updated 4/12/2005 8:35:15 AM ET 2005-04-12T12:35:15

Joan Kennedy, whose three children took temporary guardianship of her last year to ensure she receives treatment for alcoholism, is putting her oceanfront Cape Cod home on the market for $6.4 million over her children’s objections.

The attorney for the children, Augustus Wagner Jr., said Joan Kennedy, 68, the former wife of U.S. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, has no legal authority to sell the house in Hyannis Port. He went to Barnstable District Court last week to extend the guardianship order, so that any prospective buyer would know that the house cannot be sold.

“She’s not happy with the fact we have sought guardianship,” her son, Edward M. Kennedy Jr., said Monday. “She’s basically trying to retaliate against her own children by taking one of the things we love the most, which is Cape Cod. It’s very sad.”

Joan Kennedy couldn’t be reached for comment by the Boston Globe. Her lawyer refused comment to the Boston Herald.

The three children — Kara Kennedy Allen, 45, Edward M. Kennedy, Jr., 44, and Rhode Island Rep. Patrick Kennedy, 37 — took temporary legal guardianship of their mother last year.

Joan Kennedy was hospitalized with a concussion and a broken shoulder after a passer-by found her lying on a Boston sidewalk on March 28.

Edward M. Kennedy Jr. said he and his brother and sister are “trying to save our mother’s life.”

“You can imagine how bad this situation has gotten for us to risk angering her and undertaking this legal action against our own mother,” he said.

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