For more than a month, Dan Gasby has been defending his decision to not only start dating girlfriend Alex Lerner while his wife, lifestyle guru and restaurateur B. Smith, deals with her Alzheimer's—but also to give Lerner her own room in the home he still shares with Smith. On The View Thursday, the 64-year-old stayed firm on his choices, noting that he and Smith had had a discussion right after her diagnosis six years ago, and that she'd encouraged him to keep living his life, no matter what happened down the road, per USA Today. "She ... put her hand on my arm and ... she said to me, 'I want you to go on,'" Gasby told the View panel. "I'm not doing anything we didn't discuss." His explanation was in response to family friend Sunny Hostin, one of the co-hosts of the show, who called it "very disrespectful" that Lerner had her own room at the house, per People.
Gasby said his 69-year-old wife now has the mental capacity of a "toddler," but that he wasn't about to put her in a special-needs facility. "I'm keeping my vows," he said. "Vows are to protect, to care for." View co-host Meghan McCain pointed out, "Also in sickness and in health." Gasby is Smith's primary caregiver, and he says that by maintaining this setup, she could have "dignity of freedom" and he could have "sanity," per ABC News. Lerner—who's about a decade younger than Gasby and white, leading to what Gasby says has been "racial innuendo" about their relationship—also showed up on The View. "We do a lot of things with B together," Lerner said. "She has more stimulation now than she ever did before." (Read more Alzheimer's Disease stories.)