Stop trying to “convince” them

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.

image

Are you enjoying my blog posts? Grab a free download of one chapter from my audiobook here and also receive any future helpful tips and posts right to your inbox!

Logic and dementia don’t mix. What does that mean? It really means that using logic to “explain yourself” to someone with dementia won’t work out well. So, saying to someone with dementia, “But you can’t eat lunch, because you already ate lunch” won’t compute. They don’t remember eating, they still feel hungry, and they think you’re making it up!

And then what happens? You fight. No one wins, and everyone is mad.

Don’t convince. Just EMBRACE THEIR REALITY.

“I want my pills,” Molly said. “Can you bring me my pills?” she asked a nearby staff member.

“I already brought them to you, you had your pills this morning,” the staff member replied kindly.

“No I didn’t, I want my pills now,” Molly shook her head.

“But I already gave them to you…” the staff member started.

“Hang on,” I offered, walking over. “I have a solution,” I said to the staff member.

“Hey, Molly, I’m going to bring you your pills in a little bit!” I smiled.

“Okay, thanks,” Molly said, and went back to eating her lunch.

Instead of arguing or attempting to use logic with this resident, I embraced her reality. Trying to “convince” her that she already took her medicine wasn’t going to work: she didn’t remember doing it, and so it didn’t happen.

I decided to get into her world and tell her the truth of her reality: that she’d be getting her pills soon. Of course, I never brought them to her, but hearing a positive confirmation calmed her down immediately.

Do you get my emails? Sign up here.

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Your email address will not be published.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!