Coping with Injury

realize it’s the anniversary. • Allow the victim/survivor to tell and re- tell the story of what happened. Telling the story helps one come to grips with it and also helps bring to the surface forgotten memories. • Help the victim/survivor label his or her feelings. It helps to more accurately describe what is going on inside. • Understand that it is normal for the victim/survivor to move forward, then fall back as he or she progresses through recovery. • Help the victim/survivor process nightmares, flashbacks, and night terrors. Be available to sit with the victim/survivor following night terrors and talk until he or she can respond. • Give honest, reasonable recognition at signs of healing. Don’t give excessive praise or label the individual as “an inspiration.” The duty to be an inspiration or to be strong can be a burden. But do notice each achievement. • Encourage the victim/survivor to socialize, but don’t insist on it until he or she is ready. Offer to set up links with other injured victims/survivors. Offer to take the victim to support groups. Offer to help the victim/survivor attend plays, musicals, sporting events, or other activities he or she enjoyed before the crash. Try to re-establish hobbies, if possible. • Take care of yourself. Ongoing physical care of the victim/survivor coupled with worries about what the future holds can be both physically and mentally

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