I want to thank you for your illuminating article in January, published in the Spectator, a journal that illuminates in a spirit of true enlightenment.
You are of course absolutely spot on. Dementia is a blessing. Dementia induces a state of wellbeing and forgetfulness that allows all past irritations, hurtful memories, and bad relationships, to drift out of mind, such that a person can dwell happily and restfully in the present.
Dementia is caused by disease in the brain, and since there is no cure it is a blessing , as we cannot remember that cancer and most other diseases are indeed curable and ours is not. As you so eloquently write, far worse to have cancer and live in fear of death, than to simply be unaware of having any disease at all. Perhaps you should have demanded a dose of dementia so you forgot your fear of your cancer. Get in touch and I will see what I can do to help.
Some people mistakenly believe that people suffering with dementia…or rather, not suffering, since they are not aware of their disease…have actual thoughts, and feelings, and can recall events from their early lives. How absurd. We know nothing, we recall nothing. We feel nothing.
Some people living (not suffering) in oblivion with dementia do misbehave from time to time, and actually cause trouble. You don’t seem to mention this. You are in the lucky and very common position of only knowing if people who sit contentedly, and ask for nothing. Why on earth would anyone who only knows complete contentment challenge you, or lash out, or shout, or wander around? Unheard of, of course.
Unusually, you only know people who are still living, who have not yet got to a cliff edge to jump off. How fortunate. Even though they seem to all be incontinent. But since they are unaware of their disease they are also unaware of their incontinence, and sit contentedly in their poo and wee, smiling out from their chair. How quaint.
One of dementia’s great gifts is wonderful hallucinations. Not all of us get them, but we can dream…I would so love to see rats and snakes on the table and snarling wolves circling around me. Never mind Turkish women, give me a smelly, infestations of rats. The ‘old boy’ you know is truly missing out.
The brain disease that destroys our functions of course increases sensory pleasure. You express it very articulately…’sensory pleasures can increase’. For example, enjoying food you have always disliked. It is very helpful to lose your senses of smell and taste, and to be unable to hear properly, as it allows you to love everything that comes your way.
Including a spouse you have hated for decades. That, Cressida
Dick, is the best thing. What’s not to like? When you just love everyone around you.
It is quite clear that dementia is sent from Heaven to make our declining years happy, contented and full of fabulous dreams. Thank goodness the Spectator has seen this and told us.
Please, those who know us and count us as friends, don’t ever visit us, as we will not know you or value your visit. We’ll just ignore you and dream on in happy oblivion.
PS: What are your views on euthanasia?