This site is the one place I know I can rant about peoples obsessive need to give pep talks instead of listening to what I am saying!

Thank God for rehab professionals. They keep me sane! So do you all. So do many people. But many other people don't get it at all.


I am so very tired of hearing "Oh I do that all the time!" when I try to explain what is going on for me. I am also so very tired of hearing about brain neuroplasticity.

Be here now! Stop talking to me about 10 years from now when I am trying to grock my present brain holes and learn to work around them.

The thing is, I am a very positive person. I am very positive and hopeful about where I will eventually get to with growing new brain pathways. I am not complaining. I am explaining. I am trying to understand myself. I am trying to help the person understand me.

I don't even think it is the way I am saying things. It is people's discomfort with hearing a person say something about themselves. If it was gossip - no problem. Gossip is about someone. It is listening to someone that certain people have difficulty with.

My encouragement to anyone who does not have a TBI or any other difficulty? Stop, pause, and question yourself the next time you want to offer encouraging words. Did you actually hear what the person shared? Did they complain or did they explain?

Explaining is asking you to hear us. Explaining is asking to be understood.

What is going on inside of your own heart, mind and body in response - or in reaction - to what the other person just said? What is making you feel you need to give them a pep talk or minimize their comment? What is keeping you from understanding?

This drawing is by Jeff Gregory of Jagged Smile. His work is used with permission.

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Comment by Glen Brist on October 15, 2012 at 12:17am

cute,  and  well  said....

Comment by Emerson on February 28, 2011 at 7:28pm
Richard, thanks for the comment - especially about John Byler's video.  I just watched it.  My injury is similar to yours and John too.
Comment by RICHARD MOSELEY on February 28, 2011 at 7:28am

Well said... couldn't agree more.  I recently sent my list of close friends the link to John Byler's videos (his situation is very close to mine).  It was the best thing I've ever done.  I got so many great responses and I think my friends understand me better now.  It helps that it is just a video and not a conversation.  So my friends had to just listen to John and not talk to him.   

I see a neuropsychologist and its such a pleasure to spend just a little time every month with SOMEOME who really "gets it".   I'm not sure my regular doctor "gets it" yet.

Comment by Josh on December 21, 2010 at 8:33am

i so agree people are idiots sometimes they think they know and get it but they don't

Comment by Jon on December 19, 2010 at 1:40pm

it does seem people can tell us what we are experiencing, and be so clueless

Comment by Fred Harris on December 13, 2010 at 7:07am

not sure if my rehab folks keep me sane or in sane, but i know people don't get it or do not care to get it they just help consume our soul by leaving us for dead

Comment by Dack on December 12, 2010 at 8:19am

i hat it as well when people try to compare our injury with a moment of forgetfulness or a headache

Comment by Kat Z on December 9, 2010 at 5:11pm

Love the post!  I agree with you completely.  Many people just don't know what to say when you explain.  Sometimes it takes a meltdown before they begin to see what you are trying to tell them,  The fallout can be disastrous, even though it is enlightening.


Comment by Tom on December 9, 2010 at 10:51am
It is tough listening to the outside stimulus. Especially hard listening to it from those who do not know what they are talking about or who are also injured to a point that they have now become a self-described expert.
Comment by Edward on December 8, 2010 at 4:02pm
i think people have good intentions, they are just clueless on whats happening I cant tell you how maybe people shared they hit their head after my brain injury and somehow a bump on the head relates to them a brain injury depending on my mood i might tell them to shut the H__l up

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