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My experience - Mandy


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Hello, i had a SAH, when i was in a serious car accident. I hit my head on the dash very hard. I have noticed a huge difference in myself after this event. My emotions are very hard to control and hide. I asked a doctor what i could do to help myself. He said the damage was done and irreversible.


I find it difficult to have friendships, my marriage is suffering and I don't know how to change back into who I was before that car accident. I hit the frontal lobe part of my brain, and it caused the bleeding. I feel blessed to be alive, but i also miss my old self. I'm wondering what I can do. I feel too much and mostly alone. 

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Hi Mandy, welcome to Behind the Gray. Sorry to hear about the problems you have had since your SAH, it's very hard coming to terms with the new normal after such an event. You don't say how long ago this happened and if you are back to work yet.


I too have found that my personality has changed post bleed and my emotions are all over the place. I cry at the drop of a hat which can be a bit embarrassing some times. Unfortunately as your Gp has said this is probably irreversible but don't give up hope. Ask to be referred to see a Neuro-psychologist for an assessment. Not only can they see if you have any cognitive deficits post bleed but can also help with the emotional side of things.


I have seen mine for some time now and she has been really helpful in how I deal with life now.


Don't give up hope!


Clare xx

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Hello Mandy and a warm welcome to BTG.


While we do not provide any medical advice you will find much support as you read the various experiences of our members who share their personal recoveries.


This link will help you find those that relate specifically to an SAH caused by an accident.



So sorry to learn of your involvement In the serious car crash that caused your SAH.


Trauma to the brain results in many and varied after effects. You have listed several. Changes in emotion, mood swings  and fatigue are common to survivors. Many of our members do make progress although every situation is unique. When your doctor states that the damage in your case is irreversible, perhaps you can talk to him about the reasons behind this rather `final`  diagnosis.


How long is it since you had the accident? Have you seen any positive changes since you were discharged?


Please talk about your feelings and concerns with your partner and friends


We look forward to hearing more from you.







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Hi Mandy, 


Just coming onto this site will help as you know you are not alone in this and that helps in itself.


Feel for you but remember you are a survivor and although at present you might feel down and teary, things do get better.


Slow but surely, one day I realised I hadn't cried all day and I was happy.  Okay it didn't last but it was the best day I had since my SAH.


Today I awoke and dog was in my bed and I looked at her and was so grateful to all those who  went through it with me. 


Do not be hard on yourself and remember to think happy thoughts and not take others problems on. Shut all doom and gloom out.


I do it by singing xx my poor family.  Stress leave behind when possible as it is no good for us.  


Wishing you well in recovery small steps at first but we will get there. xx Good luck xx I still have sad days but I sing instead of thinking about them xxxx Happy songs only xxxx



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Hi Mandy welcome to BTG I had my bleed in January 2017  I also cry at a drop of a hat it can be so bad I don't like to go out you are not alone you have us when you need to talk the people on here are great they have helped me a lot even when I feel like giving up they give me that push to keep going on I really hope things get better for you pet.


All my love Andrea xx 

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One of the best things about BTG is that you are now not alone in this. You will always have here to come to, being able to talk to people that understand what you have been through really does make a huge difference.


it's a very emotional thing that you have been through, so try not to be too harsh on yourself, give yourself time to adjust and come to terms with everything first.


All the best x

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Thank you, Kay, and Aandrea. I  have been in denial of any of my emotional problems being caused by the head injury i had in a car accident. I cry about everything.


I feel weak minded, and fragile. That's not who I thought I was. I used to work as a prison guard lol No way I could do that now, the inmates would hurt my feelings.


My husband thinks I act like a child. I can't control my tears, when he says anything that seems mean to me. I usually just get up and go into another room.


Is there any technique that has worked for someone? For keeping the tears held back.


And another thing is how I repeat myself so much. I must've told the same story who knows how many times. The accident happened a long time ago, but I feel like time has flown by, and I can't seem to enjoy the present.


I am living in the past, thinking of who i used to be. I was also diagnosed with ADD, 10 years after my SAH. One more thing, sorry. My mother died from an aneurysm when she was 54. I'm scared everytime i get a headache. I'm anxious, and I have butterflies in my stomach, its ridiculous. I am 45 yrs old. 

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GetWow! There are a lot of people on here. I wish I had found this site years ago.


You won't believe how long it's been since the accident. I used to be real good about pretending to be ok. And i focused on everyone else to the point of being codependent.


I had to break free from toxic people. They were taking my kindness for weakness.


