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My Twin Sister Has Died(110 Posts)
Not sure what I expect or want from this thread but I feel like I need to write down how I'm feeling.
My twin sister died suddenly last month aged 37. It was due to complications from pneumonia leading to heart failure. She went to the GP because she felt she had a chest infection, the GP couldn't hear anything on her chest but was given antibiotics. Apparently because of her age even if pneumonia was suspected, the treatment would have been the same.
My DH, DS (6) and I were with her on the Saturday morning when she suddenly collapsed. I realised very quickly that something was very wrong and called 999. I told my son to wait in the other room while I started CPR, I was overcome with emotion so my husband had to take over, she stopped breathing altogether quite quickly. The ambulance arrived within 8 minutes and managed to shock her heart into beating again but she took a lot of stablising. She was taken straight to resus then transferred to ITU.
Our parents live a 4 hour drive away and I had to persuade them to get here asap rather than leave it overnight which they wanted to do. I don't know whether they were in denial about the seriousness of my sister's situation but I feel resentful that even if that was the case, why didn't they think that my sister would want them there if she woke up or I might need some support?
They eventually arrived later that night and over the next few days tests showed that she had suffered too much brain damage to survive due to lack of oxygen. They tried to cool her brain down for 24 hours and gave her the apparently standard 72 hours + 24 extra hours due to her age to show signs of improvement but nothing. We had to make the decision to let her go.
I hate myself that I didn't save her. I keep thinking did I compress hard enough? Was I distracted too much by my DS keep coming into the room? I wanted so desperately to save her and I keep replaying the whole thing in my mind. Coupled with when she actually died in hospital, It feels like I watched her die twice which is too painful for me to bear. I physically crumpled and howled in pain when I was lead away from her. It still feels that raw but my pain feels trapped, like if I let go again I'll never recover.
I've not been sleeping since. I was persuaded to see my Gp who prescribed a weeks' worth of sleeping pills and has referred me to a breavement counsellor which I do think I need but I feel like I don't want to accept she's gone in case in case it feels like I've forgotten her. The pills aren't helping much, I'm still waking up so haven't taken them for the last couple of nights.
Without turning this into a bigger essay, there was a family estrangement (for an extremely good reason) which meant that my twin sister, my DH, DS and me were our own little family here and now I feel pressured into pretending everything is ok. I've been having to emotionally reassure family members that she loved them really when I know that she never recovered from or forgave her, me and DS being treated so badly from them. I've had no help with clearing my twin's flat yet everyone wants a keepsake to remember her by and I don't really feel that some of them deserve it but I have to keep the peace for my parents sake.
I was left to register her death and arrange the funeral yet I faced pressure to do what they wanted, not what my sister would want or I felt, being the closer to her, what should be done. I had to stick to my guns and even had one of my parent's scream down the phone at me that I had got out of hand with the arrangements. FFS, I arranged a simple, pretty basic funeral but a beautiful ceremony in a Church where we had a connection to and I felt I needed somewhere to go and remember her and the Church turned out to be the cheapest part of the funeral costs! Considering I ensured the large funeral deposit was paid I felt upset that I was being criticised.
I feel like I have been ripped in half. Our birthday is later this month and I can't comphrend turning a year older without her. I don't know what I'm going to do without her. The family situation with my parents has calmed now and I know they are worried about me and are trying to support me but I have been left to it and dealing with everything on my own.
I am also worried about my son and him processing what he saw. I explained everything to him and he chose to see my sister in ITU and the Chapel of Rest which seems to have helped him. I have arranged counselling through his school which is going well. I just want to take those images out of his head. I;m scared that I'm going to die young and leave him too.
I'm rambling now. Thank you for taking the time to read x
I don't have any particular words of wisdom, but I am so so sorry for your loss xxx
I know I shouldn't post and run but my DS has just got out of bed and I need to sort him out and probably get to bed myself even though I don't feel like I can sleep.
