Posted on September 27, 2011 · Posted in TBI Voices
This entry is part 21 of 24 in the series Nancy

Mood After Severe Pediatric Brain Injury: Nancy Part Twenty One 

As Mom explained in Part Nineteen, mood after severe pediatric brain injury is an ongoing issue for her.  Her temper is the biggest mood after severe pediatric brain injury issue.

Can you give me a feel for her mood after severe pediatric brain injury issues?

She’s never, she’s never violent, uh, like acting out towards someone.  But, , in situations where, uh, she is, uh, mad, she just gets angry so quick.  It’s, it’s not a, an, a graceful escalation of anger.  It’s up there.  So, , whether it’s me or my husband, but if it’s anybody else, or the son, it’s anybody outside the family she’s different.  School she acts totally different but when she gets home she just lets everything fly.  She used to have, , I’m sorry I’m kind of digressing here, but, she has stressors during her, the day that happen.  People that annoy her, things that happen, things that bother her, and then all of the sudden when it’s just about bedtime or there’s a situation at home that causes a flare, then all the stuff comes out about the day at school.  And it’s already built up in her but she just didn’t know how to release it earlier, or maybe discuss it with an individual on a level.  And then she just blows up.

To hear us, maybe quarrel or raise our voices or she gets, like I say her emotions are over the top. They are always like that far above what everybody else’s would be.  And so, just understanding that other people around her don’t necessarily understand what she’s going through including even her own brother.

And to hear all the time. There’s making a mountain out of a mole hill.  And she doesn’t understand that.

Give me an example of her mood after severe pediatric brain injury issues:

We were talking just the other day about something she was wearing.  My son is a clothes critic.  He knows what the girls are wearing and he, he’s 16 so now he’s paying more attention to it.

He always says “you’re not going to wear that.”

“What do you mean I’m not going to?”

And I understand brothers and sisters fight or quarrel or have disagreements but it’s always that level where she starts.  She doesn’t start down here, well why, what’s wrong?  Should I change my shirt or what’s wrong with my shirt?  It’s always like what do you mean I have something, and it’s way up here.

Takes everything very personally with her mood after severe pediatric brain injury?

Yes, very personal and it’s all black and white.  The satire, the nuances, body language.  She sits back and watches.  If you notice her she will probably sit back and watch you for awhile before she understands that, okay, this is how he’s going to talk and he wants more than just a yes or no answer.

How do you get her to give you more than a yes and no answer?

I just probably phrase the question where she has to say something more.  I make sure it has to be a straight.  Well tell me about the time, you know, like you did with me.  Tell me about this and later into it, if it’s anything with a yes or no that’s all you’re going to get.  She won’t elaborate.

I asked Nancy about her mood and temper.

Do you ever lose your temper with your mood after severe pediatric brain injury issues ? 

All the time.

When was the last time you lost your temper? 



My dad started – sometimes he mouths off to me and he’s really mean so I’ll yell at him because I get in an argument with him.

How about your brother?  Do you get mad at him?  

Yeah, that’s just kind of the way God made brothers, torment sisters and we butt heads all the time.

So when was the last fight you had with your brother? 

Yesterday.  I yell a lot at my house and he thinks it’s funny to say, let’s yell Nancy, that’ll help it, that’ll make you feel better won’t it?

You don’t like that sarcasm?  

I don’t like him.  He’s mean.

Who else don’t you like? 

Sometimes my friends get on my nerves.

Talk to me about your friends.  How long, when you say your friends, are these people your own age? 


And you’ve known them your whole life? 

Well, the one I’m thinking about I’ve known since like sixth grade I think.

A girl? 


Is she 18? 

She’s 19.

What is it that gets on your nerves with your mood after severe pediatric brain injury issues? 

She doesn’t listen.

Give me an example.  

Well, I’d say, can you help me with this and she’ll go off and talk to somebody.

How much time do you spend with your friends?  

A lot.

I also talked to her father about Nancy’s mood after severe pediatric brain injury issues.

How do you deal with your daughters mood after severe pediatric brain injury issues?

That’s a tough one right there in itself.  I mean, you know, you go from being a normal family and then in a split second your whole entire life changes and no fault of your own.  You’re just thrown into a situation.  It’s tough.  It’s very difficult.

Next in Part Twenty Two – A Growing Gap As Adulthood Looms for the Pediatric Severe Brain Injury Survivor

About the Author

Attorney Gordon S. Johnson, Jr.
Past Chair Traumatic Brain Injury Litigation Group, American Association of Justice :: 800-992-9447