Kerri’s Tips to Help You Understand
At the age of 63, Kerri’s dad was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s disease.
It was over a game of checkers that Kerri noticed the first signs that something wasn't quite right with her Dad. Her dad was gifted with a strategic and analytical mind. He was a great checkers and chess player, and was always five steps ahead of his opponent. One day he was playing checkers with Kerri’s six-year-old daughter and couldn’t remember how to play – that’s when she knew something was really wrong. They contacted the Alzheimer Society who led her family on the right path.
Here are Kerri’s Tips to Help You Understand:
- If you see signs, even subtle ones, don’t try to hide it – go and talk to someone. A counsellor at the Alzheimer Society got us to address the elephant in the room and that helped us to start talking.
- Even if your family member doesn’t seem to know you, they probably know you are familiar. Dad has introduced me as his wife, so he knows I’m family.
- Let the little things go. It doesn’t matter if it takes 10 minutes longer for him to put on his shoes.
- Try to see the silver lining. For us, Dad’s illness brought my family together and made us closer than we’d ever been before.
- When people find out you have a family member with dementia, they may come to you for help if they are worried about someone in their family. That’s a positive thing – you can help them!
Watch Kerri’s story: