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Personality Changes

SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:56 AM in Depression and Coping
Man..after all this time I still get confused with posting so sorry if this shows up somewhere else. I'm goofy. :)
So appropriate for my question for you guys.

I had f/u appt with therapist today from last week. I brought good friend who is best support with me because I know something is wrong and I want to get better.

Therapist kept bringing up, for the first time today..and friend agreed.. I seem to have a personality change. I will be setting up appt for evaluation as therapist wants..as she thinks it may be related to post stroke..1/2011.

I don't really feel it..but I do see like quizzical looks on my friends faces at times..like I feel like their feedback is that something is wrong..but they don't use words to say anything to me. I have been aware that I am increasinly more forgetful of conversations and events.
And aware that I struggle with understanding words coming in or words I'm trying to express.

However, when I was looking into it online.. personality changes from meds for chronic pain kept coming up.

As many of you guys, my pain meds take the edge off. I'm never totally pain free. And on days when not going to be around people, I don't take as much..prefer to control suffer and not get to used to the meds. My PM doc agreed with that.

So, just wondering if any of you or you know someone who had similiar experience?

Thanks a lot for any feedback!
Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
Please read my medical history at: Medical History



  • First off, *HUGZ*...yeah, needed to toss ya one!!! :)

    Oh-kan-dokey.... I do think to some degree our personalities DO modify/change/suffer due to chronic pain - meds or not. 'Joe normal' can still hit the pick-nick and smile, have a brew...etc... where as a lot us, limit our brews (meds interaction) , and too are just down, and our friends (maybe family) don't get it.

    So, (me) have I seen a personality change since I moved to the chronic side of the house, sadly.....yeppers, you betcha.

    What bums... is our family and friends "get it" ( still not sure about that ) if we had say...cancer. They really DON'T get it with spine injuries.

    When questioned, I never have a 'bad back, or bad neck' because EVERYONE is an expert on treatment...!!!! "Me"... I have (no lie) spine issues... That shuts em down! Again, sound like a mutt, but soooo many people have the classic (overdid at golf, yard work, at work....) bad back, neck. Most of us on here, sure.... ours too, but nerve affected by disks, vertebral bodies (spondy etc....) and the list can go on.

    Don't tell anybody you have a bad neck/back... they just figuratively tie that picture to "Ouch... I overdid it on golf course..." Eg... They don't get it. Your true, close friends and family, will understand the true depth of what you're going through... "Joe casual friends" won't get it - not worth clarifying...

    There is (search here) a "Letter to Normals" and too you can do a search on the net, "Spoon story" which might help friends and family get it too. If after these (excellent letters) they don't get it, they probably will NEVER get it....

    Off I fade back to my corner... :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • personality change .its no surprise to me that any one suffering pain and not being able to take part in life .as they would like too and all the other unpleasant things that constant pain give us ..is it any wonder that we change ..i was a happy pleasant person with limitless amounts of energy and would do anyhting for any one type of man ..now i am a miserable and feel sad most of the time and i have developed anxiety syndrome ...
    1997 laminectomy
    2007 repeat laminectomy and discectomy L4/L5
    2011 ALIF {L4/L5/S1}
    2012 ? bowel problems .still under investigation
    2014 bladder operation may 19th 2014
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  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    I knew there would be understanding here :) Thanks
    Trying not to even think about it 'til evaluation happens... but yeah.. the pain..how can one expect not to be worn down and "different"?

    I read a post, probably yours, Brenda, and I did change my words.. to spinal issues. Very good idea!
    And I did the "Letter to Normals". I attempted different ways of trying to get through, esp my kids, but, they truly do not get it at all. Kids didn't even acknowledge receiving "Letter".
    When I just asked if they read it.. "Yeah"..that was it.

    My two main support friends loved the "Letter" & said it helped them understand. So you're right, Tony, my life so limited, not just physical activity, but friends have become few.

    So. proving once again that this is the place for true understanding and helpful perspectives. Thanks!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • I too want to send you a big >:D< . Glad to see that you have some close friends that are standing by you and go to your appointments with you. Of course, you also always have all of us.

