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Bereaved Spouses

A continutaion of the "When a Spouse or Partner Dies" thread.

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This might be a rough time for many of you. Do what you feel you need to do to get through it. Remember, someone is here almost all the time to talk to you.

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Comment by Charles E. Nelson on May 8, 2018 at 6:42am

Dear Patricia,

Reading your posts about your losses of your brother and granddaughter truly leaves me shaken. Having to endure all that sadness, and then lose your rock to whom you clung when doing so would surely leave you feeling terribly lost.

Try to think this way if you can - you can't be completely lost, because we have found you, and you us. It may not sound like much - having "invisible" distant voices trying to offer our support when you feel frightened and more alone than you ever knew was possible in this world. For myself, such voices and listening ears, quite bluntly put, saved my sanity.

I have never known the blessing of having a child or grandchild, so can only imagine the depth of grief such a loss as yours creates. My heart goes out to you and your daughter.

The tragic violent way your brother was murdered leaves my hands shaking with shock and outrage. Your feelings of hatred toward those responsible for this horrific hate crime is not ill-suited considering the circumstances of your loss. As a gay man this struck a nerve head-on with me, bringing me back to a question I have pondered my entire life. What is the reason so many people are afraid of gay people? It's only love after all, and nothing to be afraid of.

I met Larry in June of 1983, then in July my mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer. She passed September 1st. Larry became my rock that summer, as well as someone upon whom  my father and brother could lean and depend during my family's emotional ordeal.

^ years later we went through another loss to cancer of my father, and again Larry was more than my rock - he was an angel for helping me through my dealings with hospice, a frightened loving aunt, and an alcoholic brother who was unraveling before our eyes.

10 years later a dearly loved friend committed suicide, and I was in total shock for months - Larry somehow knew just what to say - and perhaps more importantly, not to say - to allow me to process and navigate my feelings of guilt and grief.

10 more years, and we lost my brother to liver cancer - he was alone in his life then, so it fell to me to handle his arrangements and meager estate. Larry kept me focused and grounded, again the steady constant support upon whom I leaned without hesitation when i would be suddenly exhausted and overwhelmed by loss.

When I lost Larry 3 years ago, I looked around me and saw many willing people wanting to get me through this fresh hell I was dropped into, but they weren't Larry.

That was all I could think again and again - where was my rock? how could I do this without my hero, my strength - my love.

Patricia, you don't know me, but believe me that nobody ever considered me a "tower of emotional strength", nor was I ever accused of being incredibly confident and stable. Yet, with the help of this family, the unseen presence of Larry and all those I had lost, and especially the mercy of God, I made it through the darkness and terror that was my early grief.

You are just now where I was - my heart breaks knowing exactly how you are feeling right now - but you will get through this, and as Marsha says, we all are here to help you do so. You are most definitely not alone.

I wish you peace today, and send my strength your way along with a hug, because, to borrow a phrase from Marsha, you need it.

Love, Chuck

Comment by Mary. Jane on May 7, 2018 at 11:09pm

Patricia, and others,,I just don’t know what to say...about multiple losses like I have read about here. I have heard stories here, that have dropped me to my knees.

Some day I will share my story about the loss of a 13 year old girl..but not yet. Ironically, the parents are my daughters husbands sister and her husband..and the mom was pretty close to BOb. When he died, she wrote me the most beautiful letter...and said she knew they were together in heaven. I still haven,t seen her, .as she chose not to come to Christmas dinner in 2016..and I knew it was because we both would have broke down...

anyway I digress ...I am not afraid to die either, I don,t want to die violently..but I am older..and, in a sense..it is the “circle of life”. I understand that I no longer have time on my side.

however, I am TERRIFIED my daughter and my cat Rudy will die. I follow my kitty around, checking on his welfare, and examine him. If I don,t get a call from my daughter I go to pieces imagining the worst. Basically my world is one big ball of terror..of loosing the people I care about, and that includes everyone here. 

I have been considering telling the story of story of the death of the 13 year old..as it was so strange and out of the blue...it was not a violent death...but it was the perfect family...they worked hard and had an absolutely perfect life..then travesty struck. How they handled it was an inspiration..but it’s been 4 years, and their perfect life will never be the same. They are good people, and the girls death was completely senseless. After all this time I still can’t believe it happened. Ok it is time for bed. Rudy is in the garage looking for bugs and small snakes. I am ok with the snakes, but not the spiders..terrified he will get hurt. Welcome to summer in Oklahoma. I hope everyone sleep is peaceful tonight.

Comment by Charles E. Nelson on May 7, 2018 at 7:39pm

Dear Christine,

You don't have to thank us for listening, because that is what this whole uncommon family is about - it's why we're here. I know how it does feel better to say what is truly going on with you without having to edit and censor your words so people around you won't start freaking out or rushing you to the nearest psychiatric ward. They can't understand if they haven't experienced our profound loss for themselves. Well-meaning though they be, so often their comments or actions make things harder fro us.

