To decline deathbed visitors?(369 Posts)
MNHQ have commented on this thread.
I have namechanged for obvious reasons so please don't out me if you recognise me.
I'll keep this brief as I can.
I'm terminally ill and bedbound. I am being cared for by my parents at their house. I have very limited energy and my drugs make me drowsy. So I do not have many hours when I'm properly awake.
Some relatives would like to visit. I do not believe their visit will bring me any comfort.
I think their main motivation is to be able to tell their church friends they've visited. But perhaps I am being unfair. I find it hard to think kindly of them due to past behaviour and their lack of support since my diagnosis. (This is entirely their choice and we had plenty of support from elsewhere, but I don't think they should expect to be able to swan in at the end, when they haven't been there for the long haul.)
Over Christmas they had the opportunity to speak to me at a family occasion and deliberately avoided me. Despite having been complaining to other relatives that we hadn't invited them to visit. So obviously they are not that keen to spend time with me
My mum wants to invite them, to avoid any family awkwardness. But I feel it would be condoning/rewarding their behaviour. They will never apologise or accept that they have done anything wrong.
Then again, I will be dead soon. I don't want to make life more difficult for my mum. I feel petty using my deathbed to make a stand.
So, would I be unreasonable to say I don't want them to visit?! It's not my house anyway, so at the end of the day I can't actually stop them, but my mum values my opinion.
They are doing it for their own good. Not yours.
Say no to the people that you really don’t want to see. Time is too short. Soendit with those you want to.
I’m very sorry to hear about your illness and of course you can refuse to see them or anyone else. At this stage the only thing that matters is your wishes. Good luck
No you are not being unreasonable at all xxx
I'm so sorry, OP.
Honestly, I don't think there is a right answer in this situation. You don't have to have them visit if you don't want to. But it might be kind for your mother's sake to let them if you could bear it, even if it's just for a couple of minutes.
Either way I would make your decision and have the visit (if that's what you decide) as soon as possible, so you can stop worrying about it and just have the people you really want around you.
You're not being unreasonable. My mum was the same - we told them that she was just too ill. Wishing you peace xx
How awkward will they make it for your mum, if you don't let them visit? I can absolutely see why you wouldn't want them, but wonder if fifteen minutes when you're dozy would be tolerable, if it avoids making things even harder for your mum. for you.
I think they are doing it to salve their consciences and not through any real concern or empathy.
It's like grief hijacking. They want people to know they were there
Totally in agreement with JuniperBeer- - it's your time and please do as you wish
Perfectly reasonable to refuse them. And it wouldn't be unreasonable if they still turn up, to feign sleep for the entire time they're there.
Sorry that you're having to deal with this sort of crap. But it is really your decision, not anybody else's.
I am so sorry to hear this, for you and your parents. I think, to make things easier all round, you might be very tired when they visit and last about 20 seconds? If it would make it easier/less hassle for your mum in the long term, then perhaps they could visit and you be having a ' bad day'? Again, I am so sorry and I wish you all the very best.
I think if it would really help your mum and you could bear it just for a little while I would.
But if you can't bear it or your mum isn't that bothered then don't.
I wouldn't factor them or what they want into the decision really, I'd make the decision solely based on you and your mum.
Ywnbu to have or don’t have whoever you like. I’m so sorry to hear about your illness.
I don't think you would be at all unreasonable to decline their visits. They want to visit for their sakes, not yours.
Your death, your rules. I think you should get to choose who you see, personally.
People like to say goodbye I suppose, but if you're not interested don't let them in.
Don’t waste precious time on people who don’t deserve it. Enjoy your time with those you love.
You are the priority here.
It's not good for anyone to have to spend time with people who don't care for them. If you've only got a short time left you need to put yourself first and not spend it making other people happy.
We have very recently lost a close friend's child, this child, a teenager, was of an age where they could make a decision as to who they would like to visit, and who not to. There decision was respected. Please do what makes you feel at peace and comfortable, life is literally too short to waste on people who don't bring anything of value to your life.
I'm sorry that you are so ill, I wish you a peace and comfort.
I'm so sorry for your situation and YANBU at all. If they haven't shown support and love when they could (should) have done, then why entertain a visit just so they feel they have done the right thing. Sod that, and sod them.
