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Imagine forgetting everything you have ever done in life –jobs you held, a marriage you built, the children you raised, your friends, your travels, everything. For many older people such severe memory loss is a reality. A man in Tennessee tries to help the old with the pain that can come with memory. Doug Oliver worked as a mental health care provider. He is retired now. But he volunteers at a daycare center for senior citizens in the southern U.S. city of Nashville, Tennessee. He goes there and talks with people about their past. Mr. Oliver uses a technique called guided conversations to help older people remember their past. Guided conversations are planned, purposeful talks. Mr. Oliver says it is important to get patients to connect memories of the past to the present and the future. These connections help a person reach memories that are buried deep away in the brain. To do this, the volunteer uses memories of good experiences and bad — successes and losses. Guided conversation start with memory recovery. But the aim of the talks is not just to remember. Guided conversations also help people regain a sense of self-worth. Mr. Oliver says the people realize through the process that they were, and still are, important. This helps fight depression in older people. Mr. Oliver says sometimes he thinks about quitting. He has an eye disease and cannot see well. For him, getting to the daycare center and home again can be difficult. But he says he always decides to continue his work. He says he knows he is where he needs to be doing what he should be doing.