MacKay Hannah

Dealing with living grief: Supporting carers

Tue 25th May 2021

OVERVIEW View Webinar Agenda

This webinar is intended to explore how people caring for someone with dementia can experience feelings of loss and grief while the person they are caring for is still alive. It will discuss how those carers - both personal and professional - can be supported through these experiences, the challenges that carers may face in recognising and coping with their journey through grief and the broader scale and impact of living grief in the context of Scotland’s wider dementia experience.

Carers can experience challenging feelings of loss and grief when they care for a person with dementia, both during and after their caring role. Since core parts of identity can be lost during dementia a carer may grieve losing the person they care for as they change. Much of what they recognised as the person they care for may be lost or altered. They may in effect live through losing the person they care for twice, firstly through dementia and then again at end of life.

Coping with this process can be made more or less bearable depending upon the professional support carers receive while they are caring. If grief being experienced when the person with dementia is alive is not accepted - or explained - it may make the challenge of caring much more acute. In recognising and dealing with living grief it is important for it to be accepted as such and professionals have a critical role to play in this while supporting both the carer and the person with dementia.

Key points

  • Scotland, dementia and living grief - what does the evidence tell us?
  • Supporting people with dementia and their carers through living grief
  • Sharing awareness of grief support and considering what works
  • Shaping policy and practice to support dementia carers through living grief
  • What do people experiencing living grief need?
  • Why grieving is important and people experiencing living grief need?


Lynda Gauld

Director, Baccus Consulting

Linda Gill

Carer Involvement Lead - East Scotland, tide

Maxine Norrish

Project Manager - Bereaved by Dementia, Cruse Bereavement Care Cymru

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There was a good variety of speakers, all of whom were very good and insightful. The conference was very useful and relevant providing a comprehensive overview.

Delegate from City of Edinburgh Council,
Attending Core Challenges for the Future of Scottish Local Government

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