Love Is Easy When The Going Is Easy.When I was growing up my Dad was the disciplinarian and my Mom was the one I go to for comfort. Dad had been a Marine sergeant in WWII and I do not ever remember going to him for comfort. I can only remember one time that Mom did not wait for Dad to discipline me. They told me later that they decided on their roles when I was born. Younger brother confirms that this is the way it was. They had a very loving relationship for 60 years; till Mom turned 85 or so. Then she got dementia and started to go downhill mentally. She could not be left alone or she might set something in the microwave and set the timer for 120 minutes. She would forget where things were and hide anything and everything. She would forget who we were; normally at night and want to leave and go home to be with her parents.
My tough old Dad was as loving to her then as he had been before. He always liked to be on the go. When she could no longer be left alone he either took her where he went or he stayed at home with her 24/7. He would not let anyone else watch her. He said this was for better or worse. It was really tough because she would decide to sleep for 4 hours in the middle of the day. He would cook and clean while she slept. In the middle of the night she would get up and decide she was going to go for a walk. He could never get into a deep sleep for fear she would leave. He did this for the last years of her life. A week before she died she had a stroke and he would not leave her room in the hospital. We had to bring his food into the room. He would sleep in a chair holding her hand all night.
I read a good story by Kel83 earlier today and she made the point relationships cannot be 50/50, but needs to be 100/100. When it really gets challenging is when you are at 100 and your partner does not have anything to give. How long would you be willing to give 100%. Dad gave me a great example, but I do not know if I would be that kind of a person; would you?