to think you should respect what she would have wanted?

(48 Posts)
3sugarsplease Wed 17-Feb-16 06:32:04

Firstly I do suspect that some aspects I am being unreasonable with however my emotions are everywhere and I'm just lost as to how to feel.

My sister sadly passed away a couple of days ago. She was mid twenties and had been battling for over a year with terminal illness. I am a couple of years younger than her with a small baby. My mum raised us alone for around half of our lives until she met my dad. (Stepfather but we call him DF) as you can imagine we were very close.

She was engaged to her partner of a couple years before diagnosis but they quickly married after they found out. My sister had a very difficult relationship with her in-laws and were incredibly dismissive of her condition after she was diagnosed. For the first couple of months they did lots of fancy OTT things but then suddenly they dropped her and they stopped bothering to see her or even contact to see how she was. His mother didn't approve of them marrying either as she didn't understand why he was marrying someone who was dying.

My entire family, mother, father, brother (step brother) sister in law and myself cared for my sister. And my partner works 7 days a week to ensure I could stop work early to spend more time with my sister and also that I haven't had to go and find work after my DC was born so I could spend time with her again. Her husband has not cared for her he went to work every single day, we even offered to support them so he could have time with her and he said he would take time off 'when the time was right' I would like to add that my sister worked up until around 3 months before she passed away.

She had been in the hospice numerous times in the last couple of months and not once did any of his family members text her to check in or call to see how she was doing. It was only in the last 3 weeks before she passed his mother suddenly began to turn up, send flowers etc. When caring for my sister her husband told me that his mother was coming over and my sister told me she didn't want her there but she still came, and then made my sister in law subsequently leave as there was 'too many people there' even though he know my sister adored my sister in law and despised his mother. My sister was also a very proud and private person and did not like people seeing at her weakest. She always wore her wig around certain people, would wear clothes instead of PJ's, and it angered me that he let his mother come around when she was very drugged up and in no fit state for people and let his mother see her like that.

When she passed, my entire family was there, minus my partner as he was at home with DC.
We all got to say goodbye we all had moments alone with her and my mother washed and dressed her after. The next day her husband took his parents up as well as trying to bring his sister to see her. It angered me. These people did not bother with her when she was here, they were mean and insulting and how dare they see her so weak and vulnerable like that when I know she would have hated it. It hurts me to know that they could have touched her hand, and I can't explain but it doesn't feel right knowing they are the last ones to see her? I bit my tongue as I didn't want to argue or upset him.

we are currently arranging service plans and he keeps making decisions that are hurting me. He has now decided that during the service he wants his sister mentioned as a sister to Marie. She wasn't her sister she was mine. I cared for her I washed her, I did those things for her. I don't want to share her. This girl abandoned my sister in her time of need, why should she be mentioned?!

We also agreed on the ashes and now he has decided to keep some of hers. He also has talked about her life insurance money and how he is planning to buy a house soon. It just feels so wrong and I want to scream at him and the world.

Thank you to all still reading. I suspect I am being unreasonable but I just want to scream right now.

JuxtapositionRecords Wed 17-Feb-16 06:39:25

I'm really sorry for your loss Op flowers

I don't think you are being unreasonable. But I do think you have to not focus on it. Instead, remember your sister and let the grieving process start. When someone dies or is terminally ill there are so many emotions and the easiest one to focus on is anger as it takes away some of the pain. From everything you have mentioned there is nothing you can do or say about any of it and it will just eat you up if you let it.

MidniteScribbler Wed 17-Feb-16 06:43:13

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

3sugarsplease Wed 17-Feb-16 06:48:49

Midnite arnt you a delight. My post is from my perspective. How I feel about my sister.

If my mother wrote it, it would be about how she felt about her daughter.

3sugarsplease Wed 17-Feb-16 06:50:30

Also midnite my sister had private conversations everyday so I know how she felt about things and people. I apologise if you feel this is about ME. It is about me and how I feel about my sister and her wishes.

BeStrongAndCourageous Wed 17-Feb-16 06:52:06

Nice, MidnightScribbler. Does it make you feel good, putting the boot in on a recently bereaved person?

