing issues that I can’t help but to think must be related to the TBI… I’m not one to use things for excuses or look for passes but the more you research the more many things start to come together and also the more you start to wonder. Mood swings, depression, headaches, etc etc are what I call the “norms” or the “expected” issues following a TBI and although quite challenging in their own right, to me, are the lessor of the potential issues..
Their are also sleep issues, seizure issues (that you might not even be aware are happening) spontaneous vertigo, excessive daytime sleepiness, tremors, memory issues, emotional issues, failure to thrive and empathy issues, etc, etc…
Unlike you, my scars are not an immediate indicator of a brain injury. I have faded but noticeable scars on my upper face and forehead but I had a Basal skull fracture and all drilling and pressure relief attempts were in the back..
Anonymous replied on Permalink
I'm going through the same things with my son these posts have been very helpful in understanding TBI injury that happened at a young age it is really hard to see it love one go through it. please keep me and my family in prayer and I will do the same.
Shawn replied on Permalink
My TBI was over 30+ years ago too. Memories of my previous life are hit and miss. A picture helps, but I can only recall the immediate memory of that instant, nothing before and nothing after. For years I thought I was fine. The short-term memory loss was irritating, but I dealt with it by writing everything down. Because of the TBI, I feel I did not get to 'deal' with the grief of losing my children in the accident. It has always been in the back of my consciousness. Recently, I lost my father and it's like the crap hit the fan. The anger is endless, the tearing up is irritating, and the lack of empathy for anything that happens around me, yet I am angered by the lack of empathy shown to me. From my reading, it would seem that, the TBI symptoms get worse the older you get. They become more prevalent. Have our coping skills diminished or do we just not give a f*** anymore? Is our brain finally just shutting down on us? It makes me angry to think, after all these years, that I would finally need to seek outside help in order to deal with the chaos my mind has become. "Everyone is an idiot!" or "How can people be so stupid?" These are my normal thoughts now. I used to be forgiving, I used to see past little indiscretions, but not anymore. Everything seems to be directed at me and on purpose. Yet, I know this is not true, this is just how I am seeing things now. There is no one out to get me, but I keep looking over my shoulder. In the evening, a simple thought about work sets off an anxiety attack. Depression has been an issue from the get-go. There were several suicide attempts.
I want to thank every commenter on here for sharing their story. Sad to say, but I am relieved that I am not alone in feeling the way I feel. Reading about other people that are experiencing the same things I am is reassuring. I'm not going crazy. Thank you for opening up and sharing. It has been a great help.
Jen replied on Permalink
My husband had encephalitis in 2013. He always had a temper and had a wandering eye for women before in his teens and early 20s but post encephalitis coma he's been getting progressively worse. He was showing bits of empathy here and there, now I see absolutely none. The only time he's happy is when he's cheating on me (serial cheating) behind my back, as long as I don't know. He is angry, rages, lies, manipulates, creates stories and believes them, controlling, possessive and completely heartless. He once loved me very much. He was kind. We did everything together. He will carry on in his abusive episodes and then all of a sudden act like nothing has happened and I have no reason to be upset by his behaviors. I'm a complete mess. I don't have much hope left for my marriage but I also can't find many stories like ours so I thought I'd share mine just in case there is someone out there going through this too.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
I need help my wife of a wonderful twenty two years asking for a divorce I suffered a TBI it will be two years on Agust 2 2022 we never went to any consoling or groups do to coved I’m in such gilt that I went back to work so I could pervide for the family way to early I’m doing everything in my power to change my wife mind I want to do consoling anything!!!! I know this is hard to make a comment on but I’ve been a really good father for are daughter and a husband she suffers anxiety my daughter is a mess I’m just try to get them healthy again but hard when I’m the one with the TBI any ideas on what I can do just to get them to read up on TBI I’ve learned so much in a short time just buy reading for one night
Ryan replied on Permalink
I lost my son then my business due to thieving employees taking advantage of his death and then covid. I was punched in the back of my head shortly after all of that. My behavior changed dramatically but I didnt know . Anything I did , I blamed on anger or grief.
