I must admit that I approached this book with a bit of skepticism. I read it anyway because I believe the topic is an important one. So why my skepticism? I think it is rooted in my observation that so many caregivers are too eager to advise others as though their situations are like those of everyone else.
Having just finished the book, I am ready to admit that my skepticism was unjustified. I am very glad to have read it and am pleased to recommend it. I rank it among the best books I have read whose goal is to provide helpful advice to those caring for a person with dementia. Why my change of heart? The answer lies in the fact that the authors’ advice is sufficiently general that it is applicable to a wide range of caregivers living under different circumstances. I believe that all caregivers could benefit from their advice.
Support the Caregiver comes about through the experience that Davis had as a caregiver for his wife who had Early Onset Alzheimer’s. It is not a full account of those experiences. The focus is on what he learned as a caregiver with the expertise and assistance of Gilbert, his co-author. Nonetheless, the book effectively communicates Davis’s feelings for his wife and the struggles that accompanied her care. As a caregiver for my wife, I could identify with him every step of the way.
More importantly, since the book focuses on 9 effective strategies for coping with the challenges of caregiving, I connected with all of the authors’ advice. At the risk of destroying the objectivity of my review, I must say that I have utilized all of their suggested strategies and found them helpful. The best news is that most of them are available to anyone at minimal or no cost. I know that there are caregivers whose circumstances might make it difficult to apply some of these strategies. Most, however, would benefit from the advice that Davis and Gilbert offer. It isn’t a long book, but it is well-written and packed with sound advice.