A blog site with the goal of recognizing and helping family caregivers
Sunday, August 7, 2016
A Subject We Like to Avoid
Christian caregiver, there is a discussion we like to avoid. It
is a topic, however, that would be wise to discuss
with theloved one for whom you
are caring. It would be especially wise to discuss this topic with
your loved one if she or he is terminally ill. That topic is death.
husband was diagnosed with a rare neurological disease called
Multiple Systems Atrophy Type C in 2006. At the time of his
diagnosis,a time frame of 6-10 years
until death was thrown out. Any internet site I visited suggested the
same time frame. In actuality,my
husband only lived four anda half
years after diagnosis.
few times during his illness,my
husband would say that he did not think he had long to live. At the
that those statementswere merely
depression speaking. This was logical in my mind, because depression
can accompany neurological disease. I felt as if I did not want to
feed into that depression. I would often say, “You don’t know
that. You could outlive me.”
I believe that was a wrong approachon
my part. I believe I should have openly discussed with my husband his
feelings about death. It most likely would have been helpful to him
on an emotional level to have talked about this with me. It also
could have been the source of some deep spiritual discussions, as my
husband was a believer andachild
of God. Further, itwould have
helped me to better know his wishes for the funeral and other
matters. I think my husband may have been more in tune
with reality at that time than I. Perhaps I was in denial about how
close to death he must be in viewof
his constantphysical declines.
Christian Caregiver, death is not a pleasant subject to
discuss; but its reality is
not going to go away by not discussing it. Consider discussing these
matters with your loved one,especially
if he or shebrings up the subject.
Your loved one’seventual death is
not going to be hastened by your discussion of death with him or her.
The date of that death is in God’s hands.
dementia prevents it,I would strongly
suggesthaving an honest and open
discussion with theloved
one for whom you are caring. Openly talk abouthis
orher eventual death. Remind your
loved one that the process of dying is not something anyone would
choose, but we will all experience it unless Jesus returns first.
Also remind him or her, however, that death for the Christian is
merely a gateway to heaven and being with the Lord.