Follow
Share

After researching our area, I find that Uber, Lyft and various non-emergency transport companies will handle all transport including his mobility scooter. I am able to use the regular bus system for myself and two weeks ago used Uber for the first time; I am 67 and he is 79. Spouse has a scooter for short errands around the neighborhood and it's 1.5 miles to the nearest large grocery and 1 mile to the nearest convenience store from the house. The VA takes him door to door for all appointments.


He handled no longer driving for himself in March 2020 better than anticipated; his hand tremors are worse along with vision and physical strength. I did get a scare when I was ill some weeks ago and he proposed driving, and he pulled himself back from actually attempting; luckily, I've been able to scare up a driver for each time. I can't depend on that always happening. Another factor is that my night blindness is worse.


Not including gasoline expenses, the 1995 car accrued $3700 in repairs, insurance and oil changes from Jan. 2020 to July 2021 and it's currently in the repair shop; its Blue Book value is $250! I'm ready to let others take over transport. It's not like we live in a rural area because the suburbs have great support for elders' transport.


Spouse has mentioned how we /must/ have a car. I do understand because a measure of independence will go when the car goes. What I'm hoping for in this post are ways to broach the subject; I certainly don't expect the situation will be easy to get used to for him or for me.

Dear Pronker,
I write from the patients perspective. I was diagnosed in Mid APril of 21 with Moderate to Severe Stage of ALZ. I was first diagnosed 5 yrs ago with Early Onsset. I stopped driving of my own volition in March 2020. Yes, I have put a lot of the burden on my DW and Adult Children. I just decided one day last March it was time to hand over the keys. My Neuro Dr. said I was her first patient to give up driving without being told they had to.
Yes, stopping driving has added a load on other family members, some of my friends have offered rides when my DW was still working. Never once have I said to anyone, I want to drive again. I just know the time was right to stop. My family is happy to taken me where I need to go. They no I am safe.
I recommend to all patients when they are diagnosed to have the driving conversation going on from the time of diagnosis. I did that with my family, and I have also had conversations about when it becomes time to admit me to Memory Care, and what my wishes are as far as medical treatment is concerned. Do please arrange for your DPOA's for Medical and Financial affairs. The family will have a lot less on their plate if these issues are discussed and the legal and medical questions have been answered. I hope this is helpful.
Helpful Answer (13)
Reply to jfbctc
Report
jacobsonbob Jul 10, 2021
Excellent suggestions, John, as you always offer!
(4)
Report
See 1 more reply
Start with how much its costing to keep a 25 year old car going. Explain that you cannot afford to keep it up or afford another car. Seems like you have taken advantage of transportation near you. If you have no problem in hiring an uber or taking public bussing, then do what is best for you. You are the Caregiver. You are the one that seems to be holding things to together. Don't ask his opinion, just tell him.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to JoAnn29
Report
pronker Jul 7, 2021
Yes, I'm considering pointing out the list of expenses with its total circled in red and going on from there. I actually am acquainted with an Uber driver, so that's a plus! It's the mobility scooter that is the hangup. The non-emergency places ask $80-100 for round trips in-city and they're the ones that haul scooters.
(0)
Report
Honey, I can't drive anymore.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to Bobby7
Report
pronker Jul 10, 2021
Thanks for the reply - the succinct answer may just work! :)
(2)
Report
Line up all the driving resources for all the situations you can think of: doctors appointments, groceries, emergencies, social visits... When he - and you - see all the options available, it will relieve fears of being stranded without a vehicle.

Next make a chart with costs of using alternative transportation versus owning a vehicle. Tally up total costs for a month for each mode of transportation and also do a tally for the year with at least 10% extra added for anything that might come up. When he - and you - see the costs, it should alleviate fears of creating a huge financial burden of NOT having a vehicle.

Thank God you are addressing this before you lose total vision. Since you are having trouble driving at night, please see an eye doctor. You may have cataracts that can be treated.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to Taarna
Report
pronker Jul 13, 2021
Thanks for the scenario and the advice.
(0)
Report
Keep the car since it's only worth $250 and don't drive it or Insure it, just park it and maybe just having one will make him feel better. In case of an emergency.
Then both you and your husband take Uber and other transportation until he gets use to it then eventually donate the car.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to bevthegreat
Report
pronker Jul 13, 2021
Just having one settles his mind; I think it's because he worries with good cause about his health and being able to get to help as quickly as possible. Last March-April he needed the ER 4x and I drove each time, but two of those times were in the middle of the night 11-3 or so and I knew at that time I'd not be able to drive under those conditions ever again with him crying and moaning next to me. Thanks for replying and advising.
(0)
Report
When you give up driving, don't let your drivers license expire until you get a new identification card instead. My father in law 93 yrs quit driving didn't think he needed a drivers license let it expire. Didn't get the senior ID card before it expired. It was such a headache to get the ID card after the fact. Which he needed to go into the bank even though he had an account for 40 years & or to do any legal stuff. It could have all been done by mail or online, but since expired he had to go into DMV office. Just side note to remember, a person never knows when they may need a legal gov ID card at any age. He lives in California, USA.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to Labmom
Report
bowgirl Jul 11, 2021
We use mom's passport for ID
(1)
Report
See 1 more reply
I am sure others on this forum will give you great advice. So, I am going to addess the night blindness. Check with an Ophthalmologist, it may be time for you to have cataract surgery. My night vision improved 100% after my surgery.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to MaryKathleen
Report
freqflyer Jul 11, 2021
In my area, we have too many streets that are not lighted. No street lights in my subdivision. Thus, I still have issues with driving at night even after the cataract surgery :(
(3)
Report
See 2 more replies
A power wheelchair seems to do anything that a mobility scooter can do, it just looks different and is more compact. My sister has a power wheelchair with one-hand operated controls, and she zips around on it, inside and out. If your local transport options will take power wheel chairs, perhaps start looking for a second hand one. If it will do the same things, the money is an argument in itself.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to MargaretMcKen
Report
pronker Jul 8, 2021
Thanks for the swift reply - I shall take a power wheelchair into consideration because its wheelbase is much smaller than the scooter's. I've seen the power chairs on buses.
(0)
Report
Billions around the world survive without owning a car, most in areas with far less transportation infrastructure than you have access to.

Good job being so proactive!
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to ZippyZee
Report
pronker Jul 8, 2021
Thanks for the reply - the car is part of our society and at this stage of the game, it's become a headache which I do not need since the options are many.
(1)
Report
I would tell him "I am sorry but I can't drive anymore" and state your reasons. Turn in your license and get a real ID at the DMV. It is valid ID for people who don't drive. This will end the issue of you having to drive. If the car is in both your names remove the battery as someone suggested. If he keeps bringing the subject up, just keep saying the stress was too much to keep driving. Good luck.
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to paintertr
Report
pronker Jul 10, 2021
That's a good idea re the valid ID. The car is in my name only and is now returned from the shop, but I'm sure that something can be worked out with a little warning to him. He values his license though he doesn't drive and carries about 30 cards in the wallet, not including the bank card, because they are for various clubs and so forth; it's important to him to have ID with 'his name' on it so I think he'd like a valid ID, too. Thanks for the well wishes.
(4)
Report
See All Answers
Ask a Question
Subscribe to
Our Newsletter