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Posted September 8, 2006
'Dementia Diary: A Caregiver's Journal,' is personal, warm and witty. It's also heartbreaking. Tell is open with the pain one suffers watching the personality changes dementia brings to a beloved parent. He is an only child. This brings a unique loneliness in handling the sometimes slow, often startling changes dementia can bring. There is a deep feeling that no one can truly understand. Tell brings this home powerfully in his memoir. I have already recommended it to readers of my column and by email, when I coach people through their personal caregiving pain. Tell's story about his mother's watch had me laughing out loud, as I experienced the same thing with my mother, my mother-in-law and my dad. There is no logical need for a watch battery to be replaced immediately, when an elder is in a nursing facility. There are clocks all over and people to take the elder wherever they need to go. But they must have their watch. My dad couldn't even see the extra large face of his, but he somehow knew if the battery quit. The watch story is just one of the many - nearly universal - stories Tell offers the reader. There are many dementias other than the well-known Alzheimer's. I had three elders with dementia. Each was different. It's good to get the word out that all dementia is not Alzheimer's. I will continue to recommend Robert Tell's book to anyone feeling the isolation of a caregiver - especially an only child. Carol Bradley Bursack Minding Our Elders:Caregivers Share Their Personal Stories
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Posted March 5, 2013
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