Traumatic Brain Injury Support Need Relationships

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I want to talk about two other things. The first thing I want to talk about is the personal relationships that you had to rebuild to maintain after your injury. We didn’t talk about the relationship with your children. So talk to me about being a father and what you’ve been through as a father.
I think being a father is what was the best thing for my rehab. I mean my kids taught me probably more than I taught them at that point. Right now my daughter’s 15 and I don’t know if you have kids but boy it’s a challenge right now. And I know that, she’s just 15, she’s a good kid. Started liking boys a year, a year and a half ago. She’s become independent and I think it’s more of the standard thing, I got to let go.

We’ve been very, very close but now that she’s 15 and I know that’s just part of it but she’s grown up and that’s sad to see. Yeah, we’ve been close. My ex‑wife hasn’t been involved except for the last six months, and so, that’s been the hardest thing. Now she’s like, doing like supermom for six months but.

So did she get custody when you split up?

Well, it was a mean court battle but, we ended up with joint custody. The kids went to school with me.

I did my first caregiver group to spite her. (But I learned better.) They have a challenge too and if we would have known, I think things would’ve been a little different.

I’ve always had a real sense of that side of the equation, and a feeling that one of the real tragedies in the entire relationship when the family fails because the professionals don’t get it.


What can we do to protect the spouse, to protect the mom, protect the children, from that first six months to a year of real neurobehavioral extremes, to keep the family intact?

Well the first thing is they have to have the knowledge. They have to know what could happen. I mean not everything is going to happen, but if you don’t know, it catches you by surprise. And here’s what I’ve learned from the different things. Once (the survivor has) said something to (a caregiver) and they think that it was true (how does the caregiver not take that personally.) So you’ve destroyed that, you can’t stop that feeling.

So you got to stop them from feeling that in the beginning. And by them knowing that this is normal, that he may be impulsive now.

Violence nobody should have to go through. I don’t believe in any violence and I know that violent people become more violent and I was never a violent person. The only person I wanted to hurt was myself because I didn’t want to be here but I know people that almost killed their spouses. You don’t want that. So, at that point they, if you’re that violent you need to go into an intensive rehabilitation until….

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LoriPurdy Faitel says:

Craig you are the voice of an angel. I want to help survivors & families. Can you & I have a phone or Internet conversation on what I think and how I can best help? Gordon these are great interviews. T Y

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