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Telling A Parent They Are Too Old To Drive  
User currently offlineDc10s4ever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2480 times:

I just got home from visiting my dad. He is 83 years old and I am sorry to say his driving days are over. I rode with him and some of his actions behind the wheel were very scary. His brother, my uncle was not too much older than my dad when he was in a serious accident that killed his wife as well as one other person.
How do I tell him with out offending him or getting him mad or upset?

17 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineKmh1956 From Bermuda, joined Jun 2005, 3324 posts, RR: 7
Reply 1, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2475 times:

Do you think just age or perhaps his eyesight that's going? You might say something like "you almost missed a stop sign back there; have you had your eyes checked lately?"
It's not accusatory, and shouldn't upset him.



'Somebody tell me why I'm on my own if there's a soulmate for everyone' :Natasha Bedingfield
User currently offlineDc10s4ever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2470 times:

Ahh no actually he played chicken with a 18-wheeler, then later on he made a U turn when he realized he was going the wrong way, and was driving against traffic.

User currently offlineKmh1956 From Bermuda, joined Jun 2005, 3324 posts, RR: 7
Reply 3, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2465 times:

Yikes. that would scare the hell out of me. Is your mother still with us? Maybe a quiet word with her would help; she could perhaps have a quiet word with the family doctor who could help.


'Somebody tell me why I'm on my own if there's a soulmate for everyone' :Natasha Bedingfield
User currently offlineDc10s4ever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2462 times:

She is well aware too, he has alreay put a huge scrape on her new 2006 Lexus. But she is afraid to tell him. I have not thought about the doctor.

User currently offlineCptkrell From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3220 posts, RR: 13
Reply 5, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2460 times:

If he was actually aware that he was playing chicken with an 18 wheeler, that might indicate he's still VERY young in his thought processes  Smile

Seriously, KMH's suggestion seems a way to start him thinking that he may be having deminished capabilities. If he's very independent, he will probably recoil from the thought of losing his "freedom", but then again, if he's smart, he might accept the thought that he could be creating a danger to himself and others. Go for it in that non-confrontational way (at first).

Very luckily for my peace of mind, my Mom made her own decision about twelve years ago and took herself off the road after getting the old (1967) Coupe de Ville stuck in a ditch. She passed peacefully at the age of 96 two years ago without ever causing an accident. Hopefully you (and he) shall be so lucky. Regards...jack



all best; jack
User currently offlineDc10s4ever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2453 times:

Quoting Cptkrell (Reply 5):
Hopefully you (and he) shall be so lucky. Regards...jack

Hopefully. My dads brother, my uncle was in a very serious accident a few years ago, and he wound up killing his own wife and a young woman. Very sad.


User currently offlineCptkrell From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3220 posts, RR: 13
Reply 7, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2443 times:

DC10s...very sad indeed. Although painful, perhaps a reminder of this incident would get your Dad to thinking. One hates to "play cop" with a parent or loved one, but if you realize that your efforts are unfruitful, maybe the family doctor idea is a good one...if he respects advice from professionals. In any event, I wish you and your family well. Regards...jack


all best; jack
User currently offlineDc10s4ever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2439 times:

Ya I know its hard. I live 1200 miles away which makes it tough. There are times I think about quitting my job and moving back the the area to take care of my folks.

User currently offlineCptkrell From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3220 posts, RR: 13
Reply 9, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 2431 times:

I did that with my Mom (550 miles), but luckily I had already retired and was considering changeover to the farm life anyway. I don't have to tell you to consider lining up another position before you move, if you can. Again, all best, and keep us informed of progress. Regards...jack


all best; jack
User currently offlineCastleIsland From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 2415 times:

My Dad is 76, and having been an engineer for GE aircraft engines for 35 years, it is hard to tell him anything. His driving does alarm me a bit sometimes, but nothing like you've posted.

This is a tricky situation. I would sit him down and tell him. It may erupt, it may not. It's the only way to go. I'm looking at this in a few years also.

Just do it. It may save his life, your mom's life, and those of others. Thing is, if he can't drive, you are looking at other implications, such as elderly housing, unless you want to go there three times a week to provide for them. Tough stuff - I'm with you. Best of luck, my friend...


User currently offlineNWOrientDC10 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1404 posts, RR: 4
Reply 11, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 2364 times:
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Quoting Dc10s4ever (Thread starter):
How do I tell him with out offending him or getting him mad or upset?

