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Since: Mar 09

Miami, FL

#1 Jun 14, 2012
DEAR ABBY: "Torn in Texas" (April 13) wrote that her widowed father-in-law visits them every weekend, leaving no time for her family to have a weekend just for themselves. May I suggest that "Torn" contact the Office on Aging nearest to "Pop" and find out what programs are available for seniors. If he has the capacity to drive an hour each way to their house, perhaps he could volunteer.

It appears that Pop has a lot of life left in him, and it's a shame that he spends so much of it alone. If he could become involved in some activities during the week, they might overflow into his weekends, keep him busy and productive, and alleviate his family's guilt. If you only reduce the number of times he visits each month, he will be alone that much more and probably won't admit that he is lonely.

As is often the case, I'll bet Pop's late wife made all their social plans. I recommend that Torn or her husband go with Pop to a program the first time. It would also be helpful to talk to the director and explain the circumstances. The father-in-law may be resistant at first because it's difficult to walk into a new place cold turkey. But he will be warmly welcomed and may look forward to the next time.-- EXPERIENCED WITH SENIORS

DEAR EXPERIENCED WITH SENIORS: Your letter reflects the opinion of many other readers. Most agreed that Pop needs to get out and become more involved, and Torn should appreciate the time she and her family spends with Pop, because at 87 he won't be around forever.

Read on:

DEAR ABBY: While I sympathize with Torn, she needs to consider that her father-in-law is 87 and has many more years behind him than ahead of him. Any time spent with him should be considered a blessing. At his age, he may not be able to prepare food for himself, so time at his son's home may be his only opportunity for a decent meal.

My advice to Torn is to stop seeing Pop as a visitor and regard him as family. Include him in your family's life and plans and build memories while you can. Remember, you will be setting an example for your own children. How you treat your father-in-law is how they will believe the elderly should be treated, and one day that will be you.-- IRENE IN ELIDA, OHIO

DEAR ABBY: Torn should be thankful her father-in-law is in good enough health to visit and be part of the family. If she needs a weekend alone, think about having him up during the week. Perhaps her teenagers have activities during the week that he would enjoy. Your family is the most important thing to Pop, and by including him you are contributing to his quality of life and well-being. That way you will live with fewer regrets.-- ACHING IN ARIZONA

DEAR ABBY: It seems like a lot of families throw away their parents -- the people who gave them life, changed their diapers, fed, sheltered and clothed them. Daughter-in-law is using the excuse of needing a weekend to themselves to dump Grandpa into a nursing home.

If she needs time away from him, involve him in senior activities, church, a health club, and help him find some friends. Pretty soon she'll find she won't see much of Grandpa. She'll have her weekend time and also have helped him have a happy end to his life.

Remember, without Grandpa, she wouldn't have the husband she has now. She should pay him back a little of what he gave her husband -- the gift of life.-- APPRECIATING MY MOM

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#2 Jun 14, 2012
"she needs to consider that her father-in-law is 87 and has many more years behind him than ahead of him. Any time spent with him should be considered a blessing. At his age, he may not be able to prepare food for himself"

1. He can drive an hour, he can fix food for himself.
2. He could live another 15 years. So stop with the guilt trip.

Since: Mar 09

Miami, FL

#3 Jun 14, 2012
One giant serving of rehash. Okay, I'll play.

I like LW1's advice (isn't this what a lot of us said?).

LW2 makes a couple of good points, but the original LW and her family still have a right to set boundaries.

LW3 regarding the weekend vs. weekdays: I believe the original LW said that grandpa would just come over every weekend, it wasn't a matter of when he was invited. He was inviting himself. So try again.

LW4: original LW never said anything about a nursing home (that I remember). She just doesn't want grandpa visiting EVERY SINGLE WEEKEND and she 100% has that right.

So these letters go from helpful to judgy on a sliding scale.

Since: Mar 09

Miami, FL

#4 Jun 14, 2012
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
"she needs to consider that her father-in-law is 87 and has many more years behind him than ahead of him. Any time spent with him should be considered a blessing. At his age, he may not be able to prepare food for himself"
1. He can drive an hour, he can fix food for himself.
2. He could live another 15 years. So stop with the guilt trip.
Both good points. And using someone's old age as a reason to hang out with them is insulting, IMO. It's like you're just putting up with them because you think they'll die soon.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#5 Jun 14, 2012
Heck, I know I've seen posts from people here saying things like, "We had to visit my grandparents every christmas because my mom would say 'you never know when they won't be here anymore'."

Since: Nov 10

New York, NY

#6 Jun 14, 2012
It's a column of rehash with a side of guilt trip.

Since: Mar 09

Miami, FL

#7 Jun 14, 2012
Renee J wrote:
It's a column of rehash with a side of guilt trip.
Mmm, yummy!

“A Programmer is not in IT!”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#8 Jun 14, 2012
What? Speak up! I cant hear you younginns. Get offa my lawn!

