Advocacy, Life & Living, Toward better care

it’s taken a pandemic and tens of thousands of deaths for people to get what long-term care advocates have known for decades: the system sucks

The tragedy that is being played out in long-term care facilities (LTCFs) across Canada and around the world as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic comes as no surprise to elder care advocates such as myself.

We have seen the rampant neglect and abuse in LTCFs worldwide, and some of us have been advocating for change for decades. I have been writing this blog for six years, and have documented my own mother’s neglect and abuse including finding her in soiled incontinence briefs (about which I wrote an open letter to Quebec’s then minister of health Gaetan Barrette), being sedated into a comatose state for close to four years, being physically restrained, and more.

Elder care advocates are not alone in knowing about the dire situation in LTC around the world. Care workers know about it, nursing home managers and administrators know about it, and some family members of the neglected and abused know about it too. Elder neglect and abuse in LTCFs have been pervasive for years, and that’s why we’re seeing so many deaths in LTCFs during this pandemic.

Don’t be fooled by what the politicians and government officials are saying now. They would want you to believe that this crisis situation is the result of COVID-19. It’s not. It’s the result of the systemic failure that has been ongoing for a very long time. In Canada, it’s also the result of healthcare officials and politicians not listening to advocates’ warnings about what would happen when COVID-19 reached our country.

Because of the pandemic and the disproportionate toll it’s taking on people living in so-called “care” facilities, the general public is learning the truth: the system sucks.

What everyone also needs to know is the system sucked long before COVID-19 came calling. Here’s what advocates says about the situation in Quebec (the situation is similar across Canada, the US and the UK):

Elder care advocates worldwide have long been fighting for person-centred care that engages people and helps them to live rich and full lives until the end. Research shows this type of care is essential to the well being of older people, particularly those living with dementia. Treating our elders in any other way is criminal, as we are now seeing clearly as they die in their thousands worldwide from COVID-19.

Meanwhile, those responsible point fingers at each other to avoid “holding the bag” as in the case of the Herron “home” in Quebec, Canada.

Here are some of the factors that allow institutional neglect and abuse to continue:

1 ) Ageism & stigma

Ageist views remain widespread (e.g. old people are useless; their lives don’t matter; our job is to warehouse them, not engage them with life). These unhappy myths negatively impact the way we care for elderly people who live in their own homes, in our communities and most particularly in LTCFs.

Many people don’t understand the realities of aging and aged care. Some of the erroneous beliefs include: it doesn’t matter how we treat old people; they don’t know what’s happening; they’re going to die soon anyway; and they are expendable. For example, one member of parliament is said to have implied that since old people in nursing homes are the primary victims of COVID-19, that we should go ahead and re-start the economy.

2 ) Lack of awareness

For the most part, the general public simply does not understand the generally poor conditions that exist in long-term care facilities. Even people who have a family members living in LTCF may not fully understand the conditions under which residents live because they believe what they are told by care workers, administrators and the government. I know from having visited my mother every day for four years that things are rarely what they appear to be. It’s true that some facilities provide good care, but my sense from ongoing research is that they are the exception rather than the rule.

3 ) Poor leadership

Senior executives and medical professionals who manage LTCFs, as well as government policy makers who  are responsible in large part for most of the factors that follow and for the neglect and abuse that result. Being willing to take a hard look at what has been wrong and what is wrong with failing eldercare systems takes courage. Identifying shortcomings and fixing them is a gargantuan task that requires vision, will, energy and commitment. If those kinds of people had been in leadership positions before and were in leadership positions now, we wouldn’t find ourselves with the existing situation: broken facilities full of infected workers and dying residents.

4 ) Lack of training/understanding

The standard of care in any given facility is only as good as the frontline workers who deliver it. Care workers require specialized training and understanding; if they don’t have the skills they need, neglect and abuse are inevitable. Frontline care staff need the encouragement and support of competent, compassionate, visionary leaders to get the job done.

5 ) Low staff-to-resident ratios

How can one care worker attend to the needs of eight to ten or even more residents and do it to a reasonable standard? It’s not possible. And yet, those are the kinds of care worker to resident ratios that prevail in most LTCFs. It’s no wonder neglect and abuse are pervasive. The situation has reached a crisis level with the COVID-19 pandemic.

