The Question Behind the Question

Great post! It is important for those of us who are caregivers to learn that if we are not getting the answer we expect or want from our loved one, perhaps we are asking the wrong question (or the right question but the wrong way.)

Dealing with Dementia

mailpileFor two weeks, my Mom has been relentless on the topic of mail. Some days, she will call more than 5 times in an hour to discuss the topic. “Kay, I’m not getting any mail. Are you getting all of my mail now?” Nothing has changed, so I’m a little confused about her question.

I’ve been in her apartment when the mail is delivered. The remnants of the mail can be found on her bed, the entry hall table, next to her favorite chair, why does she not recognize that she is getting mail? Some days she gets as many as 9 pieces of mail. After a few days of her calls, I ask my Mom what was she expecting and not getting in the mail?

“I’m not getting any condolence notes, where are they going?” Ah-ha! I now understood the question she was really trying to ask, but was…

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