- 16 pages of detailed instructions on how to get into the world of a person living with dementia
- Step-by-step guidelines of what to say and when to say it
- A breakdown on what it truly means to Embrace Their Reality—and why it’s far more powerful than just “Validating,” “Redirecting,” or “Distracting.”
I trademarked phrases like Embrace Their Reality(TM)
and Timeline Confusion(TM)
because what I teach is so different from what you normally
hear in dementia care education sessions. We always hear, “Validate, but don’t lie,” or, “Redirect and distract!”
Honestly? I don’t know what these things mean: I’m not sure how you can live in someone’s reality only, like, halfway. With Embracing Their Reality, we actually enter their world, no matter where it is. We stop worrying about “lying” and start worrying about what’s true for the person living with the cognitive impairment—even if it feels totally foreign to us.
Now, not everybody likes this. In fact, a few people think I’m downright crazy for telling audiences we need to stop getting hung up on the word “lying” and, instead, just do what’s best for the person living with dementia. They think I’m asking people to lie or be dishonest…but that’s where they’re wrong: dementia caregiving is a gray area. There’s no simple, one-size-fits-all answer when you’re looking after another person’s well-being. Telling people “never lie!” doesn’t make any sense and it’s super confusing to an already-stressed caregiver audience. So, let’s try something fresh.