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my mum had a SAH last Oct

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Been reading all the posts and found all really useful- finding my mum really depressed and gets really tired, she was such a positive person before and find it really difficult to see her like this somedays she even says she wishes she would die. I am strong for her and so is my dad but somedays i feel really angry this happened. They are doing great but is all about them adapting- the last year has been hard but positive things will improve. Last October was the worst time my mum had complications and was in HDU for 3 wks as she experienced vasospasms.

She been out of hospital since Jan and the progress is slow but steady. She gets upset alot and doesn't like being reminded of what happened after reading the posts i feel like she would benefit from councilling but don't know how to bring it up?

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Hi Marilyn and welcome to BTG! :-D

How old is your Mum? Tiredness and depression after a SAH are quite common .... there are lots of worries, as to whether it will happen again and worrying about the future and how you will cope. When something like a SAH happens, then everything is thrown into turmoil and it feels as though life may never be the same again.

However, life does improve, but it does take time to come to terms with things. As far as counselling is concerned, then it's something that I didn't feel that I needed, perhaps even as far as 2 years down the line, as I thought that I could deal with it and was a strong enough person to fight the feelings off .... but many people on here, have benefited from it and it should be something that's offered as treatment post SAH. How you bring it up, then I don't have a clue, as it's perhaps something that your Mum will have to make the decision over ... as I personally think, that you have to be ready to accept the help.

You do have to learn to adapt to your limitations and I'm sure that over time, your Mum will too .... that's not to say that you don't go and find all the help that is available in the physical and mental sense, in order that you can push forward, as life does better and you need to work at it!

Would recommend that your Mum reads Alison Wertheimer's book called "A Dented Image" ....which is based on Alison's and other peoples experiences of SAH and covers the day to day subjects... it may help to normalise what she's feeling.

Wishing you all the very best....xx

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Hi Marilyn, Welcome to BTG.

You have come to the right place for both your Mums support and for YOURS!

Don't forget that you are going through a lot as well and although you are not feeling the physical limitations, you are feeling the pressures of having to adapt.

Time, Time and more time, thats what is needed. My best wishes to your Mum and Dad, don't forget to take care of yourself.


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Hi Marilyn warm welcome to the site.

think Karen has said it you do improve although it takes time, and you adapt to suit, its sometimes far worse for the loved ones like yourself than it is for us-I think...

I would say that I changed a 100% & now I even say its the best thing to happen, if your Mum is thinking like that maybe its time to get her councelling speak to the GP believe me it really helps you understand....

take care

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Hi Marlyn

If your mum has never had the opportunity to talk with someone who's gone through this, then it can be a lonely place. I found this site 8 months after my SAH and the feelings of relief were huge! I actually felt "normal" for once! It's such a pity that we leave hospital with very little information on the recovery ahead.

Maybe you just have to bite the bullet and tell her you are worried about her and think it might help her to speak with someone. Some people view counselling as a sort of weakness but it takes a strong person to ask for help. You can get counselling through your GP. In Scotland you are entitled to get 6 sessions with a counsellor hrough the NHS. If she's resistant to the idea of counselling then maybe you could contact someone on the Brain and Spine Foundation's helpline to give you advice. They have a website www.brainandspine.org.uk and helpline is manned by qualified nurses or you could contact them by email.

I hope this helps a little.

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Hi Marilyn and welcome, sorry to hear about your mum, and the depression, my wife went through a depressive stage amongst many, but she's now on medication for it and it has helped, my wife is now 17 months on and her recovery has gone in starts and stops but is still ongoing, so it's a long road to travel and a bit bumpy at times but i'm sure she'll get there in the end Best wishes Rod

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Hi Marlyn

Sorry to hear about your mum.

I had my SAH last December and spent at least 5 months suffering Post Traumatic Stress. I was very anxious and desperate for information.

Luckily I did find this site back in January and was able to post quite quickly after my SAH and Op. It is so good to speak to others who understand what you are going

through and it is great that you have joined us here to help get an insight into how your mum is feeling and what to do to help her.

I found counselling helped me immensely. That was when I was informed I was suffering from Post Traumatic Stress, and I was going through every emotion randomly. Some days I felt better than others, but mainly I felt lost, scared, upset; it was almost like a grieving process for the ‘old’ me.

I am now nearly 9 months post SAH. I am back to work full time, and getting back to my old self in many ways. I am slightly different but have accepted that now. You can’t not be different after suffering a traumatic event.

I notice if I get tired then busy places, lots of noise, too many people talking at once,

etc does stress me a little, so I have to be mindful of that.

I was 37 when I had my SAH and after the op I felt like I was about 87! I was so weary, lethargic and found it so difficult to do the simplest things. Initially having a shower and getting dressed was a huge achievement. I have been very lucky that I have recovered so well and with literally no side effects, apart from being more tired.

Obviously we are all different, and have suffered to different degrees so our recovery times and side effects are different also, but it does get better over time, and you find after a few months you can do so much more than you could do. It is a long process, and for some longer than others.

