Coming to Grips with the Truth About Dementia

I know it has been quite a while since I posted, but I found myself in deep despair.  Only recently I began to realize part of the despair was not the fact that my husband was suffering with later stages of dementia, but I was in turmoil trying to wrap my mind around the fact that he was in such a bad mental shape, yet I had not seen it coming.

I had to look really hard at the truth and then admit for a long time many things had been happening with my husband, but I brushed each thing off and looked at them as my simply having a man…a husband… who had no understanding.

My husband worked and was a good provider; nevertheless, he lacked warmth in showing sensitivities and compassion towards his wife. Many times I felt that he was loveless and cold towards me. However, like so many other women who willingly accept men whatever way they are, I shrugged it off as him being simply selfish. Like the love struck Millie who married the rough frontiersman in the movie “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” I put up with stuff and said my husband just did not have any understanding concerning how to truly love his wife.  Still, we have been married for almost forty-five years. The dementia stages that he has been going through I started recognizing about three years ago; but I now realize it really had been showing itself for over ten years.

Dementia cloaked itself in foolish arguments that made no sense at the time. Yet they made me wonder why the same argument kept being brought up repeatedly even though the dispute had already been settled. Dementia skewed the simplest things, like telling my husband something was pointing up, but he would belabor the point that the very thing was pointing down.  I would tell him he needed to make a left turn, but instead he would turn right and insist I told him wrong. There were many head scratching moments over many things, and at times I was made to wonder did I say or do something wrong. Because of such things I had to be precise in my thinking and speaking, or else I would be blamed and cited as the reason for the problem, and oh yeah, the all time cover up for dementia, was to pout and go into rage and accuse me of never believing anything he said, although he did not know and neither did I at the time realize, that he was often hallucinating.

For a long time I wondered why did I marry a person with no understanding and wondered what was wrong with the man. Then in agony I prayed LORD help me; LORD help him; to LORD PLEASE HELP US. I now have understanding myself and pray LORD, forgive me. Forgive me because I did not know something was broken inside of him. For years his mind has not been working properly, but I minimized him and thought he was selfish and simply had no understanding!   

After years of head scratching wonderment, and confusion, yet never suspecting dementia, the veil is lifted; it is no longer hidden and I am finally beginning to breathe again.  Thank you LORD for breaths of calm  helping me rest my soul in the LORD as you lead my husband and I through this terrible time.

“Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil. For you are with me; your rod and staff do comfort me…” [Psalms 23:4]

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