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Fearless Caregiver Newsletter
 Thursday November 4, 2010 - Issue #6

Welcome to the latest edition of the bi-weekly newsletter.

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From The Editor

Gary Barg - Editor-in-chief An Interview with Linda Dano

The Support Partners  Program,, provides practical help for the millions of Americans who are diagnosed with major depressive disorder, and the people who care about them. When you are depressed, you can feel isolated and alone, which is why having a Support Partner can make a real difference. A Support Partner can be anyone who wants to help a friend or loved one who has depression Canine Companions is the newest component of the Support Partners Program. Your dog can have a positive effect on your overall health and wellbeing.

The program will help you understand how your dog can help you cope with depression on a day-to-day basis. It offers practical tips on adding your dog to an existing support network of family and friends.

Gary Barg:    
  Tell me what about the “Support Partners Canine Companions Program”
Linda Dano:   
In traveling the country and talking with thousands of people, we all realized the vitally important role that our dogs and cats and animals in general play in our lives. They can be more than just the family pet and actually become a part of your support team in a really valuable, intense way. For instance, when Frank died and I went down that terrible road of depression, the one thing aside from my support team of girlfriends and doctors, were my dogs. These dogs were with me when I was all alone, and because I had them, I was never completely isolated. Late at night when I couldn’t sleep, when I felt no joy and felt hopeless, they were there.  I had a reason to get up and get out of bed, which is a key thing for someone suffering from depression, as you know. Just any of the little things we take for granted when we’re feeling good about ourselves are hard to do; but if you have a pet, you have to tend to them: you have to feed them, walk them; you get away from yourself for a minute. You have someone to focus on, and we realized how important this element of trying to get our lives back is, so we added canine companions to the Support Partners Program. It’s really working, and people are looking at their pets in a much different light.  Animals help you focus on something other than how bad things are; you look in the eyes of an animal and it’s comforting. ...continued

Take care

Gary Barg


Feature Article

Hidden Heroes and Angels Along the Way

by Jeanette Muller

A well-traveled butterfly sun-catcher hangs in my window.  Since college, its bright red and yellow panels have cheered me.  The green panels have faded badly, but I remember in my mind’s eye.  Change and loss are hard; so we must remember with love and look forward with hope...continued Cancer Channel

Guest Column

The Financial Side of Caregiving 
By Sherri Goss

A woman called me for an appointment, saying she heard I work with caregivers.  Many of my clients are caregivers, and they are amazing people.  Most of them work very long hours, are under incredible emotional pressure, and have little support.  They want so badly to do the very best for their loved one.  This woman was no exception.. ...continued



Alzheimer's: Dealing with Difficult Behavior
By Jennifer B. Buckley

As if it weren’t enough to deal with forgetfulness and confusion while caring for your loved-one with Alzheimer’s, but aggressiveness, wandering and paranoia can really put you over the edge. Managing your loved-one’s difficult behavior is your true testament of love and devotion. You know it isn’t their fault, it is their disease that is making them scream, cry or yell terrible things out at you. Who ever said patience is a virtue, didn’t care for a loved-one with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Perhaps a caregiver’s only defense is to understand how to react to difficult behaviors and be ready for them. .. .continued

Sharing Wisdom - Caregiver Tips

From Maria
In London, England

When I was last home, I noticed that my dad's once large collection of coffee mugs had dwindled to two; so I started sending him mugs from different places with pictures that would remind him of when we were young.  He had been a passionate sailor, so I sent one with sailing ships.  My sister took him to a cafe in the harbour from which he used to sail, and this normally monosyllabic man suddenly spoke for two hours with passion and excitement about sailing.  My dad taught us how to get scholarships and among the six of us, we have nine Ivy league degrees.  I sent him one from Oxford and he came alive talking about how the grandchildren should go to Oxford together.  Each cup generates an initial burst of remembering and continues to bring back memories as it goes into daily use.  To keep them safe, I wrap them in lots of layers and my siblings report that unwrapping them is great fun for him, too. The anticipation is as good as the present itself.

From CC
in the southeastern U.S.

One parent has needed my daily care for 30+ years (since I was a teen).  Now I assist both parents with various EDLs 3x a day, yet I work full-time and have my own home nearby.  As an only child, there is no family support (no breaks), but also no one to disagree or become frustrated with.  With that background, here is my short list of tips:  Hard as it can be to do, rest and take care of YOU.  When negative thoughts enter, try to "change the channel" in your mind.  (Steering clear of negative people, news shows, etc., helps with this.)  Prepare, but don't worry any more than necessary.  Take it one day - one minute - at a time. Try to keep perspective. You're doing a good thing for your loved one, who likely didn't ask for the limitations they have, either.  I try to look at my role as a special assignment.  It's been an opportunity in many ways. I understand responsibility and don't need to have a week-long vacation somewhere else to have fun or peace.  It's a tough road for all involved, but I view it as a chapter of life. For some of us, it's a lengthy one and for others a relatively short one. Hopefully, we'll be better for it and have a clear conscience that we did what we could to help another.  My best to all.


The best ideas and solutions for taking care of  your  loved one often come from other caregivers.  Please post your ideas and insights and we will share them with your fellow caregivers. Support Group Directory. Click here for information about any caregiver support groups in your area.

Caregivers need your help. Please add information about your local support groups to our Support Group Directory. Include the name of the group, where and when it meets, city and state and support group leader contact information.

Have an idea for an article? We are always looking for contributing writers. For more information contact

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Inside This Issue:

From the Editor

An Interview with
Linda Dano

Feature Article

Hidden Heroes and Angels Along the Way

Guest Column

The Financial Side of Caregiving

Alzheimer's: Dealing With Difficult Behavior
Sharing Wisdom



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Today's Caregiver Magazine - Sept-Oct 2010 


Educate yourself & other caregivers on any prescription drugs given to a loved one. The internet is wonderful to help you...continued







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