Pleased to meet you all...

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by domb, May 10, 2006.

  1. domb

    domb Registered User

    May 10, 2006
    Hi there, just thought I would introduce myself. Im a 52 yo male teacher. My older brother (67) is just entering the 'moderate' phase of Alzheimers Disease from the initial 'mild' stage. Our mother ( now deceased) had Alzheimers for many years so I am well aware what the road ahead holds.

    What has struck me immediatley, reading the various entries, was how many times I thought: 'I know just how you feel' or 'so its not only me'. It has been a comfort to feel that other people do know what you are going through, so for that heartfelt thanks.

    To be honest my prevalant emotion at the moment is shame. I feel ashamed that I am irrrited and annoyed that the big, strong, humourous and dignified man I knew is being replaced by a forgetful, contrary and unreliable 'stranger'. It shames me that I am relieved that I'm not his primary carer (His wife is) and have the option to lessen my contact with him. I shames me that I'm more concerned about how this is affecting ME rather than giving him my love and support. Finally I am ashamed that I dont have the moral courage to says the things that I want to tell him before he forgets me - I love him- he was the best brother a man could have. But men (especially gruff Glaswegians) dont do that do they? Besides if you do say them your admitting that it has beaten him and thats just too painfull for ME.

    My only advice to people starting on this long difficult road dont leave out the things that you need to say because it 'wasnt the right time'. Say them and say them now.
  2. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    Hiya Domb,
    Is your brother aware that he has AD? But stuff what strong glaswegian men do and don't do, muster up your courage and let your brother know that you love him and what a fantastic brother he has been. If not you will regret it. Doesn't have to be a flowery speech, but SAY it.
    Shame, guilt - well if you've read some of the threads, you know they are common place on here- don't be too hard on yourself. Still plenty of time for you to support your brother and sister in law.
    Best wishes, Amy
  3. Lynne

    Lynne Registered User

    Jun 3, 2005
    Hi Domb, life's a real ba**ard isn't it - you get into your fifties, you think you know about everything life's likely to throw at you and how to deal with it, then AD appears out of the blue and where's the rulebook for this one? What the F*** can I do about this? Why him, why us?

    Forget about the guilt - just forget about it, like you never think about your ears. As you will have read here, it's always sitting on your shoulder, just because you can't help but feel that you ought to be able to fix this. You can't fix it, all you can do is love him, and continue to love him (and his wife) as he changes into a different person. He doesn't want to change, he's done nothing to "deserve" getting AD and there's no magic pill to cure it.

    Your BEST weapon is happy memories of your childhood together, when he was the big brother every little brother looks up to, and wants to be like. He will remember those things even when he doesn't remember what he ate for dinner 30 minutes ago. Share memories of your Mother when she was well & happy, and the best Mum in the world. Build on them, polish them, let him know through those memories how much you loved him then & love him now.

    Take your own advice Domb, "Say them and say them now", you'll never regret that you did, but you'd always regret it if you didn't.
  4. domb

    domb Registered User

    May 10, 2006

    Amy, Lynne and Nada.

    Thank you for your kind words. they ARE a comfort, nice to know your not alone. Sorry if my first post was a whine but in truth I found it cathartic.

    Having experinced AD to the conclusion with my mother. I hope I can give some help, advice and an ear if thats all required. I must admit i feel better for getting my initial feelings off my chest.
  5. Amy

    Amy Registered User

    Jan 4, 2006
    Whine? That's one of the reasons we are all here. So that we can whine, get our feelings out into the open and deal with them. So don't apologise. Good to have you on board.
  6. jarnee

    jarnee Registered User

    Mar 18, 2006
    Hi Domb,

    Well they obviously breed you gruff Glaswegians as honest men, too....that's what struck me most about your first post, your honesty. I never thought you were whining at all.

    Go on, take your own advice and tell him while you still can. I did that a few years ago when mum made dad phone me and tell me he had AD (just like his mother before him). I told him that I loved him and he was the best dad anyone could ever wish for....feelings I had NEVER shared with him before (Not that type of family, and all that)

    Now mum has died and dad is in care. He won't accept that I am his daughter anymore. I am sooooo glad I told him while I could

    Welcome aboard, Domb

  7. May

    May Registered User

    Oct 15, 2005
    Hi Domb
    Gruff Glaswegian or not, I bet you could do the hearty grip of the hand and affectionate back slap with your brother, just like I saw my Dad's little(59!) brother do to him, when he saw him after my Mum had been admitted to hospital. As my Dad's brother said, 'we've never been huggy kissy types (well they wouldn't be, they're Yorkshire men;) ) but he's my brother and I love him'.

    No you're not, you loved him before you knew about the AD. Forget all this rubbish about men not showing their feelings. Give it a go, bet you and your brother will feel better for it.

    Take care

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