6 ) Warehouse-like environments

There have been recent innovations in design including dementia villages, small group homes, and facilities in which childcare and eldercare are combined. While these approaches have proven successful, organizations that apply them are still relatively few and far between. Most facilities are not designed to meet resident needs, but rather to maximize operational efficiency. Calling a warehouse a “village,” a “manor,” or a “specialized memory care unit,” does not change the essence of what it is.

7 ) Dis-incentivized workers

Care workers tend to be poorly trained and poorly paid, and overworked because of low staff-to-resident ratios; they are often ill treated, and unappreciated. Many are given part-time work at any given facility, and must therefore work at several facilities to make ends meet, a fact that has contributed to the rapid spread of outbreaks in nursing homes across Canada.

8 ) Uncaring cultures

All of the factors above lead to UNcare cultures in which profit comes first, people come last and the status quo is never questioned, or, if and when it is, complainers and whistleblowers are quickly silenced, dismissed, or disavowed. Staff become demoralized, complacent, cynical and hardened to preserve their own sanity. Negative UNcare cultures that have become entrenched are hard to change.

9 ) Ineffective “policing”

Regulatory bodies may be stretched beyond capacity. Substandard operations/practices may be difficult to identify because of the way inspections are done (e.g. prior notice of visits results in things being “spit and polish” for inspecting eyes), and offending institutions may remain open and operating despite substandard performance and long lists of regulation breaches and/or regulatory infractions.

10 ) The bottom line

Cost-saving, cost-cutting, and the pursuit of profit are deemed more important than providing vulnerable elders with the care they need and deserve. Residents and families are powerless to change the system to which they have fallen victim.

It’s time to take a closer look at this tragic and completely unacceptable state of affairs, demand research into the nature and prevalence of neglect and abuse in long-term care, and most important, to immediately implement action plans to stop it. Class action suits such as these are a step in the right direction.

Perhaps this pandemic will finally open people’s eyes to the horrors of long-term “care” in Canada and around the world. But oh what a heavy price to pay for the potential of change!

6 reasons why staff in long-term care facilities don’t report incidents of elder abuse and neglect

25 practices long-term care workers know are elder neglect and abuse; it’s time to put a stop to it

3 more reasons family and friends of people who live with dementia in long-term care facilities don’t report abuse and neglect

3 reasons family and friends of people who live with dementia in long-term care facilities don’t report abuse and neglect

#mc_embed_signup{background:#fff; clear:left; font:14px Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; }
/* Add your own MailChimp form style overrides in your site stylesheet or in this style block.
We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. */

Subscribe to MAS now & get 5 free PDFs & a page of welcome links:

Email Address

Take my short survey on behaviour here.

Image copyright: warrengoldswain / 123RF Stock Photo

Care Partnering, Challenges & Solutions, Humour, Tips, tools & skills

turn potential dementia disasters into fun and laughter

Many dementia care partners have learned that going with the flow works magic: it can turn potential disasters into gales of laughter with very little effort. All it takes is a little bit of imagination. I stumbled on a perfect real life example shared by care partner Catherine Bixenman-salesi. in the online dementia support group USAgainst Alzheimer’s.

Catherine shared the vignette in response to an article on validation that had been posted by group administrator and dementia care author and advisor Carol Bradley Bursack.

Here’s what Catherine had to say:

“My teenaged son often corrects his grandmother, and then suffers the consequences. I, on the other hand, let her stories flow. I also enjoy adding flavour to them. This makes her perk up, and turns her from sad to glad. It also gets her talking, and gesturing with her hands. I help piece the sentences together by filling in every other word, and away we go. Last night, she noticed a commode in her bedroom. She pointed at it and in an angry tone said: ‘Not mine!’ It was a perfect opportunity for some fun.

‘Tell that lazy ass woman to take her belongings with her when she goes,’ I said with a scowl on my face. ‘I have enough work to do here without having to clean up after her!’

Mom burst out laughing. What a joyful sound it was. Of course I laughed too. It seems like a silly thing, but to her it was funny. I could have told her it was hers, which it is, and she would have denied it and become hostile. Instead, I went along with her version of reality. The result? Smiles and laughs all around.”

Kudos to Catherine! I know from my own experience that this, and other imrov techniques really works a treat. I talk about in the video clip here, and in my BANGS model here. If you haven’t tried “going with the flow,” I highly recommend you do so. Your stress level will drop and your relationship with your care partner will improve.

If you have tried going with the flow and have similar stories to share, I’d love to hear them.

