People with dementia always win arguments


Don’t miss the next live event!

Join us on our next live event! There are always live Q&A sessions or new webinars to learn from. Click here to sign up

You can’t argue with someone who has dementia. Well, you can, but you are going to lose.

Merle’s daughter comes to visit her frequently, but argues with Merle as if repeating herself is going to make her mother understand.

“No, mommy!” Rebecca cried out. “I told you, we aren’t going to see daddy, we are going to the eye doctor!”

At times it feels like Rebecca is even more confused than her mother with dementia. She often whispers to the staff, “My dad has been dead for years!” as if we don’t know that already. 

It’s okay that Merle thinks her husband is alive. It’s okay that she can’t remember where she is going next or what she had for breakfast. 

As I tell the families I talk to,_ let your loved ones with dementia believe what they believe_. Arguing, correcting, and repeating your points will convince them of nothing.

Rebecca’s increased annoyance, repetition, and arguments with her mother only seeks to annoy the older woman. 

“Walk straighter,” Merle scolded her daughter. “You’re slouching.”

Merle may be confused, but she’s still Rebecca’s mother.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.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

rachael photo

Rachael Wonderlin is an internationally-recognized dementia care expert and consultant. She has a Master’s in Gerontology and is the author of two 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!

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.

16 things poster
Shopping Cart