I am so very sorry.
PP idea is good - say to your mum to say sorry but you are not well enough.
I don't think you should have to see them & the very idea they will make life difficult for your mum in this situation is just horrendous. As if things aren't difficult already.
No, no, no. I do see why you want to save your mum from awkwardness but really I don’t think she would want that to be your main concern
I guess since you're asking AIBU then you need to explain more about what the relatives did that upset you.
How about inviting them to visit when you're drowsy & out of it & then you can snub them to their faces?
So sorry to hear about your illness
It's totally up to you and you know how you feel and that you don't want visitors so tell them firmly no, you don't want to see them and you want to rest
You are certainly not being unreasonable for feeling this way.
Yanbu. You decide who visits op. Your bed, your choice. Xxxx
I’m sorry to hear about your illness too.
I think you should use your remaining time to be with who you want, and not waste it keeping anyone happy. They’ll have to deal with their own consciences in the future.
Sorry you are facing this.
You should only see those people you want to
you should only do those things you want to
Your mother should say "oh how kind of you but Budgie is too weak to see you"
No decent person would insist in this situation.
My husband didn't have this for the exact same reason. Never regretted it he was asked more than once. His choice I fully supported. He had his inner circle as he called it. That's all that mattered to him. No fakeness. The fake came with the funeral ( All 5 of them) of a turn out of over 200. He said he didn't give a shit if they attended that he would be dead.
I fully understand your stance and say fuck it and fuck them...
I write this with tears as mine is recent and raw but I really truly hope peace finds you and you see beauty at the end xx
The only feelings that matter right now are yours.
I think it is entirely up to you who you have to visit, and your wishes should absolutely be respected.
Spend your time with those you love & who love you.
Much love to you
Your life, your choice, you do what you want.
I think it says a tremendous amount about you that you’re even worrying about this now (and probably a lot about them that they’ve put you in the situation to worry about it). You do what feels right for you. You only get one life to do you.
I am very sorry to hear of your health OP, my thoughts are with you. I can completely see why you feel stuck between a rock and a hard place, you don't like them, but you want to make life easy for you mum.
I will however tell you a story about my dear grandfather, a strong man, a WW2 prisoner of war, perhaps it will bring a smile or two.
I'll always remember my great grandfather on his death bed, we were kissing him goodbye as we were leaving his bedroom one day, like us grandchildren did, all the time. And then our creepy great uncle (who nobody liked) asked "where's my kiss?" My grandad told him "you can kiss my arse".
He passed away that night, but part of me knows he passed happy that he said what he wanted to say on behalf of us all 😂
Take of it what you will, perhaps you could let them visit and just smile, perhaps you can decline their visit, or perhaps you could speak out of turn but nobody would blame you 😉.
Sending you many peaceful thoughts. 💐
If you can’t be selfish on your deathbed when can you be?
I’m sorry OP - I wish you peace and freedom from any suffering
Don't waste time. Spend time with those who want to be with you, those who genuinely care for you op.
This time is all about you...
I'm so sad for you but I have had an experience which is the opposite. My friend was diagnosed with liver cancer and refused to see me. It was so sad. I truly think I could have made an impression and helped her son in the future but she completely rejected any visits. I get that she didn't have the energy but I absolutely wanted to promise to help her son. I went to her funeral but am not involved in any way with her son, because she actively chose not to let me.
Her DH then chose not to have anything to do with me because of her choice. It was awful.
I think you are being generous thinking of your mother but I think if you say it will not bring you comfort, your mother will draw comfort from knowing she did the right thing by you. I can only imagine how you both feel but I feel sure your mother’s primary concern will be your comfort. I hope very much your symptoms are well controlled and you are not physically suffering too much. I am so sorry you are in this position.
I would say no, and I think that while it might be difficult for your mum afterwards, it would also be difficult for her to be at peace with any regret at having 'pushed' you into spending some of this very precious time with people she knows you didn't want to see.
Especially if they are (and it sounds as if they are) the kind of people to make holier-than-thou pronouncements about how they were there in front of her.
Maybe you'll be doing her a favour too by refusing them - it'll certainly shut down any of that nonsense.
You choose. Absolutely.
