Monday, 18 April 2011


I am an 18 year old male, living in Newcastle Upon Tyne. You can find me on Twitter at @JamesEllison92, this is where I shall be sharing my blogs.

In the Winter of 2008, my Dad (Then aged 59) was diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer's disease. This is a topic which I have kept highly quiet amongst my peers, however I have come to the point where I am under the impression that my experiences and opinions may be able to help others/give them a view of Alzheimer's from a younger person's perspective.

I am planning to try and post a blog every fortnight. However due to exams etc, this goal may be unreachable. If you are willing to 'put up with' my often juvenile 'Tweets', then maybe every fortnight I will provide you with a helpful, sometimes touching, blog.

Within my blog I plan to post stories about my experiences with my Father, the impact that Alzheimer's has had on me and my family and advice for carers - I know that my opinion may not be widely respected, but hopefully I will help someone.

I am not sure whether or not this blog is a good idea, so any feedback with opinions of whether you think the blog has a point or people will be interested in what I have to say will be much appreciated.

This introduction has been written in a rather formal style, I can not promise that this style will be within all of my posts!

Thanks, James.


  1. Hi James,

    Just wanted to say, thanks for starting this blog. My Dad was diagnosed with early-onset Lewy Body Dementia (a form of dementia which combines aspects of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's) at the age of 60 - I was 18. He passed away last year at the age of 67.

    I never blogged about what was happening to my dad at the time, but now I wish I did. I think it's really important to get the message out there that Alzheimer's and dementia aren't exclusive to old people - and for people in a similar situation to know that they aren't alone and that support is out there.

    I hope that writing this blog will be helpful to you and to others as well.

    All the best,

    Jade Bailey (@flailey)

  2. Thank you very much Jade.

    I am so sorry to hear about your Dad! That's such a shame. I am sorry for your loss!

    I'm glad that you feel my blog may help people and raise awareness. I know it's obviously a horrible thing to happen to any family, but knowing that there are others in my situation that can understand and support me is a nice feeling.

    I hope that my blog will be a good way to express my feelings instead of keeping them bottled up, whilst hopefully informing and helping others.

    Thank you very much for your support.

    James :)

  3. a very brave blog. My Grandmother has the very early signs of dementia - but she is 82!
    Thinking of you & your dad.

  4. Thank you! My thoughts are also with you and your family!

  5. Absolutely. A brilliant idea. The more awareness of these types of illness will help people to understand them and prevent it from being a "tabboo" subject. Well done you for doing it. I certainly value blogging as an effective therapy and way to communicate :) xx

  6. My husband has Lewy Body Dementia. I realize there will be many hard and emotional days ahead.
    I hope you will be able to try and find something to smile about every day.

    I am happy you are choosing to journal. I find blogging is a form of self help for myself and believe it or not, yours will be a big help to others including me. :)

    Thank you for allowing us a glimpse into your life

    You are in my prayers

  7. My Grandma has the early onset of dementia (she is 87 this year) and I think this blog is a great idea for those in a similar position to you, such as myself. :) I retweeted your blog for you too.

  8. RE: Becky

    Thank you, I am glad that you think blogging will help me! Thanks for reading! Thanks for your support! It makes me feel happy knowing that people understand!

  9. RE: Kathy
    I am so sorry to hear about your husband, my Mother has emplyed a full-time carer for my dad and often goes away for a weekend to give herself a break. Remember, you have to live your life as well as your husband! I hope you find something to make you smile too! Maybe my blog could! I am glad you feel as if I will help you and others! Your support is highly appreciated! Thank you for your prayers! My dad is also highly religious!

  10. RE: Adele
    I'm sorry to hear about your Grandmother! My thoughts are with you and your family! Thank you for your support, knowing I can help people like you makes it much easier! Thanks for the RT! :D

  11. Hi James,

    I came across the link to your blog on Twitter and am now following - I think it's really brave of you to write about your experiences, and I agree with what others have said about it being likely to provide some comfort to both yourself and others as well as spreading awareness. My dad is 70 and was diagnosed with Alzheimer's a few years ago, but like you said about your dad in your second post I suspect that the problems started a few years before that... it's so hard to distinguish between absent-mindedness/clumsiness (which you can often just put down to tiredness etc), and there being a genuine problem, so it's really important to raise awareness of what to look out for.

    My thoughts are with you and your dad, hope one day there is a cure for this horrible disease!


  12. Hi Jessie, thank you for the follow and your comments. I am pleased that you agree with what people have said about my blog and I am so sorry to hear that your dad also suffers from Alzheimer's. I hope that my post can help people be aware that the symptoms are not obviously AD at first and that checking ASAP is important (even though it is a bit scary!)I'm glad you can relate to what i've written. My thoughts are with you and your dad too! Thanks for reading! X

  13. Mum was diagnosed at age of 58 symptoms excellerated when her dad died. Thinking back before mum was diagnosed she was also driving but would ask on regular basis to take her shops etc. When in car she would struggle to put a seat belt on. We would just tell her to sort herself out not knowing teal reason behind what was going on. It was only when a neighbour told us that she had been standing outside their house at 4am waiting for a ambulance that something was up. 
    Mum is now 63 and now in a care home. I had no choice I have a young family. It was hardest thing I have ever had to do.
    Now when I visit I don't even know if she knows who I am

  14. RE David: That sounds scarily similar! I'm so sorry about your mum! And we did the same, I think it's natural to not expect anything too serious. What he was doing just seemed odd, then when it got too odd he went in for tests and after a while he was diagnosed.I think that if my Mum hadn't employed her brother as a full-time carer my dad would as be in a care-home, however it is getting too much after work-hours and I can see him being put in a care-home soon too! I know it'll be hard but it'll make it so much easier for everyone else! It may sound selfish but it's not at all! My thoughts are with you and your family. I am sure at times she will know who you are, but I guess it's something that all people with relatives who has AD have to anticipate. But i'm sure that she will, sometimes, be aware of who you are. It's so terrible! Thank you for reading and commenting and good luck David!