Skip to comments.Robertson: Divorce Your Wife With Alzheimer's
Posted on 09/15/2011 11:20:05 AM PDT by Sopater
Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson told his "700 Club" viewers that divorcing a spouse with Alzheimer's is justifiable because the disease is "a kind of death."
During the portion of the show where the one-time Republican presidential candidate takes questions from viewers, Robertson was asked what advice a man should give to a friend who began seeing another woman after his wife started suffering from the incurable neurological disorder.
"I know it sounds cruel, but if he's going to do something, he should divorce her and start all over again, but make sure she has custodial care and somebody looking after her," Robertson said.
The chairman of the Christian Broadcasting Network, which airs the "700 Club," said he wouldn't "put a guilt trip" on anyone who divorces a spouse who suffers from the illness, but added, "Get some ethicist besides me to give you the answer."
Most Christian denominations at least discourage divorce, citing Jesus' words in the Gospel of Mark that equate divorce and remarriage with adultery.
Terry Meeuwsen, Robertson's co-host, asked him about couples' marriage vows to take care of each other "for better or for worse" and "in sickness and in health."
"If you respect that vow, you say `til death do us part,'" Robertson said during the Tuesday broadcast. "This is a kind of death."
A network spokesman said Wednesday that Robertson had no further statement.
Divorce is uncommon among couples where one partner is suffering from Alzheimer's, said Beth Kallmyer, director of constituent services for the Alzheimer's Association, which provides resources to sufferers and their families.
"We don't hear a lot of people saying `I'm going to get divorced,'" she told The Associated Press. "Families typically respond the way they do to any other fatal disease."
The stress can be significant in marriages though, Kallmyer said, because it results in the gradual loss of a person's mental faculties.
"The caregiving can be really stressful on a couple of levels," she said. "There's the physical level. There's also the emotional level of feeling like you're losing that person you love."
As a result, she said, it's important for couples to make decisions about care together in the early stages of the illness, when its effects aren't as prominent. (AP)
Pat has been delusional for several years now. He’s not getting any better. Once you get your audience to send money and support you and your staff, there is no retiring.
“In SICKNESS and in HEALTH”
“For as long as you both shall live”
Vows mean something.
Mr. Robertson is suffering dementia - not his fault.
You are suffering incredible ignorance and hate - and that is YOUR fault. Can’t blame your parents any more, you’re old enough to know better.
Going to heaven with that kind of hate in you?
It appears vows mean nothing to you. I can only hope you’re kidding. Does the same apply to a man.
He never had as much brain as a healthy cantaloupe has.
“Wonder what part of *Till death do us part* he doesn’t understand.”
Yep. And also that little part about “...in sickness and in health...”
Well explain then, this one of three rules for proper annullment in the Church other than the Pauline Rule. Yes, the rules have been abused in the West in the Church, but they stand nevertheless for the Church militant.
Do we have to listen to any ‘religious’ leader who is several fries short of a happy meal??
Pat will issue a note for you, for a modest donation to the Lord’s work, of course.
I think you are the one who sees things through the lens of modern American culture.
What premise? Robertson’s?
Pat, a ‘word of knowledge’ for you. Step away from the microphone before a lightning bolt ZOTS you.
It’s awful but I’m not surprised. Part of the moral disease that’s infected our culture is the belief that your marriage is all about you instead of about the both of you.
Pat has lost it completely. He’s been teetering on the edge for awhile, but clearly, the tipping point has been achieved.
You mean that dementia is grounds for annullment? Dementia that existed before the supposed marriage, yes. But not if the person was of sound mind when he made his vow. That can’t be undone just because one spouse suffers from mental illness or some other grave ailment.
I don’t know where you are getting your claims about Catholic doctrine. Your idea that function makes one a wife is absurd from a Catholic viewpoint. What makes a woman a wife is her free, uncoerced, knowing vow with a man who makes the same vow. If she ceases to be able to do X or Y she, the person, who made the vow, does not cease to be a person and the marriage remains.
And in your first posting you wrote, “a man is not a monk.”
Sheesh. Your implicationis that men can’t live without sex so if a wife can’t give it, she’s no longer a wife, so find a new woman while taking care of your old woman.
Monks are men who show that men can live without sex. So too are all the faithful men throughout time who honored their vows even though it meant living without sex.
You demean men when you imply that a man has to have a woman for pelvic gratification.
Talk about “modern American culture” lenses.
Why don't you just go ahead and move to Saudi Arabia? Y'all take a bit here and a bit there and turn the Bible into a big hammer you use to hammer on everybody (unless it's you, in which case you find all those handy "mercy" verses). I'm not going to waste my time posting how many times Christ was chided for hanging out with adulterers. I seem to recall one he saved from your type of judgement. I also seem to recall Christ saying something about even looking at a woman being adultery. Are you saying, Oh Glorious One, you've never ever spent a few extra seconds looking over someone?
Hey, I ain't this guy and I ain't this guy's priest. He'll get judged for what he does and that's God's business, not mine, and it's sure as heck ain't your's to declare the death penalty over. I will say that if some smarmy little weasel tries to stone somebody for not making what they deem to be the "right" decision, they'll have to make it passed me first. So do us both a favor and either move to Pakistan and join your Taliban brothers or stone yourself for looking.
Show me from scripture where God says it is okay to put away a wife because of illness.
I think Mr. Robertson has been declining steadily for a decade or more and needs to retire. Does he have a board of directors or something? What hideous and callous advice. Callous towards the Alzheimer’s victim AND their spouse.
“If she gets the flu real bad can I cheat on her just once?”
Follow Pat’s logic and a guy ought to be able to get day-passes for the old “I’ve got a headache tonight”.