You seem to focus a lot on the positives – hope, joy, etc. My dementia story has also included a lot of grief and loss. Is there space to acknowledge that?
As you note, everyone’s experience with dementia is unique and complex. In the midst of changing relationships, changing abilities, and adjusting plans for the future, it is common and natural to feel deep grief and loss. We acknowledge that pain in the varied ways it shows up. As you navigate challenges, counseling and support groups can be a good place to explore your feelings.
These resources may be helpful:
The Alzheimer’s Association offers support groups and educational programs for persons living with early stage memory loss and caregivers. Call the 24/hour helpline to get connected: 1.800.272.3900 or click here for a list of support groups in the greater Seattle area.
Dementia Road Map: A Guide for Family and Care Partners: This booklet was prepared by the Dementia Action Collaborative, a group of public-private partners committed to preparing Washington state for the growth of the dementia population. This document was designed to provide a look at the big picture and the road ahead, and offers direction and tips about what to expect, what decisions lie ahead, and what steps to take.
Senior Centers also offer support resources:
Ballard Senior Center: Support groups for care partners. 206.297.0403
Central Area Senior Center: Support group for African American care partners. 206.726.4926
Greenwood Senior Center: Support groups for persons living with memory loss and care partners; individual counseling. 206.297.0875
Northshore Senior Center: Support groups for care partners. 425.488.4821
Southeast Seattle Senior Center: Support groups for care partners; dementia-friendly programs. 206.722.0317
Senior Center of West Seattle: Support group for care partners. 206.932.4044 ex.12