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 "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook" - coping strategies 
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Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 1:46 pm
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Location: SF Bay Area (Northern CA)
Post "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook" - coping strategies
This New York Times article is about the new book "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook" by Dr. Diana Denholm, a psychotherapist who was the caregiver to her husband for over a decade.

The book lists 50 dos and don'ts to make caregiving easier. The author of the NYT article provides 16 of the 50 at the end of her article.

Here are a few excerpts from the NYT article:

* It is no surprise when serious illness or severe pain results in feelings of anger, helplessness and depression, all the more so when the illness is terminal and the afflicted person loses his sense of self. After many years as "the man of the house," the sick husband is once again a child who must be cared for, often by the very person he signed on to protect.

* In her book, Dr. Denholm discusses a series of coping strategies that she developed with her husband during his long illness. The most important of these is to adopt communication tools that avoid red flags, accusations and self-pity, and instead “create expectations, agreements and understandings, including some that may involve agreeing to disagree,” she said. “Never start with, ‘We need to talk.’ ... Always use an ‘I’ statement ­ ‘I need,’ ‘I want,’ ‘I’d like to.’"

* One tool Dr. Denholm found to be especially helpful is to create written understandings, some of which may need to be modified as circumstances change. The understandings might involve finances, individual responsibilities or issues to be avoided.

Robin



http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/04/0 ... more-74693

The Well Blog
The New York Times
April 9, 2012, 3:09 pm
Caregiving as a ‘Roller-Coaster Ride From Hell’
By Jane E. Brody, Columnist


Tue Apr 10, 2012 10:44 am
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Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2012 7:20 pm
Posts: 2
Post Re: "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook" - coping strategies
This sounds very interesting. The Muhammed Ali Center in Phoenix had a workshop for marriage partners that was called a "checking in time" and the idea of coming to understandings was a part of that. Yes, very important not to accuse one another.....THanks, Sourmilk


Sat Jun 30, 2012 1:51 pm
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Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2012 5:00 pm
Posts: 78
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Post Re: "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook" - coping strategies
I'm struggling. I'm starting to hear the same thing from all of my clinical contacts, yesterday it even included Mayo. "He's so young". "It's surprising how much/fast he's deteriorated." It's the truth, though. I know this logically, but I'm still hurting so much at times. The nursing home has a new psychiatric group coming tomorrow and, at last week's family meeting, they told me Ted's one of their first urgent requests. The meeting started with them telling me they'd noticed his increased confusion and decline. Something I already knew.
I discussed some things with Mayo clinic we can look at--medications, of course, is #1. I asked the NH to have the Psych "group" to call Mayo and my Mayo connection is quite open to them talking with them.

I'll try looking at this handbook and add it to what I've already got. I've read & re-read the Dementia Caregiver's guide, Treasures in the Darkness, the Relentless Goodbye, postings on this Forum (bless you everyone). My biggest sadness is for those struggling with the disease. I will keep fighting for whatever can help anyone with this disease by continuing to talk about this disease with the nurses, the social workers, the doctors, the maintenance guy who put his TV in his room, my work friends, our church friends, our old Special Forces friends who have visited Ted more than his sister ever has, the brother who DOES visit and has had initial workup for Parkinson's. Meanwhile, my kids are hurting, Ted is hurting, I'm hurting.


Wed Jul 04, 2012 8:34 am
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Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2007 5:35 pm
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Post Re: "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook" - coping strategies
Jean, I am so sorry. I am so glad you are with the Mayo group. If anyone can help Ted and you, it will be those folks.
Hugs from me!!!!
Pat

_________________
Pat Snyder, husband John, dx LBD 2007
Author of [i]Treasures in the Darkness: Extending Early Stage of LBD...[i][/i] [url]http://www.amazon.com/Treasures-Darkness-Extending-Alzheimers-Parkinsons/dp/1466428228/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1334092686&sr=8-1[/url]


Thu Jul 05, 2012 11:09 pm
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Joined: Sun Oct 17, 2010 2:06 am
Posts: 63
Post Re: "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook" - coping strategies
I'm so sorry. Nobody should have to go through this. It's a tragedy at any age, but with kids involved it's just off the charts. It sounds like you have the best care possible, hang in there! Staying strong for your kids will help you be strong for yourself and your husband.


Sat Jul 07, 2012 4:47 am
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Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2010 9:33 pm
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Location: Vermont
Post Re: "The Caregiving Wife's Handbook" - coping strategies
Jean - sending all of you a big hug. It's very, very tough so I hope you have lots of local support and of course, you have all of us on this forum to support you. Lynn

_________________
Lynn, daughter of 89 year old dad dx with possiblity of LBD, CBD, PSP, FTD, ALS, Vascular Dementia, AD, etc., died Nov. 30, 2010 after living in ALF for 18 months.


Sat Jul 07, 2012 8:25 am
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