I'm so sorry for your loss OP. I can't imagine what you must all be going through.

BuyMeAPony Wed 17-Feb-16 06:53:36

I'm so sorry for your loss.

I think you have to try to let the visits to your sister by her ILs go. She will not be suffering the memory of it now and the ILs, rightly or wrongly, will probably feel better at the memory of having visited.

It's obviously an awful time for you. I'm sure it's also really awful for her husband. Try to pull together and not let these things drive you apart. Members of my family no longer speak after falling out over a funeral and it's so sad. Exactly not what the family member would have wanted.

rainbowstardrops Wed 17-Feb-16 06:53:51

I'm so sorry OP flowers

Of course you feel angry with it all, I would too. Like you said, your emotions are all over the show right now.

Your sister clearly knew how loved she was by you all and I'm sure she knew exactly what her in laws were all about.

Sadly, her husband is her next of kin so I guess he gets the final say? That would upset me beyond belief too. He should at the very least consider your wishes as well.

i totally understand why you feel so hurt and angry sad

Katenka Wed 17-Feb-16 06:56:38

I am so sorry for your loss. You are grieving, so I am not going to say Yabu.

But your sister chose to marry him when she had her diagnosis and chose to pass the responsibility for these things to him, as well as the insurance money.

It was your sisters wish that he becomes next of kin.

It doesn't effect her what they say at funeral, it effects you. So while I totally understand that is upsetting, it's not really about respecting your sister wishes. Don't turn this into your BIL disrespecting your sister.

What I am saying is feel hurt by the things he is doing. But don't take it as a slight against your sister.

I get the talking about his sister as her sister is painful. I do agree.

But the ashes and insurance money is entirely upto him and your sister chose to put him in that position. It's not unusual for a husband to want to keep the ashes.

HelpfulChap Wed 17-Feb-16 06:56:51

Sorry for your loss OP. I hope you and your family find some closure.

Midnight - you must be so proud of your contribution to the thread.

icklekid Wed 17-Feb-16 06:57:54

I'm so sorry for your loss and think that your feelings are very understandable. I can imagine it was very hard to see your sister abandoned by her in laws family when she needed them most. Did she write a will? Only that might make it easier for her wishes to be fulfilled. It sounds like some compromises may be needed referring to her sil as sil not sister. However allowing him to keep some ashes? It is so hard when you are all grieving so be gentle with each other flowers

PosieReturningParker Wed 17-Feb-16 06:58:02

Aibu is not the best place for this X

I'm very sorry for your loss, I totally understand your feelings. Her H sounds grabby and inconsiderate. I think you need to tell him about your wishes, it seems odd that he hasn't asked.

thenewaveragebear1983 Wed 17-Feb-16 06:58:24

How sad. I agree with previous posts that you should just go along with them, but why don't you and your close family arrange a small altenative blessing that is exactly as she would have liked?

theycallmemellojello Wed 17-Feb-16 06:59:36

So sorry for your loss. It seems very difficult. All I can say is that I don't think it is worth fighting a battle over this. Ultimately your sister's husband is grieving too; I can definitely understand how hurtful it would be to hear him talk about insurance money, but he might not be in his right mind, so I wouldn't judge him too harshly. Same with having his sister mentioned as a sister at the memorial. It doesn't affect your bond with your sister if this goes ahead, and he might not be in a position to talk rationally about this. I think it's worth saying you'd prefer her to be mentioned as a sister in law, but if you don't get that then try not to focus on it. Id also try to let go of the anger at the in laws. They won't have been trying to offend by visiting her, and perhaps were needed to support their son. They may also have thought, rightly or wrongly, that your sister didn't want them around during her illness. Again, I'm so so sorry for your loss, and hope that you're able toget support and love from your family. Even if the in laws are awful, try not to get drawn into spending emotional energy on anger at them.flowers

PosieReturningParker Wed 17-Feb-16 07:02:33

By the way. I have no experience of loss, at all.

3sugarsplease Wed 17-Feb-16 07:04:29

I've never had anyone close to me pass away so I don't know how to feel. The problem is I still feel like she's in her body, like she's still there if that makes sense? That's why I would have to have hated them for her to see her. Like I think she's locked in her body and can't say anything. I do know that's the wrong way of looking at things but I can't get my head around it.

