I have watched as my parents have gotten the same bad bit of news over and over again. It’s like a sinister twist on deja vu.
When we started to get them diagnosed, we were hopeful that the third meeting with the medical team assembled would make a difference. Then, I watched during a 3-hour meeting when my parents got the results of their cognitive mental testing and finally realized that no matter how many times; who the information came from; or how much data was behind it, my parents were unable to receive that they had symptoms of dementia. The conversations were painful to witness.
Some of this was due to their dementia, and some of it I think was due to their united front. Their behavior seemed more like co-dependency, but together, they had managed longer independently than they would have had they been alone. I likened them at one point to a gang of two.
And now there is just one. My Mom is having a very hard time remembering, accepting and dealing with the loss of her husband of 60 years. For the first week, she would call and ask if her husband was still in the hospital or if it were true that he had passed away. I remember the burst of grief I felt when the Chaplain told me and am sad that my Mom has to experience this repeatedly. Angered.