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19th Apr 2024

Grandmother with dementia overjoyed when she meets her grandchildren ‘for first time every day’


‘It’s a bittersweet moment when she sees the kids’

A mum with dementia forgets her grandchildren, meaning that each day she meets them she finds out she’s a grandmother for the ‘first time.’

Josie Hunt, 65, was diagnosed with Korsakoff syndrome – an alcohol-induced form of dementia – in October 2020.

It means she struggles with her short-term memory and forgets she has grandchildren.

Every time her daughter, Jade Mead, 35, takes her children Marli, three, and Lottie, three months old, to see their grandmother Josie says: “Jade, you didn’t tell me you had children”.

Despite the surprise, Josie is never annoyed about it and loves cuddling Marli and Lottie like it is the first she has met them.

Jade says Josie doesn’t remember her sister Hayley Hunt, 41, has a baby either.

Jade, a fitness coach, from Perth, Australia, said: “It’s a strange one as she has all her long-term memory still.

“It’s a bittersweet moment when she sees the kids.”

Josie developed her form of dementia after drinking alcohol following a gastric sleeve operation in February 2020, Jade said.

Her condition deteriorated quickly, and she was diagnosed with Korsakoff syndrome in October 2020.

Jade said: “I believe it stemmed from the gastric sleeve operation.

“Her health started declining from there.

“She looked so frail.

“She had been drinking alcohol which we didn’t know about, and you shouldn’t do that.”

It is believed the alcohol consumption caused a lack of nutrients to go to the brain – causing her brain damage and memory loss.

Jade said: “She declined very quickly.

“She wasn’t making any sense.”

Josie has been told her mum shouldn’t decline any further for a while and says she is able to see the positives in the moments she meets her children each time.

She said: “She’s always been very loving.

“My three-year-old doesn’t ask any questions but I just tell her ‘nanny forgets’.”

Josie is now living in a supported living home.

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