Celebrating all father figures!

Dear Caregivers,

Good news! Snow has officially left the building and warm weather is upon us. It never ceases to amaze me how Québec’s climate can go from one end of the thermostat to another in the blink of an eye.

Since June is a time to celebrate dads, as well as men’s health, I have been reflecting on the symbolism that surrounds caring for an ageing father figure. The health issues associated with advancing age often complicate the relationship between fathers and their now-adult children. So much so, that roles may seem reversed. Considering that we’ve always cultivated a strong and independent image of men, it can be difficult for an aging father to accept help. On the other hand, it can also be discomforting for their caregivers to see them grow more vulnerable.

All this thinking has also led me to contemplate old age and dignity. As long as I can remember, I’ve been an advocate for dignity among seniors. People tend to overlook the baggage that older adults often carry in their lives, especially when it comes to the connection between memory loss and personal autonomy. As a caregiver, you may have noticed that it takes constant effort to help a person with memory loss maintain their identity and preserve the respect from others that they deserve. It takes a lot of energy to deal with one’s own emotions while ensuring the self-worth and rights of a loved one who once took care of you.

Happy Father’s Day!
With all of this in mind, I would like to make the most of Father’s Day by sending love to all those who are taking care of a father figure.  If you would like to join me in reflecting on this subject, be sure to take a look at the newest addition to our Caregivers’ Lending Library: Dignity for Deeply Forgetful People. The book is coming out on May 31st and should be available for you to borrow mid-June!

Also, don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any particular caregiving needs.  Please email me at afortinmaltais@jhpartners.net or leave a message in my voice mail at 418-684-5333, ext. 11700, and I’ll call you back as soon as possible.

Anaïs Fortin-Maltais, Caregivers’ Circle Program Coordinator

Continue taking good care of one another and enjoy the sun!

Bye for now,

Anaïs

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