Frustrated in Fishers

Dear Jim,

I’m currently at a complete loss and have nowhere to turn. My car was recently totaled after it was rear-ended by another vehicle. I suffered a serious whiplash injury, a broken collarbone, and a concussion, but am on the mend. 

I feel very fortunate to be alive, and I know the accident could have been worse, but I am having a very hard time accepting the fact that the person who hit me will probably get away with it. You see, my accident was a hit-and-run and, of course, this particular intersection didn’t have any cameras that I could see. 

Now, I’m stuck with medical bill after medical bill that I can’t pay, chronic pain in my neck, and a slew of other issues all stemming from this accident. I’m hoping you can help me figure out how to come to terms with what has happened to me so I can begin to move forward with my life. It’s been three months now and I feel like I should be putting this whole experience behind me. Love your column; please help if you can.

Thanks,

Frustrated in Fishers

 

Dear Frustrated,

First, I want to start off by saying that I’m glad to hear you are recuperating well and didn’t suffer any critical injuries. Being involved in a collision can be traumatizing, and there isn’t really any specific length of time you should be following to learn to cope. Have you sought mental health counseling to cope with the effects of some post-traumatic stress you might be experiencing? 

I’m no doctor, but a friend of mine is an Indianapolis car accident attorney, and I’ve heard him mention how traumatic read-end collisions can actually be. I encourage you to look into the car accident laws in Indiana. Law enforcement may be able to identify the person who hit you in a number of different ways. 

Maybe a nearby business caught something on camera, or perhaps a witness got a partial license plate number, for example. It may be very empowering for you to take charge, get an attorney, find the guy who hit you, and make him pay. 

Then, not only will you have the self-fulfillment of bringing him or her to justice, but you’ll also have a chunk of change in the bank that you can use to cover the medical bills you mentioned. Take care, and keep us posted on what you decide to do.

All my best,

Jim