cereta: Laura Cereta (cereta)
Lucy ([personal profile] cereta) wrote in [community profile] agonyaunt2017-04-10 08:48 am

Dear Abby: Spouses face difficult decision when one enters long-term care

DEAR ABBY: I am sure this issue affects many people, but I have not seen it addressed in your column. Oftentimes married partners are separated by many years in age. Eventually the older of them has to enter a long-term care facility due to a mental/physical defect.

Even though the bond and love that kept them together over the years still exists, the younger still has physical and emotional needs that can no longer be met by the older spouse. What are the ethics in the younger one having a "friend with benefits" to address those needs, if it's done discreetly without causing embarrassment and humiliation to the older spouse? -- FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS

DEAR FRIENDS: This is a highly personal decision that no one can make for anyone else. While many readers may disagree, I see nothing wrong with taking care of yourself as long as you remember you have a moral obligation to support your spouse "'til death do you part." To me that means visiting and spending time with your spouse every day to ensure his/her needs are taken care of in a compassionate and diligent manner, and to let the person know he or she is loved.
redbird: closeup of me drinking tea (Default)

[personal profile] redbird 2017-04-10 03:25 pm (UTC)(link)
Another thing I wish Abby had pointed out is that it's not necessarily the older spouse who would become incapacitated.
amadi: A bouquet of dark purple roses (Default)

[personal profile] amadi 2017-04-10 09:38 pm (UTC)(link)
I also wish she'd pointed out that sometimes it's the partner who has to enter the care facility who ends up becoming intimate with someone else. IIRC with Sandra Day O'Connor's husband, who had dementia, and when he could no longer remember his marriage, he fell in love with another resident of his facility.
eleanorjane: The one, the only, Harley Quinn. (Default)

[personal profile] eleanorjane 2017-04-11 08:34 am (UTC)(link)
I am kind of shocked at how not-terrible Abby's answer is. I was flinching in advance.
minoanmiss: (Default)

[personal profile] minoanmiss 2017-04-12 05:34 am (UTC)(link)
Me too. I mean it's quite lacking, but it could have been so much worse!