Dating and Parkinson's

Hi everyone,

I'm updating our 'Intimate relationships and Parkinson's' booklet at the moment and wondered if anyone has started a new relationship or dated different people since being diagnosed with Parkinson's? Would love to hear your experiences.


     I think there's only one resounding answer to


titan, Is it that you think it's too difficult to start a new relationship when you have Parkinson's? I know people here have said that life with the condition can put a strain on relationships but I know I've also heard some stories here about new ones over the years.

There is a wonderful thread on dating and PD in the YOPD forum of the National Parkinson's Foundation.


It has been pushed down to page 8 of the YOPD forum, but is well worth reading.

Hi Ezinda,

            I was ironically saying the opposite.In my case,the extra-marital indiscretions increased.Maybe it is other issues I already had,maybe fuelled further by the meds.Or maybe it is the **** it,live for the moment while I can attitude,before I fade away.

            Strange thing is,that can swing the other way,upsides down and back again.When being left staring at a trail of destruction and mayhem,leaves one staring into the abyss.I have Borderline personality Disorder,this makes me highly erratic.The thing is,I have been like this for too long now.

             Parkinsons affects everyone in a different way.Depending on the already present psychological and physical makeup of a person on diagnosis,is how they ultimately deal with this new"life change".I have the feeling that most pwp will develope problems in their current(on diagnosis)relationship,shifting attentions then to other outlets to fill the gap,especially with like minded others going through the same.

                I hope this makes some sense to you


I am single and i do not think i would be confident to try to enter into a new relationship now. how do you tell a prospective partner that you have Parkinsons ? and at what point do you tell them , do you tell them from the start and risk telling a complete stranger about your condition or do you wait for a while and risk them feeling that you had not been honest with them from the start, a lot of people do not understand about Parkinsons  at my age most of us probably have a failed marriage behind us and second time around the possibilty of  having to care for someone through illness is not part of the plan so  i think dating with parkinsons will be difficult , but there are some non judgemental people out there who will see you for who you are and not what illness you have  but i suspect they are few and far between .

Being honest from day one is surely the only sensible way forward in any relatoinship but especialy a new one, I'd be not impressed if a months down the line someone hadnt told me the truth.

Perhaps we with parkinsons who are seeking the possibliaty of a life with new partner  should restrict our search to other disabled persons including  ones with parkinsons .?


I am single fine it very hard to get a date has soon as you say pd thats it .so if you or any one out there with pd who would like to meet up for a chat a drink let me know i live in bristol but can drive .May be nice to go out with some one with pd then you be yourself


Looking for love?? At what point do you mention the 'P' word?

Having spent the latter part of my career looking forward to early retirement so that I could have the luxury of time doing all the things that having a job might provide me the funds to pursue but does not afford me the time to do so - like endless spontaneous trips away, scuba diving, paragliding, creating music and other artistic endeavour etc.

Having recently retired - a little sooner than anticipated - I find myself unable to do many of the things that I had planned to, although I can still travel. The only problem here is that, whilst I am perfectly comfortable in my own company, I currently have no one to share my travelling with and so feel less inclined to embark upon such activity. Therefore, I have thought of the possibility of finding a new travelling partner - and whatever else might follow.

Having been to many Parkinson's meetings and noted the very many couples and unofficial carers, I have to assume that (other than those know for certain), the vast majority of these couples were together long before one or other of them was diagnosed with Parkinson's. Hopefully there is sufficient relationship between them both to withstand the shock and for the relationship to continue. But what are the prospects of people who were single at the time of diagnosis?

I discussed this with a number of my 'working age group' couples and they wondered whether I should concentrate my efforts amongst the (very reduced) 'pool' of people who already have Parkinson's; this way, the person would have an understanding of what they might be likely to have to deal with in the future and would evidently want to be with me despite this. Fair point, although my initial reaction was that they may be struggling enough to look after themselves as it is, without of having the added complication of my potential deterioration at some point in the future. Equally, could I cope with looking after them in their potential deterioration? And why should I have to restrict myself? So, if I want to increase the odds, does this leave me the (relatively small) 'pool' of sufficiently aware non-Parkinson's people from which to select a partner?

Only once in my entire life have I approached a complete stranger in a bar with view to starting a relationship, so I don't see the likelihood of that happening any time soon. Attending some sort of course might be a place to meet people but, by the time anyone has spent much time in my company, they will have noticed at least a tremor, which isn't exactly a good selling point.

