Caregivers Need Support, Too

Dr. Herman Lukow talks about how people with TBI have a platoon of doctors and therapists to help in their recovery, but the caregiver has virtually no one. There are ways to remedy this.

View more videos with Herman Lukow, PhD.

[Dr. Herman Lukow II] Sometimes we'll bring the caregiver. Sometimes we're requested to counsel the couple—the survivor and the spouse. The spouse most often is the caregiver, as well. Sometimes the whole family. It's hard—initially it's all about—again—education. Many of the caregivers and spouses have self-educated and have really got quite a bad education. But it's still trying to—many times—convince them—help them come to the realization—develop the insight that those deficits and those issues that the survivor are real. I mean—you're overcome with stress and all the work, and this has taken up your whole life for so long. It's just real easy—I think—many times for some of those folks to realize that this isn't just something the person is electing to always forget on purpose. They're not electing to leave their dirty socks on the floor everyday because they're lazy. There's a real deficit—an impairment—that just hasn't come back yet. That's one of them. The other is to try to instill a sense of hope. To say that, "You being here is a step in the right direction. It means that you know how to reach out and ask for help," and that's very important because caregivers and spouses and members of families—they need support for their resilience, as well. They're faced by the same disruption and the same need to have this—to work on having a positive outcome because of this threat. The survivor has got a whole platoon of doctors and nurses and therapists, and that 15-year-old at home may have no one.
Posted on BrainLine September 18, 2013.

Produced by Victoria Tilney McDonough, Justin Rhodes, and Lara Collins, BrainLine.

Comments (1)

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My daughter has an spouse . He had a major aneurysm. this August it will be 7 years that she had to give up her job that she just got at a school, to give him 24/7 care. Yes, he is drawing disability, and one child is getting SS. Why does the government pay someone for coming into their house, in place of paying the spouse for his needs. She should have the right to care for him and have the government to pay her, I wouldn't want a stranger in my home either.The government needs to realize that this needs to be changed. The people that comes in doesn't fix the meals for him. They are not the one who has to listen the spouse gussing them out and repeating the same thing over and over 24/7. So if you can get this message to the government, I would appreciate it so much. I have helped my daughter as much as I can. And if the government does already have something out there that pays the spouse, I'm sorry, I couldn't fine it. He wasn't but 45 years old when this tragedy happened. And she can't even get a supplement insurance policy that pays the other 20% of the hospital bills until he reaches 65. This is something else the government needs to look into. That 20% adds up in a hurry. I'm not speaking just for my daughter, but for every person that is having to take care of any family member when they can't help their self's.