Need a Book on Alzheimer's for My Kids.

Updated on July 10, 2008
G.B. asks from Lenexa, KS
12 answers

My mom has Alzheimer's. My kids are 5,3 and 4 months, so it's very sad. I've been trying to explain things to my oldest in simple terms. My mom has times where she is angry and anti-social and I know there will come a time when my kids won't be able to visit her anymore. So, I was wondering if anyone has ever come across a good book on this subject geared to kids five and older.

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P.D.

answers from St. Louis on

The May Clinic has a helpful article about how to talk to young children: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/alzheimers/HQ00216

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K.B.

answers from Wichita on

Good Morning G., I am so very sorry and understand what you are going through. My mom fortunitly is still able to be at home with my step dad. Not always wonderful for Dad but it's what he wants at this time (I don't know how he does it most days). I have 5 gr kids from 9 yrs to 8 months. When I have taken the older two with me to visit, i just remind them Great gr ma has a illness that at times causes her to forget things or do things differently then she did before. So when we get there give her a big hug tell her your name and if she asks 10 time what your name is be very polite and tell her your name with a hug.

Right now Mom will just follow our 3 & 4 yr olds around and tell them she loves them, but watchs them closely. She will ask me who the kids belong to and wants their names.
Right now she loves everyone, but you can tell by her mood change & expressions when it is time to leave.

G. if you haven't check yet, you may try the Alzheimers web site. They have helps for families of Alzheimers patients.
I checked this one from Mayo Clinic there is a list of related topics at the bottom
God Bless you G., if you need a buddy, I am here
K. [email protected]____.com

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/alzheimers/AZ00024

3 moms found this helpful
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M.F.

answers from St. Joseph on

G., So sorry to hear about your situation. I know it can't be easy to digest especially when your children are involved. I was recently looking for a book on the death of a grandparent and saw a childrens book about a grandpa that had alzheimer's. I believe the book was written by Maria Shriver but I don't remember the name of the book. I'm sure you could do a search to find it or call your local book store. The book store personel at Borders have always been very helpful for me when i've had special requests. I hope you find something.

1 mom found this helpful
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E.L.

answers from St. Louis on

Hi G.-

I work at St. Louis Children's Hospital and we have a
Family Resource Center for specific situations like yours.
Go to our website: www.stlouischildrens.org and in the
search box, type in Family Resource Center.
You can check out books about any subject and the nurses on staff will mail you the book. You have 2-3 weeks to read the book, then you have to send it back.
It's a great FREE tool that people don't know about.

Let me know if you need help or have questions!

1 mom found this helpful
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C.M.

answers from Kansas City on

I am sorry to here about your Mom. I know this must be hard for you too. I have not had to deal with this disease but I do have a suggestion. When I was very young, my grandmother made a recording of herself reading a book. The book was Peter Rabbit and had lots of short stories. When I was little I loved to sit and listen to that tape. My grandmother was far away and we didn't get to see them very often. While your mother is still capable, have her do something like this that will show your kids who she was before her disease really took over completely. This will create a memory that will last forever and help them remember who Grandma really and not just the bad stuff.

1 mom found this helpful
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L.

