While the progression of Alzheimer’s is different for each person, there is a progression, and it’s a heartbreaking one.
On Sunday, 60 Minutes aired its latest installment following the life of Carol Daly and her journey with Alzheimer’s. This year marks 10 years since the show first made contact with Carol and her husband Mike, a former NYPD officer.
It’s gut-wrenching to watch the mental and physical decline of Carol over the years, and how much Mike suffers as a caregiver. But Carol’s story is important to tell, to help raise awareness of this devastating disease to a mass audience. I am grateful for Mike and Carol for allowing cameras to document the cruelest aspects of Alzheimer’s.
The segment touches upon important topics, such as the high cost of Alzheimer’s caregiving and the lack of financial support, along with the physical and emotional toll dementia caregivers takes on loved ones. You know Alzheimer’s is a beast when the former cop tells the CBS correspondent that caregiving is the toughest job he’s ever had.
The sad truth of course is that there are many Mikes and Carols out there, fighting their own battles with dementia. And that’s why we must do better, as a government and as a society, to help families caring for a loved one with dementia.