since my husband passed i have not heard from his brothers mom or sisters...I just wish they would call to see how im doing or just to say hi...I want to give them things he left that I know he would want them to have but they show no interest...this hurts me and makes me sad..Now I am angry at them and resent them ....Is this normal? what should I do?

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Rose,

   I have dealt with very similar circumstances and I have come to realize that we can't change what others do, only what we do. I have lost 2 sons a grand daughter and my wife and I don't let things like that control me anymore and do the best I can to heal myself and keep moving forward. I try never to think of the sad times of the past when I lost family members and if I find myself doing that I immediately think of a time we laughed together and it changes my mood. Everything we do is a matter of choice. We can choose the moments that were ( or are ) the saddening ones in our lives or we can choose the ones that we find the most precious. I'm not saying it's easy but it gets better if you work at it. I look upon the past as how lucky I was to have shared it with my family members I have lost and nothing can ever take that away. The only time is now for us and the future is what we choose to make it. I hope this helps and I wish you well in you journeys...Pete

PS. You are letting his family control your life and that belongs to you. Grab hold of now and find YOUR future...

Rose - this is so normal. Tomorrow it will be 6 months for me.  My husband had 2 sisters and 2 brothers and I only hear from his 1 brother - all the others do not bother with me.  Thanksgiving and Christmas came and went and I was not invited - its like I died too.  His sisters significant other had a 65th birthday party and I was not invited to - everyone else was including what I thought was my best friend.  Asked her to be with me and she called me very selfish.

 

You have to have a new life - I'm slowly getting new friends - my widda friends who totally get it and understand what we go through.  I'm here for you if you ever want to talk.

 

Judy

thank you peter.. get it...thanks

Peter said:

Rose,

   I have dealt with very similar circumstances and I have come to realize that we can't change what others do, only what we do. I have lost 2 sons a grand daughter and my wife and I don't let things like that control me anymore and do the best I can to heal myself and keep moving forward. I try never to think of the sad times of the past when I lost family members and if I find myself doing that I immediately think of a time we laughed together and it changes my mood. Everything we do is a matter of choice. We can choose the moments that were ( or are ) the saddening ones in our lives or we can choose the ones that we find the most precious. I'm not saying it's easy but it gets better if you work at it. I look upon the past as how lucky I was to have shared it with my family members I have lost and nothing can ever take that away. The only time is now for us and the future is what we choose to make it. I hope this helps and I wish you well in you journeys...Pete

PS. You are letting his family control your life and that belongs to you. Grab hold of now and find YOUR future...

Thanks Judy....Sometimes I wonder if htey feel the same pain I feel..for losing their brother or son

Judy Kaan said:

Rose - this is so normal. Tomorrow it will be 6 months for me.  My husband had 2 sisters and 2 brothers and I only hear from his 1 brother - all the others do not bother with me.  Thanksgiving and Christmas came and went and I was not invited - its like I died too.  His sisters significant other had a 65th birthday party and I was not invited to - everyone else was including what I thought was my best friend.  Asked her to be with me and she called me very selfish.

 

You have to have a new life - I'm slowly getting new friends - my widda friends who totally get it and understand what we go through.  I'm here for you if you ever want to talk.

 

Judy

thanks jane..food for thought ..thanks

Jane Policcio said:

Rose, I wish I had an answer as to why with one dying breath it all changes but it does.  My mother-in-law has called me everything except human!  I wish I knew why!  But with no regrets, I retired from a prestigious  position I loved, just to take care of my husband, her son.  It is now 8 months and I only hear from one of his nieces periodically. (which I helped raise) I have 2 choices either  let their bitterness towards me eat me up or move forward and I have chosen the ladder.  I am not saying it is easy but you have to move forward or they will pull you down.   I pray for them, I remember the good times but I leave the rest behind. I am sorry they have chosen NOT to have me in their lives but it is their loss and I am now moving forward.    I pray you will do the same.  Hugs, Jane

