George is a former finance banker in his 80s. He has been a widower since his 60s when his wife died of breast cancer. He recently fell in love with and married a much younger women, to the outrage of his children. George believes he still deserves love and doesn’t understand the hestiance of his children. Despite his best efforts, his children will not give his new wife a chance; they believe she is taking advantage of him for his money, potentially putting their own inheritance at risk.

George finds this offensive. After a career in finance, he doesn’t believe he can be taken advantage of so easily. He is frustrated that despite his achievements in life, the older he gets, the less seriously people take him. After working at the top of his profession for many years, he’s used to people doing what he says and not questioning his judgement. Now, because of his age, his own family is questioning his ability to make decisions for himself.

Today is George’s birthday and for the first time in years, his children have not come to see him in Palm Beach where he retired and later met his current wife, Cheryl. Each of his four children had a different excuse for why they could not visit on his birthday, but he believes they chose not to visit because they do not approve of Cheryl.

Despite the attention of Cheryl, George finds himself reminiscing about the past. He misses his children and his late wife. With so few years left on this earth, George wonders whether making a decision that upset his children was worth it. After all, he does want to spend more time with his grandkids. But his children are not with him every day, and Cheryl is. Aging is difficult, and when Cheryl is around he is much less grumpy; he wishes his children could see this.

Cheryl believes that George never recovered from the loss of his late wife and should start seeing a therapist, but George doesn’t see how it could help with his current problem.

When have you ever refused to talk about your problems? What George is experiencing is a loss of power, his children no longer listen to him or respect him. When have you ever felt disempowered? Has aging left you feeling like less of your old self? Why is it so difficult for parents and children to see eye to eye? Could therapy help George with his problem?

Lindsey Lieb