I would like advice please

Jake jess

Registered User
Mar 17, 2015
2
North east
Hi,can you advise please.my dad was diagnosed several years ago with dementia.Every time I visit he talks of the past and tells the same stories over and over which is understandable.however he had a difficult childhood and talks about this too.dad seems upset recalling these memories and i find this upsetting and tend to steer the conversation away but it always goes back to this.
I really wish he only had happy memories to recall.
I can get him to think how things changed for the better but he seems to want to talk about these painful memories.
My question is this,should I be steering the conversation away from the painful memories or should I let him talk about them freely.
Thanks for any advice.
 

Kevinl

Registered User
Aug 24, 2013
4,774
Salford
Hi Jake, welcome to TP
Sometimes all they have left is the past and even thought it may have been bad all the god bits between then and now may be lost. Do you have anything like photos or something to remind him about the good times that came after.
If not is there something you could find like (for example) football programmes from when his team was doing well (if he's a Manchester City fan then maybe not) but something from the bit of time in the middle when things were good, family. hobbies, travel anything from the middle life stage that he was interested in and may give him some positive memories of the past.
K
 

Jake jess

Registered User
Mar 17, 2015
2
North east
Thanks for replying

Hi Jake, welcome to TP
Sometimes all they have left is the past and even thought it may have been bad all the god bits between then and now may be lost. Do you have anything like photos or something to remind him about the good times that came after.
If not is there something you could find like (for example) football programmes from when his team was doing well (if he's a Manchester City fan then maybe not) but something from the bit of time in the middle when things were good, family. hobbies, travel anything from the middle life stage that he was interested in and may give him some positive memories of the past.
K
thanks for replying k,
He does have positive memories of his youth but always returns to the painful ones,I suppose because these stand out more than the good ones.i think I will continue to steer the conversation away until someone tells me otherwise.thanks
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
70,347
Kent
Hello Jake Jess

Perhaps you could let your father continue to talk about his unhappy memories but reassure him by telling him ' It's better now' or 'those times have passed' .
 

Kevinl

Registered User
Aug 24, 2013
4,774
Salford
thanks for replying k,
He does have positive memories of his youth but always returns to the painful ones,I suppose because these stand out more than the good ones.i think I will continue to steer the conversation away until someone tells me otherwise.thanks
So explore the history, ask questions: he must have done something in; the war, or national service in the 50's or the 1960's no one can forget the 60's, everyone has a past try and move it on to the bit in time when he was happier/happiest there aren't many who don't have a time in the past when they were happy, when you hit it focus on that time, use the music, big events try to move to a happier place.
K
 

always_hopeful

Registered User
May 7, 2012
13
got to agree with Kevin, I would try and find out what was happening in the world at the same time as those he is talking about and seeing if that triggers are a happier thought or recollection, or at least a diversion.
 

Concerned J

Registered User
Jun 15, 2014
65
London
I was interested to read this as one thing the nurse at the memory clinic said about my Mum is that she procrastinates about the past.
My mum often mentioned about being illegitimate (actually her parents were married by her father was a bigamist!) and complains that she never had a man in her life _ she was married to Dad for 46 years until he died 5 years ago!