Maybe you don't have to. Maybe you could talk to you one (or several) of your dad's friends and explain the situation to them. In turn, they could say a word to the "old man" (No offence, I call my dad the "old man"). If all else fails, then you'll have to tell him yourself. Your dad sounds like a reasonable man. What if he were to cause a death? Could he live with that? Tell him, in a respectful way, to do what is right. If his dad's dad (your grandpa) were around, Grandpa would probably take away the keys.

Good Luck  bigthumbsup 

Russell



Things aren't always as they seem
User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31580 posts, RR: 57
Reply 12, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 2351 times:

Just Tell him the Facts.Better to be straight than to beat around.
regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offline57AZ From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2550 posts, RR: 2
Reply 13, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 2301 times:

Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and be straight and to the point. While some may view giving up driving as tantamount to giving up independance, you must remember that this is a safety issue for them as well as the rest of the public. One thing to look into is public/elder transport that may be available in your community. Many retirement facitilies here in AZ provide regular coach service to the malls and grocery stores as well as organized nights out. We haven't had this problem with my grandparents. My grandfather who passed a couple of years ago would have Dad drive at night and my grandmother drives only as much as absolutely necessary during the daytime-if we're going to be out after dark one or in an unfamiliar part of town, one of us drives.


"When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."
User currently offlineTuRbUleNc3 From United Kingdom, joined May 2006, 519 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 2289 times:

As you get older, your reactions slow down, its been the case with a woman over here who was 80 and was driving with my nan, she had a car accident because she couldnt react fast enough before the collision, luckily they were both ok, but i think there should be set ages, as now we are seeing more older people having more accidents than younger.

Does anyone remember them on about bringing in compulsory driving test retakes for those over 70 ish?


User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 12887 posts, RR: 12
Reply 15, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 2282 times:

Some states require that drivers over a certain age before renewal of their license must take a vision test and may be subject to a driving test and a review of their record. Also in a number of states, a doctor can or may be requied to notify state motor vehicle licening facilities that a person's drivers license should be suspended due to medical conditions, such as a stroke, or if had an epilisey seizure (usually for 1 year). Some states may allow a doctor to file a statement that in their medical opinion, due to medical and mental conditions, recommend that a person's DL be suspended. Problem is that it can put the doctor in a bad and time consuming position, and there can be an appeals process. Still, the primary physican can be your best ally.
One problem with losing your license is the need for a picture ID, such as a drivers license that may be needed for health care and, of course, taking a air flight. Many states MV agencies can issue non-driver ID's based on a license but clearly marked as not for driving. After my father had a major stroke at age 77, it was clear he could never drive again. A few months later his license came up for renewal, and we made it clear that he couldn't renew it, and slowly he realized the reality that he couldn't drive again. He still has the expired license for ID purposes.


User currently offlineBristolFlyer From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 2273 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 2262 times:

Try telling him the benefits of using public transport/taxis and this may soften the blow of losing his car. Stuff like 'you don't have to maintain a car, you'll save money, ou can have a few drinks' etc. I know a lot of older people who start using taxis and they end up getting to know and trust a driver and the relationship works very well.

Otherwise tell him that you think it's time for him to let others do the driving. Both of my grandparents handed in their licences in their early 80s.

BF



Fortune favours the brave
User currently offline57AZ From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 2550 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (7 years 9 months 2 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 2240 times:

If you surrender your license, you can still obtain the Identification Card and should do so. Reason is that once the license is surrendered or expired, most governments consider it to be legally invalid as identification. As a deputy clerk, if LTBEWR's father came in to transact business with us that requires identification I cannot accept the expired license as proof of identity under law.

As for alternative transportation, you save a lot of money and expense by having someone else drive. Retirees who can afford it may find it makes sense to hire a personal driver/assistant once they are unable to drive themselves. You can also have friends or family drive you-they rarely mind the extra driving. My grandmother made it clear that if she weren't living close to family, she would have hired a chauffer (she can afford it) rather than drive herself. She still does limited driving during the day but draws the limit at driving in unfamiliar parts of town or at night. Whenever she has dinner with Mom and Dad on the weekend, I know that I'll be the one driving and don't mind at all.



"When a man runs on railroads over half of his lifetime he is fit for nothing else-and at times he don't know that."
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