Rose,
I completely understand. I have 2 step sons and although they are young 16 and 20 - they have never just reached out and called me to say hello or to see how I was doing. It's been 5 months since I lost my love, their father to cancer. We had a beautiful life and I believe the boys love me, but I just don't understand why they haven't tried. I keep in touch with them and they respond when i do call. I realize I am the adult and hope one day they will get it, but I don't understand. I too have things I will one day want them to give them. I know their father would be/ is crushed by this. Some days It makes me feel like I've lost them all. I also realize everyone friends and family have moved on and since I'm not clinically depressed they think I'm doing well... Functioning doesn't mean you don't need/want support.
It just hurts more to have to ask!
My husband passed away 27 months ago and one of his brothers didn't even call to see how his nephew is. I had to curse him out just for him to call once that day. To me that's disrespect. I was upset at first and than very angry. I said that if anything happened to him I wouldn't care. But someone pointed out to me that I would also disrespectful and it is normal to feel this way..And that they may not know how to reach out or their handling their grief in their own way. So It's ok to be angry and maybe for respect for your husband you should call and you might be surprised on how much they love you and care.
Jane

Rose, have you heard the comment "The best defense is an offense"?  Well, since I don't know the relationship here, I'm going to say they just want to hide from it all.  I have learned in these nearly three months that We, the grieving partners, make other people uncomfortable I'm told.  We remind them that their loved one or friend is gone.  So, what is the best way to not feel the pain?  It's to deny our existence, our need.  They think we're going to monopolize the conversation or break down, and it will force them to feel the initial pain of loss again.  So, what do they do?  They avoid us.

 

I've run into the same thing with Lawrence and his dad (he passed seven months before Lawrence).  I've got stuff to give away, and they tell me they don't want it.  Does it hurt?  Yes.  Why?  Because it feels like they're turning their backs on not only me, but the warm and loving man who tried at every turn to share his life with them.

 

Lawrence's best friend who I mailed his watch and signet ring to in February told me two days ago he had finally opened the box.  He said he didn't feel emotionally ready until now to open the box.  I feel resentment at times, and that's okay.  It's okay as long as that resentment does not add to the pressure you are feeling from your loss.  Since others are not giving you what you need, then you need to give yourself what you need.  Put whatever items you have away in the garage or in storage or whatever, if you can afford it, and give them a year to decide if they want to come and get it.

 

I've also learned to expect absolutely nothing from people who you don't feel genuinely care, and rely on people who absolutely do care.  Build new avenues, new friendships--when you can--and just know that you are the best thing God ever made, and they are missing out on a big blessing because you're going to come back stronger and the best you can be given your loss.

 

I have so enjoyed your comments and your questions.  I hope it gets better for all of us in our personal struggles.

 

Blessings and hugs!

Dear Rose,

 I totally know how you feel. It's been 6 months since my husband died from a rare sweat gland cancer.I hardly ever hear from his side of the family. And my brothers and their families hardly ever come to see me either. What the heck is wrong with people? I feel so alone in all of this....my own two daughters are never here for me either!!!!

  The only advice I can give to you is ask God to help you get through this difficult time. I just bought a new book last night and I'm almost finished with it. It's called: Widow to Widow by; Genevieve Davis Ginsburg, M.S. It is a very good book....a lot of your feelings are VERY normal and she tells you what other widows have gone through and the pain that they've gone through as well. Its a VERY good book and I highly recommend it! Hope this will help you.

Hi Rose ... I know how you feel as I've been through someting similar.  I realized that I am not the only one grieving and it took my family a bit to realize that contact between themselves and myself was very important.  Most of the time family and friends simply don't know what to say or do and you will have to reach out to them either by phone or ask them to come over to see you.  Many people do not want to impose especially if the death of a spouse has been recent.  If the passing of your loved one has been recent then take your time giving things away.  I found all last year after my husband Ernie passed away I was in a fog, but this year (even though still very painful) I have been able to sell his truck/camper/boat and trailer (had a good cry over it though as I knew it was the end of a 45 year relationship we had together and now I'm on my own.)  We never had any children so it can be quite lonely at times especially during the weekends although I am blessed I have reached out to family and also my girlfriends and I gave some sort of quality of life. 

 

Yes, you resenting your family is normal.  Communication is not used much these days.  You made the offer and again, I express that they may feel that it is too soon for you to give your loved one's things away.  They should tell you that.  Reach out to them as best you can and if they are not accepting it then reach out to friends (have at least one or two good friends for support) and get grief counseling.  One of the most misunderstood issues in life is death of a loved one and the grieving that goes with it. 

 

If you feel you are going crazy you are not; if you feel totally alone you are not because grief counseling and this forum will help you a great deal and you will soon see the similarities of the grieving process which helps you to cope a little better.

 

God Bless

Marcy

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