“What If….. Dad wanders away from home and gets lost?
“What If….. Mom thinks the Clorox bottle under the kitchen sink is milk?
“What If….. There is no bed available in an assisted living memory-care community when my sister needs to be placed?
“What If….. Dad refuses to give up his car keys and has an accident?
“What If….. My Mom needs Hospice… what do I do?
“What If….. I need more guidance and I can’t see the doctor for another 6 moths?
“What If….. I get angrier and angrier every hour of every day?
All of the above “What If” questions are real in the lives of a caregivers caring for someone with Alzheimer’s, Lewy Body Dementia, PD (Parkinson’s), FTD (Frontotemporal Degeneration) or any of the other forms of dementia.
We hear people complain about the weather or talk about their disappointment with X, Y or Z. These are minor concerns compared to the life of a caregiver caring for someone with dementia – or any long-term, chronic, life-threatening condition.
The “What Ifs” in a dementia family keep caregivers awake night after night; increases their stress levels dramatically; cause them to not seek medical care for themselves; and throws their lives into chaos. It’s a very difficult life, that those on the outside can’t begin to appreciate.
If you are a family member, friend or acquaintance…. give the caregivers you know a little slack when things don’t go as planned or they don’t meet your expectations. The caregiver’s life is filled with unanswered questions, an unknown future and a life that is no longer their own.