In less than two years Allen has already spent approximately $36,000, including $8,400 for a four week respite stay at a local nursing home, for Jean's care.
"We were always conservative," Allen said.
These expenses have all been paid out of pocket since Allen and Jean do not have any health insurance.
According to the National Association of Social Workers, "One-fourth of older adults have no supplemental insurance coverage for their health care needs."
"What am I going to do if I run out of money? I don't know, I'm going to go broke," Allen said. "I can go another two years and then I'm in trouble."
Jean sitting and holding her babydoll. Her doll is one thing that calms her and puts a smile on her face. Allen shared that Jean always loved children.
Starting in 1987 Allen worked as a construction superintendent for CATO, a clothing store company, traveling across the country building CATO stores. Jean signed on, and traveled with Allen in their travel trailer helping her husband build each store.
Allen attributes their savings, investments and stocks in CATO for him being able to afford Jean's healthcare costs thus far.
He and Jean spent a year volunteering at a nursing home in Greenback, TN while living there after transferring for a job.
The time spent with the nursing home residents is what Allen said prepared him to deal with his wife's condition. He spoke briefly of their time volunteering saying he had a realization at that time.
"No one comes to see them," said Allen.
The house Allen and Jean purchased 16 years ago as their forever house. Keeping up with maintenance of the property is especially challenging considering his wife's condition.
Allen thought of downsizing, but opted to stay in their home to keep Jean's surroundings familiar after consulting his family doctor. Keeping up with household chores and finances presents a challenge for Allen. Having the home health caregivers in the home three days a week helps, but doesn't ease the strain of worry.
"What if I get sick? Who will care for Jean? I don't know," Allen said.