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Alzheimer’s Disease and Divorce

Pat Robinson has suggested that a man whose wife has Alzheimer’s disease should obtain a divorce. He takes the position that divorcing a wife with Alzheimer’s is a better solution than committing adultery with a new companion. Pat made these comments in response to a question submitted to him on his television program, “The 700 Club.” He had taken a call from a man who asked a question regarding a friend of his. The friend’s wife had a serious case of dementia and no longer knew who he was. Pat stated, “I hate Alzheimer’s. It is one of the most awful things, because here’s the loved one – this is the woman or man that you have loved for 20, 30, 40 years and suddenly that person is gone.”

Pat suggested he should divorce his wife and start all over again. He also suggested that even after divorcing his wife, he should make sure she has the appropriate medical support necessary to deal with her condition.

Criticism of Pat Robinson’s Position

Pat Robinson has received a lot of criticism for his position on this issue. There are those who believe life long traditional marriage is what keeps our society together, and it is each spouse’s obligation to stay true to his or her marriage and help their spouse in times of illness.

Beth Kallmyer, a senior director of the Constituent Services at the Alzheimer’s Association, stated, referring the Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia, that “this is a challenging, devastating and eventually fatal illness and it affects everybody differently.” The most important thing is for families to get help. She further stated that it was rare for couples to get divorced because one of them has come down with a severe case of Alzheimer’s disease. She did point out that Alzheimer’s disease can go on for many years or even decades. This can put enormous stress on family life.

New York Divorce Lawyers

For more than thirty three years, the law office of Elliot S. Schlissel has litigated all aspects of divorce, including child custody, visitation, child support, spousal maintenance (alimony)and equitable distribution of property. We also represent fathers with regard to proceedings in family court. We litigate issues involving paternity, downward modifications of child support, relocation problems, parental alienation cases and issues involving parental alienation syndrome. We also negotiate separation agreements for our clients. Feel free to call us for a free consultation.

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