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Alzheimer’s, Divorce and Pat Robertson

21/09/2011

Apparently Pat Robertson, an American ‘tele-evangelist’ has made a statement that if one’s husband or wife is suffering from Alzheimers, it’s like the real person is ‘dead’ and therefore it would be permissible to divorce that person.

But is the person ‘dead?’ When we marry, we take vows, and one of those vows in the traditional wedding service is

‘In sickness and in health, till death us do part…’

Alzheimer’s disease is a sickness. it is a terrible, debilitating sickness. But the person with Alzheimer’s is not dead – they are sick. And they still deserve all the love and tenderness that only a loving husband or wife can give.

Robertson’s views would open a whole can of ethical worms. Because if an Alzheimer’s patient should be considered as dead – why not a person in a persistent vegetative state? Why not someone in a coma? And if such a condition is a reason for divorce, then why not just euthanase them?

Marriage is for life – whatever that life might bring.

What do you think?

From → Editorial

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