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Documenting observations, concerns, and related risks can help families facilitate difficult decisions. Roobrik (roobrik) offers a free online assessment tool that provides context for common warning signs, suggestions for what to do next based on personalized risk reports, and strategies to open up the dialogue and make the transition as positive as possible for everyone involved, including the aging drivers themselves.

Try it here: alpha.roobrik/driving
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Reasoning (with dr's assistance) didn't help. So I disabled the car (disconnected the battery). She doesn't know enough about cars to make it work. Although she says she drives to the shops once a week when we're not there, I don't think this can be true, as car remains untouched. But this is our insurance. While she still thinks she's driving, she retains a higher level of dignity and sense of independence.
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I sold my husbands car three years ago when he showed signs of dementia. I had my mechanic come over and tell him the computer In the car was broken and it would cost too much to fix. Now every day he asks when am I going to get him another car. He screams and yells calls me all sort of nasty names. WhenI tell him it is no longer safe for him to drive that he forgets and is confused he only states he never had an accident and what I am saying makes no sense. Now when he asks I ignore him because I cannot. Keep repeating the same thing every day because it is useless. The doc told him no more driving but he says the doc does not know what he is talking aboutTo keep his mind on other things he goes to adult day care three times a week and the other two days I have an aid. I work full time and have no time for myself because he wants to go every where with me . I prefer that to worrying about him driving.
I need to buy another car but afraid because it will start him asking all over again about his car. Does anyone have a suggestion on how I can buy a new car without starting world war 3 in my house.
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Oh, I forgot to mention that since my mother declined to be tested, that meant that her driver's license was automatically rescinded. Case closed.
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As mentioned here, the procedure depends upon the state he lives in. My mom (now 94) was still driving at 93 in Florida. She mostly let others do the driving, but one day she got behind the wheel when we were going to the doctor's, and I had first-hand experience with nearly being killed by someone who had no clue that she was drifting all over the place. And surely the honking wasn't intended for her! I related all this to her doctor, who tried to have a heart-to-heart about the wisdom of giving up driving. Mom stared benignly and nodded, but I knew that the doc's advice was bouncing off a brick wall.

Florida DMV won't just rescind a license, but to their credit if anyone has legitimate concerns about a mentally or physically disabled driver, they WILL request that the individual come in for a written and road test.

When my brother informed Mom that the DMV wanted her to be tested---and of course we didn't let on that we were the instigators---she who had been insisting that she was perfectly capable, all of a sudden had second thoughts. Somewhere in her jumbled mind she was aware that she wasn't the driver she thought she still was (and until a few years ago, she was an excellent driver).

