Because seniors are living longer many are encountering a decision earlier generations did not face. The issue develops when the spouse of a senior dies and the surviving partner still has 10 to 20 years to live. In such a case should they consider remarrying?
This issue came to national attention recently when the Rev. Pat Robertson answered a question on his 700 Club program. He was asked what a senior should do if their spouse had dementia to the point where they were institutionalized and no longer knew them. Pat replied he felt the healthy senior had the right to divorce his spouse and remarry because the marriage had been broken by the illness and the surviving senior needed the compassion and intimacy of a loving spouse. Pat's answer got a great deal of response particularly from Christians who felt the marriage vow, which contains the words, "until death do us part," did not permit a divorce in this situation.