Just to give you a hint where this story is going:

An Affair To Remember.

She was 82. He was 95. They had dementia. They fell in love. And then they started having sex.”

Illustration by Charlie Powell. Click image to expand.

Bob’s family was horrified at the idea that his relationship with Dorothy might have become sexual. At his age, they wouldn’t have thought it possible. But when Bob’s son walked in and saw his 95-year-old father in bed with his 82-year-old girlfriend last December, incredulity turned into full-blown panic. “I didn’t know where this was going to end,” said the manager of the assisted-living facility where Bob and Dorothy lived. “It was pretty volatile.”

Click here to read more about octogenarian sex and love.  I posted a few questions below the page break for those brave enough to read the article.  SPOILER ALERT!

1. Do you agree with the son’s actions? Why or why not?

2. How would you have handled the situation?

3. What would you want your children to do if you were the old man? the old woman?

  1. Teresa says:

    In the end, I think: Life is too short, too hard, and too complicated to come up with a pat, easy solution to this question.

    But I do think that just becasue someone is old, and losing their judgement, they don’t lose their right to happiness, nor the right to make the decisions that they still have a capacity to make to improve the quality of their lives.

    Guardians have an obligation to protect the health and safety of the individuals in their care…but also their happiness and their right to make what decisions they still can should be protected.

    One concern I wouold have, for instance is that some dementia patienst can become volitile, violent and abusive. Some patients might have conditions that can make sex dangerous for their health. Some might have reached the point where it is questionable if they know what they are doing when they give consent.

  2. “Some might have reached the point where it is questionable if they know what they are doing when they give consent.”

    That was my primary concern when reading the article.

    Unfortunately, the son in the article has an inheritance to worry about, so his intentions can always be questioned. Luckily for me, my parents are leaving me no inheritance since both are pretty much broke. So should I confront the same situation at least no one could suggest I was influence by money. 😉

    I would also say it depends on the person. Are the person’s action drastically inconsistent with how they would have acted when they were acting in their right mind? Would they have been ashamed to have acted that way before their dementia?

  3. Teresa says:

    Everyone kept talking about the inheritance, but the woman’s family offered a pre-nup.

    Personally, if I were going to speculate based on incomplete information about the motives of a man who I don’t know, and attribute base motives to him for purely entertainment purposes (doing it right now, actually)…

    …It seems that what information we have from him, he was irritated with his dad being a ladies man when he wasn’t senile, and now he has a chance to control his dad’s sexuality.

    You know, if I were going to speculate…


  4. Well, it’s not like she’s going to get knocked up and bear his love child, so I don’t see how an inheritance is relevant….

    If they are happy, fine. So many elderly people are profoundly depressed. My grandfather spends a lot of time with a few women – not dating, but lunch, social events, etc. I would love it if he were to find someone (although any woman would pale in comparison to my grandmother). I just don’t want to hear about what they do in bed.

    Personally, I thought that the benefit of getting old – especially if you’re a woman – was that you didn’t have to deal with sexuality any more, but, hey, if it makes her happy….

  5. Teresa says:


    But the woman was only 85.

    Everyone know that Sarah bore Abraham’s son, Isaac when she was at least that old.

    AND the oldest son got disposessed in that case too! Turned looe in the desert to rot. There’s been trouble ever since.

    Never ends well.


  6. Teresa,

    I may have enough Bibles to fend off an army of invading vampires, but do you think I actually read them?

  7. “I may have enough Bibles to fend off an army of invading vampires, but do you think I actually read them?”

    Come on Bridget, we all know better than that. We know you read your Bible. Heck, you just might convert soon. 😉

  8. I would make a great Jew. I’ve already gotten the kosher part and the lawyer part down.

  9. Teresa says:

    “I may have enough Bibles to fend off an army of invading vampires, but do you think I actually read them?

    In no vampire mythos I have ever encountered has the Bible had any affect on Vampires at all.

    Crucifixs, Holy Water, Hallowed Earth…wooden stakes, yes. Bibles, no.


    Go get yourself a boatload of crucifixs, and in the meantime….dont look behind you! 🙂

  10. Teresa,

    Well, the Queen of Swords begs to differ. Duke it out with her.

  11. “Crucifixs, Holy Water, Hallowed Earth”

    Okay, now you are confusing vampires with highlanders.

  12. Teresa says:

    The immortals of Highlander can’t fight on hallowed ground, but in some mythos, vampires cannot tread on hallowed earth.

    As far as I know, hallowed earth doesn’t adversly affect Highlanders at all, although Ive known more than one Scott to show up at church on Sunday LOOKING like the walking dead…from Saturday night…

    boooya! full circle.

  13. Teresa says:


    Queen of Swords – Book? Card in a divination deck? Person?

    I’m lost. Pitch me a clue.

  14. Teresa says:

    Oh, never mind. I just spotted a link to The Queen of Swords over in the blogroll on the left.

  15. ROFL. 🙂

    Queen of Swords is one of my best friends from law school.

    As for the Highlander/vampire/assorted ghoul issue – colour me clueless.

  16. “As for the Highlander/vampire/assorted ghoul issue – colour me clueless.”

    I think someone if pretending to be ignorant in order to avoid the geek label. 🙂

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