Time to have "The Talk" with dad...no more driving.

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by airmotive, Apr 6, 2010.

  1. airmotive

    airmotive Tin Kicker

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    So my dad....WW2 vet, 1st Infantry, is now 83 years old.

    He has always driven, and driven well. One accident in 70 years behind the wheel (they started driving early back then) and even then, that accident was purely not his fault (T-boned by someone running a red light). That accident was 22 years ago.
    Driving was always a passion for him. Some of my fondest memories as a child are of long, aimless drives in the country. When I was little he would set me up on the center armrest and let me steer for hours and hours as we went down the highway.

    His reaction times are (in my opinion) dangerously slow now. He just had cataract surgery and is expressly forbidden from driving for 2 months by his doctor; but he fully expects to be back behind the wheel by summer.

    It's time to take my dad's keys.

    jesh....it's like telling him it's time to put his dog down. Only worse. You can always get another dog. Giving up driving is the first time he will have to aknowledge that it's not just his body that is in decline.

    I'm sure some of you have been down this road. any advice?
     
  2. silentpoet

    silentpoet

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    Have a talk with his doctor about your concerns. It helps to have him on your team so to speak.
     

  3. Jack_Pine

    Jack_Pine CLM

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    We had the doctor talk to him first. Then we approached him. Have to admit, it did not go well, but we kept falling back on the letter form the doctor and finally got through it.

    Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2010
  4. airmotive

    airmotive Tin Kicker

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    It doesn't help that dad's a stubborn SOB.
    He had a defibrilator implanted a couple months ago. Doctor said NO PUSHING A LAWNMOWER.
    So I stop by his house this weekend and what's he doing?
    Pushing a fertilizer spreader with 100lbs of fertilizer in it.
    "Doc said no pushing a lawnmower...this ain't a lawnmower."

    I swear I should puch him but he would probably kick my ***.
     
  5. Stang_Man

    Stang_Man

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    Its gotta be tough, I'm still young but I dread having to have that talk.

    I inherited my Grandfather's Camry after he passed away. Got it home, car was still in pretty damn good condition because he didn't drive often. It was funny though, you could tell where he got into minor accidents and didn't want anyone finding out because he'd cover it up with house paint. Man I miss him!
     
  6. Nutt51

    Nutt51

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    Not an easy thing to do. I'm almost 60 and I've actually thought
    about how I will fell when my time comes, not being able to come and
    go as I want. Losing one's independence is a big step.
    My wife's grandpa was about the same age when the family had to
    stop him. He pitched a fit. He started showing signs of dementia
    and they hid the keys to the car, he found them. Her pa took off the
    distributor wire, but the grandpa knew cars and he found the problem
    and raised cane. They finally had to take one of the wheels off and
    kept telling him it was broken and would be fixed, after a while he
    worried less and less about driving and finally ended up in a nursing
    home. It's tough giving up something we've been able to do most
    of our lives.
    Good luck.
     
  7. Glock-it-to-me

    Glock-it-to-me Catching liars

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    Go ask Alice, I think she'll know
    Did that with my 81 year old mother last year. She's allowed to drive to the pahrmacy anf grocery store which are both 4 blocks away. That's her limit. She had a reminder when she tried to drive to the hearing aid place (3 miles) by herself. Had a nice little fender bender and she swore she would stick with the agreement.
     
  8. airmotive

    airmotive Tin Kicker

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    Honestly, I really don't want to simply shift the responsibility over to his doctor.

    it's sort of like "Of Mice and Men"...I'd rather it come from his son than a stranger. Doctors do things to cover their own *** from liability.
    If I tell him, he knows it's for only one reason.
     
  9. Flatulence

    Flatulence 5X EMU Champion

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    Hey Dad, If you want to push that mower or seeder the only person you can do damage to is yourself. If you cant see or react to that little girl that chased her ball into the street......


    Backed up by the doctor of course.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2010
  10. cabindriver

    cabindriver NRA Life Member

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    Assuming his vision his sufficient in two months, what's your plan if he doesn't take your advice?
     
  11. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    In 1990 I was hit by a 83-year-old woman in a 1979 Mercury Grand Marquis who ran a stop sign because she "couldn't see me". She had her 79-year-old sister in the car with her at the time of the accident.

    I am ALL FOR mandatory eye testing on people who get driver's licenses every single time you renew.

    Thanks to the OP for being responsible.
     
  12. Kona2004

    Kona2004

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    Seems like in my area, we've been averaging around one missing adult alert per week. There was a couple who was running to a Kohl's about a mile from their house and ended up a couple hours south before they were found. Another guy was running an errand and was actually found trying to cross into Canada.
     
  13. hatidua

    hatidua

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    We got lucky: my grandmother acknowledged that her vision and reflexes weren't what they once were and simply asked if she could be driven to the market once a week in return for giving up driving. That lasted about 15 years until she died.
     
  14. airmotive

    airmotive Tin Kicker

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    My brother's mother in law suffered from dementia and was stopped by the police one evening. She said she was headed home and her house was just around the corner....she was 90 miles from home and had no idea where she was.

    Fortunately, my dad's mind is still sharp as a tack....it's just that his mind doesn't communicate with his body as well as it once did. And then his body can't move with any urgency or precision any more. In other words...he's gotten old.
     
  15. scottlang

    scottlang Millennium Member

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    When I die I want to go like my Grandma, peacefully unconscious, not like the people in the car with her screaming in panick as it plunged throught the guard rail.:whistling::cool:
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2010
  16. kirgi08

    kirgi08 Watcher. Silver Member

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    We had ta do that with my Pops,alzhiemers.He was pissed.'08. :sad:
     
  17. bobby_w

    bobby_w Alienigena Platinum Member

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    My Father-in-Law is now 83.

    He just bought a brand new Nissan pickup and had the offroad front end bumper guard put on it.

    I asked him why the bumper guard ?

    He said as he gets older he tends to bump into more things and he wanted to protect the truck. :wow: :faint:
     
  18. keeper85

    keeper85

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    My dad died many years ago so we did not have that conflict with him. We did with my mother, it went better than I expected.

    With my in-laws, both in early 80s, my mother-in-law is not able to drive but my father-in -law is still sharp as a tack and still out works men half his age. We do not see any problems with his driving at this point.
     
  19. janice6

    janice6 Silver Member

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    My Grandfather was about 100 and in a rest home. The management was pissed at him because his auto was parked in their lot. They wanted him to get rid of the car. He told me, after filling me in on the story, that that car is his only reminder he has left of his independence and the ability to "go somewhere" if he really wanted to. While telling me about his car, he was crying. I suspect your Dad may have the same feelings.

    When you got your license I bet it meant total freedom to you. It may to him too.

    Good luck.

    ADDED: I am NOT suggesting you let him drive. Just that I was surprised at how people think about their cars and driving.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2010
  20. Gallium

    Gallium CLM

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    You can thank the AARP, and the insurance industry for keeping old geezers on the road PAST THAT POINT where they are safe.

    Everyone loves hammering the 16yr old texting...but according to insurance industry data, that 80yr old is just as likely to be in an accident as the 18yr old - the only and main difference being SPEED (senior citizens get into more lower velocity crashes).

    'Drew