Caregivers are very near and dear to my heart. There is a very special place in heaven for them. I know what it is like to be a caregiver. My mom had Alzheimer's and my Dad had vascular dementia. My sister lived in another state, and she did everything she could. She always checked on them many times each week by telephone. Four to six times a year she came to see them and stayed several days with them. My sister was my lifeline for me as I was our parents primary caregiver.
I have told my wife many times that the only fear I had with our journey was what she and my entire family might endure. They deserve so much more than having to deal with this horrific disease. Please understand, I know they want to do what they are doing. They are doing it because they love me and I love them. That said, no one should have to go through this.
I have total peace because I know what my future is, and I know who holds my future. On the other hand, the person/persons who are providing care for their loved one are doing the best they can do. The enormous pressure they are under, often has a very negative effect on their health and well-being. Often, depression occurs which only complicates all that they are going through. Many times, caregivers are torn between providing care for not only their immediate family but also care for their spouses immediate family. Then, there are those situations where the adult children of the primary caregiver are having significant issues in their lives. Take all of these factors together, put in pot, stir them up, and , it is no wonder, that large number of families facing dementia care, encounter elements of family breakup.
I have spent signifcant time thinking about this situation using my experiences from caring for my mom and dad and now me with Lewy body dementia (LBD). I have spent this time because of my love and respect for all caregivers. Their job, often is a thankless. Sometimes, the only joy they might have is in knowing that they have do a good job. I think that I have reached some possible solutions that might help create a better life for both the caregiver and the person with dementia.
I will share those thoughts soon.
©2015 Robert Bowles
Robert Bowles, Jr.