It's My House.

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“Why are you ALL HERE!?” he demanded. “What are you all doing in my house? Get OUT!”

Matthew* was angry. He came out of his room to find a few residents sitting and watching TV in a common area. In his mind, however, this common area was his living room.

“You! I want you out of here!” he yelled, pointing to one of the men.

I quickly moved over to Matthew and pulled him aside. “Matthew, this is my fault,” I said. “I wanted to throw a dinner party and I invited all of these people over. It’s so nice of you to let all of them have dinner with us!” I said.

“Oh,” he calmed down, thinking it over. “Hey! You all are invited to our dinner party! Thank you for coming!”

Suddenly, Matthew felt like a hero. I had thanked him for “letting” all of these residents stay for dinner, and he felt like he’d done something nice.

“Here, everyone follow me to the dining room!” he called. “Welcome to my house!”

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Rachael Wonderlin has a Master’s in Gerontology and is the author of two published books with Johns Hopkins University Press. She owns Dementia By Day, a dementia care consulting company.

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I wrote this poem years ago, but to date, it’s the most popular piece I’ve ever created.

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