Well, that was that. It was almost too easy. I think deep down she was relieved. She could now justifiably be chauffeured like royalty without feeling guilty, since it was the DMV, not her or her offspring or her personal physician, who decided she couldn't drive any more. In other words lay the onus on the state agency instead of the individual.
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I typed up a list of all the reasons my Dad should not drive (since no matter how many times I told him he couldn't remember). I finally hid the keys and found a program locally (called, "Seniors Helping Seniors") that will take him to his various appointments. I also tried to prepare him for close to two years by asking him if he was ready to stop driving when the time came. He would always say he was, but when that time came, no one could convince him of it. I finally had to hide the keys. I think he now realizes that he will not drive again.
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Would showing a picture of what a terrible auto accident scare the driver into thinking how dangerous it is for Dad to drive?? Really think about the consequences of what will happen, including injury and lawsuit against the driver and maybe his family.
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We have Call A Ride here in the St.Louis area. A small Fee for the service and reliable. They come to your door and pick you up and drop you off a time you request.
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When my husband had FTD he wanted to drive too. I sometimes would disable the car by loosening the battery cables. It finally came time to renew his Driver license and he insisted he could do it. I game him the tests to study and after a few week of trying to learn he said, I 've decided not to renew. I told him I would take him down and renew a non driver license, for I identification instead. He was happy with that. From then on I drove and he went with me everywhere.
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When my husband had FTD he wanted to drive too. I sometimes would disable the car by loosening the battery cables. It finally came time to renew his Driver license and he insisted he could do it. I game him the tests to study and after a few week of trying to learn he said, I 've decided not to renew. I told him I would take him down and renew a non driver license, for I identification instead. He was happy with that. From them on I drove and he went with me everywhere.
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I don't know if this will help, but when my mom couldn't drive anymore (physical abilities were diminished), she still had her license, car, and keys. In her mind, she could do anything. She wanted to drive, so I told her that the registry requires that you take a re-test if you haven't driven in a while. She told me she didn't want to take a test. I told her that it was o.k., but there were a lot more people on the road now (she was also in the early stages of dementia). I asked her if she would like to go with me to "practice" since it had been a while. She said that she would drive when she was ready. Well, to make a long story short, she never drove again, and it was her decision. I just played along for a while and she was quite content with the fact that she "just did not want to drive for a while". I hope this helps, and I'm glad you have so much good advice from other readers to choose from. P.S. I know that every case is different, but sometimes it helps to get bits and pieces so you can put them together in order to apply them to your particular situation.
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It took my dad going into a nursing home. He is 91, can't walk on his own, has dementia, bone cancer. He still wants his car....he thinks he will drive again...taken to a dealer for repairs and he has zero funds. It's a 1989 olds and we pay storage every month. Once dad is mentally gone....which will happen...I will sell it for scrap. Until then, I let him dream and I keep the car keys.
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Just take the keys, no amount of reasoning is going to convince them and the games just prolong the issue. It is difficult, but if you are their caregiver, just another difficult chore that you must do to protect them and the other drivers on the roads. My LO continues to think that he should be allowed to drive (and he is not even able to walk on his own). Just last evening he told me that he was not happy with me because I took the keys away from him (and that was two years ago) I just told him that I was not happy about his poor health forcing me to do that, but that the DMV and the general public were happy that he was not driving and did he want some ice cream. He told me - screw you about the driving and yes please on the ice cream.
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I'd speak with his doctor & have the doc speak with him. Be prepared to 'disable' the car or hid the keys. It can be very difficult for some to admit they need to stop driving. With the dementia, he doesn't realize he is no longer able. Make sure he's not isolated, he can be picked up by the local senior transportation and go to the senior center or you may want to look into an adult medical day care program. They do a fantastic job, he can socialize, participate in a variety of activities and eat a meal. They have a nurse on staff that can monitor him. Our local one also make arrangements for the hospital to come in monthly and do blood drawls for lab work which was really nice. He may not understand the need to not drive, but he would, if in his 'right' mind not want to cause an accident that hurts others. I understand not wanting to give up that independence, my grandfather gave up driving on his own. I wish everyone would do that. good luck.
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If a person is "impaired" as a driver, be it from alcohol or dementia, the keys need to be taken away and hidden. Otherwise, they will get behind the wheel and kill somebody.
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I took away my dad's keys and sold his car to his brother for $1. His brother was poor and REALLY needed a better vehicle. My father had multi-infarct dementia after several small strokes and was starting to get "lost" when driving to familiar places, forgetting to fill the gas tank, etc. He was becoming a danger to himself and others.
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My husband has FTD and thinks he's fine. He wanted to continue to drive even though we knew he shouldn't. Our neighbor "disabled" the car and he was told I can't afford to fix it right now. That was 2 years ago, but he thinks it was just last week. As long as he sees the car he's fine.
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Take over all car keys and do not let your Dad drive. Does the vehicle require any expensive repair work done? Maybe scaring him about the cost may persuade him to give up and sell the vehicle!
