The Dementia Diary

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The Pause for Thought

on May 18, 2012

This is my take on a local news story and I do not claim this piece to be factually accurate.  The case is not yet resolved.  

As an aside – I have been looking for a particular article, which contained a pertinant quote, to link this post to.  In searching again for this article I came across a website which is quoting this murder as evidence to further their anti-sexism agenda.  It made me so angry!  The full evidence has not been revealed and they have made assumptions on the motives of the killing to suit their political stance while friends and family are trying to preserve the memory of two elderly people they cared about. Now, you may say, aren’t you doing the same thing?  Well no.  I don’t claim to be factually accurate – I am relaying a story…..

 

Within the last week or so there has been a murder close to where I live.  I live in a leafy market town where, although you may not know everybody, you will know someone who knows X (a kind of 6 degrees of separation thing).  Murder doesn’t happen here so, of course, people are talking about it.

Very quickly the news spread and the rumour mill started.  I say rumour mill, but actually it was one of those situations where the facts slowly leak out.  Like I said, ‘so and so who knew them said….’

The inital facts were as follows:

Alerted by a Sales Rep to something being odd at an address, a neighbour called the police to a local house.  When they broke in, the police found a woman stabbed in the chest and her husband dead with no apparent injury.  Police quickly announced that they weren’t looking for anyone else in connection with the deaths.  Family were receiving ‘help’ and no-one had anything other than kind words for this devoted couple.

Why am I telling you this?

The story that is being told locally is as follows.  The couple, who had no children of their own, had fallen into poor health. The article that I have been searching for said that the husband was not receiving the help he needed to care for his wife.  The wife had dementia.

I think that anyone who cares for someone with any form of dementia knows how trying this is; how you can be pushed to the very edges of your patience.  Now imagine being an elderly man, alone, caring for a dementia patient 24/7 without help and without receiving the assistance you know you need.

It’s believed that on that last afternoon, whilst caring for his wife, he just flipped out and in a moment of blind fury, just a moment, he stabbed her.  Realising immediately what he had done to the woman he had been devoted to for 40 plus years took his own life.  Tragic.

Doesn’t it make you stop for a moment? Does the story, true or not, make you feel grateful that you haven’t been pushed that far? It does me.

 

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3 responses to “The Pause for Thought

  1. kimjoy24 says:

    These stories (and they seem to be growing in number) are so sad but I will never judge the parties involved. If you haven’t read about this case in the U.S. it offers an interesting perspective:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/03/opinion/brooks-respect-the-future.html

    • FundeMental says:

      Another sad case.
      I find it interesting that an Alzheimers nurse said ‘none of us have the right to decide that another person’s life is worthless’. She’s right, but aren’t the people closest to the sufferers also, usually, best placed to know how far into decline their loved one would want to go? I know what my parents would consider their limit. I already know that if I reach a state of constant incontinence, or being unable to remember and recognise family and friends, my life would have no worth to me or those caring for me. Better to be remembered as a person than a shell.

      • kimjoy24 says:

        I agree. After watching what my dad went through, my mom says she doesn’t want to linger like that and just wants to die with her boots on but she realizes that ultimately she could end up with dementia as well and then what?

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