Hi, my name is La Verne. I live in the city of Lancaster. I have been a caregiver now for 20 years.
I became a caregiver because I took care of my mother and father until, say, point of death. And I was very intrigued and interested on the geriatric patients, on how to treat them and be treated. That's what really inspired me to get into the caregiving.
My advice to a new caregiver would be to go in motivated, happy. Listen. The main thing with a dementia patient or Alzheimer patient, you have to listen, not raise your voice. Be as calm. If they get angry, you step aside, and you come back. You have to be careful. Just listen. Go in and do what you're supposed to do, and I think you'll be okay.
The client I will never forget would be Mary. She was in her third stage of dementia, going into Alzheimer. She was very combative and very angry and very rude, but I was the only caregiver that she would let into her home to take care of her. So it would be Mary.