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This really is a hard thing, hugh? Funny, I took my Mom to a store the other day, after we got out of my car and were walking towards the entrance Mom heard a car behind us, (I already knew he was there), ...she jumped and said "Car!". She was worried for my safety, as though I was little. I remembered all the shopping trips with her taking me, when she made me hold her hand in the parking lot to keep me safe. I just kept that thought to myself, and smiled. Trading place is hard.
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if all else fails, take the keys (make sure no extras around) and just say you can't find them. and depending on their age they may not know who to call to come fix car (if you can disable). better safe than sorry.
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Lots of ways to disable a car--remove battery, remove a tire, unscrew the steering wheel, hide the keys, put a steering wheel lock on, remove accelerator pedal, take out the driver's seat, smash the windshield (that's a last-resort measure). Best way is to tell him "you are no longer safe to drive" and ask for all sets of keys. But if he chooses noncompliance, then you have no choice but to disable the vehicle, AND call doctor, AND call local police. If you are POA, locate the title to vehicle and sell it, putting proceeds from sale into his account or open a savings account for his estate.
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Talking is only good up to a point. remember he may danger himself and or others. I had to hide the keys at first then he could not find them. While in the car with my husband I saw how his driving really was!! It has bee 2yrs know and I am glad I did. ll miss him driving he was a race driver in his younger days he was hard for me to do it but I had to.
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I don't know how to do it, but please do something, anything to get him off the road. My darling grandchildren are out there.
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This is the most difficult problem I've faced with my mom! She loved her car and felt she could drive as good as ever! Tried everything! Dad had passed and her income was greatly reduced so had to cancel her insurance except comprehensive for it to set in her garage!
With expense of paying caregivers to stay at night with her sold her car! She hasn't forgiven me to this day!
Wishing you the best as I know it breaks your heart as it did mine! Seems we have no choice but change roles and become the parent!
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Dad became suddenly deathly ill 3.5 yrs ago and ended up in a coma. Mom was already showing dramatic signs of dementa. The first nite Mom mentioned she was going to drive back to the ICU to see my Dad, my husband and I went to the house directly from the hospital and took the car from the house. We parked the car at my house and then told Mom the next day she wouldn't be going to the hospital alone. She didn't seem to remember that she even had a car; she was really shook up about my Dad and therefore the driving was no longer an issue for her since I think she didn't even give it another thought. It was sad, but it actually worked out. I felt guilty for being so dramatic about it but I knew it was for the best. Mom was very unfocused and 'out there' so I really knew I did the best thing for everyone. About a week later she realized the car was gone and I explained it to her; I think she understood but I re-directed her thoughts to other things and her focus on driving just got pushed to the wayside. Then I went into her purse and took her keys as well as my Dad's. When my Dad survived, I explained to him and he was in agreement and he didn't want to drive anymore anyways. He was already having a hard time concentrating on driving, and knew he had slow reflexes and even said he had a few close calls of which I didn't even know of until then. I take them to all their dr appts, my brother takes them to the pharmacy and grocery stores and we both take them to other places too. I am their DPOA and knew I made the right choice. And, safer for everyone !!! Now, my Dad has recently started saying that he would like to buy a car and drive again...I know if he does that, I will do everything in my power to stop that. I will have a police officer come to the house and explain it, I will notify his PCP and the DMV. Dad is on alot of medications that he shouldn't be driving anyways.And, he is recently now starting to be tested for memory problems and had already been declared 'incompetent'... Mom says she would like to drive again but she has been progressing in Alzheimers and is very obvious she shouldn't be allowed to drive. The family doesn't even let her be alone because she is very frail and accident-prone.... I am actually protecting alot of people if they do not drive. I hated to have to take their independence away of driving but it is for the best and that is what you have got to think of. Sometimes decisions like this are for the best.
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My husband got very angry when we told him he should not be driving. I talked to his doctor, who recommended a group called, "Driving Solutions." We told Dean that if he would take the test and passed it, we wouldn't bother him about driving any more. He finally agreed. The test consisted of a written evaluation, then if that was passed, a regular driving test would follow. He did not pass the evaluation. The test-giver sat him down and went over every wrong answer and explained why he failed. He accepted this. The results were sent to his doctor and the DMV and his license was revoked. He now makes no fuss about driving. The key here is to get an objective person to tell him he cannot drive. He will take it much more calmly if it doesn't come from you.
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We tried without success to get my husband, 82, to stop driving. He had a wreck that total lost our car. No one was hurt and no one was charged. I called the officer that investigated the wreck and ask him if he would inform DMV that my husband has dementia. He did and DMV had him come in for a driving test. Unfortunately it was in the morning when he was at his best and an examiner that overlooked mistakes so he passed the test. After that he was having many small wrecks, dents all over the car. Then he had another bad wreck, still no one was hurt or charged because my husband lied about running a red light. I wrote DMV a letter and explained things and ask them to retest him. They ordered another test but this time my husband was too scared to take the test so he agreed to turn in his license. We then got him a ID card. I gave his car to our granddaughter. It took a year before he stopped complaining about driving. I am glad others are safe from his driving but it has been very hard being the sole driver. I still praise him, though, for turning in his license.
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Oh my does this all sound like our story with my Dad. Dad had dementia for over five years before we got him out from behind the wheel. We was totally unsafe driving. The doctor told Dad he shouldn't drive, but he paid that no attention. We argued that he was going to hurt himself, or someone else. We asked him how he would feel if he killed some child on the street. He refused to even answer. Just said that would never happen.

