What do you say when the truth will hurt?

This is a topic that I am asked about frequently and is apt to be controversial. But it is important, because it is one of the most common problems in the relationship between a caregiver, families, and a sufferer from dementia. What do you say when your loved one asks a question for which the real-world, literal, factual, answer can only cause them more confusion and pain? This happens frequently, and as a frequent occurrence it is an issue you must be prepared to deal with in a way that hopefully will not violate your own sense of honesty and integrity. Continue reading

Things to look for in choosing an ALF?

Our last article was about “How do you know when it is time”. Underlying this whole discussion is the very difficult decision about how to care for your loved one, whether to seek professional support, and how to recognize what kind of help you need. I have not tried to sell the idea that assisted living is always necessary and ultimately inevitable. I have my own views about this, but I consider it my mission to provide you the knowledge and resources so you can make a decision that will be comfortable for you. The sooner you implement support the better off you will be. This is not a sprint this is a marathon and the odds are that you will need support of some kind. This should not be looked at as giving up any control but as keeping you healthy for this journey. Continue reading

How do you know when it is time?

I am often asked by caregivers “How do I know when it is time?” Is there a sign? If you are asking the question, it usually means it is time. This is a common question I am asked by caregivers. Sometimes the signs are very subtle and other times they are not, and you may have to act quickly. Your loved one is not normally going to tell you that they think they cannot drive anymore and hand you the keys to the car. If they do this, consider yourself very fortunate. Continue reading

Routine and Reality

A friend of mine told me a story that illustrates some of the most important understandings about how to care for a person with dementia.

He was a middle-aged man whose mother was under professional care in a memory care community.  For her 85th birthday, he wanted to bring her joy by going all out with a catered private dinner.  He, his wife, and his adult daughter arranged to use a private dining room at her community, and bring in a fine meal, served on fine china. Continue reading

Coping With Dementia LLC’s Official Debut

On April 25, 2015, my new business Coping with Dementia LLC had its official debut and ribbon cutting at the Second Annual Dash for Dementia fund-raiser hosted by The Memory Enhancement Center of America. Coping with Dementia LLC, is a new training and education business that will focus on person-centered care for people with Alzheimer’s and dementia.  I would like to thank everyone for their support in both being present and in their well wishes for the business’s success. Continue reading

Recognizing Behaviors

I would like to take a moment to welcome you to my website site. I will be adding informational writings to this site regularly, so please check in often and follow my blog.

I am very excited about my new business “Coping with Dementia LLC,” to  train and educate caregivers — both professional and lay persons — on a better and more effective way of interacting with people who suffer from Alzheimer’s and dementia. As you have read, I too was a caregiver to a spouse with dementia, and I had to make some difficult choices while lacking the information and tools to understand what was happening or how to properly deal with challenging situations. Continue reading