I often work with people who are terminally ill. Family and carers are often very relieved when they can simply do as asked - you say, no, I don't want them to visit, I'm not strong enough. Your family pass on this message, and repeat if necessary. The would be visitors simply can't argue with that. It's not your parent's decision, so they can't argue with them.
Not unreasonable at all OP.
Wishing you all the best.
Would it make a difference to anyone's opinion if I said they were my grandparents?
Sorry, I know we hate drip-feeding, but I wasn't sure if it would affect people's opinions if I conjured up images of doting granny and grandpa (they're not and never have been).
They are elderly, but no dementia or similar, and no recent personality or behaviour change. They've always been this way.
I’m sorry you are in this awful situation.
I think YANBU and if they do visit, I’d just pretend to be asleep.
Would it make a difference to anyone's opinion if I said they were my grandparents?
No, though it may explain why it's harder for your mum to see.
Just remember that if you push people away now, your Mum won't be able to draw on their help...I'm ashamed to say I'd have anyone visit me in the belief that they cared and would help the people I'd left behind.
I recognise you and you are a lovely person with a lot of patience.
Don’t waste these precious hours making small talk with people who don’t matter to you.
“Budgie was too tired for visitors, I’m so glad you’re so understanding of that” will be easy enough for your mum.
They can tell their church friends how kind they are to your mum at your funeral instead. You’re not here to prop up their image and you shouldn’t be asked to spend your last days doing so.
Neverender I'm terribly sorry. That must be really difficult for you. I have no idea why your friend behaved that way. But it sounds like quite a different situation. Perhaps in time your friend's family will get in touch with you
If your parents will be getting support from elsewhere after you die, will they actually care if these relatives play silly beggars afterwards? I imagine i would be do sad at losing my beloved daughter, I wouldn't really care to be honest.
to you OP and your parents.
If you can’t say “fuck you. I’m spending my time with the people I want to see” in your situation then when can you?
No. YANBU in the slightest. Fill your days with the people & things that make you happy. Now is the time to be selfish.
Hmm, still think it's your choice. Do your parents find them supportive?
Not the same thing OP but when my father was terminal and given 4 hours to live (he actually stayed with us a further 3 days) I stopped people visiting. They would sit there with their head cocked to one side smiling at him like he was some animal in a zoo they thought was cute. I told the fuckers they couldn't come back. He would have hated that to have happened. So it was o let me my sister and the step mother (his wife) but that's a whole other story.
I'd do exactly what you want to do.
Op, I'm sorry to hear of your terminal illness. I feel that your wishes should be followed, it sounds like they have had plenty of opportunity to see you but only now they are trying.
Maybe they feel guilty?
I hope your parents are strong enough to stand up to them and follow through with your wishes.
That does make a tiny bit of difference but actually, your wishes and needs should come first. If you can’t put yourself first now, when can you?
I stand by my opinion!
It makes no difference. If anything I can see how their behaviour must have been extra hurtful.
I really hope so...I love/d her. I would have so loved to have been trusted and for her to have realised that I genuinely loved her and cared about her. I know you must be in the most awful situation but I felt totally rejected and dismissed.
CoachBombay I loved that, thank you maybe that would be a good compromise. I can only imagine their faces if I said anything like that!
Honestly, your Mum will understand. No, look after yourself, your choice and wishes x
I think the fact that they're your grandparents and they haven't made any effort in the past makes me think that you have an even better reason to NOT see them.
Knowing who this is, you're lovely.
Please spend your remaining time in peace and tranquility. I wish you a gentle journey
Would it be possible for your mum to have them in the house to support her, but not see you?
If not, then YANBU.
Well done for getting rid of them Scrumptious. That's exactly how I feel sometimes, like a zoo exhibit!
Just remember that if you push people away now, your Mum won't be able to draw on their help..
honestly this shouldn't be the OP's concern as she nears the end of her life. The OP has a little time left. She should spend it with those she loves and who are kind to her.
I wondered about that Using, but I'm not sure how it would work practically. Plus then we would actually have to tell them I don't want to see them, whereas at least if we just don't invite them at all we can skirt around that.
It doesn’t matter who it is. Grandparents or not, it’s your decision. Your moments when you’re awake don’t need to be wasted on anyone else but those that are special to you and who you want to be around you.