Since: Feb 10

Location hidden

#9 Jun 14, 2012
"Torn should appreciate the time she and her family spends with Pop, because at 87 he won't be around forever"

None of us are going to be around forever. Should I now spend all my free time with the family members I don't like because they, too, could die in a car accident at any time? Sacrifice all my free time, forego any plans I may have and bury my resentment because otherwise I could regret not entertaining them whenever they wished while they were alive?
That's stupid.
I like the idea of getting him involved as a volunteer, though. My dad was 80 when he died, and right up to the end, he worked at the local food shelf, helped out at the church and spend a lot of time driving the "old folks" they knew into town for shopping, doctor appointments, etc. It can be tough to start something like that cold turkey, so if possible, it would be great if his son and DIL could help him get started. However, he sounded pretty active, and maybe all he would need is a little nudge...maybe a list of possibilities.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#10 Jun 14, 2012
I agree, itser. I know retired people who seem to be busier than we working people! They fill their time with all kinds of interesting volunteering and hobby stuff.

Since: Dec 07

DuPage County

#11 Jun 14, 2012
Grandpa needs some lovin'. Find a woman for him to spend time with.

“I Am Mine”

Since: Dec 08

Location hidden

#12 Jun 14, 2012
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
1. He can drive an hour, he can fix food for himself.
The money he spends gas to drive an hour will pay for a decent meal. Throw in the cost of gas on the way back and he's got enough for a real nice meal.
Stina

Saint Petersburg, FL

#13 Jun 14, 2012
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
I agree, itser. I know retired people who seem to be busier than we working people! They fill their time with all kinds of interesting volunteering and hobby stuff.
My Dad is almost 85 and pretty much never home!!! He is always so busy running around helping so and so with this, building that for so and so, etc. Plus he's been rebuilding an old car for fun just for himself. He is always repairing and creating handy things at my house, too, when I ask. Plus, he babysits my daughter, volunteers at the church, etc. etc. If I had HALF his energy, I would be THRILLED!!!

Since: Feb 10

Location hidden

#15 Jun 14, 2012
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
I agree, itser. I know retired people who seem to be busier than we working people! They fill their time with all kinds of interesting volunteering and hobby stuff.
Hope you closed your windows...looks like a storm is comin'

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#16 Jun 14, 2012
itser wrote:
<quoted text>
Hope you closed your windows...looks like a storm is comin'
I did! closed them all because the sky was pretty dark at 5:45 this morning.

Did you see they built a new Target in IGH? We did the engineering. The engineers did a site survey and came back and told me "there's nothing else there!" No businesses, no houses. Off of Robert Trail (south Robert Street, essentially). Weird, considering there's that SuperTarget on Robert STreet a couple of miles north of the new one, plus there's one less then 10 minutes away in Eagan.

Since: Feb 10

Location hidden

#17 Jun 14, 2012
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
I did! closed them all because the sky was pretty dark at 5:45 this morning.
Did you see they built a new Target in IGH? We did the engineering. The engineers did a site survey and came back and told me "there's nothing else there!" No businesses, no houses. Off of Robert Trail (south Robert Street, essentially). Weird, considering there's that SuperTarget on Robert STreet a couple of miles north of the new one, plus there's one less then 10 minutes away in Eagan.
I did see that. They open next month, don't they? Cool that you were involved with building it.

I know there is nothing else there, but I'm sure there will be soon. You know it will just be packed by everyone who currently has to go ALL THE WAY TO ROBERT ST to get their Target fix, or just settle with the Walmart that's what? 2 miles away? Speaking of the Robert St store, I thought it was weird that they tore down the "old" store to build the new one on the same site, just sitting the other direction. But that lot is always full, so I'm sure they have recouped the cost already.
Stina

Saint Petersburg, FL

#18 Jun 14, 2012
Saluki Rod wrote:
<quoted text>
You're very lucky. My father sat down after he retired and quit being active. We later figured out that his poor health was the primary driver.
I know I am!!! My Dad's the type that if he stopped, it would kill him. He's had some health issues, but he hasn't let them stop him. He had some major surgery a couple years ago and was told to take it easy for 3 months. That lasted MAYBE a week. But it seems to do him good, so who can complain!!!

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#19 Jun 14, 2012
itser wrote:
<quoted text>
I did see that. They open next month, don't they? Cool that you were involved with building it.
I know there is nothing else there, but I'm sure there will be soon. You know it will just be packed by everyone who currently has to go ALL THE WAY TO ROBERT ST to get their Target fix, or just settle with the Walmart that's what? 2 miles away? Speaking of the Robert St store, I thought it was weird that they tore down the "old" store to build the new one on the same site, just sitting the other direction. But that lot is always full, so I'm sure they have recouped the cost already.
Yeah, it opens in July.

The original Target store in Roseville on County Road B, when they redid that store, they paid to build a brand new Perkin's restaurant nearby so they could take over the space it sat in.

Since: Feb 10

Location hidden

#20 Jun 14, 2012
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
Yeah, it opens in July.
The original Target store in Roseville on County Road B, when they redid that store, they paid to build a brand new Perkin's restaurant nearby so they could take over the space it sat in.
That makes sense to me cuz the store was so small and they didn't own the property. But I'm pretty sure they already owned the lot on Robert, and they just built the new store perpendicular to the old one.

The storm is sitting right overhead now and it's raining. No hail though, so it's OK.

Since: Jun 09

Madison, WI

#21 Jun 14, 2012
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
I agree, itser. I know retired people who seem to be busier than we working people! They fill their time with all kinds of interesting volunteering and hobby stuff.
There's a guy here who's in his 80s and officially retired, but he seems to put in nearly as many hours as I do. I don't know if he's still doing research or publishing or just surfing the web all day, but he's here a lot.

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