Tagged: Brain injury TBI
29th May 2023 at 7:51 am #158792blluetParticipant
I am a carer for someone with a TBI (traumatic brain injury). I have known this person since I was young, over 10 years. He is becoming increasingly aggressive and unstable. He is involved with adult social services due to his disability but they have been useless to be honest.
I am alone.
And I’m scared of what could happen.
I feel like I betraying him by reaching out like this though, he is losing control over his emotions and actions. It’s got to the point strangers will stop in the street and ask me if I’m OK if he is acting out. That set alarm bells off.
It’s so hard to recognise the true face of someone when your staring straight into the eyes of the person you love.
I cannot separate what is his brain injury and what is him. Or if they are one in the same now anyway.
I’m so tired. But I know I’m not alone.
29th May 2023 at 2:57 pm #158800Twisted SisterParticipant
I can hear how super tough this has to be for you. It may be very difficult to separate out what abuse he thinks he can get away with under the guise of TBI, and what is real TBI. However, I think timings may help you. Presumably when the TBI happened this behaviour appeared instantly? As one would assume that over time there will be some healing and improvement? Certainly, someone once immobile from such an injury, can then start to move limbs and finally walk, and can improve memory and cognitive function over time. The behavioural element is more trauma-based is my understanding, similar to how PTSD would express. PTSD sufferers don’t automatically abuse because of PTSD. So that leaves abuse alone.
You have a double bind, the same as any woman in abuse, that there is gross emotional blackmail going on to make you feel sorry for their suffering, in your case thats his sudden reliance on a carer, you, but for other women it could equally be how they suffer with ‘anxiety’, or ‘suicide threats’, whatever form it takes, there’s usually something.
Maybe its time for him to have a different carer, thats your choice, not his. It doesn’t matter what emotional blackmail he uses, this doesn’t have to be your life. At whatever point you wish, you do not have to comply with his wishes, but absolve yourself of any responsibility for him, and hand that over to someone else. Does he have other family that he can go to for your respite? You need a break urgently so you can process what you want to do with your life, and how much of it, if any, that you want to give to him. I have heard of women being placed at desperate risk, and repeated threats and attacks in similar situations to what you describe.
You do need to prioritise your safety at all times.
I understand there is an organisation /charity for TBI, that allocates a worker to the injured party, and maybe a carefully considered/worded letter to Adult services to raise concerns over the key issues/risks that you are now facing, for them to step up, and if they do not respond appropriately you can escalate it.
Even if he doesn’t have family for respite for you, there are other organisations that can do respite for you also.
Do keep talking and working out a way for you to be happy and not live under threat and risk to yourself.
29th May 2023 at 4:27 pm #158801LisaMain Moderator
Welcome to the forum and thank you for posting. I hope you find this is a safe and supportive place to be with others who understand.
Whatever his condition, you deserve to be safe and to not be abused. Living in fear of what might happen is extremely stressful and oppressive. It isn’t a betrayal to seek support for yourself and the fact that you’re feeling that way could be quite telling. If his behaviour was only because of the TBI, wouldn’t he want both of you to get whatever help and support you needed and therefore be encouraging you to reach out?
As well as continuing to post here for support, you could contact your local domestic abuse service who should be able to offer ongoing support, helping you to plan to stay safe and understand your options so you can properly think about what you want to happen. You might like to use our Live Chat service (8am – 6pm weekdays and 10am – 6pm weekends/bank holidays) to speak in confidence to a Women’s Aid worker. They won’t tell you what to do but can discuss your situation and signpost you to other support that’s relevant for you.
You may already know this and have been through the process, but you can request a carer’s assessment from adult social services. This should focus on the impact of being a carer on you and what support can be put in place. It’s one way you may be able to access respite like Twisted Sister has mentioned above.
Take care and keep posting,
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