Now, I have no distractions, so to speak. It was 8/26/2002 when i changed into a person i could hardly recognize. I feel like my husband is sick of my teary neediness.


I wasn't worried about him when I was helping others, and giving money to them, to "help". Thank you all for letting me get this out. I havent been able to talk about my feelings to anyone without crying and U dont just get teary eyed.


I'm usually boo-hooing. Embarrassing for sure. My husband is hard to talk to because I am, and have been really struggling with my anger. He was driving, and it doesn't seem like he thinks I went through anything.


It might be in my mind, but he seems different to me. In the last few years. Actually, after I stopped helping my 2 younger sisters/conartists, is when I focused on him. He seems like he hates me. I'm sorry for being lengthy, and I feel better just knowing there are people who understand, and care. 

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As others have said, go back to your doctor and request some counselling. It is not unusual for a person to have PTSD after suffering a SAH. It could be possible for you, especially due to the cause.



It actually sounds as if your doctor really hasn't got a clue about SAH which is not unusual as it is pretty rare and many never come across it in their practising years.

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Welcome to BTG. I m sure you will find many threads helpful here. It sounds like you had SAH years ago. 

I cannot give you medical advice. But I have seen many people / friends/ patients who cannot control emotions after a stroke. It can either be depression or pseudobalbar effects.


I don’t think the gp should have told you it s irreversible. Yes it was SAH. But there are many treatments for it such as medicines, counseling , biofeedback, relaxation, meditation etc. and it might be ptsd like subs said. You can talk to the gp again. Find a new one if you can. May be medicines. Then again I don’t know your history or allergies or what meds you take so I m not sure. Therapy has no side effects. So is meditation.


As for spouses, they need to be supportive and understanding. Try to explain to him the SAH caused it but please also try to control and may be count to ten if you feel like crying. Reading books such as loving kindness and finding peace in a frantic world might help. 


Best wishes

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Hi Mandy,


Welcome to BTG.  I struggled with this kind of issue early on in my recovery.  I had to sit down and reappraise who I was and what I was doing if my life was to become bearable again.  It was something somebody said to me off the cuff about life being full of opportunities. Somehow it kind of resonated with me and I thought long and hard about that sentence.


I thought about how I was before, how I am after, and lastly how I can learn to live with this sudden change that has been thrust upon me without any warning.  Usually change happens gradually as you get older and you seamlessly learn to accept it.  In this case the change happened in an instant.


The first thing to do is to learn that this event happened, and much as we would like to, we can't turn back the clock.  So look forwards and think' how can I be the best that I can be?'  Be honest with yourself, and accept what has happened and learn some coping strategies that help you deal with it.  There are numerous strategies, some will play a greater part than others, but that depends on your own circumstances and how you feel about them yourself.  If you try one and it isn't working, change it for another,  be flexible.


For instance, if someone annoys you, avoid them, or sit them down and explain to them what has happened to you so they may adjust their behaviour, rather than you always having to adjust yours.  If you work and your job is stressful, change it, or reduce your hours or delegate the work to others.  Sit your husband down in a good moment and have a heart to heart with him.  He may not fully appreciate what you are going through.  Show him this thread if you like so he can gain some understanding that you are not kidding and that there are others just like you to whom this has happened. 


The problems won't go away unless you confront them, one by one if necessary, when you are up to it.  If you don't change something then matters won't improve.  What's the old saying? "If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got"  That's the same answer!


One of the biggest problems is usually from lack of communication - and thus lack of understanding.  When people understand, they change their behaviours and usually try to do their best to be helpful.  If they don't then maybe they are not the best people to have around you in your life.


No one is saying this is easy, but it can be done to a lesser or greater degree and it doesn't happen overnight, but I am living proof that you can learn to live with these kinds of issues, with patience, perseverance and support from those closest to you.  But you have to let them in by talking through your problems with them.


Don't lock them out because these are the same people who can help you climb the ladder back to an acceptable and quality life again.  I am nearly eight years out and my life now is much better than in the early days.  I find it is as much about the way you think about things than about what you actually do.  Try and turn negatives into positives.  When something happens think about the opposite.  You can still achieve things, maybe not as quickly but if you walk rather than run, you still get there in the end!


Good luck, let us know how you are getting on, and if you can't talk to those near you then talk to us, but talk, don't bottle it all up.  All those emotions of yours are natural, there's nothing to beat yourself up about. Most of us have had them and we continue to do but accepting the the event happened goes a long way to starting to find solutions that work for you.




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