Dementia: Respecting Maureen’s Reality

The phone lines were hot yesterday as I kept in touch with professional staff providing ongoing support.   I eventually decided not to seek additional ‘Boots On The Ground’ as Maureen’s focus was changing as the day progressed.  It was helpful that ‘Flexible Sue’ our social worker was back in work and she is making a scheduled home visit tomorrow.

Maureen is now articulating what I had suspected for some time: she is frightened when I am out of sight and doesn’t know where she is anymore.  I realise that this could be a dip in her presentation or a plateau; I’m hoping it is the former.  As my prime focus remains ‘minimising distress’ I have adopted the following ‘Working Position’, which I Emailed to family members and professional staff:

‘We will remain in Cleethorpes from now on.

There will be no more trips to Coventry or elsewhere.

Telephone calls need to be short and sweet: her reluctance to take calls is likely to continue.

Visits need to be in very small numbers for short periods of time.

My Blog details how things are going on a daily basis’.

I’m very grateful to Bill Malley one of my Line Managers when I worked at Coventry City Council for introducing me to the concept of ‘Working Positions’.  They are statements of intent sharing practical solutions to dynamic situations: ideal for dealing with dementia

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About Remember Me

I am a retired adult educator. My wife had a stroke in February 2014 and now has mixed dementia. Her recovery from stroke has been exceptional apart from 50% loss of peripheral vision and vascular damage. 'Dharma For Dementia' is my approach to being Maureem's Care Partner: it aims to end the suffering of 'Prescribed Disengagement' (Swaffer) .
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2 Responses to Dementia: Respecting Maureen’s Reality

  1. AmazingSusan says:

    This behaviour is given the label “shadowing.” When I was living with mom, she became very distressed if left alone, so she would come everywhere with me including to the bathroom, having a shower, etc.

    Like

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