When an individual sustains a brain injury, it affects not only the survivor, but his or her family and friends as well. Many loved ones of brain injury survivors often take on the role of caregiver and many of them are completely unprepared to be thrown into the role. No one expects a brain injury to affect his or her family and no one can prepare for one either. Brain injury happens, in the blink of an eye, and then everything is different.
For caregivers, like the mothers who helped found our organization, at first, there is no plan or person to lead the way. Caregivers often begin tireless research on brain injury treatments, tips, symptoms, and caregiver support. Unlike when our founders and first staff members worked at BIA-MA, today we have the Internet, full of helpful articles, stories, tips and tricks for caregivers seeking support and information. Today, we’ve picked some of our favorite blog posts and caregiver articles we think will be most helpful. What others would you add? Share them in the comments!
BIA-MA Mommy Blogger and caregiver Kristin Olliney writes a monthly column called Mommy of a Miracle. In her posts, she decribes the challenges she and her daughter Isabella, who suffered brain damage as a result of sudden acute encephalitis, face each and every day. In last month’s must-read blog post, How Life Changes After a Brain Injury, Kristin is incredibly candid about the isolation survivors, caregivers and family members all may feel as their lives change post-injury.
Heidi Qua, mother of Jacob, who suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) when he fell from a third-story window in 2004, writes this incredibly thought-provoking guest blog called The New Normal where she describes how she and her family found and accepted their “new normal.”
Also on our must-read blog list, Brainline.org blogger and caregiver to husband and brain injury survivor Hugh, Rosemary Rawlins writes weekly blogs for Brainline.org about her struggles and day-to-day life as a caregiver to her husband. She discusses the changes in their marriage and family life, challenges they face and other brain injury topics. In Banishing Caregiver’s Remorse, Rosemary confronts the guilt caregivers often face. In another post, Help for Couples After TBI, Rosemary discusses rebuilding her relationship with her husband after his TBI. For couples who deal with brain injury, the road can be especially difficult one as typically one person takes on the caregiver role, leaving the romantic relationship and partnership on the back burner. Rosemary shares her experience in couples therapy and how their relationship has changed.
For more information on brain injury and care giving, go to www.biama.org or call 1-800-242-0030.