What this site is about

My name is David Parkin. My son Julian suffered a brain injury in June 2004. His daughter Amy, my only grandchild to date, set up a Support Group on Facebook which attracted over a thousand members. We were humbled by the kind responses of people who knew Julian, and many more who didn’t. Facebook are archiving that page so I’m starting a new one. It won’t be as savvy as Amy’s but I’ll do my best while she gets on with her studies.

Julian was a musician. He played bass and croaked backing vocals in some well-loved bands like Snuff, Soho Roses, Guns and Wankers, and Dog Piss. He has (had?) a record deal with Fat Wreck Chords http://www.fatwreck.com  and had just finished the backing tracks for his next album when he had the fall that put his life on hold.

It’s really difficult to explain how Julian’s “acquired brain injury” (ABI) has affected him. In future posts I’ll try to describe what the experts think and what we his family think, but it is very puzzling. To give you some idea, we don’t know anybody who can currently beat him at Scrabble, but we are sure he would be dead in minutes if he were left unsupervised close to a busy main road.

We don’t know if brain injury research is underfunded or if it is just too difficult, but there are few ideas out there. We see marvelous advances in life saving surgery and billions invested in drug therapies, but brain injury seems worse than neglected; it just seems to have been forgotten. Maybe you can throw some light on this. If you are a neuropsychologist or a neurorehabilitation consultant, or a student of those disciplines, or just a deep thinker, we hope you will remember our son and people like him and come back to this site.

If you are one of the lovely people who joined Amy’s support group for her dad, I hope you will continue to follow Julian’s progress and maybe add an occasional comment that he can read.

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Joolz’ Facebook page

I created this site because I thought Facebook were going to remove Amy’s ‘Support group for Julien Parkin’ page, but in fact it has just been ‘migrated’. I haven’t had time to develop this WordPress site, so please go to Julian’s page on Facebook to see the latest news, pics, etc.. Jools seems to be improving quite dramatically.

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Conversation with Jools (2)

One of the things that gives us hope that our son will one day return to a normal(ish) life is his humour. Julian always had a sharp wit; it was one of the things that attracted people to him – he was funny. He still is.

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Conversation with Jools

Conversation with Jools is difficult. He responds to conversational gambits with a shrug or a thumbs-up or a smile or a frown. To get him to speak you have to say something that forces him to speak. If he can respond in any other way, he will. But here’s a funny thing; put a mobile phone in his hand and he can engage in a (fairly) normal conversation, especially if the person on the other end of the line is Amy or her Mum.

In the early months of his recovery from surgery Julian could only speak in a whisper. But one day, when a friend (we can’t remember who) rang from London, he suddenly started talking into the phone in a normal voice, all animated and “back to normal”. At the end of the phone call he reverted to whispering.

These days his speaking voice is normal, he just doesn’t use it unless he has to.

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