Living with a Traumatic Brain Injury

I have been asked many time what it is like to live with a Traumatic Brain Injury. I simply say it is hard but what people do not know is how hard it really is. Some days are ok but other days are just extremely difficult to get through. A simple task may take 5 times longer to complete. The pain in your head can go from a 0 to 10 in a minute. The feeling of confusing, having brain fog, and the lack of comprehension can be a daily challenge. Having a TBI is having an invisible disease. People say you look great but your inside are not. A TBI can happen to anyone at any time in any place. With proper therapy you can heal, but in most cases you will only heal to a point and will be unable to go back to your life before your TBI. I also have had some unkind comments from people in all parts of my life. Below are things you can say to someone with a TBI that may help lessen the frustration for everyone. Please note that sometimes there are no words needed and your empathetic silence creates space for healing.
The 5 best statement to say to someone healing from trauma:
1. I see you. I hear you. I believe you. I am here for you. You are loved.
2. It was not your fault. You did not deserve this nor did you cause it to happen.
3. You are safe to feel everything that you are feeling. All of your emotions are valid and important. I am willing and able to be here with you through it.
4. You have every right to feel, say, think, express whatever it is that you are experiencing in this moment.
5. What do you need? How can I best support you? What do you like?

 Colleen Todd