Donald was 73 and taking care of his wife of 51 years. About two years ago, Betty was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. The signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease had become clearer as she began struggling to keep track of appointments, started using the wrong word during conversations, and simply had extreme difficulty remembering conversations she recently had with family members on the phone or with friends who came by to visit.
Donald encouraged her to visit her doctor. After a series of tests, it was determined that she was certainly dealing with the earliest signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.
Donald never thought twice about taking care of her.
After being together for so long, after Betty had stood by him through so many challenges as a couple, he couldn’t think of turning his back on her. No one in his family ever thought about the prospect of hiring a home care aide; Donald was determined to look after her and, at 72 and 73 years of age, he still felt strong enough to be able to do that.
What Donald didn’t realize was just how much emotional and physical pressure this type of job was going to exude on him.
He was getting emotionally worn out. Physically, his wife, at the time, didn’t need so much assistance that it was putting him at risk. Still, there were days when he felt completely exhausted, drained, and as though he couldn’t go on one more day. Most of that was the result of fatigue because of the emotional pressure he faced.
He needed an outlet.
He needed somewhere he could vent. A close friend of his had gone through a similar situation years earlier, and suggested that he join a support group. At first he was reluctant, but when he hired a home care aide to look after Betty when he was out, he started going to the support group.
It offered incredible emotional comfort.
To realize that he wasn’t alone, that many of the challenges he was facing were not unique to his situation, it felt like a breath of fresh air. He gained insight and some great strategies to try. He was able to discuss his frustrations and see there were others who dealt with the same challenges.
When caring for a loved one who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or some other form of dementia, a support group can be an invaluable asset. So could hiring a home care aide.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Alzheimer’s care in Cherry Hill, NJ, please contact the caring staff at TLC HomeCare Services today at 856-234-8700
Kelly C. McCabe is the co-owner of TLC HomeCare Services.In addition to management, marketing and sales, staffing and recruiting, Kelly holds her New Jersey producer’s license in Health and Life insurance and isalso a New Jersey Certified Home Health Aide.Kelly is the proud mother of two daughters and is a resident of Moorestown, NJ.
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