Heartbreaking, yet maybe some peace?


#1

Not sure if this should go here or maybe in news, so feel free to move it if so.

Saw this on Google, this am. Broke my heart, as my grandparents had to deal with Alzheimer’s (grandmother).
She forgot who we were, denied any relationship, refused to
stay at their home (where they had lived for some 20+ years)
wandered off, became angry, and forgot her husband. Refused
to sleep with him, and sometimes to stay in the same room
with him, even to watch tv.
Eventually, we had to place her in a home, where she lost what
little memory of anything she had. Two years later she was gone.

So, what do you think of this? What would you do/want?

news.aol.com/story/_a/a-new-page-in-oconnors-love-story/20071113082409990001?ncid=NWS00010000000001


#2

Anyone?
Bueller? Bueller?

Come on guys, 28 views and no opinions?
What do you think, and how would you handle this?


#3

How incredibly sad. Prayers offered for all involved.


#4

I’m not sure if you’re asking about the article or your own situation; both of which are sad, and in need of prayers. I think though, in regards to the article, if I were the wife who’s husband had al’s, and was falling in love with another, I’d be happy for him but incredibly heartbroken. I’d definately visit a priest, and besides getting counseling, I would also avoid causing said husband to sin (since technically he would still be married) by asking for an annulment. I mean, God would probably not send the guy to hell just cuz he had al’s and couldn’t remember the fact that he was married; but still, he technically is so the best thing would be to let go of the marriage. Still be friends with him certainly, and if possible, make friends with the new girlfriend. But yea, I can’t imagine what that lady must be going through, but she sure needs prayers, along with all those who suffer under similar situations.

I’m sorry this “kind” of situation happened to you as well, and I hope you and your family are doing alright. I’ll say some prayers for you.


#5

Wondering a/b the article.

I think, if I were in this position, and it were my husband, I’d be okay with it. I think. So long as it stayed to hand holding and hanging out. And, as this is in a facility of other alz patients, I’m assuming it will. The woman he is attached to has alz too, so she is not herself either. I’d want my husband to find some measure of comfort and happiness out of this hateful disease.
If I couldn’t give that to him, because he was no longer himself, and did not remember me, well, I want him to be happy.
His peace would give me peace, I think.
I agree that counseling is a good idea, but I would never divorce/anull my marriage for this. He isn’t himself, but I am still me, and I would still love him. For better or for worse, and I meant it.
I would not consider this adultery, not even emotional. Alzheimer’s strips you of yourself, and what is left is only a shadow of who you were. No one cognizant is really left, so the true person isn’t breaking any vows. It’s like losing the person twice, once to the disease, as they forget their lives, and then again to death.
So hard for everyone, but maybe this will open more people to the horrors of Alzheimers, and they will push for better treatment/cure.


#6

WOW, just WOW.

I have to say this, we don’t KNOW what she’s feeling in her private life. It MUST be heartbreaking. At the SAME TIME: love does outweigh all. She knows her husband is just a shell of the man he used to be, so although it must hurt like the dickens – she is mature and stable enough to say “hey this is how it goes. If he’s happy, I am happy.” TRUE selflessness there.

Funny – my grandmother was a hideous woman for most of her life. I mean a real wretch. She was a hideous mother, a hideous grandmother, cold as ice, and not even nice to be around. She developed alzheimers when I was about 17. My dad said I should go visit her, “don’t be afraid, I mean it, with the alzhiemers your grandmother has completely forgotten how to be a b*tch.” This coming from a man who does NOT curse. If he could say this about his own mother, who even when she was being wretched in her right mind, would say it when she had alzheimers…well you get my point. I was SO shocked this came out of his mouth…

ANYWAY, despite the fact her and my grandpa did not have a very loving relationship, didn’t’ even share a room nor bed since I was born at LEAST, my grandpa died within months of her.

It’s the way it goes.

I think he would have been ok with her having a “boyfriend.” She was in a home, he wasn’t. He just loved her so much despite it all. He couldn’t live without her.

I keep thinking about how happy she must have been not being difficult…wow.

I suspect it’s the same with O’Connor. She loves him, to see him happy is not an ego-crusher, but simply a relief.


#7

I worked in nursing homes for many years. One man that stands out had no recollection of the wife that came to visit him every single day. You would tell him that his wife was there, he’d say, “Nah, that’s not my wife” He couldn’t get his brain around the fact that that the silver haired woman in front of him was the red haired beauty that he married. It broke her heart that he didn’t know who she was.

The news report said that he hated being there so much that he talked about wanting to die. That is a heavy dose of guilt for the person who places a loved one in a facility. Now he is content.

I wouldn’t be surprised if in these situations, the new friend reminds the person of their spouse in some way…something evokes a memory or feels familiar, when the real person may no longer do that.

God bless Mrs O’Conner. What selflessness, what hearbreak, what loss. But she lost her husband when alzheimers took over his brain. Now they are just trying to keep him content in his last days. I will keep them in my prayers.


#8

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