#mc_embed_signup{background:#fff; clear:left; font:14px Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; }
/* Add your own MailChimp form style overrides in your site stylesheet or in this style block.
We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. */

Subscribe to MAS now & get 5 free PDFs & a page of welcome links:

Email Address

Take my short survey on behaviour here.

Care Partnering, Challenges & Solutions, Resources, Tips, tools & skills

30 tips to help reduce anxiety in dementia care

We all get anxious sometimes. It’s normal. Often it seems that people who live with dementia experience anxiety more than others. Maybe they have more to be anxious about. Maybe they are more sensitive to stimulation or lack of stimulation. Maybe they become more anxious in particular circumstances or at certain times.

Here are 30 tips to reduce anxiety and stress levels of people living with dementia and their care partners:

  1. minimize medications (and thus their side effects)
  2. remember: everyone experiences anxiety sometimes
  3. provide extra full-spectrum light
  4. track triggers, and reduce them where possible
  5. avoid anticipating “bad behaviour”
  6. avoid caffeinated beverages
  7. avoid alcohol
  8. stick to routines
  9. remember: different things work for different people
  10. remember: what works today may or may not work tomorrow
  11. avoid agitating television (e.g. Dr. Phil)
  12. be physically active each day
  13. don’t be too physically active each day
  14. help the person living with dementia expend “excess energy”
  15. suggest an enjoyable activity
  16. remember: everything is not always “fixable”
  17. stay calm (but don’t tell them to “calm down”!)
  18. minimize loud noises
  19. minimize stimulation
  20. minimize stress
  21. go outside
  22. take a walk
  23. sit by a window
  24. offer a snack
  25. comfort and empathize
  26. agree and validate
  27. play calming music
  28. use touch
  29. remember: even the best batters strike out
  30. remember: all things pass

Do you have more tips? I’d love to hear them!

Take a short survey on behaviour here.

Subscribe to my free updates here.

Image copyright: creatista / 123RF Stock Photo

Care Partnering, Teepa Snow, Tips, tools & skills, Videos

7 teepa tips to help people with dementia do what they can to care

Mom & Pia Roma in a tête-à-tête on May 9, 2013

Mom adored her cat Pia Roma; she came to live with Mom in her big red brick house on the hill sometime after 2001. In the mornings, Pia and Mom delighted in having tea for two. But as Mom’s dementia progressed, it got harder for her to care for her beloved Pia. Twice when I came home from Dubai in 2010, I found breakfast cereal instead of cat food in Pia’s dish.

“When you develop dementia you don’t lose your interest in providing care,” says  dementia care pioneer Teepa Snow, although, as she points out, you may lose some of the skills it takes to do it, just like my mom did.

Caring for other living beings such as a child, a spouse, a friend, a pet, or even the birds outside, as well as caring for the things around you such as your home, your yard, your plants, or whatever brings you pleasure, gives meaning to your life. The desire to care for others and for things doesn’t diminish with dementia.

Here are some specific tips and a video from Teepa Snow on helping people who are living with dementia to care, and thus to keep purpose and meaning alive every day:

  1. provide guidance appropriate to what kind of GEM the person is
  2. observe the person’s behaviour closely for clues
  3. use visual cues (e.g. point, demonstrate, model)
  4. use verbal cues (i.e. say what might be done, make suggestions, give gentle instructions)
  5. break activities up into smaller tasks / “windows”
  6. do “with,” not “for’ or “to”
  7. support PLWD in what they want to do, what they like to do and what they need to do


7 dementia care basics from Teepa Snow

5 top dementia care tips from Teepa Snow

10 ways to calm a dementia care crisis

13 expert tips to help with “I want to go home”

10 tips to deal with hallucinations

Hand Under Hand (TM) demo

Teepa’s GEMS outshine all the stages

10+ Teepa Snow videos on dementia basics

Teepa Snow’s videos are available on Amazon here.

Take a short survey on behaviour here.

Subscribe to my free updates here.

Resources, Tips, tools & skills, Toward better care

16th alzheimer shower-time tip applies to everything

I love it when people add their knowledge to mine, especially when they are really specific and the advice is spot on. When I posted 15 tips to make alzheimer dementia shower time successful not stressful, Becky Gabbard. who follows MyAlzheimersStory on Facebook, made this comment:

“Good suggestions. But I didn’t see one asking for permission as the process progresses on a daily basis.There were some days Mom could wash herself and shampoo her hair and other days she was lost. So at every step I asked her “Do you want to wash your _____ or would you like me to help you do it?”

