Older Spouses and Mental Health Deterioration

Older Spouses and Mental Health Deterioration

Talk about an important issue with no good solution.

Consider the following scenario: You have been married to your spouse for decades. You recently noticed an increase in their lack of stability. It might be physical. More likely, it is mental. It could be anger, confusion – or a true diagnosis such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, or other dementia.

In any event, these declines have seriously impaired your marriage. You turn to doctors and mental health professionals. You may come away with a better understanding of their issues and perhaps management of them. But underlying problems still exist. These could be financial – or even safety concerns regarding dementia that manifests itself through violent actions.

It often takes far too long before someone suggests seeking the help of a highly experienced divorce attorney. Divorce may or may not help the situation. The reality, however, is that highly experienced divorce attorneys usually know the best resources to assist you.

Think about it. What happens if your spouse has memory impairment but has control over the family finances and loses all of your money to a scam. That is too late. That should never happen.

Highly experienced divorce attorneys regularly interface with financial experts, medical experts, and mental health experts in an effort to determine what is best for you – and by extension – your spouse.

Here is a quick example. A spouse comes down with a serious, life-altering physical condition, the result of which is decreased brain function and progressive dementia. That spouse begins acting out by spending tens of thousands of dollars on Internet purchases that make absolutely no sense. The spouse then goes to the bank, withdraws the entire savings account, and donates everything to a nonprofit.

Situations like this one are real – and they happen every day.

In fact, there are thousands of scammers out there looking to identify and take advantage of these vulnerable adults. Your financial stability could be destroyed by a failure to identify the issue early and act to preserve and protect the family’s assets.

Just remember: When a spouse or loved one begins to show signs of deterioration, take care of him or her, but don’t forget to take care of yourself, as well.