Your mum values your opinion because it is your choice. Its a tough one but I dont think you should have to see anyone you dont want to. I am sorry for what you are going through.
If you are worried about your mum dealing with the fallout could you soften the blow and tell her to tell people you just werent up to visitors?
Sorry, I'm trying to catch up, but I'm full of some excellent drugs, which are making me a little bit dozy
Cross posted with you, OP. The fact that they're grandparents doesn't change my pov
Neverender is the reason you don''t reach out to your friend's son that she wouldn't let you visit her when dying? If so, that is sad. Why not reach out anyway? Her refusing to see you could be for any number of reasons - fear, shame, pure sickness, etc. She may not have been up to a conversation with even a trusted friend. I'm sorry you have interpreted it to mean she didn't trust you.
What a dilemma.
I'd talk to your mum about it and make it clear to her (just in case you haven't already!) how you feel, but also that you don't want to make things awkward for her, once you have died.
Otherwise, do what you feel is best for you.
My heart aches for you and your mum <3
Part of me wants do say it’s entirely up to you , and don’t see them ( the grandparents ) if you don’t want too
My mum and her SIL ( dads sister ) never got on , ever , from meeting as teenagers , til when mum was ill , in her 60s
They came to see her , and mum chose to see SIL , on her own . She was in there for an hour , and came out saying they had talked and talked
Again , it’s up to you , if you truly dont want to see them , then say you’re not well enough
I'm am so sorry to hear about your illness.
You are not being unreasonable, if this is your last bit of life. You do it your way, go out on your terms.
Best of luck OP
You need to do what feels right for you right now. I’m so sorry to hear of your illness and wish you peace. x
OP it's fine to refuse anyone you don't want to see.
no, I'm not in charge!
but my dad died last year and he didn't want to see anyone bar me and mum in the last stages of his illness. Some people were offended by this, but they still helped me and mum and I would hope your grandparents would be the same.
you get to choose who you see, I think that's completely reasonable.
I don't think that you should do it for them or your mum tbh.
Lovely to see a woman feisty to her death. I genuinely hope I'm equally as staunch!
I've had a health scare recently and I think the terror of it, and knowing that you've done nothing that you wanted to do (speaking for myself) if bloody petrifying!
Being me, I'd invite them all in and then give them a right good bollocking. Scare the life out of them lol. Sorry, but when faced with death, your priorities change.
Or you could invite them in individually and whisper in their ears 'I know what you've done'
I suspect I am going to the worst patient on the ward when my time comes. Family fleeing in tears lol. While I cackle!
That is so hard but you are allowed some self care here, so if it’s easier to skirt around, just do it. Light and love coming your way, from a community fan xxxx
No you are not bring unreasonable OP.
Sending you much love.
When my FIL was very ill my MIL would not let anyone outside of her, his children, his sisters and grandchildren and his best friend visit. He had said he only wanted to spend his time with family and she patrolled the house so no one else got in. And he had a huge extended family, neighbours etc but all were kept away.
It is your time and I’m sure your mum wants to spend it just with you. When my darling mum was dying we did not even bring our children to her - she was too tired and would not have wanted the upset even though she adored them and they her.
What matters at this point, is you and only you. Wishing you peace x
This is one of those situations which is cut and dried: your wishes should be respected and there is really no other consideration. It doesn't matter what these relatives did or didn't do, or even what reason you have for not wanting to see them. It's entirely your call.
Their wish to visit certainly sounds as if it's for their benefit and not your own. In your situation you are under zero obligation to entertain this, and the last thing anyone should be doing is putting you under pressure of any kind.
Wishing you peace, positivity and comfort, OP. I'm truly sorry.
It is entirely your call, not your mum's yours! Your mum has to respect that! They are want to visit for their own selfish reasons and not to see you, and more importantly, you don't want to see them, and should not have to.
You do what you bloody well want to do stuff them (admittedly slightly harder knowing their GP's but you come first here, not them and not your mum).
Wishing you love, light and peace xxx
I don’t think it’s a dilemma at all. If you don’t want to see them then your mum should be supportive of your decision no matter what she thinks of it. Ffs if people can’t respect the wishes of someone terminally ill it says a lot more about them.
I know what a lovely kind person you are.
