“I like who I am now” – a survivor’s story

Domestic violence can have a long term impact on survivors’ mental health. In late 2014, we launched a pilot neurofeedback training program as a response to the needs of domestic violence and sexual assault survivors with traumatic brain injury.  In late 2015, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other mental health issues such as depression and anxiety were added to the program.

To the best of our knowledge, Fort Bend Women’s Center is the only agency offering neurofeedback training to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.

Neurofeedback training, also known as EEG biofeedback or neurotherapy, involves exercising and training the brain, much like working out at a health center exercises and trains our muscles. You can read more about neurofeedback and how it works here.

One of our clients wanted us to share some of her experience with our neurofeedback training program in the hope that it would help others.

“I am a female veteran with PTSD.  Nothing meant more to me, and I mean nothing, than to stand with honor and spend my life serving my country.  But life had a different plan. My brain for years was hiding things from me that I wasn’t ready to deal with. I started the program on my last ounce of hope for moving past the past. So before you ask if this program brain washes you, it does not.  It helps your brainwaves get back to normal or if you want scientific ways of describing it, talk to the ones who run the program.  I’m just a passenger not a crew member.  But with all this said, in my experience, this program works.  But there is something very important you must know.  And this is something that is totally and utterly dependent on you.  You have to put the effort in to do this, face those hard things. Doing therapy and allowing your therapist to do their job and help you.  It was so easy to just sit and exist wishing things were different.  But once you feel life flow through you again, that is something I cannot turn away from.  At the beginning of this program I was terrified of crowds, I feared enjoying a life for pointless reasons.   At the end, I was someone different.  I had finished my sessions and was letting my brain rest and adjust to the new training.

A month later, I managed to buy a plane ticket to see a sister I’ve never met, across the country, by myself, and accomplish a lifelong dream of standing next to a volcano.  It awakened me further.  I will never be who I was and that’s fine.  I like who I am now.  I’m the crazy mom who busts a move in the kitchen, listening to music while cooking dinner. I am me.  I am back to living.  So many goals just waiting to be checked off my dreams list.  Neurofeedback helped me get to where I am now, it was a life changing experience. I have always wanted my writing to really inspire or mean something, like to help someone.”