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.


Discussion Forum

Navigating Widow-hood

Started by Tim's Mom, Vickie. Last reply by Michele Jul 21. 5 Replies

Finding the new normal

Started by Sharon Kinsey. Last reply by Frances C Younger Jun 24. 12 Replies

Grief so great it hurts

Started by Bonny Jones. Last reply by Bonny Jones Jan 22. 12 Replies

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Comment by Marsha H on October 25, 2013 at 3:26am

I had a very strange day today and don't know if it's part of healing during the grieving process or not.  I am also trying to quit smoking which isn't an easy task.  Between thinking of my Ernie and things piling up so quickly I was in a foul mood today (unlike me) and nothing went right.)

I left a post here a couple of months ago saying I had joined a women's group (women helping women) and tonight went to a auction and then they had a meeting called 'uncluttered' telling us how we could unclutter our house.  Some good tips, but I thought to myself 'mmm, you don't mention anything about a spouse passing away and how hard that is to unclutter.' It was an unfair thought I had, but couldn't help but think about.  I just can't concentrate on these meetings and find constant chatter by speakers boring and generally (if Ernie was here) I would be right into it, but can't seem to get into gear.  I was sitting with 2 of my friends so that made it a little easier.

After 2 hours of the speaker talking we had a break and I went outside to have a cigarette where there were several people and two women came up to me and chatted and it felt good to be treated like a human being without being looked at as a widow. What happened next I'm blaming on trying to quit smoking and think that the extra oxygen to my brain has done damage. LOL  One of the women brought out gum and the other something liquid and said we should take it so we didn't smell of smoke.  I took the liquid (there is such a thing) and as she poured a bit into the palm of my hand I stuck my tongue on it and oh my, it tasted horrible!  Then I heard her say to the other girl 'yes, that Sachet is a beautiful smell!'  OMG, I had just licked up Sachet and I didn't have the nerve to tell them what I did. I had to rush into the washroom and clean out my mouth!  I can still taste it!  What a day! LOL 

Comment by Marsha H on October 25, 2013 at 3:17am

Carol ... always there for a laugh.  Sometimes laughter is the best medicine if we can muster it up and I know it's not always easy for some, but I mean no disrespect.

Oh boy, a flood from the ceiling.  Goes to show you how tight our government is keeping up our hospitals. 

Love you too!


Comment by Marsha H on October 25, 2013 at 3:15am

Dear Diane C ... I am happy you liked the way I had dealt with my brother.  We must also remember that others in the family grieve for our loved one as well although not grieving as deeply as ourselves.  I believe in good communication skills in as calm a way as possible and expressing feelings on both sides.  If the other person can't or won't express themselves then it's important you get your feelings out in the open and over with.  Then your brother can't ever come back at you.  Family is so important. 

Our weather has been warm and sunny during the day and cool at night and tonight a wee bit of fog.  I don't envy you the snow.  I use to love waiting for the first fall of snow (if we got any where I live .. generally stays on the mountains) but that was when Ernie was still here and he drove.  Now I have to learn to do everything on my own and pray a lot. 

Here's a good tip I use for weight in my car (Toyota) I use two bags of kitty litters and this way if you get stuck anywhere it can be put under the tires for traction and is much better than sand.  It's a thought.

Comment by Carol Kayser on October 24, 2013 at 11:36pm

Hi Marsha! Love you!!! keep on making us smile - it's great!  Hey the hospital had a flood today at work - not big enough to have us on the news but water was pouring out of the ceiling like a waterfall!!!




Comment by Carol Kayser on October 24, 2013 at 11:34pm

Hi Diane C.  Snow already!  I hear you about the car.  It's always a worry driving in the snow.  My husband always wanted to make sure I had the best car for the snow.  We lived on a big hill and people would slip and slide all over it.  He was off work for a couple of years after he had an accident and he would go out into the snow in the mornings and heat up the Jeep and clean off the snow, make it all warm.  Bless him, such a sweet thing to do.  Now I moved to a condo and have underground parking, I think that would make him happy that he knows I am safe in the snow.  I have a Ford Escape now, pretty decent in the snow.

