This article originally appeared here in The Wall Street Journal
By Clare Ansberry
A husband vowed to care for his wife at home after her diagnosis of Lewy body and Alzheimer’s disease. Their daughters worried about them both.
Nick Clement, 78, spent the last 10 years caring for his wife, Lucy, who had a progressive dementia called Lewy body as well as Alzheimer’s.
As her condition worsened, his two daughters worried about the toll it was taking on their dad and wanted him to get more in-home help and consider long-term care.
“It was a very delicate house of cards,” says his daughter, Jennifer Lowe, 55.
But Nick wanted to take care of Lucy himself. “I feel that is my obligation. You take those marriage vows seriously. For better or for worse. In sickness and in health.”
The family learned much along their decade-long caregiving journey, about setting up trusts, getting help in the home and respecting each other’s decisions. They think about a few things they would have done differently. And they found that caregiving, while relentless and heartbreaking at times, can also be rewarding.