    I think for us spineys there can definately be changes in our personalities. It can come from all different reasons. Meds of course, depending what they are and how they affect the specific person.

    Chronic pain in general can affect our personalities, just as we battle through day to day living. We will have our good days as well as our bad days.

    Yes, strokes also can effect personality. Depending where the stroke affects the brain, as well as how bad the stroke was. It just depends on the individual, stroke affects all people differently.Where it may change some people's personalities, others are not changed by it at all.

    Everyone is different, we all, I am sure have changed in some way or another, since we have had chronic pain. I know that I am not the "same" person I was before this journey all began.

    Wishing you all the best at your evaluation. Know that we are all here for you. Please keep us updated on how you are doing.

    >:D< Karen
    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
  • Savage,

    Try and remember when you were say...under 21 years old. Short of experiencing some nasty trauma, or almost dying, this stuff won't register with the younger ones! Sure, they know people get cancer, injured or even die, but to them "they still live in the eternal mode" most times. Hell, hehehe when I was a teen, someone 30 was over the hill to me! (G)

    When my neck and back would hurt forever ago, but would settle down with rest, chiro, massage etc., nodding, yeah I "had a bad back, neck." Once nerves got involved, pain went chronic, and surgery started getting put on the menu, I then developed spine issues! Even with doctors, I don't use the term "I have a bad neck." I really think they too (they are human too!)instantly lump us with most of "normal bad back America" when we say that....

    The family and friends that truly care about us will try to get it! Those same folks will be there for us "warts and all." You already know you're stuck with us, cuz we get it, and you!!!! :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
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  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    ...an thanks for the reminder about the thinking of a young person, Brenda! My brain thinks of that at times but my emotions sometimes just grieve without thought.

    And thanks, Karen, and all for the reminder that just the chronic pain can change someone. I'm taking notes from you guys for the evaluation so I can show more awareness of my situation. :)

    I feel so good "being stuck with you guys"!! ..as you are with me!
    I'm truly blessed! Thanks guys!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • Yeah, nothing "Kills" us as kids and teens!!! So, yeah we took tons of risks and didn't think twice about it! Most of our friends were within a year of our age, else they were too old or too young for us! As we age the spread of ages in our friends change.... :)

    Yep, you are for sure stuck with us darlin!! *HUGZ*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 7,385
    ...for neuroscience to eval my "personality changes."

    I do wish docs would focus on what I want... like..umm...pain control. But no..we are now going into yet another area and I have no say in the matter.

    It's not like I can refuse anything or... they refuse me..and then finding a new doc or therapist.. who would want to gladly add me on?

    And I so don't even care..probably got me into this eval in the first place...but I just want to be.

    Just be..and keep a handle on my pain..just be in my limited lifestyle. I don't even care about missing out on anything...been there..done that.. got a tee shirt.(I stole that from someone!)
    Thanks for permission to vent.

    So, appt mid Oct...I may have to come back here to b...., I mean, work it through with you guys later.

    Hope your days are managable!
    Honorary Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • I have had a major personality change, anger, crying, frustration, play a huge role in my life lately. I to just want pain control, I will live and function with limitations or whatever need be, but man get rid of the pain. Especially when my screws pinch something in there and the instant pain isn't something I can hide. I make a big scene even when I try so hard not to, my kids get upset and cry cuz moms in pain and all I can say to them is I am fine leave me alone get away, any touch hurts during these spouts. Then comes the crying cuz they were so scared, but yet tell the doctors this they don't care not one bit what your family is going through while they play their games. Well mine don't anyway I know there are doctors out there who do and I will find one.
  • It does change who we are , I was once a out going person had lots of friends, loved to camp, fish, climb cliffs but now the big weekend for me is to get done what I can do in the house and lay on the couch and figure out what lifetime movies I want to watch, I used to hate tv loved being outdoors riding my horses, I have become a recluse sometimes I feel like a wild injured animal backed up in a corner waiting to snap someones head off lol I dont like who I am but constant pain makes us that way.
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