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How do you feel about correction?
Iris L.
Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 3:48 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18519

There is a thread on the Caregiver's board about correcting a patient with dementia.  If you were to get to the point where your clothing is mismatched or buttons buttoned wrong, or makeup looks off, or your hair looks bad--how would you feel if someone close to you were to gently offer to help you?   


Personally, I would appreciate it now, if someone were to point out something wrong, so that I could correct it.  I don't want to go about in public with my top on inside out, or with a stain.  I would prefer if someone were to assist me in this area.  I have had strangers come up to me, saying, "the tag on your top is showing.  May I fix it for you?"  I appreciated that.  I would not like to have people laughing at me or thinking that I just don't care or that I am eccentric. 


With dementia and cogntive impairment, our close attention to our hygiene and our appearance may be diminished.  I am aware of this, and I take special note to focus on these areas.  But I might miss something.  I would appreciate respectful assistance from someone. 

How do you feel about receiving assistance in the personal area?


Iris L. 

Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 5:30 AM
Joined: 5/20/2014
Posts: 4408

I would definitely want to be corrected. Grooming and personal care are important. 

I worry that I won't care about plucking the eyebrows or those annoying hairs that seem to grow out of nowhere on my chin these days!

Paul Hornback
Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 9:00 AM
Joined: 8/9/2013
Posts: 584

I don't have a problem with being corrected as long as it is done in a loving manner. I understand that I sometimes make the wrong decisions about clothing and grooming so I'm okay if someone points out a substantial problem.

God Bless, Paul

Mimi S.
Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 10:33 AM
Joined: 11/29/2011
Posts: 7027

Aah, but how it's done is so important. As I've watched caregivers I've heard so many horrible corrections. in a sense, it's not the Caregivers fault; we need to do so much more education of what works and what doesn't.

And I've heard lots and lots of positive reinforcements.

Yes, all of us in Early Stage are still concerned about our appearance. But suppose we are in a  later stage where we haven't a clue. What is to be gained by telling us we are inappropriately dressed? Forget it.  Simpler to provide a coordinated choice. Or perhaps let us choose between two sets, each coordinated.

The philosophy behind the book by Jolene Brackey's, Creating Moments of Joy should be imprinted on our mouths and in our hearts.

Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 11:35 AM

Iris, thank you for starting this thread. I learn so much from your personal input. I just added the book "Creating Moments of Joy" to my book order list. I am looking forward to reading it.

(I hope it is okay to read and occasionally post on this dementia board, I don't want to offend anyone).

Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 2:11 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326

Forget-me-not, it's my understanding that everyone is welcomed to read and post on any board, as long as the posts are respectful. It can only help when those of us with dementia and our loved ones and caregivers share information with each other in a caring way.
Iris L.
Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 2:55 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18519

Welcome, Forget-me-not. I'm glad you visited and posted.  I wish more care partners would visit our patient board and interact with us patients.   


They can see our lives from our point of view.  I think it's a plus! 


Iris L. 


Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 7:31 PM
Joined: 6/25/2014
Posts: 67

Hi everyone, I am also a caregiver who "sneaks" over to read the posts here. I have found the information and insights here very helpful to my understanding e thalzheimers progression.


My brother, sister and I try to be very compassionate in our dealings with Mom but we've kind of been thrown into our roles in the middle of the process. Like trying to ride a bike without the training wheel stage or trying to swim without learning to float first!







Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 7:59 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326

Hi, sassie. So good you posted here, and great that you've come to these boards. I learn so much from the caregivers' point of view by reading the Caregivers and the Spouse boards. 
Posted: Thursday, July 24, 2014 9:03 PM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21250

I too learn so much from the interaction and am grateful for the sharing.  I see an overall growth in understanding now that we go back and forth.

Iris....your topic reminded me of two occasions when I had my clothes on wrong. No one said a thing and I did not notice until getting ready for bed.  I kind of wondered why no one said anything.  I remember being somewhat amused. Maybe people don't look very hard or do not care.

As far as Dick goes I try to get anything that does not need to be worn again out of sight...I do keep my mouth shut when his ger-animals do not match...well usually. 

Posted: Sunday, August 10, 2014 11:29 PM
Joined: 9/12/2013
Posts: 3608

A  caregiver LonsomeStray wrote a book about taking care of his wife, he made it available free on our boards as a pdf. Highly recommend it.


What I noticed was when he took control of his wife's care he naturally included having her hair done, nice looking clothing, some lipstick (since she usually wore it) and I realized sometimes I do not even look in a mirror for days.


At exercise class some women pointed out I had a stain on my t shirt - things I would not be able to see now. I felt ashamed, they said "tell your husband to do the laundry!" and laughed - no harm meant, they were trying out being friendly with me. But it was weird.


I think if we do for ourselves or then have others make us look good it will help more than we imagine. If a spouse starts to dress differently, a friend or parent or child - they seem less there to others. It helps others relate to us if we keep up appearances, and those normal and friendlier interactions/responses make us feel more normal and friendlier.


It is in the tone and context whether someone's pointing out  shirt backwards, shoes on wrong feet, smudge on face feels appreciated. I prefer someone be very discreet about it, and if they smile. I don;t like it when people discuss my appearance. If I do not look tidy the way I speak may come across as drunk.


Love and Courage

Iris L.
Posted: Monday, August 11, 2014 2:03 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18519

Studies have shown that well groomed patients get more attention that those who are ill kempt.  It will serve us well to pay attention to our hygiene and appearance, and to have a trusted, reliable person assist us if we need help.  I agree, Alz+, I don't want to appear disheveled in public.

Iris L.

Posted: Tuesday, August 12, 2014 7:42 AM
Joined: 5/20/2014
Posts: 4408

i know I'm off topic here but one of the things I have valued as I grow older is not feeling so pressured as far as the societal expectations of how a woman is supposed to look.Of course being neat, well groomed and socially acceptable is different.


 It does seem as if the expectation for women to look perfect is ever increasing to the point that extreme measures are taken by some more often these days to look the part. A trip to the supermarket these day's can be like walking along Hollywood Boulevard with all these perfectly coiffed young women and mothers looking like it must have taken several hours & $$$ for the hair and makeup.


 God help all the little girls growing up thinking they have to look perfect!

Posted: Wednesday, August 13, 2014 2:03 AM
Joined: 8/12/2013
Posts: 158


Life is much the poorer when you fail to look past the cover.