Doris Ober

Selected Work

Memoir
Do not be alarmed by the title: The Alzheimer's Years: A Mother and Daughter Reunion is not a depressing book, though it is touching and frequently very funny. Molly Bourne, M.D., director of Hospice in Petaluma in the California Bay Area, writes: "A treasure. I think of those just early into the possibility of a dementia diagnosis and how this is an accessible, real, inspiring, funny glance at it without crushing the heart or making one run fast in the other direction."
A middle-aged couple of escaped New Yorkers become shepherds in the rural outpost of West Marin California, and learn much about life—and about death—from the experience.
Prose, Poetry, and Art
managing editor
A literary/art journal with works by locals and visitors to this very special northern California community. Robert Hass, Jane Hirshfield, Susan Trott are a few of the stars in Volume 4.
Nonfiction
with Sukie Miller, Ph.D.
“This is the best book on parental grief that I have seen.”
--Seattle Times
English/Spanish Language
with Richard Kirschman
“It says, Go ahead, give this language a try; you’ve already got the vocabulary.”
--San Francisco Chronicle
Portraits
with Charles Garfield and Cindy Spring
“An extremely valuable source of information.... Your heart will be touched and your mind opened.”
--Bernie Siegel, M.D., author of Love, Medicine, and Miracles

Sometimes My Heart Goes Numb: Love and Caregiving in
a Time of AIDS

with Charles Garfield and Cindy Spring

Some people are born to be caregivers. Some embrace caregiving to heal their own wounds. And some have caregiving thrust upon them by life circumstances. Sometimes My Heart Goes Numb offers compelling portraits of twenty exemplary caregivers...

Caregivers everywhere will treasure this book as a guide whose tales are raw, honest, funny, wide, and always inspiring. The book shows us:

* How to “say the right thing” when a parent accuses you of not doing everything you can to help her child.

* How to set healthy limits.

* How to understand someone’s heartfelt gratitude when you “only” bring over a self-healing book or some homemade chicken soup.

* How to know when to encourage someone’s fight for life and when to accompany them to death’s door.

* How to identify your own special needs as a caregiver and implement effective self-care strategies to avoid burnout and compassion fatigue.

These men and women demystify the caregiving process as they talk candidly about the risks and rewards of supporting someone with a chronic or life-threatening illness. They share their hard won ideas about active listening, establishing boundaries and coping with multiple losses, bereavement overload, and relentless uncertainty. Finally, they show all of us--whether we care for people with AIDS or not--how to really make a difference in the lives of the people we love.