It took me a long time to accept that no pill, no miracle doctor, no loving care, and no medical book on Alzheimer’s disease was going to suddenly fix my father and make him like he used to be.
Mother was absolutely sure that if “we” took care of him at home, he was going to be okay.
My dad’s know-it-all baby brother didn’t believe the diagnosis for several years and accused me of making it up because I wanted to throw him away.
Others thought that magical pill called Aricept was going to cure him and threw a fit when Mother and I could no longer go on two to three hours of broken sleep a night, his bowel incontinence was out of control, he had become extremely violent, and we finally placed him in a facility.
These people kept telling Mother we could bring him home in the “spring” because he should be well by spring.
No matter how much I spoke up about the reality of his disease, people pooh-poohed me and insisted he should be brought back home to live, that he’d feel better at home, which just piled more guilt and anguish on my poor mother and me. The sheer stubbornness and stupidity of people literally blew my mind during this time.
We got all kinds of “good advice,” but nobody volunteered to give us a break if we did try to bring him home.
Sorry, but helpful advice doesn’t assist an exhausted, burned-out pair of caregivers.
By Vicki Bennett, originally published on Facebook.