If you are caring for a person living with dementia at home, Mondays with Mimi is where you can have your questions answered. In her 20 years at St. John’s, Mimi DeVinney (our Dementia/Quality of Life Specialist) has heard dozens of questions about caring for people living with dementia. Check this page on St. John’s Online Dementia Resource Center every Monday, to see Mimi’s answers to submitted questions.

Mom’s lifelong friend asked me the other day whether she should continue visiting with her. They’ve had a longstanding appointment to play cards and catch up on Thursday afternoons. My mom’s friend now says that mom always seems to be too tired to visit, and has been short with her at times. She still loves mom but isn’t sure that mom even wants her there to spend time with her. Is this common with Alzheimer’s disease? What should I tell my mom’s friend? -Trixie M.

My advice would be to continue the visits, but modify the circumstances. Afternoons can be a tough time of day for people with dementia. A morning visit might find your mom more receptive. The card game may have become too difficult for her and she doesn’t like to say so. Trying a simpler game or a different activity might be more successful.

My mom and dad have always loved to go to dinner. Recently, as my father’s dementia has progressed, mom feels more uncomfortable bringing dad out in public. I went with them to dinner this week for the first time in a few months and I definitely noticed a change. His table manners and lack of social graces definitely attract attention now. I want to tell my mom to not worry about it and continue taking dad out as long as it’s safe, but I’m not sure she’s comfortable doing that anymore. Could you suggest anything that could help mom manage these trips out to dinner? -Debbi S.

Ask Mimi

If you have a question for Mimi related to dementia care at home, use this form to contact her.