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Officially given up driving now

When I was diagnosed in 2006 and had to notify DVLA and got three year licences I declared that I would decide when to stop driving rather than wait until I was forced to. The trouble is I didn’t expect it to happen so soon. I haven’t driven since some time in 2009, I just drove less and less until I stopped. So my licence expires tomorrow, we have notified the insurance and I am officially no longer a driver. I can’t tell you how sad I am. Just one more thing I can no longer do and another nail in the coffin of independence.

Hi Flowerpot

That is sad. Hope you dont mind me asking but why have you decided to stop driving? Is it because you physically cant any more? Would an automatic not be achievable? Im recently diagnosed so still learning about this horrendous disease.

Hi Flowerpot,

My name is Marcus and I am 56 years old. I have been driving (not on the road) since I was 14 - passed test at 18. Banned from driving about 1 year ago because my foot was too slow going from the accelerator to brake pedal no others involved - only the examiner and she said that I could maybe try for an automatic. I just let my wife drive the car and I will be taking advantage of my 4th motability car in September - it’ll be a 3rd Mercedes which will cost £900 for 3 years (I don’t pay for anything else, my wife pays for the petrol and Mercedes ‘pick up and re-deliver’ if they want the car for service. Not bad. I was initially ‘lost’ when I had to give up my licence and I do intend to ‘try’ for an automatic (maybe next year?) - my ‘late’ father had been in the ‘motor trade’ for over 50 years and he had 5 garages and I had been brought up in the motor trade. What used to be my life has disappeared now and quite honestly (whether it is the MS or not) I have ‘forgotten’. Sounds sad but I don’t feel it - sounds weird but I don’t really miss it? Am saving a hellava lot more money now. The ‘motor trade’ harbours alot of ‘dishonest people’ (but then so do the banks!). I’m away on holiday this weekend so I don’t really care!

Marcus.

If you are/were a confident driver, why not consider a road going class III mobility scooter, if you think you are fit for it. I still have my three year licence ,but haven’t had a car for a year.I’ve done over 2,500 miles on the road in 18 months. Please don’t consider a buggy on mobility,if you get it…It is a rip off,and a decent mobility emporium can offer the same for half the price.

Wb

I am just the same, i have given up driving altogether now, due to cognitive issues,i know that i am not safe to drive,because i cant even think straight most of the time, i tried to hold on to this last bit of independance for so long,and kept having a go at driving, but after the las attempt i just knew not to even try, i am so depressed about it,because i learnt to drive at the age of 38, the reason being,that i could hardly walk, so it gave me back the indpendance i lost,so i feel now, as though taht last little bit has gone,and it hurts like hell,doesnt it ?

I keep being told i have to be grateful for what i can STILL do, thing is i am fast running out of things.

jaki xx

I second Stevie’s post - have you tried an automatic? I resisted for years - my only regret is not getting one earlier as it made driving so much easier. I am fine to drive but find it tiring - I have made contact with my local driving assessment centre (addresses and contact detials of all UK ones are available via direct.gov) and will arrange to go for an assessment sometime in the next six months or so to find out what special controls might be useful to me. There may yet come a time when I need to stop driving but I reckon if there are safe ways of carrying on, I should look into them first.

If your only problem is with the foot pedals, why not try hand controls (need automatic car)?
I had a minor accident in my Mini when I couldn’t move my right foot onto the brake quick enough. My car slowly rolled into my garage wall! Still costt £1800, though!
I realised I wasn’t safe on the road (or drive way!). I didn’t drive again for almost a year.
A friend suggested hand controls. I took three lessons with BSM who can provide an adapted car along with a ‘special’ instructor. £40 per lesson, I think.
Really only needed one lesson. I had no problem at all and quickly got used to it.
Driving with hand controls feels completely natural now.
Don’t give up!

John

I drive and after advisng the DVLA of my condition I am waiting for them to contact my consultant to determin my suitability for driving. I really really hope it comes back positive as my car is my lifeline and I couldnt be without it.

Even it it comes back that I should have an automatic I could just use my DLA payments to get a brand new car with insurance and servicing included that wont be too bad. I currently live in a house with stairs and steps everywhere wich I hate so getting a scooter wouldn’t be posdsible at the mo.

I just hope that it doesn’t get to the stage where I need a scooter permenantly.

I’ve just ordered a replacement car on motability. An automatic with hand controls !

It recently became apparent to me (…thankfully not through any kind of accident …just being objective and honest with myself) that my right leg - whilst OK for about 30 minutes of driving - soon got tired and ‘stiff’ enought to make something as little as moving my foot between accelerator and brake pedals very slow, difficult and even sometimes impossible.

As soon as I became conscious of this, my driving became more and more rare.

I understand the car adaption company have to notify the DVLA about the mods so I can’t wait to see what restrictions are placed on my license ??

Dom

Hi

Sorry to hear about you giving up driving.

Between my wonky legs and my cognitive problems I have found driving increasingly challenging so heartfelt commiserations.

Best

Tu

I also had an NHS assessment which concluded that I was perfectly safe with hand controls. I advised DVLA and I was given a three year licence, restricted to hand controls and automatic only. You have to advise DVLA - the NHS won’t. Also advised insurance company who didn’t increase the premium.
Really no problem!