Dementia: Withholding Bad News

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There is no point whatsoever in giving Maureen any bad news: she has enough sadness in her life dealing with dementia.  Today is a particularly significant day in both of our lives.  It is Esme, my youngest daughter’s 29th birthday. I have already upheld my tradition and sung happy birthday to her in her absence – I do this whenever I remember it is someone’s birthday  There is no point in reminding Maureen that Esme wants nothing to do with me at the moment, and wouldn’t appreciate any form of contact.  However, when I get a quiet moment I won’t be able to resist listening to ‘Groovy Kind Of Love’ to remind myself of dancing with Esme in my arms when she was a baby:

Today is also the funeral of one of Maureen’s oldest friends.  When I received the sad news of Janet’s passing last week I mentioned our circumstances to her son and explained that attending the funeral was not an option.  There is no point in taking Maureen to events that would cause confusion, and lead to distress .

Maureen’s youngest son is visiting at the weekend.  It is his birthday a few days later. He is a Sunderland supporter, and we managed to snap up an appropriate polo shirt earlier in the year.  How fortunate that we will be able to have an early celebration of his birthday without reminding Maureen that she no longer has any concept of time, place or person.

I’m meeting Mel my Admiral Nurse this morning.   I need to chat over my responses to Maureen ‘wanting to go home’.  I also skimmed an interesting article yesterday that suggested trying to improve short-term memory is futile and focusing on the past might be more productive.  Such discussions will be academic unless I schedule regular respite into my schedule.  If I don’t look after my own well-being Maureen’s care will be taken out of my hands!

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