The cost of being abandoned and abused

The last few weeks I’ve been watching on the sidelines as numerous people with dementia have been abandoned, and even abused by their families or a partner.

It’s truly disturbing to watch, and I fully understand the pain and impact of this on worsening a persons dementia symptoms, as have had it happen to me.

No idea why people without dementia could be so cruel?

It could be a combination of many things, for example:

Money and greed?

A form of abuse?

The stigma of dementia?

Not ‘looking like we have dementia’?

The influence of others who are ignorant of the reality of dementia?

Unkind people in our lives?

Or maybe just selfishness?

Whatever it is, it’s gut wrenching to watch people playing cruel games and manipulating the truth to justify their behaviours.

The cost of this is very high as it impacts a persons ability to function, to sleep, to manage things like pain, and also increased isolation and loneliness, often leading to depression and suicidal ideation.

The worst case scenario is homelessness.

To all the families and friends without dementia , my 2019 wish is that you love and support people in your family with dementia, in the same way you would if they had cancer. It’s not much to ask for really, and the long term benefits to everyone will be inner peace and NO REGRETS when the person dies.

19 thoughts on “The cost of being abandoned and abused

  1. Pingback: Understand with your heart |

  2. A well written Article, Kate. Wishing you a HappyNew Year, too xx
    I am still involved with Alzheimer’s Society also.
    Supporting My Friend whose Mum has Lewy Body/with Parkinson’s Disease.
    Take Care, Kate xx from Jackie Birch 💕😁


  3. This is absolutely terrible! I’m SO sorry that it’s happening to people with dementia as they are in such a vulnerable position. I hope that GPs and other health professionals are aware that this is happening so that they can keep an eye out for it 😦


    • It is terrible… and even those aware it is happening usually stand by and do nothing! Im lucky to have two cousins who’ve stood up and spoken up for me, but most have no one. 😪


  4. Kate-this is a very interesting blog you have written. I have had a very difficult two months with my Grandad-and it is just getting worse-no better. In November he drove of because my Grandma was sleeping and took her keys and police were called-it was awful-and he drove illegally to. I was so angry at my Grandma. He crashed in to a person and broke there car and caused damage to my Grandmas car which is now fixed-very traumatic. He also had a collapse and ended up in hospital and just going downhill continually. He also fell backwards on a chair and fell on their steps and got a very bad cut on his face because my Grandma was gardening. My Grandma left him in the car two weeks ago when they were going shopping too and he was about to drive off again-scary. So much has happend to him, and yet nothing changes. It is awful watching people with dementia being saddened and abused by family members-something i have watched too. My Grandma doesn’t even speak to him positively now-only speaks to him negatively. E.G Calling him fat and saying stuff like ‘oh your a waste of time’. I have been struggling the last 2 months immensly and cried a few times, but have had some wonderful times in between though, hanging out with lots of wonderful friends who will be lifelong friends and positive family members too and talked about lots of nice stuff and had lots of laughs which was wonderful. When he collapsed in November my Grandma didn’t even tell my family for three days-i was so horrified as we needed to know. I am heartbroken that my Grandad has been abandoned by my Grandma-some of her friends don’t even speak to him now, as she has told her friends not to speak to him-and some friends agree with her which is beyond devastating. One niece and one Nephew don’t speak to him now because of his Alzhiermers-so hearbreaking. His nephew was in Auckland only a few days ago-he lives in Adelaide and didn’t even say hi to him, when this is probably the last time he would of seen him-and that Nephew is a head doctor too-honestly-WTH. However, i am very very very grateful for the family and friends that are loyal to him-there are alot more who are loyal to him than not-and i will remember that forever and write them thank you cards when he dies and give them a gift to say thank you for there support, but those who aren’t loyal make me angry-i no longer trust or respect them, as they don’t respect or speak to him now. Now my Aunty and Uncle are unfortunately back to there normal selfs and are selfish again and don’t speak to him again-my uncle only spoke to him for a period because my Auntie told him to-not because he wanted to-hopefully they change back to being supportive again-new year-new start i hope. Hopefully you don’t watch anyone this year being abandoned or abused with dementia, Kate-i hope these people who abuse and abandone people with dementia hopefully have a new attitude this year and be nice to them as a new year is a fresh start i say. I agree entirely-i don’t understand why people with dementia can be so cruel. My Grandma is so cruel to him-calls him fat constantly, yells at him and screams at him constantly. My Grandma does not understand the reality of dementia and is very unkind and selfish to-does what she wants all day everyday-all revolves around her-all about me me me. My Grandma doesn’t even let him sleep in-she yells at him for sleeping and tells him to get up and knows nothing about his condition. I have been looking after my Grandad a bit recently which has been good. I will have no regrets when he goes, however, i won’t keep in touch with people who have disrespected him throughout his illness, as they are driving me insane. Hopefully my Grandma and other family members change one day and adjust there attitude for the new year, as a new year is a new start. I am going to meet with his doctor soon to discuss the concerns as his care at home is getting out of control and is not appropriate.


  5. Like you Kate I can’t rationalise unkindness, be brave enough to walk away even for a while rather than be unkind to another person. Your words ring true Kate as I’ve just spent some precious time this morning with Aspen (20 month old granddaughter) and my mum and other residents of Nerrilda. We have much to learn from the very young, no judgement of others situation, no preconceived expectations, no need for thanks or reward for acts of kindness just endless love to share with anyone wanting to hold her tiny hand. She is an old soul this little treasurer it’s like she knows who needs her magic touch and smile the most and I sat in awe today as she worked the room radiating her kindess to all. Kindness in words creates confidence.. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness.. Kindness in giving creates love. Lao Tzu
    I pray your wish comes true Kate today it did for a brief time at least x ness


  6. My wish dear Kate is that I act effectively to enable and defend both V & myself, to protect us both from threatened homelessness. My wish for others is that they start (if they haven’t already) to imagine how they would wish to be treated if they were to lose, by degrees, the autonomy that they currently take for granted.
    I’ve given up expecting others to want to learn about supporting others’ disabilities.


    • Great wishes Lynda… I constantly try not to give up on others supporting people with dementia and our care partners and families! It’s possibly the one thing I find the hardest not to give up on! X


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