When a loved one is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, it is devastating news for all. Family members may quickly start experiencing feelings of grief as they recognize their life is about to be changed by the disease and are uneasy about what the future will hold. Most are left with questions about what to expect next.
As Alzheimer’s begins to take away the person we know and love, the Alzheimer’s Association explains that, “you'll mourn him or her and may experience the different phases of grieving: denial, anger, guilt, sadness and acceptance.” They remind us that feelings of grief do not come in a specific order but rather we go in and out of the various stages.
Feelings of denial include unrealistically hoping the person is not ill or expecting them to get better. Others try to convince themselves their loved one has not changed or try to normalize and make excuses for their behaviors. Anger may include being frustrated with the person or feeling abandoned. You may also experience feelings of resentment with the demands of caregiving and/or resent others who are not helping with care.
Guilt includes having unrealistic thoughts about what you should have done or feeling guilty if you do not visit every day. A spouse that is well and still able to enjoy life may feel guilty that their husband or wife is no longer able to do so. Others may have negative feelings such as wishing the person would die or go away.
The Alzheimer’s Association says you need to face both your positive as well as negative feelings. They also say to be prepared to go through feelings of loss more than once as the disease progresses. Remember your grief is a part of your journey, and if you need help, talk with someone about your feelings.
At MorningStar of Happy Valley, our goal is to provide the best senior living in the area, which includes compassionate and loving memory care to those suffering from Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related diseases. Our memory care residents are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve and spend each day in an atmosphere that celebrates and elevates their lives. Please visit our website for more information about our exceptional assisted living and senior living communities.
MorningStar of Happy Valley proudly provides the very best in senior living with our unique mission statement of “to honor, to serve, to invest.” With a foundation built on honoring God, valuing all seniors and selecting staff with a felt calling to serve, we create a true home for residents amid a beautiful setting. Please contact us to learn more about the finest assisted living and memory care in Happy Valley.