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Getting the Family on Board When a Loved One Has Dementia

When a member of the family is diagnosed with dementia, the family dynamic will inevitably change. Mom might no longer be able to give thoughtful advice. Dad may lose the thread of an important conversation. When this happens, different members of the family may shift into new roles.

Tim Tholen, CEO and Founder of Thoughtful Health Care and its affiliates in Kansas City has seen these family dynamic changes among his clients for many years. In the “Getting the Family Onboard” video, Tim helps identify and address some of these issues in order to make getting everyone on the same page easier.

Denial Is Common 

Often in families who are faced with the challenges that dementia brings, some members of the family will fall into a state of denial. Some people are so uncomfortable with such a profound change that they feel safer denying that anything is wrong.

Our advice for the more pragmatic members of the family? Face this person with compassion, but don’t expect that he or she will be able to contribute to decision making. Everyone has his or her own emotional timeline, and some people are naturally more suited to planning and decision-making than others.

Taking Action

  • Keeping the end goal in mind will help every member of the family stay focused on outcomes. The care and wellbeing of the loved one with dementia is that end goal.
  • Start by making action lists. Shared online documents are a good way to keep everyone updated.
  • Proximity and ability to get things done are good indicators of who should do what.
  • Avoid drama. Remember that everyone is human and is doing their best.

Our professional caregivers at Thoughtful Care are here to support your family in caring for a loved one at home. Please feel free to contact us for more information.

Watch “Getting the Family Onboard” below:

Click here for more Alzheimer and dementia care videos.

For more information about Thoughtful Care visit the Thoughtful Care website.

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