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Telling your Friends You Have Epilepsy with Kristen Bell & Novette Green, R.N.

Best friends love you unconditionally -- no matter what.

If you trust someone enough to call them a friend, and they call you a friend back, you may want to talk to them about your epilepsy and seizures.

Talk about it and know you have someone in whom to turn.

It’s especially good for your friends to know what to do if you have a seizure. Make sure you take time to talk with your friends and answer questions they may have about your epilepsy, too.


Actress KRISTEN BELL: It's OK to feel nervous about telling your friends you have epilepsy. But the best way to deal with it? Talk about it together.

The station darkens, moving focus to a TV monitor featuring an expert panel interview. Greg Grunberg interviews Novette Greene, R.N., of the Epilepsy Foundation of Forida  and Palm West Medical Center, Miami.

Greg:  If you're a teen and you're dealing with epilepsy you need to talk about it because...?

Novette Greene: If you're a teen watching this and you have epilepsy you really absolutely must talk about it and in doing that you're gonna open up a whole world of awareness. People are gonna be more interested. They're gonna want to talk to you about it. They're gonna ask you questions 'cause this is something new that they've never heard before. So talk to them about it and they're gonna get interested. They're gonna go home and talk to their parents about it and say, "Hey, my friend John just told me he had seizures. Have you ever heard about seizures or epilepsy?" That generates conversations. So just get involved and just keep talking about it.

Greg:  Teens that are watching this, talk about it with your friends, but you don't have to talk about it all the time. Talk about it so they understand but at the same time it doesn't have to define you. You are who you are. You're the great person that you are because of who you are, not because of epilepsy.

Novette Greene: Absolutely. You'd be surprised. Once you tell your friends about it, they don't even think about it again. But a good thing about it, it makes you feel good because, wow, my best friend knows so I feel safe hanging out with my friend cause if I have a seizure he knows what to do for me or she knows what to do for me.

Greg: Exactly.

TV monitor darkens, and station brightens again, lighting upon Kristen. 

Kristen: I'm Kristen Bell. Thank you for Talking About It!