answers from Kansas City on

I know exactly what you are going through. My mother suffered with it for 10 years. We just lost her this past March. I have two boys and one of my sisters has two kids as well. My oldest and her oldest knew my mom before she got really sick and really started to deteriate. It was the hardest on them. My youngest son and my niece unfortunatley only remember my mom being in the nursing home and being sick. It is such a heart wrenching experience for a family to go through. To not only have to work through your own feelings but to also have to explain it to children makes it even harder. We just really tried to be open and honest with the kids for them to understand what is going on, especially when my mom would get angry. It was hard for my nephew to understand. He went from thinking she was going to get better to not hardly being able to be around her..that was tough. It was the hardest to explain when my mom stopped remembering who her children were or her grandkids. We took the kids to visit when we could but knew that we had to watch when it was to much for them. We just encouraged them to continue to talk to her about what they had been up to, sing her songs and just do the things they would like to share with her, knowing that some part of her would hear it. Some of the suggestions below, especially the Alzheimer's website is what I would suggest and what I have used. They have a ton of useful information not only for your kids but also for you. Over the years we have continued to talk to the oldest grandkids about the wonderful memories they have of my mom, especially before she went into the nursing home, and keeping those memories close to share with my niece, my youngest son, and now we have a new baby on the way. I have not only struggled over the years with losing the mom, especially not having "her" here when I had my kids but also to not have my children get to have the grandmother that they so deserved or that she would have been. That was one of the things she looked forward to most in her life. I'm glad she got to experience it for a little while. My advice to you is to take it a day at a time, but enjoy the time you do have with her and let your kids do as much as they can. They will have the good memories of her to keep with them and that is what is important. After my mom passed in March, now my kids just talk about how Grandma is up and heaven and no longer sick and suffering and talk about how she was before she got sick. Which is so nice to hear. It was a very long struggle but I just hold on to those memories to make it through the tough days. Best of luck!!!

1 mom found this helpful
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B.S.

answers from Joplin on

I have a great one. It is called "Grandpa Doesn't Know It's Me".
Written by Donna Guthrie, illustrated by Katy Keck Arnsteen, in cooperation with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Association, Inc.
It was given to me by some one with the Area Agency on Aging.
I don't know if it is still in print or not, so contact the printing house to find out.
Human Sciences Press, Inc.
72 Fifth Avenue
New York, N.Y. 10011-8004

My copy is copywritten 1986

It's great book, though I can't get through it without crying. Alzheimers is such a sad disease.

If you try the publisher and still can't get a copy, write to me (through Mamsource) and I will send you mine.
I am so sorry about your Mom.

1 mom found this helpful
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M.G.

answers from Wichita on

J lee curt us wrote book a few yrs back I don't know name of it. Sorry.

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S.W.

answers from St. Louis on

G., I don't know of any books, but if you find any will you let me know. We are going though the same thing with my Grandfather. He is in the early stages so my kids haven't noticed much but I know we'll have to explain why Grandpa is diffrent soon. Good luck and we'll pray for you guys.

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D.B.

answers from Kansas City on

Sorry to hear about your mother. When I worked for Barnes and Noble, I recalled a book that was getting to be released by Maria Shrivers called "What's Happening to Grandpa?"
Here is a summary of the book. I hope it can help.

Kate has always adored her grandpa's storytelling—but lately he's been repeating the same stories again and again. One day, he even forgets Kate's name. Her mother's patient explanations open Kate's eyes to what so many of the elderly must confront: Alzheimer's disease and other forms of memory loss. Determined to support her grandfather, Kate explores ways to help him—and herself—cope by creating a photo album of their times together, memories that will remain in their hearts forever. With special insight derived from her own father's struggle with Alzheimer's, Maria Shriver offers a touching and optimistic story that encourages awareness, acceptance, and dialogue among family and friends.

D.

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M.Y.

answers from Kansas City on

You have recieved some excellent responses. I want to add Leeza Gibbons has an Alzheimers support site on line you might check out. Sorry I don't have the address now. I'm sure if you do a search on her you would get the info. I lost my Dad 2 years ago to Alzheimers. It is a cruel disease.

J.G.

answers from St. Louis on

I wrote a huge reply and then deleted it. My mom has alzheimers but I have never really liked her so I sounded awful. Instead I will give you this advice. If there are books on Alzheimers they are going to be as useful as a book on child behavior, compeltely useless unless you happen to have that kid or in this case that mom. Go with your gut, you know your kids better than anyone on earth and I would imagine you know your mom pretty well too. Personally I let my kids have their feelings, there is nothing I can do that will help my kids remember grandma before, something far worse that what is going on now will be how they remember her. Alzheimers is worse than any disease I know of and I have had a lot touch my life.

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