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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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Discussion Forum

Grief so great it hurts

Started by Bonny Jones. Last reply by Diamond Jan 31. 13 Replies

Navigating Widow-hood

Started by Tim's Mom, Vickie. Last reply by Michele Jul 21, 2019. 5 Replies

Finding the new normal

Started by Sharon Kinsey. Last reply by Frances C Younger Jun 24, 2019. 12 Replies

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Comment by Marsha H on August 31, 2018 at 4:17am

Jeanette ...  No marriage is perfect and it's natural when two people live together usually with different personalities it's fair to say each spouse can get on the other's nerves and often arguments can break out.  There may be times where we have felt our spouse never noticed us that much, not the extra hugs, kisses or 'how was your day', but it doesn't mean they don't love you.  To say I love you often is to me like water running off a duck's back.  It's every so often when your spouse's eyes are tender looking and they tell you they love that those words really mean something.  Then, there are some men who just can't express themselves and may do something small to show they do love you.  I call it the 'old slipper syndrome' where two people get so use to each other they practically can finish each other's sentences.  Also life is fast pace, financial problems can come out of nowhere, not getting along with certain members of each other's family, etc.  If two people didn't have at least a tiny light of love in their heart for each other they wouldn't be together.  Don't blame yourself and since you are grieving then there must have been a hint of love.  Otherwise you would feel free and get on with your life.  

Comment by Mary. Jane on August 30, 2018 at 7:06pm

(My apologies for this post, but I am in a strange mood, and feel like calling it as I see it)

Jeanette, I could be wrong, but my guess is that a lot of us who mourn their soulmates here, DIDN,t spend their entire lives together, strolling hand and hand down the. Primrose path, while bluebirds and butterflies fluttered around them. In most relationships, there are wonderful times, and really BAD times. In the very LONG ones, especially.

 In my case,in 49 years of marriage  we had some wonderful times, and some HORRIBLE times! Major horrible. I don,t know how to drive a car. Wanna know why? When I was a teen, my parents (mostly my mother, who never liked me very much) said I was too distracted to learn to drive...when I got married at 20, Bob made a few vague attempts to teach me, yelling at me the entire time, then told me I was hopeless..but I knew the real reason...if I drove, I could get in the car and DRIVE AWAY if I wanted to. And there were many times I wanted to...but I couldn,t so  I stayed..and things always worked out. For one reason. I KNEW HE LOVED ME WITH ALL HIS HEART. And I loved him..even tho he could be a bully, and an a$$hole, and he called the shots..at least I let him THINK he called the shots. 

We were both DRUNKS, but thankfully each at separate times during our marriage...we would have TERRIBLE fights, and some years were horribly rocky...but we got through them...and I knew how he grew up..with a father that beat his mother, and him and his brothers, and he had lived in fear his entire life...and I knew this before I ever said “I DO” so I married him knowing it wasn,t going to be easy,because I knew as sure as God made little green apples we were each other’s destiny. And I was right. And as the years went on, there were less fights, less fear, I DIDN,t drink for 37 years, he began to realize I wasn,t going to leave him, and trust me...and we had a wonderful life together. Oh, don,t think we walked down that primrose path...it was more like a street in the inner city where we sidestepped the trash, rats  and junkies...but we did it. That is LIFE!. Because I knew he loved me with all his heart, and during the last 20 years, it was only his irrational fears that would cause us to argue..but in all that time, we ALWAYS made up by the next morning. We never had a fight last longer than I have seen some people do..for weeks, cuz neither one wants to say “I’m Sorry” 

So Jeanette, let that thinking go. Of COURSE you deserve to hurt...you spent 40 years with this man, and loved him. And he loved you. Maybe he didn,t tell you, but I bet he did. And, if the last few years you thought you were just a caretaker...you wouldn,t have stayed if you thought you DIDN,t love each other. 

As for other who will read this...I could be wrong, but I am pretty sure there were some times in your lives with your partner that were rocky...we just don,t mention that out of both respect for their memory, and the love deep inside that diminishes any rocky times. 

As I wrote this I was wondering if Bob was reading this, and I think he is ok with me telling these rather private things. We would sometimes use HUMOR to defuse an argument. I would yell at him and tell him he was such an A$$HOLE, and he would yell back “I am not   “AN”  A$$HOLE, .I am “THE”  A$$HOLE”.....and we would laugh and the argument would be over. 

