When an unexpected car crash leaves your family member facing a catastrophic injury, the future may look uncertain and daunting. Helping your loved one adjust to a permanent disability will take time, unconditional love, and encouragement.
Recognizing newfound limitations and a loss of independence may cause your family member to feel hopeless and discouraged. Your support may help to prevent feelings of despair from taking over.
Show empathy and understanding
While you may never fully understand how your loved one feels, your effort to learn more about his or her condition can help you to feel empathy. Your research may focus on areas including the following:
- Giving emotional support
- Facilitating recovery
- Improving physical comfort
- Setting goals for progress
Your loved one will undoubtedly have moments of frustration, sadness, anger, or even guilt. Support from you can come from listening, empathizing, and giving encouragement. Help your family member identify realistic goals and celebrate little accomplishments along the way.
Facilitate social relationships
Even though your family member may feel, look and move differently than before the car crash, they may find critical support and satisfaction in meaningful relationships. According to Psychology Today, studies have shown benefits for disabled persons who collaborate with other members of the disabled community.
You can facilitate the development and maintenance of beneficial relationships. You can look for local support groups and help your family member build a network of friendships. Another way to encourage social interaction is to make an active effort to involve your family member in community and family activities. Your actions can help your family member recognize that a disability does not have to determine the enjoyment and success of long-term living.