Perhaps the next option is the current trend for anonymous online dating, but how should one form one's advert? Forgetful, untidy, clumsy and with a penchant for mixing up dates, making silly mistakes and the likelihood of tipping coffee down my shirt. Blah, blah and more blah...Oh, and I also have Parkinson's. At what point in the proceedings does one mention the 'P' word? Should it go in the actual advert, so that it naturally eliminates 99.9% of an already reducing number of potential takers? Or does one wait until some point during the first meeting, having spent much of it sitting on one's offending hand, where they are able to realise what a wonderfully compatible person I am and are just at the point of thinking they would like to spend more time with me, when I hit them with the 'P' word and they suddenly lose interest, never to be seen again? There is little point in leaving it much longer, whereupon they end up feeling 'duped'.

I haven't yet found the thread of the discussion mentioned elsewhere here.
I do wonder how other singletons manage the prospect of embarking upon a new relationship and whether there is any scope for a 'P' pool for those so inclined to restrict themselves to others with Parkinson's?



The whole thing here of dating post dx fills me with dread thank god i am married. 


Personally, I've never minded being on my own, and although the prospect of being alone with this as it progresses is pretty scary (on so many levels), the thought of navigating the horrendous maze of  'dating' is strangely worse. Friends who don't have the whole Parkinson's thing going on find it tricky enough; it makes my tremor so much worse just thinking about it, never mind about actually getting involved. I also sit on my offending hand - which is a problem if, like me, you have life long sweaty hands: I end up with a wet leg, where I've been trying to keep the damned thing still, as well as pins and needles and a strangely purple, cold, sweaty hand. I'm definitely not exposing myself to any of it, total cop-out or what?

Good luck with it all and .apologies for the slightly vague reply - it made sense in my head!





I  don't think you need to restrict yourself, perhaps if your going down the online dating route then just be open and honest in setting out you have 'P' along side your interests.

When i met and started a relationship with my GF years ago i knew she was unwell she made it clear she was it didnt bother me and the relationship blossomed, over the years she's become less well, i became her care'er as well as her partner, and then I became unwell and less able'd. so tables were turned it hasn't made a difference apart from her family have had too step in a little in her caring.


I read the posts with interest: he's my recent experience:

My wife and I separated early last year for several reasons but her inability to cope with the changes in me (early stages of PD included depression and anxiety) was a major issue:she herself became depressed.

The prospect of being ill and on my own caused me to panic somewhat and inadvisably I joined an online dating website and subsequently met a wonderful woman who I dated from May until December. The point I would make is that I told her by email and before we ever met that I had Parkinsons': at our first meeting my body and left arm shook like mad but this didn't put her off and we soon began an intense relationship, seeing each other 2 or 3 a week and going away for weekends to The Cotswolds, Derbyshire and London. I should say that in the weeks before I met this lady I went on several dates and only in one case was my Parkinsons' an issue.

My girlfriend researched Parkinson's and was happy to continue our relationship and was completely supportive. The point I would make is; don't second guess how people will react to you when you have PD. I believe that there are many people out there who can look beyond the physical infirmity and judge the person you, not the limitations you may have. I have to say that people in their middle years (I am 62) will often have a health condition and perhaps because of this will have an understanding of illness and as such are more accepting of "less than perfection" in their potential future partner. My advice is join a dating site (I joined Fifty Dating) and go for it! 

My own experience was clouded by the fact that I didn't wait long enough before seeking another partner. I realised that my wife and I had not spoken properly about our problems and much was unresolved. I reluctantly brought my new relationship to an end in December in an effort to reconcile with my wife. Still work in progress and perhaps I made the wrong decision?. There is also a lot of guilt about the way I treated this lovely woman. However the point still remains: there will be someone out there who will be the right blend of desirability, common interests and understanding: you have to keep looking!

The Captain           

To be honest, it’s hard to find another partner when you’ve been diagnosed with Parkinson’s. People generally don’t like taking care of strangers. Some people are enough to have their wife or husband next to them after being diagnosed, others don’t. Maybe if a dating app was built for the ones with Parkinson’s, finding another partner would be faster and easier. Or maybe there is one already? A friend of mine daily tries to find a partner on Seniormatch ( with no success till now. But the most important is to not quit, isn’t it? He was diagnosed with Parkinson’s 7 years ago and a few months later his wife left him. Who needs such women? The people like him need a strong person next to them. If someone who reads this message is willing to meet him, PM me. He’s a brave man.