Love in the Land of Dementia: Finding Hope in the Caregiver's Journey [NOOK Book]

Overview

The hard lessons learned while taking care of her parents as her mother died slowly from Alzheimer's and her father died unexpectedly during the process are presented compassionately and lyrically. The book contains a great spiritual message as well as practical support for caregivers and other family members.
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Love in the Land of Dementia: Finding Hope in the Caregiver's Journey

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Overview

The hard lessons learned while taking care of her parents as her mother died slowly from Alzheimer's and her father died unexpectedly during the process are presented compassionately and lyrically. The book contains a great spiritual message as well as practical support for caregivers and other family members.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
★ 01/01/2014
Once a rarefied term used primarily by medical specialists, dementia is now a common word in the vocabulary of aging. Despite the ubiquity of this term, families often know only to be scared and are unsure of how to care for a family member with the disease. Columnist Shouse's (coauthor, Working Women's Communications Guide) writing has appeared in many publications. She shares the story of her mother's decline owing to the mental and physical effects of Alzheimer's, ending with her death in 2005. This is a practical and sincere guide, written with humor and insight and packed with useful information to help family caregivers understand what is happening as they and their loved one experience this difficult disease. Readers will be grateful that the author has distilled her own experiences, providing a nonprofessional but caring picture of the loving and difficult journey she took through her mother's illness. VERDICT Highly recommended for all general health collections. This title will be a good companion volume to the more technical publications on the topic.—Olga Wise, formerly with Compaq Computers Inc., Austin, TX
Publishers Weekly
09/16/2013
While in recent years there have been more skilled professionals and care facilities for dementia patients, close to 15 million Americans are family caregivers. In a combined memoir and caregiver’s guide, Shouse, a journalist and contributor to numerous Chicken Soup volumes, shares the story of her mother Fran’s last seven years, from diagnosis and a move to assisted living to a stay in the geriatric psych ward, and on to nursing home placement and eventually hospice care. The author’s short, first-person narratives, complete with dialogue, will undoubtedly resonate with the huge population of adults charged with caring for a loved one with dementia. Shouse ably expresses a daughter’s pain and sense of hopelessness, while exploring the intertwined dynamics of love, guilt, and grief. Though she is indeed fortunate to have found—and been able to afford—an excellent Alzheimer’s unit of a nursing home, her experience is universal, and compassionately rendered here. Readers come to know Fran, thanks to her daughter’s unconditional love, respect, and candor. Though the appendix features concise advice for advocacy, a minimal resource listing, and a cursory caregiver’s guide, in terms of guidance, these sections barely touch upon what is readily available in books like the classic The Thirty-Six Hour Day or Lauren Kessler’s Finding Life in the Land of Alzheimer’s. (Nov.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781937612504
  • Publisher: Central Recovery Press, LLC
  • Publication date: 10/28/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 180
  • Sales rank: 319,588
  • File size: 427 KB

Meet the Author

Deborah Shouse's writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, Reader's Digest, Newsweek, Woman's Day, Hemispheres, Family Circle, Spirituality & Health, Chicago Tribune, and MS. She writes a weekly column on love stories for the Kansas City Star, and coauthored Working Woman's Communications Survival Guide, which is now in its fifth printing, and Antiquing for Dummies. She has written several memoirs and business books and has been featured in more than a dozen Chicken Soup books.
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 4, 2014

    As a caregiver for my mother, I have read many memoirs by adult

    As a caregiver for my mother, I have read many memoirs by adult children who have cared for a parent with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia, and I believe that “Love in the Land of Dementia” is truly one of the best. Not only is Deborah Shouse a talented writer, but she shows us how she came to discover small ways each day to enjoy her mother’s company despite her mother’s advancing dementia. Shouse doesn’t shy away from describing the more difficult moments of dementia caregiving, however, such as the guilt, despair, anger, and grief we often experience, and the challenges we face dealing with the elder care system. She includes scenes in her mother’s assisted living facility and nursing home dementia ward, and with her mother’s hospice team, that many family caregivers, and elder care professionals, will find illuminating and uplifting. Her book is an easy read, full of insight, honesty, compassion, and humor. But what makes it special, and unusual in “caregiver lit,” is that it helps us see people with advanced dementia not as “dementia patients” or as “shadows of their former selves,” but as persons with a full range of emotions and needs and the ability to share love in simple ways. Shouse writes, “I would never have guessed that I could sit on the edge of a hospital bed with a noncommunicative woman and still feel the warmth of connection…She is not ‘herself’; she is not the mother I have known and the wife Dad loved. But despite all the loses, she is still someone well worth being around….When all the ordinary things are gone, the spirit can still remain.”
    --author, "Inside the Dementia Epidemic: A Daughter's Memoir"

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