Sunday, June 5, 2011

Maria Shriver on Alzheimer’s and Women: Hope Over Fear | BlogHer

Maria Shriver on Alzheimer’s and Women: Hope Over Fear | BlogHer

Maria Shriver on Alzheimer’s and Women: Hope Over Fear

Try to remember what you were doing a minute ago. Got it? Now wrap your brains around this: In the past minute, another American developed a fatal disease that will slowly erase the personality and a lifetime of memories. That person will either die with that disease or from it, because there is no cure. That disease is Alzheimer’s, and it’s a growing national epidemic.

Right now, Alzheimer’s disease is like an earthquake rumbling deep in the core of our society, and women are at its epicenter. Women are fully two-thirds of the people with Alzheimer’s. They are also 60 percent of the unpaid caregivers of loved ones who have it. In every way, Alzheimer’s is a mind-blowing disease -- not just for the people who get it, but for everyone around them.

Believe me, I know. When my father, Sargent Shriver, was diagnosed back in 2003, my mother, four brothers and I all felt we were entering a world that was

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