I could tell something was off though. I would describe symptoms without knowing anything about TBI. Ive lost all my friends. My son My business and now my Wife hated me. And to me. It seemed like she was doing it. I was being punished. I denied any and all of my behavior. Knowing you have an injury is a huge help. Then admitting you are not doing things right. Slow down.. I felt so overwhelmed. Hated. Punished . And couldnt get through to my wife. That was all that mattered to me. That she understood. Then she would love me. She would know I am still here. Trying to get back. Every comment she made hurt me. I had been violent and had no impulse control. Called her names. Was abusive. I hadnt been before. Even worse . We had only been married a short time. She has seen far more of the monster I became than what people know me as for the rest of my life. She doesnt see the dream man she fell in love with anymore. So I am lost . Only child gone, business destroyed, lost millions adn wrecked my marriage. So I stopped talking. Stopped needing to be understood. Started listening. Being understanding. I am not fixed at all yet. But I am smart enough to know I am in charge of me .. Regardless of what happened. Honestly I dont feel it is fair to be treated as harshly as I was before I even knew. And many people dont care or dont believe it is real. So what. Now I do know and my life isnt going to be better by needing more from people. I was a self made millionaire and could handle anything. Now I an abusive child. I think Ill keep working on how I can be better to my wife. Not need her to be better to me. To your wife.. The constant struggle in the mind for a tbi sufferer afraid of losing his wife. Its a useles and never ending fight to worry about what you are saying or how to not screw up. ANd the more pressure you put on that sufferer the more it grows. And it takes everything. Truly everything just to mismanage that i the mind. And he isnt even aware of how much mental and emotional energy is going into that. And the aloof and moody attitude. It is resentment. Feeling abandoned and not even being able to communicate. And now losing the only thing that matters. Because of an injury he cant even understand. If you want your husband back. Quit pushing him away. He is aware he sucks.. That he failed. That he isnt what he was. That you dont want him..
He knows .. He has heard it. Please understand. We have the emotional response of children. You wouldnt deliberately be mean to a child. Thats how it feels to us. It is crushing. You see an adult. Capable. Yes, but fragile and It is your job to help. Not stay under any circumstance. But if you didnt do your job. He cant come back. I knew I would kill myself as soon as I understood TBI. What it took from me. What it would keep taking. But I am not going to quit without trying anything and everything I can.
It sucks. We suffer 10x more than you think we do and we are hated for it. BUt . I canr change that. I can change me. And its up to me to be who I was. And spouses. Fucking help. Do not cater to. We are fucking puppies. Dont scold us. Encourage. Talk. Is that how you what to be thought of. Is your behavior acceptable. NO. We need you. You are the only one we can trust. Our only chance. You promised to be there. Help us.
And to the TBI sufferers... DO NOT LET IT CONTROL YOU.. YOU ARENT HELPLESS. DO BETTER
Debbie replied on Permalink
Prayer changes things for real. Please seek God in prayer and ask him to intervene in your life. Trust God. He cares for you. Read Psalm 23 and Psalm 119. I will pray for your healing and for your family! Peace and Blessings to you all!
KT replied on Permalink
There should be a local support group in your area. See if you can get to them just to sit in, and learn more.
Healing takes a long time, real rest is important, and your family will need to read up on this too.
You are doing great just from I saw here. Still empathetic, trying hard… but going to need some support network.
Martin replied on Permalink
Family therapy is crucial. Have a neurologist talk with your wife. Set up a treatment plan with your therapist that addresses neurological deficits. You CANNOT do this alone. You shouldn't try to. Reach out for help NOW from therapists, doctors, anyone you have access to.
Anonymous replied on Permalink
My son was pushed out of a tree house at age 4 and landed on concrete breaking his jaw in 2 places. Prior to the accident he was happy, vibrant & outgoing. After the accident he was different...no longer happy-go- lucky. That was 26 years ago. He has been suffering with depression for the last 8 years and is very bitter and angry. Is all of this connected to his injury at age 4? Is there anything we can do to help him? He has tried meds for depression but doesn't like how they make him feel. He feels like nothing in life ever goes his way, he is very negative about his life and future. I just want to help. Any advice? Thank You
Gina replied on Permalink
My son has had a TBI and he may have had a brain injury back then. I would talk to his doctor to see if they can order a brain MRI. They will tell you if he suffered a concussion or TBI. I had a concussion as a young child and I’m learning through my son’s treatment my injury has caused me issues with the ability to retsin what I read.
