Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

The CafeMom Newcomers Club The CafeMom Newcomers Club

What do you think? Should he have moved on BEFORE she dies?

Posted by on Apr. 21, 2013 at 7:35 AM
  • 20 Replies

en CBS News Correspondent Barry Petersen married the love of his life twenty-five years ago, he never thought his vow, “until death do us part,” would have an expiration date. But Early Onset Alzheimer's claimed Jan Petersen, Barry’s beautiful wife, at 55, leaving her unable to remember Barry or their life together.

The above is a small description of a book and true story of a husband, whose wife was diagnosed with Alzhiemer's disease at 55. There have been commercials showing an interview with this man about his story and his wife and how he has found "love" with another woman, who helps him take care of his wife.

I have taken care of ALOT of patients with this disease and so far have buried two people in my own family who had it. I KNOW about this disease. More than I should.

I have had patients whose spouses have significant others on the side. Some keep them hidden, some have the relationship in the open to family and friends and will have this person around the one who is sick. I have litterally heard the words........"They dont know who I am, so they don't know what I am doing or who this person is."

I must say, just from my own experience, The person who is sick DOES know, on some level, deep in their heart. I am convinced of it. I know for a fact my MIL knew me even at the end. I honestly would be heartbroken if I had it and my husband moved on. I feel I would know deep down. I would have a sense of it. Some argue with me that I do not know this for a fact. That's okay, cause I know I do know it. I am committed to my husband, fully. Since this runs in his family, there is a great chance of him developing the disease as well. I WILL NOT move on while he is alive. I will care for him, love him and go through it with him.

Don't get me wrong. I understand why a spouse moves on. I feel for them. I understand the loneliness they must feel. I smile, touch their hand. I really do understand, but I dont approve. I dont say that to them tho.

Do you think a person should be committed fully or do you think they have the right to "move on" like this?

by on Apr. 21, 2013 at 7:35 AM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
kidlover2
by on Apr. 21, 2013 at 7:41 AM
1 mom liked this
I think it is different for each individual. I marvel at the spouse who chooses to stay and I don't judge the spouse who chooses to move on.
Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
coolmommy2x
by Ruby Member on Apr. 21, 2013 at 8:33 AM
I absolutely agree with you. 

Quoting kidlover2:

I think it is different for each individual. I marvel at the spouse who chooses to stay and I don't judge the spouse who chooses to move on.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
SweetPea2004
by Silver Member on Apr. 21, 2013 at 8:37 AM
1 mom liked this

I will make it clear to my spouse he needs to make a choice to leave or move on without me. I think it is selfish and wrong to move on in front of your living spouse even if they don't know you. I hope whatever family is around kicks him to the curb if he tries to bring his new s/o in front of me 

ayacocca
by Member on Apr. 21, 2013 at 9:51 AM
Personally Im convinced that it is a selfish move to "move on"/ cheat while your significant other is battling such a debilitating disease.thru sickness and in health...
Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
lapcounter
by Super Mom on Apr. 21, 2013 at 9:54 AM
1 mom liked this
A lot if people for get, for richer or poorer and sickness and in health. If it doesn't benefit them they are jumping ship.

Quoting ayacocca:

Personally Im convinced that it is a selfish move to "move on"/ cheat while your significant other is battling such a debilitating disease.thru sickness and in health...
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
celestegood
by Platinum Member on Apr. 21, 2013 at 9:57 AM
I agree. I have seen people with the disease have girlfriends and boyfriends. They aren't aware they are married and find comfort in the company of a new person who lives in the nursing home too. I have seen how it hurts the other spouse to be forgotten but it happens.
It happens on both sides.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
ayacocca
by Member on Apr. 21, 2013 at 10:01 AM
So unfortunate..


Quoting lapcounter:

A lot if people for get, for richer or poorer and sickness and in health. If it doesn't benefit them they are jumping ship.



Quoting ayacocca:

Personally Im convinced that it is a selfish move to "move on"/ cheat while your significant other is battling such a debilitating disease.thru sickness and in health...

Posted on the NEW CafeMom Mobile
LAXmom21
by Silver Member on Apr. 21, 2013 at 10:05 AM
I have too and it's heartbreaking for the spouse. Therefore I am not convinced that the spouse with the disease knows or has any inkling that they are married or have an SO.

Quoting celestegood:

I agree. I have seen people with the disease have girlfriends and boyfriends. They aren't aware they are married and find comfort in the company of a new person who lives in the nursing home too. I have seen how it hurts the other spouse to be forgotten but it happens.

It happens on both sides.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
Mrs.Kubalabuku
by Silver Member on Apr. 21, 2013 at 10:07 AM

I think it is different for each scenario.  My Grandma's Alzheimers is getting pretty bad.  She often thinks she is a little girl, and it is to the point where she is scared and traumatized to wake up to an old man spooning her in bed!  We had to get her a new bed.  She remembers Grandpa...as HER Grandpa!  

At this point, if Grandpa was to meet someone new none of us would hold it against him.  He would still love and take care of Grandma, but because of how her mind is now he's basically been forced to transition from husband to more of a paternal figure in her life.  He can't kiss her on the lips anymore.  He can't sleep in her bed or shower with her.  He can't even hold her lovingly the way a husband does.  If he goes any further than what one might expect of a doting father, she's screaming and terrified she's being molested.

So I don't think she would pick up that he has "moved on."  Because I know he'd still take care of her.  He would just be getting adult comforts that she cannot provide somewhere else.

Personally, I would hate for my DH to move on like that.  To EVER seek comfort from another woman while I draw breath.  But, I also know from watching my Grandparents that it wouldn't be fair to deny him that, either.  I trust he wouldn't violate our relationship while I live, but he may meet someone, draw comfort from them, and marry them after I died.

momdoes
by Platinum Member on Apr. 21, 2013 at 10:08 AM

 

I have seen that start to happen on the other "side" too but it is most of the time curbed, for the surviving spouses sake. Aids and nurses explain and remind the patient they are married. Its a bitter sword tho becuase that person is reminded that they are married, they then feel tremendous guilt.The next day it happens agaon, they forgot. It is sad.

But this is speaking for the spouse who is not sick and doing these things. Very wrong there.

Quoting celestegood:

I agree. I have seen people with the disease have girlfriends and boyfriends. They aren't aware they are married and find comfort in the company of a new person who lives in the nursing home too. I have seen how it hurts the other spouse to be forgotten but it happens.
It happens on both sides.


 

Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

close Join now to connect to
other members!
Connect with Facebook or Sign Up Using Email

Already Joined? LOG IN