Recent Testimonials from various sources
- On returning home from 4 months in hospital, I found myself pretty much left to my own devices in trying to adapt to the changes that had happened to me as a result of my TB meningitis diagnosis. My doctors were satisfied that I was physically healthy, and i had the impression that psychological/emotional problems were of negligible importance.I was referred to a psychologist after suffering disinhibition but treatment was frustratingly slow. I was having problems at work, problems socially and problems at home. I carried on supported by my family and close friend but looking back, it felt as though I was walking through a foggy labyrinth.Then 5 years after my illness leaving hospital, I came across Headway and attended my first meeting. Going to this meeting was a game changing moment for me. Talking with other people who have experienced a similar injury to me as well as the side effects that come with the package, meant that I felt safe and comfortable. It is difficult to put it into words, but I would say that it is the group support that creates a warm atmosphere and I felt a noticeable boost to my emotional state when I returned home and this stayed with me for the rest of the week.
If I was asked to give two highlights for me in attending the group, two things stick out. The first was the encouragement to invite my wife to a group meeting. My wife never knew me before my ABI so struggled to appreciate my issues with disinhibition, tiredness and especially apathy. A carer in the group sat down with my wife and talked about the challenges they both faced and was able to talk about coping strategies. This has had a really positive affect on Sonia’s understanding of my difficulties.
The second was the mini library that is brought to each meeting. Following ABI I have read only one book, as my attention span is so minute now. However I took the chance to select a book and was proud to read the whole book before the next meeting.
In conclusion I cannot emphasise enough, the positive result of me going to the Headway groups. An ABI can easily result in isolation and if even for just two hours, a person can feel accepted in understanding company.
- Little is done for the social reintegration of the survivor. The family is often alone to support the “stranger in the house”.
- If you look at me you wouldn’t know I’ve had a brain injury, but my life and that of my family has changed forever, I am not the person I was before.
-Volunteer and Brain Injury Survivor, Headway West Sussex.
- The information you have provided is fantastic and will provide excellent help to the family.
-Social Worker, Horsham.
- Hello, thank you for sending me your latest e-bulletin which I found very interesting and well put together.
Congratulations also on your new website, again very well presented and easy to access / use. Well done to everyone involved.
- Hi Gwyn, Just thought I would drop you a short note to let you know how welcome we felt by everyone at the meeting last night. We both came away feeling a little more positive than when we arrived, yes even George!! I hope you enjoyed your grandson’s celebrations. Look forward to seeing everyone again on the 5th September.
- To Gwyn, Happy Christmas Gwyn and a Happy New Year! You are wonderful in your support and encouragement to others.
- Your visit to the day centre to meet our ABI group left them feeling really inspired. It was a pivotal moment for them and they really want to attend the next support group.
-Julie Moore Glebelands day care centre
- “The brain is the bit that makes you, you,” says neurosurgeon Andrew Brodbelt
Worthing Support Group Questionnaire October 2012
What difference does what HWS does make to your life?
- It’s my lifeline
- Massive; friendship, support, regular contact, social
- Lots of support and information about everything
- Let’s us know there are people who can help if we have any problems
- It is there to help if we need it
- Helps having support of others who understand ABI
- I don’t feel alone
- Gives me a very supported life, to understand why things happen to people with ABI
Worthing Support Group March 2013
- I haven’t been out of my flat for 3 years but I came to the support group and later that week went out to play poker with my old friends.
- My emotions were flat, I couldn’t connect with them. It was as though I had gone blind, I could remember what the sky looked like but I couldn’t see it. I could remember happiness and sadness but I couldn’t feel them.
- Sometimes you don’t see the emotions coming.
- You’ve lost your old life.
- It’s a grieving process; you’ve lost someone, you.
- It creeps up on you and ‘bang’ you are not that person anymore.
- I felt like I was the only person it had happened to.
What do you get out of your support group?
- Mutual understanding and support. People who really understand ABI
- Support for me and my husband – carers have needs too
- Meeting people who understand me
- Meeting and interacting with people who have similar problems
- Safe friendly environment where everyone can express themselves to people who have understanding of their situation and their partners
Where would you go for information and understanding if HWS was not here?
- The only place I can think of is the internet
- Internet, GP for information but there is no other support
- My GP was useless and there are not enough specialist services for ABI. HWS are the only people with the knowledge of what it’s like.
- Brain and Spine foundation and my GP
- Info online but no support anywhere else
- Don’t know where we would go as I’m not sure there is anything else out there.
- It’s all hidden, you have to struggle to find it
- Carers Support Service.
- No one else seems to know anything