Joy replied on Permalink
I have a question. I’ve been married to the love of my life for 5 years, and I’m at a point of considering divorce because out of no where for no reason he will become very emotionally abusive and just completely destroy me. He goes from wonderful to a complete narcissist with no empathy looking at me and treating me like an enemy. Nothing will lead up to it. Then after a few hours, he’ll flip again. I’m emotionally exhausted and refuse to be abused. I’m not myself anymore because of it. Yet, I love him more than anything and we have a child together. While at work today, one of my clients mentioned that he’s getting divorced because ever since his wife got in an accident she got a brain injury and became a Jekyll and Hyde abusing personality. That client has no idea about my marriage. But I thought, how unconpassionate to leave your wife of 20 years because she suffers after an accident. Then I remembered something my husband told me, when he was 20 he got jumped by a group and they tried to kill him by stomping on his head and he went unconscious but survived. Is this actually what’s going on? Can it really make someone suddenly abusive for a few hours out of no where and have no feelings for me at all like he’s a psychopath during it? If that’s why, I’ll stay and support him and get help. If he’s just a narcissist and power trips because he’s insecure, I’ll leave. But. Wondering if it’s actually TBI- he also suffers from depression and short term memory problems. Thanks!
Mark Flatt R.N.... replied on Permalink
I am a survivor of two TBIs and a nurse that specializes in TBI...before I had my first TBI I was studying for my PhD in neuropsychology...short answer to your question...yes, but....its complicated...if a person with brain injury has processing problems or is labile...(emotionally unstable) or has epileptiform activity deep in the midbrain...you may get behavior like this...also sensory overload may be a factor as well...but usually there are learned factors as well...if he learned that he gets what he wants by an aggressive response...he won't change...all behavior is communication...finding the basis is important...finally...as I usually tell families of clients: Disability is an explanation and not an excuse...I hope this helps you at least some. Good luck and know that it definitely can be, but it doesn't make you in any way a bad person for taking care of yourself however you must...
Greg replied on Permalink
That sounds like me. I thought it was me alone that suffered the Jekyll and Hyde personality complex and I've come looking for help with it. Its emotionally unstable personality disorder and it is really hard on relationships and friendships. I'm at the point where I have no friends and try to stay away from people lest I tell them off. When my mood changes back I feel like shit and try to apologize but the damage is done.
Ann replied on Permalink
I can completely relate to the things you have described. My husband has had 4 TBI's over the course over 20 years. We have been married now for a short time, but have been together for a few years. In one instance he can be very sweet, loving, caring, but in the next and without warning can be angry, upset, hysterically crying and what I consider abusive or hostile towards me at times, especially if he feels I am against him in some way. You don't always know who you are going to get or when the switch happens. I feel that this is definitely a result of his TBI's and lack of ability to really regulate the emotions or anger. It can be very difficult at times because while I am a caregiver for him, he denies that I provide any care to him. My husband also suffers from depression, anxiety, PTSD, CTE. Based on my experiences alone, I would have to say that what you're experiencing is very much part of the TBI, and from research I have done, and in speaking with my therapist. Unfortunately, that is part of the TBI, but it is different in each instance and depending on what parts of the brain were impacted. In my husbands case, the whole right side of his brain is 'dead' matter. So we try to work on things that help him retrain the left brain and I try to teach him to recognize the anger moments, or the emotional moments so that he can calm them as much as he can. Not always an easy task since the reasoning part of his brain is hindered. He wants to be the best he can be for himself and for us, so we make a conscious effort to work on that. Also me with my patience or certain things that could potentially trigger him to be emotional. It's not easy, but I love him very much and I want to do the best I can for me and for us. One thing my therapist suggested was working on detachment, walking away in those moments of hurt or anger to avoid having it escalate. Then finding a time to be very clear and assertive about the pain you feel. Also not easy, but worth the effort. I hope this helps you.