And she would say “I’ll do it.” or “Thank you,” and then she let me do it. I watched her balk at others’ giving her “help” as they just did what they thought they had to do, and didn’t ask her if she wanted help or could do it herself — especially in the bathroom! Even in her severe stage there were days she could do it herself and other days she was lost as to what to do first, from the simplest things such as pulling down her pants before she sat on the toilet. Asking, and asking her permission, made us happy dance partners in the bathroom.”

I found exactly the same thing when helping Mom. She knew at any given moment what she felt confident doing as well as what was too much. Asking if she wanted or needed help gave her the opportunity to do whatever it was for herself when she could or to get assistance in a respectful way when she couldn’t. I feel certain this allowed us to avert many potential confrontations. Here’s an example of the kind of situation that may ensue when we don’t ask permission.

Asking permission is so important that I’m going to add it to to the “A” in my BANGS model. And it occurred to me that an easy way to remember this step for people of my generation would  be to recall the childhood game “Mother May !?

Do you have any great care partnering tips to share? I would love the hear them.

#mc_embed_signup{background:#fff; clear:left; font:14px Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; }
/* Add your own MailChimp form style overrides in your site stylesheet or in this style block.
We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. */

Subscribe to MAS now & get 5 free PDFs & a page of welcome links:

Email Address

Take my short survey on behaviour here.

Image copyright: chassenet / 123RF Stock Photo

Resources, Tips, tools & skills

15 tips to make alzheimer dementia shower time successful not stressful


Most of what I know about Alzheimer dementia care I learned through experience. For example, I discovered how to make shower time successful and to overcome “resistance” if and when there was any by understanding where the resistance came from – mostly it was fear.

Maybe Mom had scalded herself in the shower when she was on her own, or couldn’t find a towel when she got out and was cold, or put face cream in her hair (which she almost did one time when I was with her before I stopped her just in time), or who knows what else might have happened? But I know Mom was afraid: afraid of getting soap in her eyes, afraid of the temperature of the water not being right and not knowing how to adjust it, etc.

I made the audio recording below 14 days after I moved in with Mom (in her own house), to be her care partner in November 2011. Prior to moving back into the family home, I had never been in the bathroom with Mom when she showered. But it only took two weeks to get a bit of a routine in place. I learned to do some things differently over time – I was still pretty green at the time I made this recording – but even so, I did lots of stuff that “worked” and made the process easier on both of us, even in those early days.

Here are 15 off-the-top-of-my-head tips (there are real-life examples of both rights and wrongs in the audio clip):

1) Act normal

Become comfortable with something that is initially inherently uncomfortable (i.e. guiding / helping or giving your parent or spouse a shower or bath). The more comfortable and natural you feel (if you don’t feel it, fake it), the more comfortable and less anxious your care partner will feel and the less resistance you are likely to encounter. Act as if it’s the most natural thing in the world that you should be helping them.

2) Get ready

prepare the environment to make it pleasant (i.e. the right temperature, right lighting, everything where it should be so no one needs to search for stuff)

3) Let go

Give her/him as much control and power as possible. For example, toward the end of the recording below, I say: “You are like the Queen, and I’m the lady in waiting.” 🙂

4) Be a cheerleader

Say and do things in a way that makes him/her feel competent and confident rather than incompetent and unable

5) Support don’t act

Be helpful and supportive, only take action and do something if and when absolutely necessary

6) Guide

Gently guide and suggest rather than telling / commanding / ordering

7) Use the right tone of voice

Use a light, natural, even tone of voice (record your voice and play it back later to check your tone because we are often unaware in the moment when we are using a counterproductive tone of voice)

8) Agree

Encourage and agree; don’t contradict or argue. This applies to EVERYTHING 🙂

9) Prompt and cue

Use prompting and cueing to guide through the steps of the process.

10) Don’t criticize

Avoid pointing out “mistakes,” shortcomings or flaws

11) Praise

Give compliments and praise for everything, even things that would have been simple for her/him to do previously. AND, remember your tone of voice. Make her/him the expert (E.g. I hadn’t thought of using the washrag to clean my face like you do. I like the way you’re doing it. I’m going to try the same myself next time.)

