VIRGIN Media viewers said they’re “bawling” watching Martin Kings “powerful” documentary We Need To Talk About Dementia.
Virgin Media Ireland has been running Donate for Dementia all week in hopes to raise vital funds to support people with all forms of dementia which affects half a million Irish families.
To conclude this charity week TV presenter Martin King opened up about losing his mother, grandmother and aunt to dementia and the huge impact it has had on his life in this documentary.
In the new documentary, We Need To Talk About Dementia, The Six O’Clock presenter went on a personal journey as he aimed to answer questions we all have about dementia.
In 2019 Martin sadly lost his mum, Christina to dementia and his dad, Martin Senior, who was in the same nursing home and room, as his mother, died just 4 weeks before her.
When he died suddenly, the family made the decision not to tell their mother as they felt the news would make her regress. Sadly, she passed away a few weeks later.
During tonight’s documentary Martin sat down with his sisters Claire and Eithne and they reflected on their lives with their parents before their passing.
They also spoke about their mother’s gradual decline into dementia and what effect it had on the family.
Speaking in the documentary Martin said: “Dad died on the 22 of April and she slipped away on the 21 of may so four weeks.
“In the end he went at Easter.”
Martin’s sister Claire was emotional as she said: “I had bought my dad’s clothes to wear to my mother’s funeral because I was thinking it would be one less thing to worry about.”
Eithne also said: “We didn’t tell mam we never told mam that dad died but she figured it out on her own she definitely figured it our in her own way.
“My mam was amazing and he had beautiful eyes and there was just nothing.”
Following this Martin also spoke with Margeurite who was diagnosed with dementia at 54 years of age as well as her daughter Blathnaid.
On the show, Margeurite said: “I have a plan when there is place for me to go, when I get worse but I’m hoping that I can hang on here until Blathnaid is gone to college.”
Blathnaid was very emotional as she spoke about her mother’s diagnosis and she said that she is worried her mum won’t be around for important moments in her life.
Speaking through tears, Blathnaid said: “I suppose when I first got told I was kind of like,’ I don’t want to lose my mam’.
“I just kind of thought is she going to be around for my debs or is she going to be at my wedding?
“I know it’s very dramatic but those were the kinds of thoughts I was thinking of.
“I would never want to lose my mam, she’s like my best friend and we’ve always been as thick as thieves.
“So I didn’t want that taken away from me. I didn’t want her to forget me and forget the things that we do.”
Martin then visited scientist Matthew Campbell who spoke about what happens to the brain of someone who has dementia.
Following this Martin sat down with Simon who spoke about his mum Jakki and her battle with dementia.
He explained that Jakki found out about her diagnosis when she was very young and many people didn’t think she had dementia.
During the documentary Simon got a change to visit his mum in her nursing home for the first time in a while due to the pandemic.
Martin also spoke with more expects about the subject and visited a nursing home that cares for people with dementia.
Finally, Martin spoke with Sean and Mary to discuss Sean’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis and the impact it has had on their lives.
Virgin Media viewers flooded Twitter with praise for the new documentary as they praised Martin for sharing his story.
The Irish Dementia Working Group tweeted sayinig: “Your mum would be very proud @martinkingtv3.
“Thank you for shining a light on dementia and the impact on families.
“The disappointing need to fight for #DementiaSupports should not happen to other families.
“We will all remember your Mams beautiful eyes.”
Eimear gushed: “Very powerful viewing.”
Daryl said: “And I’m bawling.”
Jean wrote: “Martin King great programme and so important. Well done and to all the people involved.”
While Jackie also tweeted saying: “Well done to Marguerite for telling her story and what an incredible daughter you have.”