Thank you Lucysaysno, I appreciate your kind words. I think I just needed an outlet to get everything out of my head. It's a living nightmare x
OP - I don't have any words of wisdom, what you are going through is beyond my imagining and I am so sorry for your loss. You did the right thing with the funeral. You did the right thing when your sister collapsed. Someone with better advice will be along in a minute. x
I'm so sorry for your loss, please don't blame yourself you did everything you could
Thinking of you and your family
I am so so sorry. That is so sad. I think losing a sibling must be heartbreaking but losing a twin must feel like losing half of you. And your family issues sound like a nightmare.
Forget them. Concentrate on you. Start your bereavement counselling as soon as you can. It WILL help.
Look after yourself. It will get easier but nt for a while. X
Your post made me so sad, and I really don't know what to say.I didn't want to leave your thread unanswered. What a hard and horrible time you are having. From experiences of bereavement in my family, I understand the pressures of people getting involved who have no claim to, and everybody wanting a bit of the person to remember and I know you are finding this hard. Your twin sister was yours, after all. Please try to find some comfort from the closeness that you shared and that you can hold that to you when things are difficult. Your family members may not be able to do the same in good heart, hence the anger and shouting and displays of ownership - perhaps they feel regretful or guilty?
Your son will be fine. If he remembers at all, he will remember with love how mum tried so hard to save a person she loved in tragic circumstances. Please be kind to yourself, allow yourself time to heal, and express how you feel if you need to. You are allowed to have emotions about this too.
So sorry for your loss,
That's so sad Twinless, but of course you couldn't have done more than you did.
I hope that you get the help you need to get through this awful time - your DS needs you.
I hope that it helped to write it down. As Edin said, you did the right thing for your sister x
I too am so so sorry for your loss and my heart goes out to you.
I'm sorry mate. You did everything you could. Look after yourself. Your dh and ds are there for you, as you are for them.
oh Twinless, i am so sorry for your loss, it sounds as though you had a lovely relationship.
You were there for her all through it. Noone could have asked for more. xxx
Oh Twinless, it must be so hard for you, but it sounds like you've done right by your sister. Wishing you all the strength you'll need for the time ahead. Take care of yourself.
Twinless, so sorry.
What an awfully traumatic few days your family has had. Reading your post was heartbreaking and I couldn't not post-despite not really knowing what to say. I have experienced bereavement and can remember those feelings of despair and disbelief. And anger. Anger that they'd been taken and the unfairness of it all. But to lose a twin, and one who you obv so very close to must be so very hard.
If you're worried about your DS, could gried counselling be made available for him?
Thinking of you . It sounds like you did everything you possibly could to help her and protect your DS. Be gentle to yourself. X
I'm so so sorry, how awful please don't think anything is your fault at all, you did your best to help her.
So sorry for your terrible loss.
I'm so sorry Twinless, I can't imagine what you must be going through. Everything you feel - your self-doubting etc. is natural, but not true. You were there for her right until the very end and she wouldn't have wanted it any other way.
I always wonder what I would do in such an emergency situation, I don't think I could even attempt CPR, my standard reaction to such things is to freeze.
Your ds will be ok, children are surprisingly resilient and live very much in the moment. I'm sure he will at times feel sad or he might have a flashback, but in the next minuted he will happily play away.
I'm so sad for you. This is still so new and raw. Of course you'll never forget her, but gradually, in time, your day to day functioning will become easier and it won't be so consuming. Sending you much love xxx
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Oh Twinless, I'm so sorry for your loss. Your post has taken me to tears.
I just wanted to say that your darling twin sister will live on forever in your heart and your memories and no one can take that from you. You did everything you could to keep her with you, but it was, sadly, her time and not to be.
Look after yourself and do have counselling as I believe it will help enormously.
Your son will be fine, children do somehow bounce back from awful things and we can't always hide away from them what we'd like to.
I am praying for you all.x
Very sorry for your loss. I've got no words of wisdom but I'm thinking of you.
You are doing an amazing job. You did everything possible for your sister, and you are still doing that now. What a huge loss.