12) Reward

Reward desired behaviour without being patronizing or condescending. (E.g. “Now that you’re finished with your shower, we can have a nice cup of tea / bowl of ice cream / bag of chips or go for a walk / watch the birds / read a book / do a puzzle or 101 other activities.)

13) Make it pleasant

Do everything you can to make it a positive experience rather than a chore. Do what s/he likes, not necessarily how you would do it. If s/he likes Irish Spring soap and you prefer lavender, go with with Irish!

14) Reinforce positive outcomes

Remark on the positive outcomes from her/his point of view (E.g. “How do you feel now? You have always enjoyed having a shower, being fresh and clean. I bet you feel great.” Or: “I find having a shower makes me feel wonderful and energized. I wonder if you feel the same…”)

15) Learn as you go

Review/debrief yourself on what worked and what didn’t and do more of the former and less of the latter next time. Build on the good things you did that seemed to work. Remember they might not work every time and that it’s important to be flexible. Congratulate yourself on a job well done; focus on your successes; learn from your failures.

Here’s a nursing home example of what NOT to do.

More tips here:

#mc_embed_signup{background:#fff; clear:left; font:14px Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; }
/* Add your own MailChimp form style overrides in your site stylesheet or in this style block.
We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. */

Subscribe to MAS now & get 5 free PDFs & a page of welcome links:

Email Address

Take my short survey on behaviour here.

Image copyright: mheim301165 / 123RF Stock Photo

Care Partnering, Tips, tools & skills

you’re invited to a free, life-saving dementia care webinar

If you are a dementia care partner to a family member, or a care worker in a long-term care facility, you’ve probably felt like you’re drowning at some point or another, and if you haven’t yet, you will one day. Wouldn’t it be great if you could be your own lifesaver? Even better, wouldn’t it be wonderful to reduce, or even prevent situations in which you thought you were going under the waves and never come up again?

Here’s my invitation to you:

Register for the webinar here.


Relevant background links here:


Subscribe to my free updates here.

Information, Poetry, Resources, Tips, tools & skills

Top 10 MAS posts to date (plus bonus links)


Happy New Year!

As we launch into 2017, I am committed to building on the success of the past to change mindsets and improve dementia care worldwide. is only three years old, but it has already made a mark and garnered a lot of support, thanks to you, it’s subscribers and supporters.

MAS top posts come in all colours, shapes and sizes. They include memes, tips, demos, poetry, questions and a rant. The top post, “5 ways we rob people with dementia of their dignity,” has been viewed more than 13,500 times. Not bad for starters. Here’s a list of the top 10 posts:

  1. 5 ways we rob people with dementia of their dignity
  2. 20 questions that help explain why people with dementia get agitated and physically aggressive
  3. 10 ways to calm a crisis with a person with dementia (Teepa Snow demo)
  4. 20 questions to ask when a LO with dementia doesn’t recognize you anymore
  5. 13 expert tips to help with “I want to go home.” (Teepa Snow demo)
  6. don’t give advice to people who are drowning
  7. 7 powerful things a care partner can say to stop anger and aggression in a person with dementia
  8. Two Mothers Remembered by Joann Snow Duncanson
  9. dying with my mom
  10. Teepa Snow demos Hand Under Hand™ dementia care to connect, comfort and “control”


Subscribe to my free updates here.

Take my short survey on behaviour here.

Image copyright: kathienichols / 123RF Stock Photo

Information, Resources, Tips, tools & skills, Videos

25 dementia communication quick tips in 4 minutes!



These are great tips for newbie care partners and “the general public,” and practical reminders for those who have been involved in dementia care for any length of time. The engaging four-minute animation will help embed the techniques in your brain. Have a read and a watch!

  1. use one idea per sentence (i.e only one verb)
  2. ask questions
  3. limit demands on recent memory
  4. provide options for answering
  5. speak at a normal rate
  6. use normal volume
  7. use normal intonation
  8. eliminate distractions
  9. encourage
  10. support participation
  11. use prompting & cueing
  12. invite engagement
  13. offer choices
  14. mention preferences
  15. facilitate
  16. supply possible answers
  17. orchestrate
  18. provide guidance
  19. assist with activities
  20. demonstrate
  21. partner
  22. draw on shared memories
  23. tell stories
  24. use simple grammar & sentences
  25. do an enjoyable activity together


More here:

Subscribe to my updates here.

