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altzheimers patient struggling with grief


New member
Sep 18, 2019
Both my nan and grandad have both suffered with altzheimers and vascular dementia for some time. Sadly my nan has passed away this week and my grandad is understandably struggling. I know it is early days yet but he totally forgets she has gone and gets distressed looking for her. He will undoubtedly wish to stay at home but I’m not sure he can cope on his own. Don’t really know what to do to help him it’s very upsetting x


Volunteer Host
Apr 1, 2016
I'm sorry for your loss @Truffle88

Sadly it is quite possible that your grandad will never be able to remember that your nan has passed away. The kindest way to deal with this is to distract him from looking for her. Tell him she's gone shopping or something that he will accept.
If he's living alone this will be doubly difficult so I'm afraid the best thing for him may now be 24/7 care wether this is in his home or somewhere else.

Given the nature of the disease your grandad will probably forget about your nan in time but reminding him that she has gone will only upset him - every time will be the first to him.

I'm glad you've found this forum. We may not have all the answers but you'll always find someone who'll understand here.

nae sporran

Volunteer Host
Oct 29, 2014
Sorry for the loss of your nan, @Truffle88. Experience with my partner who has forgotten her mum died in the past, when that was 30 years ago, tells me Bunpoots approach is best. It is so hard for your grandad and for you to deal with though and I hope you have a strong family to support you.


Registered User
Jul 9, 2018
So sorry for your loss of your Nan, distractions or "white lies" if you are able I've found are the best


Registered User
Mar 9, 2014
I am so sorry for your loss...

as others have said distraction is a Good option. In the Care home where my Mum was a couple of residents lost their partners and the staff often said that they were away to...
Work... shopping, hairdressers, bookies, keep fit class, university.. the list of options was endless and the person accepted it pretty well..

Lots of love