In a world filled with bad news at every click, to be brought to tears for reasons of joy rather than sorrow is a rarity. Fortunately, this heartwarming story does just that.
On January 26, 2019, Dr. Philip Grimmer, a general practitioner in Wiltshire, posted a photo on twitter with the caption, “Words of reassurance left for an elderly lady with dementia by her daughter. A simple white board left in her sight line in her sitting room. Helped to reduce constant anxious phone calls.” The whiteboard he mentioned contained several reminders left for a dementia patient. They include, “You’re okay,” “Everyone’s fine,” “You don’t owe anyone money,” and “Your meals are paid for.” As of this week, the post has garnered over 40,000 likes.
Helping to popularize this post was Aman Bhatia from Shimla, India. He was touched by Dr. Grimmer’s tweet, and took to Reddit to share the heartening titbit. It has since seen more than 112,000 upvotes on the site.
Those moved by the story have commented similar stories of their own. A tweeter user, going by Nick Brooks, shared his own photo of a sign for his mum, which included the phrase, “Nobody goes to bed before 8 O’Clock.” Another twitter user, Eric Wibbl, shared a story of another relevant experience, “My father in law used electric tape on the floor to mark the path from his mother’s room to the bathroom to aid with night time wandering…”
Professionals in the field of Alzheimer’s and dementia treatment have affirmed the validity and safety of this “whiteboard technique,” explaining that as long as the reminders and reassurances are true, dementia patients can benefit greatly from these notes.
Dr. Grimmer did not anticipate the scope of his post, believing that his tweet would only “be seen by a few interested colleagues.” He remarked that he feels impressed by the power of Twitter and is excited to share the influx of responses with the woman who created the whiteboard.