If you can possibly stand it I would let them come for a short time for your parents sake. Tell your parents you only want them there for a short time and then doze. If you refuse totally it might stress you more worrying about your parents.
In the end it is your choice and there is no right or wrong answer.
No. Decline. The good ones will understand. If they don't, they aren't good enough to see you anyway.
YANBU at all. Sorry to hear about your illness and prognosis.
Even if they weren't unpleasant, you're not obliged to see anyone. A friend of mine died a few years back from secondary breast cancer. She wanted her friends around during her first round of cancer treatment, but second time round when she knew hte diagnosis was terminal, she just wanted quiet time with her family in the few months she had left, and didn't tell anyone - her husband told us after her death. Some people did complain that they felt hurt, but I think most of us understood that she wanted to spend what little energy she had left on the people who matttered most - her husband and children.
Even nice visitors take energy - you feel obliged to "jolly them along" because they are upset. And that's something you don't necessarily feel able to deal with.
When they are tossers, I don't see why you should even try.
I think it’s understandable to not want to see them but I wonder if there’s any compromise in that perhaps limiting their time and frequency e.g. 10 minutes only because you’re too tired? Only you can know if they’re truly horrible people or “just” misguided and unsupportive. That said, I don’t think anyone should judge you as we’ve not been in your shoes. I am sorry for what you are going through and know words are not always adequate.
So sorry - OP. Thinking of you. This is completely your prerogative . When my father was terminally ill, he didnt want to see certain people and so they were told that he was too ill for visitors.
Do your drugs make you foul mouthed and completey off your rocker? That could be an opportunity to have some fun with them
On a serious note I am so sorry for the card you have been dealt. I love that you have your sense of humour. Iss there anyway to speak to your mum and ask her to assist with keeping any visit short to say 10 mins and then you
pretend to conk out for a good snooze where she then ushers them out?
YANBU at all to not want to see them. It doesn’t sound as if they have a history of being supportive to you or your mum, and as you say, they only want to visit to make themselves feel better.
However, I can see why you might be contemplating letting them visit to make life easier for your mum. Will they be there for her and the rest of your family in the future? Will they be able to support them in their grief (I suspect the answer is ‘no’)? I think if it’s something your mum really, really wants then I might consider it, but my instinct would be to say no.
no your not bu at all-i cant stand people turning up trying to look god and how distraught they are
its up to you at the end of the day and if theyve never been supportive why would you
Sorry to read your story OP. I say fuck them. Your needs trump others.
If they're people you know and like, yes. If not. No.
The only person I saw before she died was my grandmother. I have to say that as a grown woman it saddened me.
It's not something you want the local gossips talking about at church. Praying for the forgiveness of your soul etc.
It’s totally up to you who can see you and when. Do what you want when you want and don’t worry about others xxx
Thank you everyone for your kind words. I was expecting more anger, what with it being AIBU and all! Especially with a drip feed.
Anyway, thank you. I am mostly comfortable, and my parents and hospice nurses are caring for me amazingly.
There wouldn't be any sort of confrontation about it. Just snide comments and little digs for many years. They won't be of any help to my mum after my death either way.
So far we have fobbed them off with me not being well enough, but the trouble is that I have been having visits from other family members (we have a big family) who I do actually want to see.
Thank you for all your different perspectives. It has been cathartic to write it all out, and it helps to know that people don't think I'm evil for even contemplating not seeing them
Obviously I need to work on my disguise though
What Ineedachange said. Please yourself OP. Your mum will understand I'm sure.
I am so sorry you're so ill. Wishing you peace.
It's a good opportunity to practice forgiveness, perhaps see them now, not later.
I wish you happiness and peace xx
It would be tempting to have them visit and pretend to be slightly delirious while they are there. You could say all sorts pretending not to recognise them, i.e. 'those fuckers who blanked me at Christmas had the cheek to want to visit but I said no way was I going to let them cos they'd only use it to big themselves up and make everyone think they're fucking wonderful grandparents' Then drift off to sleep.
But otherwise I wouldn't have them next nigh or near me and I'd let other visitors know why.
Wishing you peace - which is more important than anyone else's feelings at this time xx
If ever there was a time for pleasing yourself, it is now. Do not spend your time on people who drain you, spend it with those who will make you smile and who will be with you because they love you.
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