Everything You've Always Wanted to Know About Living With Dementia: A Virtual Q&A
On June 15, 2021, 5 of our authors came together for our first Virtual Q&A called “Everything You’ve Always Wanted to Know About Living with Early Onset Dementia but Were Afraid to Ask.” We talked about their diagnoses, and they answered questions regarding their daily lives, how they cope with their condition, how they manage to keep a positive attitude, and so much more. You will learn a lot!
For a transcript, please email [email protected]. Let’s get started!
Michael Ellenbogen was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 49, after experiencing symptoms for 10 years. This led to an early retirement from his career in information technology. Following his diagnosis, he has become an outspoken advocate for those with dementia and has written articles and blog posts in addition to his book, From the Corner Office to Alzheimer’s. He has appeared on podcasts and television and has testified before the United States Congress.
Gerda Saunders was the Associate Director of and taught in the Gender Studies Program at the University of Utah; she also taught gender and literature courses in the English Department. At the age of 61, she was diagnosed with cerebral microvascular disease, a precursor to dementia. She retired a year later. She maintains an active lifestyle, writing and speaking about the disease in a variety of settings. She is the author of Memory’s Last Breath: Field Notes on My Dementia, and blogs at Living With My Dementia.
Wendy Mitchell started a blog, Which Me Am I Today? after being diagnosed with young-onset Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia in 2014. She was 58. Her blog eventually became a memoir, Somebody I Used to Know. Wendy remains active in the dementia community, participating in workshops and lectures across England. She has a very active Twitter presence, which she calls her lifeline.
Dr. Jennifer Bute, FRCGP worked in Africa as a doctor before working as a GP (Family Doctor) for 25 years and was involved in medical education. She was diagnosed with dementia ten years ago. She speaks at conferences and on radio and has been involved in television programs raising awareness and understanding of dementia. She passionately believes more can be done to improve both the present and the future for those living with the disease. Her book Dementia from the Inside: A Doctor’s Personal Journey of Hope is her story and explains these principles. Her website GloriousOpportunity.org includes many videos where she discusses different aspects of the condition, and she also blogs on Facebook at Glorious Opportunity.
Peter Berry ran the family’s timber business for decades before being diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at age 50. He immediately stopped working and fell into a deep depression. After some time, he realized that he still had a life to live, overcame his depression, and now fills his days with cycling across the English countryside with his friends, and advocating for those with dementia in his community and on social media. To date he has raised more than £20,000 for dementia charities through cycling challenges. He tells his story in Slow Puncture: Living Well with Dementia, with Deb Bunt.
Each season our podcast brings you six of our authors sharing their dementia journeys. Please subscribe so you don’t miss a word. If our authors’ stories move you please leave a review. And don’t forget to share our podcast with family and friends in need of knowledge, comfort, and support on their own dementia journeys.
AlzAuthors is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization totally reliant on donations to do what we do. Your generosity supports our mission to lift the silence and stigma of Alzheimer’s and other dementias. To sustain our efforts please visit https://alzauthors.com/donate/ .
Thank you for listening.