Follow Here To Purchase The Caregiving Wife's Handbook: Caring for Your Seriously Ill Husband, Caring for Yourself

Author: Diana B. Denholm, PhD, LMHC

Publisher: Hunter House Publishers

ISBN: 978-0-89793-605-7

In the Bible, Ecclesiastes 3:1 says “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die.” In Diana B. Denholm’s book, The Caregiving Wife’s Handbook, the topic of wives helping, caring and living through their husband’s terminally illness is discussed, dissected and detailed.

This one hundred and ninety-eight page paperback book has a banal, clinical front cover with an endorsement on the front jacket and several paragraphs about the book’s content including another endorsement, a short author biography and author photograph on the back.  No grammar or typographical errors were noted.  Due to the subject matter, the book is mainly targeted to married women who have seriously ill husbands.

The book starts with several pages of endorsements, contents, acknowledgements and an introduction that includes the author’s own story.  Most of the book is about six married women of different ages, social statuses and backgrounds who have dealt with their husbands’ life-threatening illness or deaths and how they went through the five stages of denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.  The conclusion of the book has a helpful resource section that concentrates on the ins and outs of searching on the internet for information along with a comprehensive index.

Having gone through over eleven years of her own sad, tiring, bittersweet experience, Denholm promotes communication as the top priority as the couple walk through the process of accepting one of their own deaths.  Utilizing a four-category sorting process, the emotional channels can be opened by determining if a specific topic does not expect the other’s response, discussing it will not make a difference, if it should be discussed with a friend instead or if it really needs to be talked out, known about, resolved or decided upon.  She applies this “understanding” technique between the husband and wife to almost all aspects in her book.

Because the common threads of a caregiver can be anger, guilt, exhaustion and fear, these are dissected more through the eyes of the six women and their heart-felt experiences.  The author includes detailed suggestions such as avoiding codependency, using the “I realize; however,” statement with confronting family and friends and gives a list of fifty well-thought out do’s and don’ts to the tragic situation.

This book may be very helpful for a married woman just starting to face her husband’s long term illness and demise but it only skimmed the surface when memory loss or dementia-type illnesses provide little time to talk, confirm and agree to a spouse’s wishes, needs and wants.  Also, little was mentioned about the spiritual aspect of both the husband and wife and how they can help each other with the pain, loneliness and sorrow by knowing their stances and beliefs about God and the afterlife.

Follow Here To Purchase The Caregiving Wife's Handbook: Caring for Your Seriously Ill Husband, Caring for Yourself