Comment by Jeanette McSherry on August 30, 2018 at 5:13pm

In two days it would have been our 40th anniversary. It already hurts. Unlike so many of you I don't feel I really deserve to hurt. My husband and I weren't terribly close for many years and might have separated had he not gotten a chronic condition where he needed constant care. During the last few years it has been mostly a caretaker role. Still, I mourn him as the father of my children - and there was a time when I remember him as being filled with life and joy. Those memories are precious. Although I can't identify with many widows who are grieving a soulmate that they shared so much with, I am still grieving. I do think the guilt part is worse, wondering if something had been done decades ago to endorse reconciliation whether he would have had a happier and more fulfilling life.

Comment by deborah peck on August 30, 2018 at 8:54am

Thank you all for your words of wisdom, does make me feel better that this is normal .I so love your tree Steve, such a nice memorial for Mark

Comment by Steve G. on August 28, 2018 at 10:42am

Debbie,

Each morning when I go out to water the flowers, Mark's living memory is planted in a huge planter and as I water his Crape Myrtle tree, I say good morning  to him and to Bella.  The birds seem to love his tree as I sometimes startle them with my presence...they actually look annoyed at me.  Since placing his tree out front Chuck and I both see a Cardinal fluttering away...Chuck goes out to feed them, I usually see the Cardinal as I pull into the driveway...make me smile when I see him. 

Comment by Marsha H on August 28, 2018 at 5:45am

Debbie ...  It does make sense that we still feel married to our spouses.  No one can take that away from us.  They will always be special in our hearts even if we go into the future and things change for the better where there is some peace and joy.  I knew Ernie 5 years and he passed just before our 40th wedding anniversary and he's still my husband to this day.  I can deal with it though and not so upset as he's been gone over 7 years.  I just talk to his ashes out loud and wish him a happy anniversary.  I believe our spouses are close to us and you can be sure your Greg is.

Comment by Sara Murphy on August 27, 2018 at 9:53pm

Debbie.....What you're saying makes perfect sense.  I was married to Ken for almost 27 yrs when he passed 2 1/2 yrs ago.  As far as I'm concerned, I'm still his wife and he's still my husband so our anniversary in May will always be honored as a special day by me.  Take some time for yourself on Friday to reflect.  I have no doubt Greg will be right by your side.

Sara

Comment by deborah peck on August 27, 2018 at 11:24am

Friday marks my 27th wedding anniversary to Greg, it will be the second one without him here, which in itself doesn't seem possible. About two months ago I was talking to his ashes sitting on his dresser and it jit me that he wasn't coming back I told him You are really not coming back and I totally lost it, even though I knew he was gone I guess a part of me wasn't accepting it.I still feel very married and still consider this our anniversary does this make sense? I don't know, guess its all part of ths crazy process

Comment by deborah peck on August 27, 2018 at 11:18am

Steve, my prayers have been going out to you and Chuck as you face this new trial, but I know you will both handle whatever it turns out to be and you beat this once so praying for a second time. I too have arthritis in my hands really bad and have thought of talking about the drug you have taken, I now know it is an evil drug and will not pursue it and am grateful I didn't do it. your friend Debbie

Comment by Mary. Jane on August 27, 2018 at 9:23am

Ok, this is technically for Jeanette...but hello again to all of u. Since I returned from California, around 3 weeks ago, looking at possible mobile homes to purchase, I have been frozen with inability. I have so much to do, so I do nothing. (No, I DIDN,t find a home, but I got an idea of what I want to find..)

Jeanette... I think it might be too soon for counciling  for your son and grandchildren. But that is just my opinion.  We each grieve at our own pace. You can suggest it, but if they aren,t receptive let it be for now. Just focus on yourself. Of course,keep calling your son, and talking to him about your pain. The pain you hare now..is going to be so different from a year from now.  But please, DO NOT FEEL GUILTY ABOUT ANY PAIN YOU ARE FEELING. Go with it. 

My husband of almost 50 years died 2 1/2 years ago after 4 months with cancer. We have one grown married  daughter, no grandkids. She lives in a different state. Sh is just now starting to grieve. She has pushed it away all this time, for whatever reasons, I don,t know. Only a few weeks ago, she told me, “I was looking at the picture of Dad on my refridgerator, and I realized I would never see him again”. That was the first time she had said anything like that. She is ALOT like her dad...holding things inside.

For yourself, I would SERIOUSLY consider getting a journal..and writing in it when feel like it. It has helped me get through these past years. I don,t write every day, only when the mood hits me..and I have found it to be very cathartic.

Also, coming here has been a Godsend. These wonderful people have saved my life....I wish you the best.

 

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