Care for the Carer: An Alzheimer’s Memoir


Born and raised in New York’s suburbs, Jeff Camhi earned his PhD in neurobiology at Harvard. He was then a professor at Cornell for fifteen years, following which he moved with his family to Israel, where he was a professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem for twenty-five years. Academically, he is best known for his research on how nerve cells produce behavior in animals.

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“This is a story we all need of how to live well, how to love with decency, humor, humility, and passion, and how to find enough in the world to keep us in it, hungry for more, even when we lose someone we love. This is a deeply humane book that will stay with me.

— Ilana Blumberg,
Professor of English and Linguistics, Bar Ilan University


“Professor Camhi’s engrossing memoir sends an important message to family caregivers of a demented loved one—that they can learn, as he did, to live an engaging life, even while caring for one whose life is closing down.”

—Professor Margaret O’Connor,
past president of the International Neuropsychological Society


“In this brilliant memoir, Camhi describes a hard lesson he learned—that he needed to care not only for his demented wife, but also for himself. Required reading for anyone providing long-term care of a loved one.”

—Dr. H. William Taeusch,
author of Baby Doe

When his wife Jane was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s dementia, Jeff Camhi believed he could manage caring for her at home. From his professional background in neurobiology, he had some idea how the illness might progress, and his recent retirement left him time to be her caregiver.

But as Jane’s dementia increased, he began to feel overwhelmed. He started meeting twice-monthly, for a year and a half, with a professor of occupational therapy who advised him on caring for Jane, but even more on caring for himself. The result was life-changing.

Thought-provoking and compassionate, Care for the Carer: An Alzheimer’s Memoir is essential reading for anybody troubled by the pressure of caregiving.


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