Visiting Nurse Home Care & Hospice Offers Bereavement Group for Those Impacted by Dementia

June 24, 2024

North Conway, NH – Loving someone with dementia is frequently described as a very long goodbye. Throughout the progression of dementia, friends and family experience recurrent feelings of grief and loss, as their loved one moves through each stage of the disease, losing not only their memories and abilities but also aspects of their personalities and identities. Oftentimes, the demands of caregiving become the primary focus for caregivers for many years. They can become isolated from the friends and community that used to be part of their lives, and less able to participate in activities they used to enjoy. When the finality of death occurs, it is common to feel a range of conflicting emotions and enter into a period of major adjustment. 

Visiting Nurse Home Care and Hospice of Carroll County and Western Maine (VNHCH) recognizes that people who are grieving the loss of loved ones who have recently died from dementia often have different needs from others experiencing grief. 

Thanks to an ACL (Administration for Community Living) Alzheimer’s Disease Initiative Grant, VNHCH is offering a new structured support group on Monday afternoons July 8-29. The group will be facilitated by certified dementia consultants who also have experience with bereavement support groups. 

“Families and caregivers witness the patient slowly fading away, which has prompted many to use the sobriquet of “The Long Goodbye” for this disease. Our goal for hosting this special bereavement support group is to help ease the caregivers’ transition into a life without their loved one and back into the community,” stated Sandy Ruka, Executive Director for VNHCH. 

Registration is required. The group meets at the VNHCH offices at 1529 White Mountain Highway, North Conway, NH. If you have lost a loved one who had dementia and would like more information, please call 603-356-7006.

This program is sponsored in part by ACL #90ADP10060 through the Mount Washington Valley Dementia Capable Community Grant.