How People with Dementia Make Sense of the World

March 9, 2023

(The Atlantic) – Mitch had Alzheimer’s. I met Elizabeth in 2016, when I was a volunteer at an Alzheimer’s organization in New York City. I’ve remained in touch with her since, even after Mitch’s eventual death from the disease, in 2020. Although Mitch had already been diagnosed by the time Elizabeth and I began discussing her case, she was surprised at the turn his condition had taken. Many people with dementia experience occasional delusions and hallucinations, but relatively few become as fixated as Mitch did on the idea that a spouse is an imposter. I once asked Elizabeth why she thought she continued to argue with Mitch when she knew it wouldn’t do any good. She chuckled. “The thing is, he had an answer for everything. No matter what I said or could prove, he had an explanation. I just couldn’t let it go.” (Read More)