She was extremely organised my sister and she did write a will. She left money to my entirely family, but we arnt sitting around thinking what to do with it and buying houses etc, we are just missing her, and it feels so wrong and grabby for him to talk about it.

Also in regards to her ashes, deep down I know that as her husband he can have them, I do know that, it's just the thought that one day in the future, when he has a different life that she might be put away in a box out of site. I know my views on death are all wrong I just can't get through this.

Thank you to all that have posted. thanks

southernskies Wed 17-Feb-16 07:05:56

I am so sorry for your loss OP.

Midnight - that is a terribly unhelpful thing to say to someone who has so recently suffered a great loss. She has been there for her sister through a very painful time and now it is time for her to grieve.

KC225 Wed 17-Feb-16 07:07:43

I am so sorry for your loss and cannot imagine the grief you must be feeling at the moment.

It is a difficult time, and I too, would be angered about the husband's family lack of attention during her illness. As the poster above said, nothing can be done to change that now. You were there for her, you knew that and more importantly, she knew it. They will have to live with the fact they shunned her in the beginning and didn't do nearly enough to help their dying daughter in law.

Do not let the husband and his family ruin your goodbye. Focus on your sister and know you did everything you could. You have been a brilliant and devoted sister.

3sugarsplease Wed 17-Feb-16 07:10:55

Thenewaverage I love this idea, thank you thanks

Hamishandthefoxes Wed 17-Feb-16 07:11:17

Op, you may find it helpful to have some bereavement counselling - perhaps after the funeral. Cruse are very helpful.

It may also help you if you can see your sister's body before the funeral. I saw my sister after she'd died and it did help because she wasn't there any more - only her body which she didn't need.

Do what you need to go to get through your immediate grief, but by marrying your BIL your sister made him next of kin so these decisions are for him. It would be nice for him to ask you, but he doesn't have to.

Millionsmom Wed 17-Feb-16 07:11:21

I'm sorry for your loss 3sugars. Your lovely sister is no longer suffering, if you can take comfort from anything, take it from that.
I can see why you're so upset, it's totally understandable and I don't think YABU at all.
I have no practical advice or sage words for you right now, but be kind to yourself, don't beat yourself up over anything. I wish I could send you real flowers, but please take these flowers.

Midnight - I used to tell my DC to follow the advice of Thumpers mum 'if you can't say nothin nice, don't say nothin at all'. Maybes it's time you followed suit. 😕

Katenka Wed 17-Feb-16 07:11:34

Also in regards to her ashes, deep down I know that as her husband he can have them, I do know that, it's just the thought that one day in the future, when he has a different life that she might be put away in a box out of site.

You have enough to be upset about. Don't get upset about what ifs. My uncle kept my aunts ashes. He is now remarried. She still has pride of place in the house. His new wife totally gets that she was a significant part of his life.

She was extremely organised my sister and she did write a will. She left money to my entirely family, but we arnt sitting around thinking what to do with it and buying houses etc, we are just missing her, and it feels so wrong and grabby for him to talk about it.

Having, unfortunately, lost a few people. I can say everyone deals with it differently. Some people find it easier to get through it by making future plans.

Personally I think grief is selfish. Not saying you are selfish. But we tend to do and say things that get us through, often without thought of how it sounds to others. My aunties were horrendous when they lost their mum. All dealt with it differently and those differences made the other jump to the conclusion that they others didn't care.

But it's different. I lost someone very close and never took a day off work. I couldn't face not getting up and going. Like I had to maintain some normal routine. The weekends were awful. If anyone mentioned it at work I cut them off and walked away. I know some people thought I was heartless. I wasn't. I was trying to survive the grief.

wannabestressfree Wed 17-Feb-16 07:15:58

3sugars your sister sounds like a lovely person and all the things you have written I think I would feel similar.
You know some are grief and some are the way they have responded. All understandable.
Have no real advice. Just stay strong and I am sending hugs through these difficult times.
Midnight do F* off dear.

phequer Wed 17-Feb-16 07:16:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

phequer Wed 17-Feb-16 07:17:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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