Good luck with the new car - the Kia's are cute, but light aren't they.  Kitty litter bags would work too and then you can use them for traction if you need to.





Comment by MikeF on October 24, 2013 at 10:00pm

Dear Barbara:

I am so sorry to hear about you sister's diagnosis. A path that you never wished to follow again, yet here you are so soon. Although painful to you, your experience may be able to help guide your sister. Things that you learned, things that you wished could have been different, things that you are glad you were able to do, can be of great help to her in this difficult time. Although the course of her illness will be different than Chris' there will be plenty of commonalities.

I have lots of internal discussion about the course of events between the day that Molly was diagnosed and the day that she passed away. Whether I would have the strength to try to do things differently if I were presented with another illness, I do not know.

In my bereavement group I have heard lots of stories of people who had back to back loses.  From these stories, I it is clear to me that it is difficult to not suppress grief to allow a person to cope with an impending loss.

I wish you all the best.

Comment by Mark A. Mandel on October 24, 2013 at 9:18pm

Friends,I joined this site and this forum about two years ago, after losing my wife of 39 years to cancer. We lived in Massachusetts for 20 years until moving to Philadelphia in 2003. Our gravesites are all up there.

This past June I went back there to unveil her headstone, a Jewish tradition marking the end of mourning. Her best friends in Massachusetts were there with me, and my oldest Massachusetts friend, and my sister who came up from Texas for it, my daughter, and my cousin. We said a selection of the traditional prayers and blessings, and we all spoke briefly about our memories of her. Then I unveiled the stone, inscribed with the traditional elements – her name and dates in English and Hebrew – and the words that came to me at her funeral:



We each left a pebble on the stone before leaving, a traditional way of indicating "You are remembered". And I kissed the stone: as I said then, the closest I'll ever come to kissing her again, except in my dreams.

And for me the effect of that kiss was ... I was going to say "almost magical", but I'll say it without qualification: It was magical. With that kiss, I felt the burden of mourning leave me. I will always miss my dearest, but I am no longer weighed down every moment of every day.

During my mourning, I found this group, this forum helpful, but more helpful to me were my congregation and my other friends, both realspace and Internet. That is no insult to you; I think it's just something about the ways I interact with people, about what's realest to me. But I haven't read or posted here since I don't remember when, except maybe right around the unveiling. When I logged in tonight I was going to withdraw from, but now that I've been "talking" to you, I think I will stay around at least a little while longer after all.

Comment by Barbara Sullivan on October 24, 2013 at 7:02pm

Dear, dear,  Diane C -- You are always there for me -- with kindness and understanding.  Thank you!  

Marsha H -- You are so right -- it does seem that it 's the women in the family that are the glue -- at least it's true in my family.  If it weren't for me and my two sisters I don't think there would be any connection at  all with our remaining 3 brothers and their families.  We have lost 2 brothers and our mother in the past 10 years and Mom made us girls promise we would all stick together after she was gone -- I guess she knew the boys wouldn't.  

I went with my sister to see the oncologist on Monday and the news was not good -- he explained that the cancer was in the lining of her lung and there is no way to surgically remove it -- he gave her 9 months to a year -- what can you say to that kind of news -- I just held her and let her cry.   At 49, she is just 3 years older than my oldest daughter, and she has a 14 year old son.   This is devastating to her and to us.  Of course, my two daughters and I will support her -- and my other sister has said she will come when needed -- it's just so hard -- so hard.

Comment by Marsha H on October 24, 2013 at 6:48pm

I know some of you are trying to envision my stories, so I'm sending you this link because this is something that could have happened to me, but without my teeth!

Comment by Diane C on October 24, 2013 at 6:48pm


I like your way of dealing with my brother!! I am feeling the same as you. Days of being sad and depressed and crying off and on. Today was our first day of snow, and that caused me issues last year and again today. We didn't get much here, but others in neighboring communities got 3-5 inches. I have a new car this year, and I need to get some weight in it. It is a teeny tiny Kia Soul. The tires spin in the rain, so I can only imagine the snow. Yikes!! We have some bags of sand out in the shed, so I think I will see if the neighbor will throw them in the back of my car. Will have to wait and see what happens!!


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