My 86-year-old father is a stroke survivor and has not been able to speak for 3 years. An old girlfriend has resurfaced and has been writing letters from out of state. Now she wants to get married. How do I handle this?

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Not sure how to handle this situation that is escalating rapidly. She is out of state, but wants to visit, and wants him to marry her. We suspect "for money."

Answers 1 to 10 of 11
How has your Dad communicated that he wants to marry his former girlfriend? If you are caring for him, you can deny her visit, or have someone at his home at all times who will deny her access. From the limited information you have shared, though, it is unclear whether your Dad wants this, or not, and how independent he is in living aside from being speech impaired.
Isabel is right - give us more info about your dad's abilities and wishes. If he's got dementia then it's not a good idea to see the "girl friend". This might sound mean but I'd do what I could to "discourage" the visit - if the gal is also older, she might have difficulty getting around. If she asks for your help to travel, tell her it's not convenient; find some excuse or tell her you're taking your dad out of town for a family visit at the same time she wants to visit. If possible, screen his mail.

Without knowing more about their relationship, and her age and condition, it's hard to know what to say. I'd be suspicious too but don't want to poo poo any ideas that might enhance your dad's quality of life - provided it's some responsible person who he'll enjoy and won't take him to the cleaners. It could be that the old gal is just "wishful thinking" and neither realizes they are forgetful and beginning to decline.
This is bad news.Block any coresspondence with her and politely advise her you do not think her relatioship with your Father should continue. Red Flags popping up all over this!!!
I agree. Red flags all over this! Do you have a durable power of attorney? If not, get one. What does he say about her? When was she his girlfriend. Many years ago? recently? She should be discouraged from making a visit. You could tell her just about anything to keep her from visiting. Is he physically & emotionally fit to have a visitor? Dr.'s orders, not a convienient time, What is her health like? Does she need care? Would you be caring for both of them? I am sure he would enjoy company, but this just doesn't sound like a good idea. the list goes on and on.
If you don't have it yet get a POA for your dad. And let her know that you have one. That will probably stop her.
Top Answer
Galaforce,

I'm an 89 year old stroke victim. I had my stroke 10 years ago. I can speak OK (with a slight impediment) I need a cane or a walker to get around, even for short distances. My right hand functions at about 50% and I need Dragon Naturally Speaking to write anything on the computer. I'm the caregiver for my wife of 63 years, who has the cerebral vascular disease (not Alzheimer's, but has the same short term memory problems.) My wife is 88 and is a lot more physically fit than I. She is in some respects, my caregiver. Last night she carried a case of beer upstairs for me. I retired as an investigator 2 years ago.To keep busy, I have been studying digital security. Currently, in concert with some other old guys, I am looking at possible solutions to these horrible school shootings.

My point here is that old age and physical infirmity should not be confused with a diminished mental capacity or the loss of a need for emotional support and love. Be sure he is unable to make competent decisions before you try to "save" him.

Convince Dad that he needs a prenup, and see how long the girlfriend stick around. Maybe it's true love.
Her profile says that Dad has ALZ/Dementia. If so, he cannot enter into a legal marriage. He has to be aware of what he is doing. I would write her and make her aware of this. You could also say that his income as such will not support another person. Eventually he will need more care and any money he may have will need to place him in an AL. She will back off.
HA HA HA, this thread is 8 years old!!!
Please note the original post is 8 years old.   Edited:  Ah ha, I see cwillie had beat me to the finished line :)

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