The Parrot Speaks Spanish

4

Have more questions and don't know where to turn?


Join our community and get access to monthly support calls, an online chat forum for questions, and even monthly 1:1 calls with Rachael! CLICK HERE for more information.

Belinda was ecstatic. “He’s talking to me!” she cried out in Spanish.

Belinda was talking about her new best friend—the toy parrot our community kept. Unlike most of the other residents, Belinda spoke two languages. And, unlike most of the residents, Belinda was beginning to switch back to her native language.

This was a real problem, because none of the other residents spoke any Spanish. For many people with dementia, the ability to be completely bilingual, or even multilingual, fades during the course of the disease. Most people return—at least in some part—to their native language. 

“Her English is actually great,” Belinda’s family had told us. “Or, at least, it used to be,” they had added. 

It seemed as though Belinda had forgotten that she knew English. She could understand people who spoke to her in English, but she would only respond in Spanish. Sometimes she would utter English phrases—or even full sentences. 

“Oh, que linda!” Belinda laughed, clapping, and continued to tell the bird how beautiful and wonderful he was. “You are a great friend,” she told the parrot in Spanish.

“You are a great friend,” the parrot repeated, in Spanish. 

Liked it? Take a second to support Rachael Wonderlin on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rachael Wonderlin is an internationally-recognized dementia care expert and consultant. She has a Master’s in Gerontology and is the author of three published books with Johns Hopkins University Press. Rachael owns Dementia By Day, a dementia care consulting and education company.

16 things poster
Get the FREE “16 Things” poster!

You're not alone!

Get personal support from Rachael and connect with other Caregivers when you join our community.

16 Things I Would Want If I Got Dementia

Get the FREE “16 Things” poster for your personal use—or better yet—your dementia care community’s staff break room!

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


When you sign up, you’ll also get access to Rachael’s weekly newsletter so that you can get her top tips, links to new content as soon as it’s released, and special offers directly in your inbox! We’ll never sell your information, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

16 things poster
Shopping Cart

Have questions?

Book a Dementia Detective
call and talk to a DBD expert!