If, like many of us, your mum was given little or no advice upon discharge from Hospital; has she read any info online or have you tried to print off the Brain and

Spine Foundation SAH booklet and letting your mum read through it when she is ready? I know some hospitals have supplied a booklet to some, but many of us are left to just get on with it. It is shocking.

Good luck for your mums continued recovery, and I hope you find a way of seeking counselling for your mum. (I initially had counselling sessions via my work and then eventually got referred by my Dr as they have an onsite counsellor, so as suggested it may be worth you speaking to your mums GP so that they can broach the subject with her?).

Best wishes

Kel x

Edited by KelBel
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Hi Marylin, I am so sorry to read about your mum but what she is experiencing is a perfectly normal reaction for someone who has gone through this experience.

Its so hard for our friends and family to watch and your also going through your own trauma too.

I was fortunate to be offered councelling at around six months post op.It was a godsend to me. At that time I was in denial, I was greiving for the person I once was,I was confused ,upset to say the least. What I learned ( amongst other things) was to go easy on myself,be kind to myself and to come to terms with the possibility that I will never be the same but with time I can be as good if not better.

I had help dealing with coping with my anxiety and my panic attacks,and I learned that it was normal and natural to have all the feelings and fears and not wanting to talk about them was in a way a form of self protection. I am 18 months post SAH and it has been an ongoing struggle but looking back I can now see how far I have come away from the dark days.

I hope your mum can get some help. And I hope you can too,often we forget what a trauma it is for those we love.

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Hi Marilyn :) a very warm welcome to BTG :) I agree with the others, I think we have all been where your Mum is and can empathise with what she is going through. So hard for all of you. Counselling certainly helped me....there was a long waiting list....but was worth it. My GP arranged it all. I am 2 years and 9 months down the line now and still get anxious sometimes and frustrated....but it does get better. Hopefully your Mum will soon feel up to coming on here, BTG has been a God send to me. Wishing you all well...take care Love Tina xx

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  • 2 weeks later...


Found your post very helpful- my mum and dad do not have the internet so cannot come on here, I find it very useful- when first came on here found very upsetting as didn't want to accept my mum was ill. Alot of people think she has been ill and is now better and do not realise all the repurcussions.

My mum had vasospasm and we actually only found out in her follow up app at Walton Neuro last month. Alot of frustrations for all of us.

My mum very agrophobic and I do agree very like a grieving process she has good days and then meets someone who does not know what has happened and is almost like she has to go through it all again :frown:

Me and my dad are very positive but we all just have to adapt the biggest thing is for my mum losing her independance- a big thing we all take for granted, and no one can fully understand how she is feeling not even me her daughter, i get so annoyed as just want my mum back but feel selfish as I not had the one who has had my life taken away.

Am positive things will improve and just this morning she has got out of the bath on her own- little things now are a major step forward :cool:

A8)m going home this wk and will broach the subject of counselling I think it will help but think she is a bit too proud at moment. I love this forum as has helped me immensly... am using to help them they can't do all alone and I think they need to realise this has affected other peoples lives too.

thanks for all your kind messages- know I have not had SAH but it affects all of us xx8) marlyn xx

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Hi Marylin,

I had SAH 2 years ago and have fought an exhausting battle ever since to stay in denial and prove that I have recovered. I finally realised 2 weeks ago that I am not who I was, I can't physically or mentally do what I used to and this is really a good thing! I am taking a huge step back, cutting my hours at work and finally accepting what is.

I have just had a second appointment with a neuro phsycologist (every thing seems to be in two's!). I believe it has helped enormously but I had to finally stop pushing myself off my own back and no counselling would have helped in the early days. I did not realise how ill I had been or how much life would change. It has taken 2 years but perhaps you could try to stay strong for your mum, don't push her or judge her, just allow her to be and perhaps, like me, she will come to realise and accept things in her own time. I do think though, that with the right, unobtrusive help, perhaps she will see things clearly sooner?

I know it must be very hard for every one watching to see how much the person is struggling but I don't think you can make people accept things until they see for themselves. It is so hard to accept what you have lost. I'm in the early stages of accepting this and have found posts on here amazingly helpful, I hope you & your mum will too.

Best wishes x

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Hi there, and welcome to BTG. Like others have said, it takes a LONG time to get over SAH, or indeed any brain trauma. It's been 7 months since mine and I've been having sessions with the neuropsychologist who has been doing assessments on me. I understand there are not enough neurpsychs to go round, so mum might have to wait even if she is referred.

Personally, I didn't think I'd need it - I've made it through the SAH so I must be ok, right? - WRONG! I don't think "why me?" or anything, but I have been having trouble coming to terms with the cognitive problems I've been left with. Only yesterday, at what was supposed to be my last appointment, something new came up! Anyway, it has been a great help, and next week we are going to talk about her findings and look at ways to cope....

I hope you can get that book Sally (?) mentioned if mum doesn't have access to the internet - it will be helpful to mum to read about others going through the same thing. Oh, and the booklet from the Brain and Spine Association is really helpful, both for the sufferer and their family, in order to understand just what your mum as been through.

Take care!

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