Consequences of Brain Injury on the Family

There are many consequences of a brain injury experience that can intensify the trauma and deplete personal and familial resources. Some of these consequences are:

  • Marital relations can begin to deteriorate, and spouses may see separation, resignation, or divorce as the only way to save them¬selves from a situation they cannot handle.
  • Siblings may act out as a result of the changes in the family and experience resentment, jealousy, and parental pressure.
  • Substance abuse by a family member may develop as a means to cope with the stress and losses associated with a brain injury.
  • Work performance of the injured family member may deteriorate and result in job loss.
  • Individual family members, as well as the total family, can neglect themselves, both physically and emotionally, by not tending to their individual or mutual needs.
  • Financial pressures can be seen as a cause of disharmony when, in fact, they may be symptomatic of underlying global stress that is more difficult to identify.
  • Traditional support systems, such as friends and relatives, may remove themselves from supporting roles because of their inabili¬ty to respond to the emotional demands made upon them.

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