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,,,I want to make the point here that if this change had happened after the upheaval in our living situations and the threat of COVID-19, I’d consider that trauma as a contributing factor. It sounds from your letter, though, that this change happened prior to the COVID-19 outbreak. Read more →

Dear KT: This is a frustrating situation that many adult children deal with as caregivers. While everyone is different, I can think of several possible reasons. Read more →

Dear Erased: I’m deeply sorry! Having your parent forget your name is said by many caregivers to be one of the most painful parts of being a care partner to their parent who is living with dementia. Yet, it’s one of the cruel, nearly predictable realities of some types of dementia, particularly Alzheimer’s. Read more →

...When you were a teen, you often took care of your grandma, who was ravaged by Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), while also keeping track of your toddler sister. When you were the joint owner of a four-plex, you did your best to help your tenant/neighbor who struggled with RA. Later, Read more →

...The reality is that many adults of varying ages have bladder and bowel control problems for any number of reasons, most of which are health-related and beyond their control. Stroke damage, spinal surgery, as well as any number of diseases come to mind. Read more →

Insisting you are right because, well, you know better. You don’t have dementia. People living with dementia (PLWD) have an increasingly limited ability to understand the world as we see it. Therefore, we need to learn to see the world from their view. When we do this, Read more →

Dear Sad but Tense: I’m so sorry about what’s happened, not only to your dad but to your whole family. Generally, when I hear about ruined retirement plans, the letter comes from a spouse, so you provide an observant perspective that we can all learn from. Read more →

Guilt has a purpose in life. If we are mean, we should feel guilty. If we owe someone an apology, we should be big enough to do so. But guilt is a complicated emotion. We take on the expectations of our culture, our religion, our family. And then we take on the expectations of our toughest critic – ourselves. Read more →

Dear KD: I understand your worry. This situation could reflect a genuine error or even miscommunication about your rights and your expectations. In my opinion, you aren’t out of line as long as you’ve been open about these expectations, and that they have written permission for you to be your mom’s health contact. Read more →

Where do we start in our search for options? If we were proactive, we’ve already discussed the choices for living arrangements our loved ones would have made for themselves under differing circumstances, however many people haven’t done this. Either way, we move forward. We need... Read more →