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Mum's funeral abroad tomorrow. I cannot attend

(24 Posts)
Debs45 Wed 14-Feb-18 22:17:01

My mother who was 86 and lived abroad died suddenly last friday. I am off work this week and was waiting for news about the funeral.
My brother who lived with my mum told me this evening that the cremation and funeral is arranged for tomorrow morning. I cannot go as it is a 4 hour flight. My husband is furious with my brother, I'm exhausted from poor sleep and my brother is under the impression that it is not an issue that I should be there. Any suggestions how I cope tomorrow and not feel upset that I missed out on this event in the future? Trying to be pragmatic!!!

StealthPolarBear Wed 14-Feb-18 22:20:52

I am so sorry for your loss and so so sorry about this. Why is your brother being so malicious?
Are there any flights you could catch?

StealthPolarBear Wed 14-Feb-18 22:22:13

I'm not sure, is your brother expecting you to be there or thinks its no big deal you won't be?

MyBrilliantDisguise Wed 14-Feb-18 22:22:28

I'm not religious but I'd probably go to a church at the time of the funeral and light every candle there was and sit there quietly and think about my mum.

I'm so sorry about your mum.


StealthPolarBear Wed 14-Feb-18 22:23:23

If you are religious can you ask your church leader to sit with you and pray?

MaggieFS Wed 14-Feb-18 22:26:33

I'm so sorry for your loss OP. Does your mum have other friends or family in this country? Could you hold a memorial 'celebration of life' service in due course? We had one for my Dad after the crematorium service and I'd worried it wouldn't 'work' without the coffin being there, but actually it was fine and a beautiful, fitting service.

Chifi Wed 14-Feb-18 22:26:48

Sorry for your loss. I hope it was a case of your brother being consumed by grief that made him arrange things without notifying or consulting you sad

NataliaOsipova Wed 14-Feb-18 22:28:13

I'm very sorry about your mum.

Your brother sounds hugely insensitive! I'm going to risk being accused of the same....but I think the only way to cope with this is to see it - the funeral - as something which doesn't really matter. It's something for those left behind. You can remember your mum in your own way, wherever you are. Your memories are yours. They are special and they cannot be taken away. Take some time for yourself to remember her and to say goodbye. That's what's important - not the set piece event itself.

WeAllHaveWings Wed 14-Feb-18 22:31:38

I am so sorry about your mum and so sorry that you cannot attend the funeral. It is a big deal and you brother has been unbelievably unkind not keeping you informed.

If there is no way you can get there for the funeral, going somewhere like a church or a special quiet place at the time of the funeral is a good idea.

Will you be able to go over soon and maybe help sort out her personal possessions as a way of connecting with her and saying your own goodbye, see if there are any keepsakes you would like such as family photos, a treasured ornament, favourite scarf. I found it very comforting helping sort out my dads bits and pieces and remembering him, much more than the funeral which is just a blur.

CoffeenoTea Wed 14-Feb-18 22:40:42

is there any way you can book a flight and just go? i understand it might be hard but have you seen or checked if its possible ?

Branleuse Wed 14-Feb-18 22:48:23

just go

CotswoldStrife Wed 14-Feb-18 22:51:35

Sorry for your loss, OP.

What a tricky situation for you all. Obviously we don't know why your brother didn't let you know earlier, although I'm aware that there are some religions that like to have burials within a week or so. Did you spend much time at your mother's home abroad (because she may well have moved there after you left home or similar) or is there another place that you used to spend time with her?

Ariela Wed 14-Feb-18 22:54:05

Can anyone live-stream it for you, or record it? I went to a funeral a year or two ago, and the grandson had set up his ipad to video, and had very carefully set up a laptop at his nan's to live-stream it so she could watch because the nan was far too unwell to go to her best friend's funeral.

Debs45 Wed 14-Feb-18 22:54:40

Thanks for your messages. As with all families it is a bit complicated. He's my half brother (same mum, different fathers) and he is 17 years older than me. He's 64 and I'm 48. Not a lot of love lost between us and we haven't talked much in years. We only communicated via mum which became more difficult as she got older and more forgetful. To be fair on him she was disabled and he has looked after her for years and i would visit 2 to 3 x a year to give him respite and care for her... so complicated. Families are a minefield. Think I'll go to our local church tomorrow where we were married and have a quiet moment. I have been keeping a written journal of all my memories of mum and going to sort out all old photographs for me and the rest of the family. Not all family aware of her death as yet (my dad's kids) due to my brothers wishes. The only family I've told are one of my deceased brother's widow (dad's son and my half brother) and his daughters so may meet up with them at a later date. They're in Kent and I'm up north so cannot meet them soon. Told you it's complicated !!

StealthPolarBear Thu 15-Feb-18 05:30:00

Thinking about you this morning.
I'm quite shocked that family don't all know yet!

Galaxyfarfaraway Thu 15-Feb-18 06:16:14

Thinking of you. 💐💐

haba Thu 15-Feb-18 06:23:57

Thinking of you this morning; I am sorry for your loss flowers

StealthPolarBear Thu 15-Feb-18 08:17:26


Debs45 Thu 15-Feb-18 11:16:08

Thank you for your kind thoughts. I managed to go to my local church for 10.15 this morning and spoke with one of the vergers. He was lovely. He took me to the quiet chapel where I lit some candles and had a quiet moment. I took my favourite photograph of mum and also her favourite Jane Stilton 1960s handbag which has her initials emblazoned on the side. Afterwards the verger said some kind words, and I had a chat with some lovely ladies from the church who made me a cup of tea. I feel so much better x

TheNoseyProject Thu 15-Feb-18 11:21:19

This is one of the things that local churches and religious communities do so well. I’m so sorry about what’s happened but very glad you found some comfort with your local church.

TheMerryWidow1 Thu 15-Feb-18 11:26:43

that sounds lovely OP, so very personal and a lovely way to remember your Mum xxxxx

MyBrilliantDisguise Thu 15-Feb-18 11:37:08

That's a lovely way to remember your mum.


That1950sMum Thu 15-Feb-18 11:42:59

So sorry for your loss. I think the way you have marked the day sounds perfect. The people at your church sound very kind. flowers

CotswoldStrife Thu 15-Feb-18 13:28:24

OP, that sounds lovely flowers

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