Re: A Delusional Jealous Husband?
A psychologist who leads our support group always says that although the illness is an unrelenting decline, there is also a miracle happening, which is the human and spiritual growth of the caregiver. I believe it, although the growing pains are hell.
The tiniest example of my growth was when I learned to set aside my every earnest instinct and answer Dad's concrete requests with an emotional gift totally lacking in practical impetus. When he said "I want to move back to Michigan," I said "That's a GREAT idea!!...linger in the feeling of total agreement, pause, smile with the joy of discovering a great idea .... slow down... get lost in reminisicing... "You know, my favorite thing about your house is the.... etc..." The first time I flat out agreed with a request of his which I had no intention of operationalizing violated all my to-do-list tendencies and felt crazy. But it also gave me and Dad a rosy moment of union and liberated me from turning every conversation into an action plan.
I know it doesn't always work, some of our LO's still line up the steps needed to get something done and want real action. But I've learned to really enjoy these new chances at being a sweetly ineffective flake, it's like taking a vacation from my personality.
Funny, when I first learned how to do that, I was dating a nice (very logical!) man who was wildly afraid that I would use my newfound powers to paralyze him in the middle of a couples argument!