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Supporting DH after estranged DF has passed

(5 Posts)
RasperryInAMelon Tue 14-Feb-17 00:53:39

I'm a little lost here...

DH has been estranged from his DF for a number of years now. Certainly in the 4 years we have been together, I've never met him, DH hasn't seen him in around 8-10 years and has spoken to him a handful of times during that.

He always makes contact around his birthday which he did earlier on this year, which is always very one sided - rarely asks how DH is etc.

His father suffered with alcoholism for a long time, separated from his mum when he was around 6, spent a lot of his younger years with weekend contact with his dad - sadly this tailed off when DH went to uni and his fathers situation got worse.

His uncle called this evening to say that the police had been in touch letting him know that they found him in his flat. We don't currently know much else.

DH has had a tough 6 months with his grandfather passing a few days before our wedding, then grandmother in December and now this.

I admire DH so very much, he stayed so strong during recent times to support his mum. I can tell that this is tearing him apart because he has lost his dad, but he also feels awful for things he has felt and said in the past about him.

I have been lucky enough to have never dealt with bereavement directly but want to support DH as best as I can, but am finding myself getting more physically upset than he because I don't want to see him hurting.

We are expecting our first DD together in May and I know he worries about 'being like his dad' which I 100% know he won't be.

I guess I'm just looking for a little hand holding and guidance as to how to support him best...

Fortheloveofdog Sat 25-Feb-17 21:57:04

I'm sorry you didn't get a reply. I don't have advice, but have contemplated your situation as DH is also estranged from his father. Hope your DH is getting by now flowers

WeAllHaveWings Sat 25-Feb-17 23:04:32

DH's dad was an alcoholic and as he lived 9 hours drive away dh never saw him the last 5 years of his life, when he died he grieved not so much for his dad, but for the dad he never had.

How do you help? Everyone's grief is personal and everyone copes differently so there's no easy answer. Let him talk if he needs to, keep other pressures off him while it's still very raw, give him time and space if he needs it.

Flixybelle Wed 01-Mar-17 00:36:39

My DH dad died very suddenly after many many years of being estranged. He was next of kin and organised the funeral etc despite hardly knowing him. There was huge regret that he never reached out to his dad and anger that his dad never reached out to him. It really hit my DH hard.
I would recommend some sort of counselling I so wish we had accessed this earlier. Let your DH feel what he feels and talk about the negative alongside the positive of their relationship sometimes it good to see what you had not just what you lost.
You know your DH best does he need space or to be busy etc? Just take it slowly and listen.

highinthesky Wed 01-Mar-17 00:40:30

Be guided by your DH, and expect anything. Involving him fully with the baby will help.

The grieving process may take years.

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