Stories of Patience after Brain Injury
The following are stories of real life survivors of brain injury. Clicking on the titles will take you to their actual story.
She also has problems with impolitic speech, impatience and independence.
Similar to her problems with impulsivity, she has difficulty with patience. She said: “When I’m in occupational therapy and I’m looking on, working on a big cross stitch project, I’d look at it and I’m halfway finished and I get angry because I’ve done stitches wrong and I have to go back and take â€˜em out. I used to try to cover â€˜em up, which was not a good idea, and I’d take it into therapy and she’d say, we have to take all this apart and you have to do it again. And then I would get angry at myself for allowing myself to just slop over the problem and think I can fix it in the wrong way.”
I believe TBI survivors can relearn to become adults, that while it may take more time, more patience than it did the first time, over a generation, severe neurobehavioral problems may be treated and disappear.
His mother explains his state of mind when he was transferred to Norwood hospital; “He had problems with being angry, impatient, confused. He still didn’t necessarily recognize us on a consistent basis. He would forget where he was. He’d forget if people came to visit.”
Fred’s Mom explains: “Well, when he came home he was doing very well, I mean for the most part. I would say he was – personality wise and everything he seemed a lot like the boy he was. He still had his issues. He still had to deal with confusion, anger, forget, you know, forgetfulness. And he would get frustrated because he would see where he was lacking at times. But at that point we always had a positive attitude coming into that, that it would always get better, and that’s what we always just kept relying on.”
Do you find yourself becoming impatient when you’re driving? Ian continues; “No really; not impatient so much, it’s more frustrated, especially with the other drivers. The ones that don’t use the directionals; lane change for no apparent reason; talking on the cell phone, texting; driving with no lights on (in the dark of course). You know, it’s little things like that that just kind of pop out in mind where they didn’t really bother me before. Now, it seems like they take precedence.”
Let’s talk about mixing with people. Do you have problems with blurting things out that you shouldn’t, saying the wrong thing, doing the wrong thing?: “I think my problem is interrupting when people are talking. I get impatient I think. Or not impatient but anxious and I butt in, or an interruption. That’s what irritates me too, when people are talking and I kind of butt in you know. Not butt in but interrupt and then tell my, or what I’m going to say, that irritates me.”
Anything else you want to add?: “I guess the last thing would be, if someone is TBI and you have them in your life, be willing to be patient. I never understood the extent of my TBI until I read a couple things and saw something. I’ve got to see one of my MRIs. First part of my brain was dead; just about this front, and all the front was all black. And then they had patches all over the back of my head, and then, I think you know the name of it, it’s the scale.”
Did you have problems with impatience?: “I’d say yes probably.”