When someone tells me something to do, they need to be quiet and patient. Just because I am slow in responding, does not mean that I do not know what I have been told to do. An example of something that would create frustration and increased anxiety in my mind and body is: you might say Robert will you take the things out of the car, if you do not mind. That would be fine unless you pause in between the two thoughts. If you pause, my brain has already started planning how to execute what I have been told to do. With my example, I would suggest that I be told "If you do not mind Robert will, you take the things out of the car". What ensues with the example is utter chaos inside my body. Immediately, I go blank. I will lose my focus. I have no idea at that point what I have been told to do. May I suggest that the best approach with a person with dementia is to start off with the defining parameters first and finish the sentence with what you want them to do. Care partners and others following this process will most likely see less anxiety and frustration in themselves and in the person with dementia.
©2015 Robert Bowles
Robert Bowles, Jr.