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    • CommentAuthorAdmin
    • CommentTimeApr 14th 2008
    Good Morning Everyone,

    Today's Blog is a follow-up on the Disappearing Conversation (on page 2 of this board). It about an unconventional solution that works for one of our readers. I invite you to read the blog with an open mind, and post your responses here. Please be mindful of the fact that neither she nor I are advocating this solution for anyone. We just both felt it was worthy of discussion.

    Thank you.

    • CommentAuthorcarewife
    • CommentTimeApr 14th 2008
    i am considerably older than many of our members especially those who spouses are EOAD. My views are probably related to my age somewhat. I am assuming you are talking about a dating service website that is usually composed of male and female participants. I can understand the need for you to have a member of the opposite sex to talk to about various subjects however I would like to warn you about possible ramifications to this relationship. the person you are having discourse with joined the group because it is labeled a "dating service". These rela tionships online can begin in an innocuous friendship, however they could easily escolate into an attraction for each other as you go from innocent topics to more emotion laden subjects. You may view this activity as not infringing on your relationship with your spouse but you must be realistic in that even though you are not being physically unfaithful, you are developing a emotonal relationship with someone of the opposite sex. I am not making any judgements about developing friendships but I just want to have you be aware of possible developments .Do not deceive yourself that you want to have a little excitement and interesting dialogues. I have many online female friends and we discuss various topics I have lived a long time and men and women find it difficult to remain platonic

    Remember, "Women are from Venus, Men are from Mars"
    carewife, you are more eloquent than I, yet I believe exactly as you do. Thank you for stating your opinion so well.
    • CommentTimeApr 14th 2008
    It sounds acceptable to me. Where do I sign up!?
    I agree with carewife that we should be VERY cautious about "On Line" dating services. We are getting some "conversation" on this site, and it really helps. I have had 3 methods of getting good conversations - 1)Our church has a weekly bible study and an adult class. My wife is willing to go with me, but does not take part. 2) By living in a retirement home which serves the evening meal we get to sit with others for dinner. This gives both my wife and me someone to talk to. 3) Several years ago I joined Rotary. Since my wife can no longer be left home alone, she goes with me and seems to enjoy it. A couple of weeks ago the club made her an official member, which really pleased her. All of these solutions involve the spouse being willing to go along, but they get her out of the house and provide some mental stimulation, which seems to be helping. She is much happier when we are doing something like the above, rather than sitting at home with her having nothing to do.
    I am fortunate that I work outside the home and my husband is able to still remain at home alone while I am at work. I get my conversations at work with both males and females and also at this web site, which I have become addicted to! :) I would feel like I was cheating if I went to an online site, but that is just me.
    • CommentAuthorSunshyne
    • CommentTimeApr 14th 2008
    I can certainly understand the need to find someone to "talk" to, but I'm not sure I understand the rationale of using a dating-service website. I would agree with the reservations expressed by the others.

    If we want to find someone to chat with on-line, there are many, many, many chat rooms and discussion forums, for all sorts of people and on all sorts of topics. Why not use one that is NOT directed toward people who want to find someone to date?
    • CommentTimeApr 14th 2008
    All of joang's suggestions take it for granted that you can get out of the house. We are at the stage where I get no help from any agency because he truly doesn't yet need the help, but he hates it if I leave the house. Going to the library for half an hour every two or three weeks has ramifications and leads to sulks. I try to do one thing a week that will give me some face to face interaction with another human being. I used to run a monthly ladies lunch for the community. Wednesday will be the last one since I can no longer plan on going out to lunch. Somehow I'm going. I know that I'll pay for doing it, but I'm going to do it anyway.

    I have one pen-pal I got through another support group. We started writing to one another through their email system and then went to normal email. I have another that I've known for 30+ years. Once again we are living in different states, so we are emailing and occasionally she will call me. I'd love more of them. I miss conversation. I miss just talking to store clerks.
    • CommentAuthorfrand*
    • CommentTimeApr 14th 2008
    This is my second marriage (out of three) to end in terminal illness. I have ZERO interest in another relationship! This site is enough sharing for me.
    Starling, how would he react if you had a potluck lunch with your monthly ladies' lunch at your house? That would be one way to see them.
    Also, we have a church (not mine, but I can use it when he gets worse) that has one day a week from 9-2 for AD patients to stay while their spouses can go out and see others and get errands run. There might be one in your community. It would be worth checking into for later.
    My husband sulks, but he forgets it five minutes later. :)
    I wait until it's time for me to get dressed to tell him I'm going out, mainly because he'll forget it if I tell him sooner anyway. I always fix him a favorite treat, put in one of his favorite DVDs and am back home usually before it is over with. It is working for us right now, anyway!
    I'm doing it tomorrow night while my daughter and I go to a play. (He would go to sleep during the performance if I took him, but he doesn't begrudge my going.)
    • CommentAuthorAdmin
    • CommentTimeApr 14th 2008

    That was a good suggestion about e-mailing personally to someone you "met" in a forum such as this. Some of our members have done that.

