What can family do to help????

What can family do to help????

Posted by Tari on Apr 27, 2015 12:18 pm

My brother was in a motorcycle accident on April 23rd. He sustained numerous injuries, but the biggie is to T2 and T3. He has no sensation from the nipples down. What as a family memeber can I do? He and his wife have had a run of bad luck, both unemployed right now. And I want to help and be supportive but I just don't know what to do. Or where to start. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Re: What can family do to help????

Posted by TJ14 on Apr 28, 2015 12:47 pm

Tari, so sorry to hear about your brothers accident. I am the Program Coordinator for the peer mentor program with the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. I can definitely help your brother and any family members dealing with this accident. Please feel free to contact me directly. My contact information is below. Just go to the below link or email me.

TJ Griffin
Program Coordinator
Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation
Peer & Family Support Program

Re: What can family do to help????

Posted by prc_Beth on Apr 28, 2015 4:36 pm

Hi Tari,

My name is Beth and I am a member of the Information Specialist Team here at the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. Please let the family know that we are here to provide them with resources including information for the newly injured. We have a wide range of information and resources for individuals living with paralysis, as well as their family members and caregivers.  Should you need any further information, please call 1-800-539-7309. My extension is 7220.

Associate Information Specialist
Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation
Paralysis Resource Center
636 Morris Turnpike Suite 3A
Short Hills, NJ 07978
1-800-539-7309 x7220
1-973-467-8270 x7220

Re: What can family do to help????

Posted by Dan Gottlieb on Apr 29, 2015 3:45 pm

hi Tari

I want to echo what the others have said-it breaks my heart to hear what happened to your brother and making matters worse, the context in which it happened. Economic insecurity makes everything worse-especially medical problems. As such, isn't it terrific that you got such helpful and rapid responses from the folks here in the program?

Even though I have been a quadriplegic for 35 years, I am not an expert on resources-especially economic ones.  But I can't address the emotional toll this takes on the family. The first reaction, after terror and desperation, is helplessness. Generally, those with spinal cord injury and their loved ones feel very alone and isolated in this world-as though no one could possibly ever understand their experience.
I strongly suggest you sit down with them and talk together about what everybody needs-including yourself and how all of you can go about caring for one another with love and compassion.

Many years ago there was a book written about children who have experienced trauma and the title of the book was: "first you cry…". A family that loves together, mourns together and find a way to live with adversity. Together. The great risk here is that everyone goes in different directions and all of you feel isolated and uncared for.

So here's hoping people with far more expertise than I can tell you about external resources. And if you stay in touch with us, I would be happy to talk about internal resources.

Please take care
Daniel Gottlieb PhD

Re: What can family do to help????

Posted by Bryan56 on May 2, 2015 12:32 am

Re: What can family do to help????

Posted by Dan Gottlieb on Jul 29, 2015 3:40 pm

I hope that is helpful. And I hope the family is doing better. I hope that a lot!

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