"Arthritis, that's what it is": An Analysis of Alzheimer's Denial

Faith Roncoroni


I desperately want to share my past with her, reminisce with her, recount how she role played in my childhood reality. We are past that. It’s her turn to fantasize, but I cannot seem to play along as well as she did. I need to understand her reality before I can enter it. I need to understand Alzheimer’s before I can comfort her. When presented with the opportunity to interview, analyze, and gain a better understanding of how illness impacts a patient’s life, I knew my gram’s inability to discuss Alzheimer’s directly made her a difficult subject for the interview. I chose her anyway.

The following essay examines my understanding of my gram's struggle with Alzheimer's by focusing on dependency, stigma, denial, and reaffirmation.

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