Come here and speak with us whenever you can, and when going through periods of depression please reach out and tell us how you're feeling. We are listening and I promise you that we do care very much.

I was discussing my health with someone recently and said quite plainly that I wasn't afraid of dying, just like you say. They looked a bit startled first, then said I should be. I just replied that I was here because God still has something for me to do - what that is remains a mystery, but I'm confident that when He's satisfied that I will be more useful with Him than here, it will happen.

Prayers are coming your way, and the hope that you'll have a better  day tomorrow - 

Love, Chuck

Comment by Patricia Huett on May 7, 2018 at 11:51am

Thank you Marsha and Mary Jane, I just got So lost when my brother was killed.  He was only 24 and stabbed to death 5 times at the time of the MKY Derby in Louisville, KY.  They put him in a trunk of a car and drove around with him going to grocery store and whereever. They finally buried him in a shallow grave in the guys grandma's garage.  Two weeks later we found out where my missing brother was. We found out by the fact they had hisnpicture on the news and said id you know this boy: call Louisville police. I had SO MUCH HATE IN MY HEART when I walked into that corthouse to attend the trail and speak on behalf of my brother.  It was a HATE crime case he was gay and the guy did not want to lose my brother.  I HAD NEVER FELT HATE LIKE I DID FOR THIS MONSTER! I never thought I would get over that loss. At least I had my husband to console me.

Now my grandbaby is gone and I fell like my heart is ripped from my body, but at least I have my husband to console me.

Now, moving a little forward and I lose my consoler, cause I've lost him.  I just don't feel like I can honestly get over this one.  I don't have my rock, it died the day he died about 3 1/2 weeks ago.  I'M SO LOST

Comment by Christine Blaire on May 7, 2018 at 9:44am

Hello everyone.   I haven't been on here for awhile because I went into a deep depression. I was depressed before  but I guess it got worse. My daughter was having a hard time getting me to answer the phone. I kept telling her I was ok,just tired. On a nice sunny day she came over and found me in jams on the couch with all the blinds closed and dirty dishes in the sink. I told her I was really tired. I had been having night terrors where the dog would wake me barking and I could hear her as I was walking and I was screaming. I also was having whole body spasms. Now I'm on doxepin along within pills,paxil and ativan. I slept thru the alarm for church yesterday. I was happy about that because church seems to be my saving grace. But later I did cut the grass.  My daughter will spend a couple days with me this week. The Dr wants to know if the new medicine is working. I still pray every day and night to be with my Marshall. It's all I want. We are all so broken. I don't know why we have to go on. I too hear "Marshall would want you to go on and be happy"  he said the only reason he tried was because of me. I find no joy in anything. I'm waiting to die. I have no strength. I'm worn out and tired. I'm no longer young. I'm 66 and feel 106.  I feel I'm on a stationary bike...peddling and not getting anywhere. Things will never get better until I'm with him. I don't tell the Dr everything. Putting me in a hospital won't solve anything. Can they bring him back??? Can they take the hurt away????  I have ptsd from an abusive husband. This one showed me what real love is. No one can make this better. When the cancer comes back and it was very aggressive and triple negative so without chemo or rad. It has a really good chance of coming back. I'm not afraid to die,it would be a blessing. I don't know what the answer it and no one else does either. It feels a bit better to get this all out and not be considered nuts. Thank you for listening.

Comment by Marsha H on May 6, 2018 at 11:43pm

Dear Patricia ...  Thank you for sharing part of your life and again I'm in tears over the death of your brother, granddaughter (the loss of a child has to be the worst) and now your beloved husband.  I know the fear you must be feeling that you'll slip back as you did when your brother passed away, but you won't!  You have come to a wonderful place 'Legacy' where we all understand just how you feel.  Legacy and the wonderful angels on it saved my life when my Ernie passed away.  It's a place you can express exactly how you feel without anyone judging you.  I went to pieces when my father passed away and had to quit my job as I was getting terrible panic attacks and got little help for them until my girlfriend suggested her doctor and he helped me a great deal with short-term medication.  Then my husband's brother took his own life and the family was never the same after that and on and on it went with aging parents on both sides of our family.  

I can't even begin to imagine being so strong for your daughter as I know your grief over the loss of your grand-daughter was heavy on your heart.  It is no one's fault that little angel had to go so soon.  There are just no words to help those that grieve over a wee one.  Then the sudden shock of your strength, your beloved husband passing away; your rock and strength.  I hope you will remember this Patricia; when we are married to wonderful men we learn from their wisdom and strength and they learn from us.  His strength and love for you will always be with you and he's right beside you getting you through each day.

