In recent years numerous works of fiction have been written that portray caregivers and discuss providing care for seniors suffering from dementia, illness, or serious accidents. The following are five of our favorite novels recommended for family caregivers, all of which provide a unique perspective on caring for another person and a glimpse into the experiences of those who need care.
Still Alice by Lisa Genova
One of the foremost recommended reads for those who want to know what it’s like to experience early-onset Alzheimer’s Disease. The novel follows the experiences of Alice Howland, formerly a gifted professor, as she comes to grips with her diagnosis and experiences the terrifying reality of the disease.
The Bonesetter’s Daughter by Amy Tan
A splendid novel in its own right, Tan describes the sometimes-uneasy relationship between a woman succumbing to dementia and her daughter, who initially denies the reality of the disease. The book also delves into the importance of family history, including passing it from one generation to the next before it’s too late.
Living in the Land of Limbo: Fiction and Poetry about Family Caregiving edited Carol Levine.
For those who may not have time for a novel, this collection provides shorter, but no less poignant stories and poems related to caregiving issues. The stories are not just about dementia, but a variety of long-term and chronic illness issues from a variety of perspectives, including those of husbands, wives, children, parents, and friends.
The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving by Jonathan Evison
A different sort of novel for caregivers, this one is more lighthearted, following the adventures of Ben Benjamin, who is the caregiver for a teenager with muscular dystrophy. Although the book does deal with some issues directly, it is primarily about family, loss, and wanting to change the past, but needing to deal with the present.
Me before You by Jojo Moyes
One of the most popular novels on the theme published this decade, Me before You deals with finding meaning in life through caring for someone else. The story also tries to convey the emotional struggle of being a caregiver to someone who doesn’t want, but still needs to be taken care of, a struggle we know many families encounter with when providing in-home care for an aging parent or loved one.
Reading a book can be a less demanding way to understand the perspective of other caregivers as well as those that are receiving care. These books offer not escape, but a gentle introduction to others’ experiences on a topic that can be all-too-familiar at times.
If you provide care for an aging parent or loved one and feel that you need additional support or assistance, reach out to Home Care Assistance of Vancouver today. We offer Vancouver hourly home care which can be great for respite, as well as live-in or around the clock care for seniors living with advanced conditions such as dementia or Alzheimer’s. Give us a call today at 778-279-3634 for more information or to schedule a complimentary in-home consultation.