by Joan Jerkovich ~ Salina Post
While I feel it is a very personal decision for any spouse to leave a marriage, my outrage over Mr. Robertson’s comments stem from his position as a Chrisitian leader speaking from a widely broadcast televised pulpit.
Robertson’s comments came after a male viewer asked what advice he should give a friend who had been seeing another woman since his wife had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.
“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. Well, Mr. Robertson, would you have given the same advice to a woman caller?
Writing for About.com, Daniel Kurtzman, compiled a list of “The 10 Stupidest Things Pat Robertson Ever Said”. Number 6 on his list said, ”I know this is painful for the ladies to hear, but if you get married, you have accepted the headship of a man, your husband. Christ is the head of the household and the husband is the head of the wife, and that’s the way it is, period.” –Pat Robertson
With his comment on Alzheimer’s, co-host Terry Meeuwens, to her credit, challenged his comments. To this Robertson responded, ”You said ’till death do us part;’ this is a kind of death. I certainly wouldn’t put a guilt trip on you if you decided that you had to have companionship; you’re lonely.”
Seriously, Mr. Robertson? You justify from your pulpit loneliness and a desire for companionship as a reason for divorce? What do you know of Alzheimer’s to call this a “kind of death”. Would you justify divorce if a spouse fell in to a kind of ”spiritual death”?
While I do not have firsthand experience caring for a spouse with Alzheimer’s, in my work as a Registered Nurse I have cared for many Alzheimer’s residents at my Assisted Living Facility, Dignity Care Home. I can speak for both myself and my staff in saying that some of our most cherished residents have been those with Alzheimer’s. We, as nursing caretakers, see the value of all persons through all stages and phases of life.
I have a challenge for you Mr. Robertson:
Return ALL the donations you have received from the elderly who suffer from Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Listen in this Saturday, 10-8-11, as I talk with an Alzheimer’s caretaker and representative about the disgusting truth of how televangelists and other solicitors prey on the elderly with Alzheimer’s, dementia and loneliness.
The Joan Jerkovich Show
Saturdays at 9am, 910 KINA
For Pod-casts and Video Outtakes
Available on iTunes