    Reminder to everyone - when someone writes a post, if you click on their name that appears in blue, their profile will come up. Some of you have included your e-mail addresses in that profile. Others have preferred to keep their e-mail addresses private, and e-mailed me for the information.

    E-mail connections can be emotional life savers if used judiciously - either through "meeting" on forums like this or the online dating service our reader joined.

    I am old enough to be Mom to most of you, but even tho my DH is gone, I still enjoy being around men--even at this advanced age! Not many men are all that enchanted w/grammy, but I do have a 'friend,' well, he's pretty ancient, too. Now, I agree w/Carewife, a platonic relationship can lead to much more. When I was younger, I thought not, but my DH always said it would lead to more, and now I believe that, too.

    Obviously we don't know who wrote about being on-line, but her quotes tell me she is having just too much fun, and as stated, there are plenty of other on-line ways to communicate. I want to tell her to be wary. I'm not routinely that much of a talker. Sometimes I just stop talking for the effort of it--which has annoyed my daughter--and my father, and an uncle, but I did miss my DH even when he was in the same room w/me--talking or not.

    In my support group, one woman had a relationship w/another man, she was quite open about it. There was enough money for full-time help w/her AD husband still at home, it was evident that she still loved him, never neglected him, but she also was having this affair. I wondered how she could compartmentalize her life like that, but no one called her down. It worked for her, and I knew a couple others. While my DH was alive, I had 'oportunities' like the man whose wife also had AD & he wanted to date me, but nothing came of any of them, and I wonder if----I'm not sure I would have been all that opposed.

    When we say 'til death do us part' I often wondered about the 'death' of our marriage. We were both here physically, but our marriage had died. He had left me and my whole life was tied up in being his CG. I'd do it again, I have no regrets, but we were married in name only. It's certainly up to each one to make these personal decisions. I will never condemn anyone for doing whatever they can to get thru AD. If you get a chance, try to see 'Away From Her.' It is very much my story, except the roles were reversed, it focuses on the husband left alone, not the AD wife.
    Hmmm. I really think it has to be left to the discretion of the individual. I'm not going to argue that one means of connecting with online friends is better or worse than another. It sounds like boundaries were set, and its simply up to the person in question to maintain them, according to his/her best judgment.

    I have many online acquaintances, both male and female, whom I've "met" through a music-based forum. It's a valuable source of interaction for me,
    and they know and respect my situation.
    • CommentAuthorkay kay
    • CommentTimeApr 14th 2008
    In the NH my husband is in, there is a man that his wife has been there for over 9 years now. She has AD and is in a wheelchair, does not really open her eyes anymore and does not talk anymore. She is here physically, but there is no reaction from her mentally. Her husband comes in everyday to see her and will feed her yogurt as she has always liked that. They are in their 80's and he admitted to me that he does have a lady friend that he goes to dances with, movies and out to eat. This man and his wife have been married 62 years and he loves her so very much, but, he told me that after so many years you begin to get lonely and he met this lady that understands his situation. They just enjoy each other's company. I do not look at him in a negative way as his wife has been gone for a long time now mentally and he still sees her everyday and loves her so much.

    AD is a very sad disease and the loved one left behind does struggle with loneliness and what is right and what is wrong. Also, the guilt feelings. I love my husband with all my heart, but, none of us know what the future will bring.

    Sorry to get off the subject about on-line dating services, but, I just wanted to share this story with you.

    Kay Kay
    It's a good story Kay kay, and illustrates a point:
    Lonely caregivers are going to behave in a way that they judge, in their situation, to be the right choice. You can approve or disapprove, but it's an individual judgment issue.

    I think we can universally agree that someone like the "cheating spouse" mentioned in another thread who is siphoning financial resources away from the care of his AD wife to treat his lady friend and her family is showing bad character, but a person who truly, conscientiously sees to the needs of the ill spouse but socializes elsewhere to appease loneliness is dealing with a situation that's more a matter of personal choice.

    Whether or not you get to know people through a dating service, or at church, or in the produce aisle doesn't really matter. It's how you then conduct yourself and choose boundaries, while remaining dedicated to seeing that your ill spouse's needs are met.
    • CommentAuthordwgriff
    • CommentTimeApr 15th 2008
    In my old age (I am a few months younger than john mccain), I am loathe to criticize anyone who can make anything work for their benefit.
    Sure there are problems, but that goes for almost anything and for sure any kind of relationship.
    It gets durn lonely out here.

    • CommentAuthorsthetford
    • CommentTimeApr 21st 2008
    There are times when I would give anything to have a good cup of coffee and good decent conversation with an understanding man, no strings or expectations attached. But I feel guilty even thinking about it, so I keep to myself.
    Take care!
    I was reminded again today of the advantage of living in a retirement home. My wife and I just came from a Bible Study here at the home. I had to keep reminding her where we were in the discussion, but it gave me an opportunity for adult conversation about more than the weather. Then as we were heading back to our apartment we met another couple and talked to them for over 20 minutes. It is things like this that keep me sane. Our previous home (which we still have and visit occasionally) was 8 miles down a dead end road, 15 miles from the nearest super market, with no neighbors near enough for casual conversation.