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This thing is not quite our thing...
When your partner is no longer your partner and if a new promising partner arises and if this new partnership does not mean ending the old partnership...where is the harm?
Why can’t that be alright? Just wondering.,.
Been lots and lots of debate on this question in the few months, Some of it was brought on by man whose DW had advanced AD, so he was having a relationship with her BFF (IIRC) and all involved were OK.
I know some spouses who’ve taken a “companion” while their LO was in a facility with late-stage dementia (basically non functioning cognitively). Nobody expressed any dismay at the well spouse; all I ever heard was “good for her\him”, or positive comments, for getting out or finding some pleasure after years of caregiving. (Of course spouse with dementia was well cared for).
Who does it hurt? I’d say that depends on the people involved and the circumstances. If the PWD is cognizant enough to know what’s going on, that could be a big difference. The cases I seen, the PWD was basically “out of it.” I’m not going to judge anybody for such a relationship or companionship.mIf it was me in that bed/facility, we said early on we’d want the other to still have a life, and relationship if that was in the cards, as long as the sick one was cared for.
I saw an Alzheimer's documentary a few years back, I think it was on the HBO website but can't remember. Anyway, the husband was in MC and had a girlfriend. They held hands, and ate together, and cuddled. The actual wife of the man, and his daughter had a hard time with it at first, but then came to see that if made the new couples days happier to be together. They in turn began supporting the relationship, and he would still be thrilled to see if actual wife and daughter when they came to visit.
It was one of the first docs I saw on dementia when I was trying to wrap my brain around Mom's diagnosis. I'm glad one of my early exposures to the disease was a family who had already discovered that moments of happiness can come if very unconventional packages in dementia! If it eases the horrors of the journey for any of the players involved, I don't see any harm either.
The only thing that bothers me is when someone gets a “companion” they are sleeping with involved in direct care of the person they’re still married to. There’s something diabolical about that.
You want a companion? Go for it. Place your spouse. Don’t act like it’s some kind of “family” when you sleep with someone and use them to provide free care.
If the PWD is cognizant enough to know what’s going on, that could be a big difference.
Anyway, the husband was in MC and had a girlfriend. They held hands, and ate together, and cuddled. The actual wife of the man, and his daughter had a hard time with it at first, but then came to see that if made the new couples days happier to be together. They in turn began supporting the relationship, and he would still be thrilled to see if actual wife and daughter when they came to visit.
And this is why I should not start topics after one too many gin and tonics. Lol!
But thank you all for answering. I enjoyed pondering this topic from your replies.
Such complicated relationships dementia brings. And this is just one of them and it is rare and hypothetical.
But so many other complicated relationships between families trying to care give, between siblings and aunts and cousins and children and in laws. And nosy neighbors and well meaning friends. Crazy.
Name one other disease that can affect a lot of people like this one can...the only other thing I can think of is the plague.
Hello, I recently joined (8/12/19) kind of thinking that perhaps I wouldn’t have to start gathering info so soon on Dementia. But I’ve come to the realization that this is REAL. I am a caregiver to my husband who was diagnosed in 2017. Seems that the disease has advanced to the level that he is aggressive. I’ve had to call the cops to my home that’s how bad it’s become. I need advice/options to know what my next steps are. I am currently unemployed and looking for work but at the present time I just can’t seem to. I thought about contacting the hotline since I need so desperately to come up with a plan. Not sure what’s out there.
I can't imagine how difficult this must be. Even if you discuss adding new people prior to a dementia diagnosis, it's hard. My partner and I have discussed this, and we feel the same, we'd want the unaffected partner to be happy (have to look out for the affected partner!). But speaking for myself, even knowing that, I don't know if I'd add someone, but that's just me.
It all seems fraught, but with love and care, I could imagine it working.