Hank called VOYCEconnect looking for any resources that might help his family. He needed help for his parents, who were both in really good health besides his mother’s traumatic brain injury. Seventeen years ago, Hank’s mom, Cynthia, was in a car accident that resulted in permanent brain damage. From that moment on, she was a different person. Despite the change in her personality and the short-term memory loss, Hank’s father, John, continued to care for her for 17-years.
As the couple ages, this is becoming more difficult. Hank describes his parents relationship before the accident, stating that Cynthia always was the homemaker, and kept the house incredibly clean, like out of a magazine. However, the brain injury changed this. She no longer was keeping up with housekeeping or personal hygiene. John tried to take over the care for the house, but became distressed as Cynthia would insist she has already cleaned and be upset that he was cleaning again. Hank reminisced back to his childhood, remembering that his parents never fought. He thinks this is why John is having a hard time going against Cynthia’s desires and taking charge.
The VOYCEconnect Coordinator was able to talk through the situation with Hank, provide options for a potential mediator to help his family discuss the need to change, and options for home care services to help keep the house in a livable condition. VOYCE also connected Hank to the Brain Injury Association, in the hopes that some education for John might help him understand why Cynthia’s personality has been drastically different for the last 17 years.
Although we wish we could have intervened earlier to help this family cope with the changes they were seeing, we are glad we were able to help them find resources to ensure that John and Cynthia and living safely and can go back to being each other’s spouse.
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