Advocacy, Challenges & Solutions, Toward better care

brutal short fragile storm perpetuates dementia care stigma and myths


The nine-minute short film Fragile Storm opens with a young woman being tied to a bed by an older man. It appears she is being held captive. The atmosphere is dark and chilling; like a horror movie. The woman is clearly terrified; she screams and pleads.

“What do you want from me?” she asks her voice cracking with fear.

“I want you to do what I say,” he says threateningly as he straddles her. It looks like he might be about to rape her. It’s creepy, violent and scary. The jailer is alternately nasty and nice with his victim in the way some abusers behave. In the next scene, the woman is tied to a kitchen chair as the man tries to force-feed her a watery broth. She spits it at him. When he shoves a piece of bread in her mouth, she bites his hand. He responds by slapping her hard across the face after which he collapses with his arms around her, seemingly guilt ridden.

We learn in an unexpected twist that the young woman is not a young woman at all but an older woman, the man’s wife. Apparently, she is living with dementia of some kind. The film flashes back to a scene in which the man promises to always take care of her “no matter what.” It seems “no matter what” has become a hellish prison from which neither can escape.

As a film, Fragile Storm is arresting. It’s skillfully shot and masterfully acted; it’s compelling to watch. Not surprisingly, it’s garnered a host of awards on the festival circuit. As one friend commented: “It sucks you in, it’s scary, like a scary movie, but then the twist is he isn’t her captor he’s her husband just trying to keep a promise.”

There’s no denying the clever twist, and the underlying love story. But the film sickened and angered me for the way it taps into people’s fears and reinforces the stigma associated with dementia and those who live with it, and perpetuates the harmful myths that better dementia care advocates around the world are trying so hard to dispel – myths that say, for example, that dementia inevitably causes those who live with it to become aggressive and violent. People who live with dementia are people; they respond to adverse circumstances in the same ways we all do. But because they live with dementia their normal behaviour is deemed aberrant.

We don’t need myths like these reinforced. Instead, we need people to understand what causes this kind of behaviour and to equip care partners with the knowledge and skills required to reduce behavioural expressions that are problematic. Fear mongering is not useful. Neither is terrorizing people who live with dementia by physically and chemically restraining them (including tying them to beds and chairs and force-feeding them); this is abuse.

I fully understand the film is a dramatization; it’s a movie, fiction not reality. But it tells a story that is meant to reflect reality, and I don’t believe it does, or at least not the reality of the majority of dementia care partnerships. Do violence and abuse occur? Undoubtedly they do. But are they the norm when family members care for their loved ones? I think not. In fact, I would argue that aggression, abuse and neglect are more prevalent in institutional environments than in people’s own homes. It’s irresponsible to fuel fears with this kind of portrayal (fictional though it may be) of what caring for someone with dementia is like.

ChangingAging pioneer and dementia care advocate Dr. Bill Thomas tweeted that he found the film “creepy as hell” and couldn’t watch it through to the end because it made him “nauseous.” Dementia care advocate, author and prolific blogger Kate Swaffer, who is one of the founders of Dementia Alliance International and who lives with dementia herself, wrote:

“I am almost without words to say how dreadful I think this is, and how far back it will take the work of so many global advocates living with dementia, trying desperately to stop the stigma and myths. Showcasing it like this, as if it is always like this, simply ensures the fear of dementia is heightened, and perhaps even more people will avoid getting diagnosed.”

Long-time care partner P.P. said this in a forum comment:

“I found it very disturbing. As a care partner I can’t imagine restraining my loved one. I understand his frustration and it clearly shows the emotions of both parties, but all I could think was that the poor man needed help and education. My heart breaks for both of them, what a sad situation they are in. That is why support groups and other forms of education are so important. Unfortunately, not everyone knows how to access the help they need. We must all speak out about our situations and not be afraid to reach out to others, we are all in this together.”

Another long-time care partner said:

“I’ve just watched the first few minutes of this. It’s horrible and to think that it’s happening around us. It’s a shame anyone would have to live like this. I found this so upsetting that I’m not sure I can finish watching it. I’m heartbroken.”

Those who conceived and produced Fragile Storm are clearly talented filmmakers. They know how to capture and keep an audience’s attention, except for those who can’t bear to see others in such pain. Next time I hope they use their skills to create positive change instead of further entrenching harmful stigma and myths.

Subscribe to my free updates here.

Image Copyright: bialasiewicz / 123RF Stock Photo