Letting go: separation-individuation in a wife of an Alzheimer's patient.
Conflicts surrounding separation-individuation issues may affect decision making and reluctance to use available help among older spouse caregivers for Alzheimer's patients. This paper describes an intermittent, focused social work intervention to help overcome personal and intrapsychic barriers to using available help. Therapeutic goals, common themes, and implications for practice with caregiving wives are discussed, with specific attention to supporting the wife in her wish to "responsibly finish" rather than separate from a marital bond.
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