But he was losing his way on familiar roads, and driving for hours to get to places five minutes away. He was having accidents and speeding tickets . This after an entire lifetime of being the slowest driver on the road. He claimed all the incidents were the other guy's fault, even when there wasn't an "other guy". The police had to call us to come take him home when he was found miles from home, and seemed disoriented. We took the keys, but he must have had six sets, all scattered around the house so drove anyway. We argued and he remained uncooperative.

All manner of things happened, but nothing stopped him. He got stuck in snow drifts repeatedly last winter, and somehow always found some kind soul to shovel him out. When he forgot how to turn his car lights off, the neighbors would help him each evening to turn them off. That was until we begged them not to. So the battery went dead and we hoped that would stop him, but unfortunately Dad was able to call AAA to fix it. We thought flat tires would stop him, but NO. He drove on the flats, till the neighbors called the police . He refused to admit the tires were flat before the police showed up, and the police officer (believe it or not) called the auto repair shop to come fix the tires. I even asked the police if it was legal for us to just take the car away. The answer was, "No".

I called the BMV and begged for help and they gave me erroneous info on how get Dad's license revoked, adding months to the process. But eventually we got the doctor to write to the BMV, who then sent a letter to Dad, saying he had to get another physical from the doctor to declare if he was fit to drive or not. The doctor then had to send that letter in to the BMV, who sent another letter to Dad requiring Dad come to the license bureau for testing within thirty days.

Dad refused of course, constantly saying how he was the best driver and they had no right to insist he go for a test. On the last possible day Dad finally agreed to take the test, which he failed miserably, despite the license bureau workers bending over backward to help him. Their supervisor talked to Dad, very compassionately, for over an hour, telling him they were keeping his license, and that he could no longer drive. ...The instant Dad got in my car for the ride home, he very angrily stated "You're not taking my car from me!!" "I can drive and you can't stop me.!!"

Which we couldn't. When I dropped him off at his house, he got out of my car and into his, and drove away. I called the police, but they said they couldn't do anything about it unless he gets stopped for some reason while driving. Having no license was not reason enough. So he drove, every day, all day sometimes, for the next several weeks, (with AAA and the auto repair place still coming every few days to jump his engine) until the day Dad drove the car right through the closed garage door. Totally obliterated that huge old door. All that remainded was splinters and shards of glass. And Dad said, it was the other guys fault ! (He meant the fellow who'd just jumped the engine for him that morning) . "He must have done something to my car. He ruined my car."

The only good part of that was that, we were able to get the car away from him under the guise of having it fixed. Every day, for weeks he demanded his car back, demanding that we take him to his car. He insisted he could drive and that we didn't have any right to keep him away from his car. Always blaming me. There were unceasing angry, ugly arguments everyday, worse than all the ones we'd been having for over a year of trying to get him to stop driving.

I was beside myself, not knowing how to stop the angry episodes so I called the police again. This time they finally sent out a very kind officer, who spoke to Dad, at told him (basically lied to him) that the car was being held by the police and would never be released to him, as he didn't have a license to drive. That he could sell the car, but he was never getting it back.

And even then, once the police officer left, Dad was angrily saying "I can drive and they can't stop me. !!" And I answered: "And what car do you think you're going to drive? You don't have one anymore, and you are sure as hell not driving mine !" ...And finally he shut up, because there was no answer to that.

And now, half a year later, he still hasn't stopped being angry about that car. And he still complains how "they had no right" and how he is "the best driver out there." He's barely coherent most of the time now, but he still mentions that car.
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Talk to his Dr. Tell him what is going on, if he doesn't already know. (It is good to update the Dr Ether way, when there is Dementia going on.) The Dr Can talk to him, and get the ball rolling to have his licence taken away, if it comes to that. It isn't fun, but it could just come down to hiding the car keys and standing up to him.... telling him that he can't drive anymore. Not a fun position to be in, but tough love is part of dealing with dementia sometimes. If that isn't enough, move the car so he can't get to it. It might seem "mean" but it is meaner to let him kill an innocent family or have him get lost... there was a man not too far from here where the family should have taken steps to keep him from driving. They didn't. He was last seen driving towards the city. He has never been seen again. That was like 2 years ago. He and his car both vanished. I wouldn't want to live with that! Do what you have to do. I know you will or you wouldn't be asking how. Good call. God Bless!
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I Hid the keys and as an extra precaution I had my neighbor disable the car. I put a note under the hood, just in case, a good neighbor tried to help start the car. That worked great until he finally gave up and lost interest. That was a very scary time and was happy to move on to the next problem. Prior to that I had changed phones for one that was a little more complicated to use and he didnt try to call for help.
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