Gransnet forums


Older partner's driving

(73 Posts)
GagaJo Sat 19-Nov-22 22:42:56

He is quite a bit older than me and his driving is deteriorating. Late breaking. Not being able to see the lanes properly. Flustered in traffic etc.

The other night, we were going out, and I said I'd only go if I could drive. He was OK with this (meant he could drink) BUT then asked me why.

And I was honest. His night vision isn't as good now. It was a very wet night. And he drives too fast. He was OK with my answer at first, but later, he got angry.

Was I unreasonable?

crazyH Sat 19-Nov-22 23:03:17

Recently, on a bright, really bright sunny day, I had a nasty experience. Approaching the roundabout, the sun caught me (my fault, didn’t have my sunglasses). I was fumbling for them and turned into the central grassy reservation. No one was hurt, except my car which knocked the BillBoard that was there. And caused £1500 worth of damage. to the bumper etc
But the experience knocked my confidence and I almost felt
like giving up driving altogether, but was dissuaded by family and friends. Strangely enough , I now prefer driving at night.😂
If your husband’s reflexes are not up to scratch, he is a potential risk to himself and other road users.
Why don’t you arrange a refresher course for him? Good luck !

Allegretto Sat 19-Nov-22 23:05:43

You were perfectly reasonable and absolutely right. In fact I think that by drawing attention to his night vision you were being very tactful while still planting the seed that there is an issue with driving. Hopefully as your partner has time to process the conversation he will start to acknowledge that there is a problem. Maybe an eye test in the near future would be appropriate.

Wyllow3 Sat 19-Nov-22 23:10:02

No GagaJo : yes, it will hurt now but the alternative?

As well as road safety Worrying each time you go out, trying to "persuade" or give made up reasons for taking the wheel each time...its not great in a relationship?

it was loving. I'm just sorry - it just be hard.

welbeck Sat 19-Nov-22 23:15:58

he sounds like a danger on the roads.
do not collude with this.
as a bare minimum, refuse to be driven by him.
when someone is killed or injured, maybe paralysed, by an incompetent driver, it so often comes out that this incompetence had been noticed by friends or family.

Bellanonna Sat 19-Nov-22 23:16:02

Completely agree with you GagaJo.

CrazyH, sorry to hear about your experience. Dazzling sun can be really difficult to cope with, as it can strike suddenly and throw you. Sorry about the car damage but glad you’re ok.

Bellanonna Sat 19-Nov-22 23:17:58

Welbeck, from what she says I don’t thing the OP is “colluding”.

Grantanow Sat 19-Nov-22 23:28:05

How do older drivers get on in rural areas where there is almost no public transport and taxis are expensive?

Redhead56 Sat 19-Nov-22 23:30:51

Driving getting flustered and too fast not being able to see the lanes properly. Something is definitely affecting his judgement and his driving skills are deteriorating.

You are obviously concerned about this so seriously ask him to at least talk to the doctor. A talk and tests may be able to ascertain the problem.

Your partner has to put away his pride and accept the well meant criticism he sounds a danger behind the wheel.

crazyH Sat 19-Nov-22 23:54:03

Thanks Bella x

maddyone Sat 19-Nov-22 23:54:53

No, you’re not being unreasonable.
Does he need an eye sight test possibly?

Hithere Sun 20-Nov-22 00:24:23

not at all

Thanks for thinking of others who could be impacted by his deterioration

stella1949 Sun 20-Nov-22 03:06:01

My DH is also a lot older than me - 84 to my 73. About a year ago he started being less safe than normal ( he'd always been an excellent and enthusiastic driver). I just didn't feel happy being the passenger any more. Thankfully, we can always talk sensibly about any problem, and I told him that his driving wasn't safe any more and that I'd prefer to drive in future. He was a bit puzzled at first, since he hadn't thought he was unsafe, but he accepted my decision and ceremoniously handed me the keys of the car.

You do need to be firm about this, OP. An unsafe driver can cause an accident, even hurt or kill an innocent pedestrian . It just isn't right to allow him to continue.

Oopsadaisy1 Sun 20-Nov-22 07:13:50


Calendargirl Sun 20-Nov-22 07:41:53


How do older drivers get on in rural areas where there is almost no public transport and taxis are expensive?

You either stay at home more, or depend on others for lifts. Taxis are not available at the drop of a hat either, apart from the cost.

Often on ‘Escape To The Country’ or similar, one of the requirements is always ‘a good bus service’. Might be ok now, but a couple of years down the line….

kittylester Sun 20-Nov-22 08:17:36


How do older drivers get on in rural areas where there is almost no public transport and taxis are expensive?

None of that is a reason for a dangerous driver to be on the road.

Calendargirl Sun 20-Nov-22 08:26:40



How do older drivers get on in rural areas where there is almost no public transport and taxis are expensive?

None of that is a reason for a dangerous driver to be on the road.

No, it isn’t, but I think it was a genuine question, how do you manage when you are no longer able/safe to drive, living out in rural areas?

The answer is, with great difficulty, as GP’s, hospitals, any service, is usually miles away.

Jaxjacky Sun 20-Nov-22 08:43:46

A tricky conversation Gaga, well done for having it, not unreasonable at all.

TillyTrotter Sun 20-Nov-22 08:44:57

I have an older brother and a sister who still drive and have many “bumps” and near misses in their motors.
One got theirs stuck in a rural ditch recently and had to be pulled out by a tow truck.
I’ve tried suggesting they stop driving - and I get a barrage of baffled and angry retorts. It is worrying.

Franbern Sun 20-Nov-22 09:01:10

I made the decision ages ago, that I would be strong enough to give up driving at the right time. Did not want to have either a large accident or a a series of small ones to make that decision.

So, when I started to feel slightly anxious sitting in my car, I knew the time had come. I wa 81 years of age, no insurance claims, no near misses - but knew it was the right time. THat was a year ago - yes I do miss having a car occasionally, but know I made the correct decision in good time.

karmalady Sun 20-Nov-22 09:10:50


How do older drivers get on in rural areas where there is almost no public transport and taxis are expensive?

it is called forward planning. Getting ready for old age, which happens to all of us. I did that forward planning and moved from rural to an area which has transport links and local shops and facilities. I still drive but would give up my car if needed

No-one should put other people at risk from their poor driving and delayed response time. Gagajo did absolutely the right thing

Septimia Sun 20-Nov-22 09:13:38

How do people in rural areas manage?

Many stick to daytime and the local area, on roads that they know well until they have to give up. A friend of ours no longer drives and relies on friends and neighbours to get her to appointments. Fortunately, in a small community, there is usually someone to help, but we're all getting older.

We aren't as old as some and still travel long distances, but we try to avoid night driving.

kittylester Sun 20-Nov-22 09:48:37

Agree calendar.

We have recently had this issue with one of DH's brothers who was concerned about doing his shopping in the nearby town if he gave up.

More worrying was his son who thought that was the most important part of the problem and not the people he could harm as he drove around.

Callistemon21 Sun 20-Nov-22 10:44:17


How do older drivers get on in rural areas where there is almost no public transport and taxis are expensive?

All those older people who want to Escape to the Country puzzle me - surely as you get older it's better to be nearer facilities?

Grantanow Sun 20-Nov-22 11:46:28

Thanks for the answers to my question. We moved to be within easy walking distance of our town shops but hospital visits and anything out of town means a car journey including access to the railway station. We can't afford to move again given all the on-costs. I'm ok health-wise but worry about the future and the 3 year licence regime now I'm over 70. In France anyone can drive a low power car without a licence and I wonder why we don't have that here.