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What are some credibility issues tbi victims will face after a brain injury?
I’m Taylor Ernst at the Ernst Law Group. The question we got from our Facebook group that I wanted to answer directly was, what issues with credibility do victims of TBIs often suffer? And I want to address this because I’ve personally seen what it does to my clients that have this happen to them, where there isn’t a thing that normal people can see with a traumatic brain injury victim. That’s why it’s called the silent epidemic of people who suffer from a TBI and continue to suffer from the symptoms of it. But doctors sometimes won’t address it. New people they meet won’t address it. And it puts the victim of the TBI in this horrible spot where they have to tell someone they just meet, “I’m sorry if I don’t remember everything, I suffered a traumatic brain injury,” and the stigma that goes with it. Because everybody looks at them, thinks they’re fine, and then communicates with them or treats them like they’re fine.
And the brain injury victim’s stuck in this horrible spot where they either need to tell their audience, “Hey, I’ve got this problem,” or not. And as a result, what do you do about that? And it depends on the circumstances. We’ve actually had clients in the past, who have some pretty significant social phobias, actually print out cards that say, “I have a traumatic brain injury. I’m sorry if I don’t remember everything.” And sometimes during the conversation, if they start getting flustered or they’re having difficulty communicating, they know they can hand the person the card and it will help alleviate some of the issues. Other people that we work with never want to admit that anything’s wrong and they want to just push forward and try and not admit that there’s an issue to anyone they’re speaking with. And they just worry about it deep inside.
And so how do you really address that? And I wish there was a better answer. I’m looking for one. I’d love some messages or comments about how to deal with it. But sometimes when you’re meeting new people, the credibility is something that our clients really struggle with and it’s something that I don’t have a great answer to, to be candid. You’re going to have to make the choice. Do you say something? Do you not say something? The brain injury’s the invisible injury. When you’re communicating with somebody that doesn’t know you have it, you’ve got to come up with ways to work around and try and figure out what’s the best method for you. And so if I had to say one thing is you got to try some methods and figure out what is the one that works best for you. And I’m sorry, I don’t have a better answer. I’d love some feedback on it. If somebody does have an idea about how to communicate with somebody that doesn’t have a TBI when you’re worried your symptoms of the TBI are going to get involved in that conversation.