I urge you to see your doctor and express just how you are feeling and why and get short-term medication to just get you over the hump.  It is so important and it's not a sign of weakness or not.  From the losses I went through I certainly learned from them and I refused to let myself go back to those bad days of mental anguish when Ernie passed away.  Oh yes, I had tears often, didn't want to talk to anyone, just wanted to sleep and try not to remember what I considered an on-going nightmare, but, suddenly strength came into my life and it was onward and upward from there; little by little.  I certainly can have my bad days now and come to this forum to let the angels on her help me through it.  We all hurt inside missing our deceased spouses and others in our family, but we hold each other up and it makes us feel less alone.

You ARE GOING TO MAKE IT!  We are here and we won't let you down.  As I said before I'm in Canada so probably your late night or day time is the opposite of me and I will answer your posts as others will as soon as they see it.

I'm saying a prayer for you and others on here tonight (I always do) and pray for peace and strength.  Try sleeping on the sofa for a few days with the TV low and you most likely will find you will drift off to sleep much quicker.

Hugs

Marsha

Comment by Mary. Jane on May 6, 2018 at 10:18pm

Patricia, you aren’t rambling at all. You seem very courageous to have gone through so much, and be in such new and raw pain. 

I didn,t find this site until almost 1 1/2 years after my husband died..at least I think it was that long.  After Bob died...I thought I “was fine”  but I also thought that he wasn,t really gone..he’d walk back into the house and laugh, and say, I’m home...did You miss me? It took me about 18 months for me to grasp that he HAD really died..and was never returning. Of course I knew deep down he wouldn,t..but it was a nice first year. Unfortunately I lost a year I could have grieved, instead of pretending all was well.

the people I have met here saved my life..in so many different ways...I othink we were all meant to find each other. After spending a few days on our Facebook sister page..I realized there were something  very wrong...so I wouldn,t advise anyone to go there. I will post more about that another day...try to have a good sleep tonight, everyone. It has been a very strange weekend.

Comment by Sara Murphy on May 6, 2018 at 9:55pm

Deb....I'm sorry you had such a rough night last night.  These dates do have a way of sneaking up on us.  It sounds like a nice plan to be in your favorite place with Greg on the 1 yr anniversary of his passing.  I have no doubt you'll feel his presence and I hope you'll feel some peace knowing he's with you.

Comment by Sara Murphy on May 6, 2018 at 9:50pm

Patricia.....I'm sorry that you also lost your baby granddaughter.  That in itself is a tough loss plus your brother and now your husband.  So much pain for one person to be dealt.

I understand how lost you feel.  I met my husband when I was 20 and lost him in Jan 16 when I was 50 (he was 52).  My entire adult life up until that day was spent with him and when he died, my life ended too.  Although he had been sick for many years (2008), and had been in the hospital for a month when he passed, the doctors were not expecting this and therefore neither were we.  In fact, I was standing next to him in the middle of a conversation with him when he went into cardiac arrest.  That night played on an automatic continuous loop in my mind every night for at least the first 13-14 months.  Now I can control it better and in time, you will as well.  In no way, shape or form does this mean "time heals all wounds".  This is a wound that will NEVER heal, it just looks a little better than it did in the beginning.

Marsha makes a good suggestion about visiting your doctor and asking for something for the anxiety.  You'll need something to take the edge off.  It helped me get through the first few months.  And finding my Legacy family really helped.  None of my family or friends understand what I feel or think.  I got so tired of having my feelings dismissed by people saying "Ken wouldn't want you to feel that way" that I won't even discuss my loss.  For me, this is the only safe place.  I hope you'll also feel safe and understood here.

Sending a hug your way.

Sara

Comment by Patricia Huett on May 6, 2018 at 6:08pm

I honestly do not know how to thank you all for your support!  You welcome and have so many kind words for me.

Mary Jane, Sara, Charles, and you Marsha are the best, Thank God for ppl. like you that share their grief and have been where I am now.  I have not hardly made it out of this bed in 3 days now.  I know this is not good for me cause it happened once before when my 24 yr. old brother was murdered and the outcome for me was not Good at All. 

I just don't know how to get going?  When it all happened, it was like a fog I was trying to navigate through.  I found out I had so many places to contact regarding his passing.  I think this kept me a little more occupied and now I have that all done, the horror of it is sinking in.  

I also went through this at the end of 2016 when my 6 mo. old granddaughter passed.  She was the most precious baby!  She smiled and laughed all the time.  Her Pappaw could make her giggle and he loved to hear babies giggle.  My daughter could not deal with the loss (reasonably so) so I dealt with everything for her and it took a toll on my mental health, she still hasn't really dealt with the loss, cause of guilt. She let her cousin bandit Maddison that day when she passed and she laid her down for nap and when she went to get her up, she was unresponsive.  My heart still aches for her and now my husband!!

Sorry guys for rambling, I just hurt so bad and it seems like I've been given so much grief lately.

Thanks for listening

 

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