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My good friend died in the night. I want to help however I can. What will her husband want?

(119 Posts)
Spidermama Wed 03-Jun-09 20:24:39

sad

No-one knows yet why she died. She was so fit and full of life. She had so much to look forward to.

I want to know how someone can just die like that in the night?

She and her husband have three boys aged 10,7 and 4. sad sad sad

She absolutely doted on them. I've posted a card through the door saying call me if you need any help with anything.

Is there anything else I can do. I'm assuming he won't want me calling yet. I knew her far better than I know him.

stillenacht Wed 03-Jun-09 20:25:54

Am so sorry - poor boys and DH sad so so sadsad

Unicornvomit Wed 03-Jun-09 20:26:25

food for them. stuff that can go in the oven. help with arrangements.

practical help, maybe with the children

what a terrible shock,. how awful for the family and for you.

BecauseImWorthIt Wed 03-Jun-09 20:26:25

sad That's awful, SM - sorry.

I haven't been in this position personally, but I would imagine that he will be all over the place and not thinking ahead about what he needs.

Can you offer to help out on the school run?

Taking food over would also help - in convenient sized portions to go in the freezer.

morningpaper Wed 03-Jun-09 20:26:44

so sorry spidermama, how terrible for you

I would call in and offer to take the children - leave a list with two or three suggested days and times and ring to follow it up

Tatties Wed 03-Jun-09 20:27:18

Oh how awful sad so sad

ILikeToMoveItMoveIt Wed 03-Jun-09 20:28:30

I'm so sorry to hear this. What an awful thing to have happened.

On the practical side, make meals and take them round. Offer help with childcare.

On the emotional side, be there if he or the children need to talk.

MABS Wed 03-Jun-09 20:30:05

i am so sorry sm x

Hassled Wed 03-Jun-09 20:31:07

I'm very sorry.

Don't wait until he calls - because grief/pride/shock everything else might stop him. Just show up with a meal for the freezer, offer to do a load of washing, have the boys round etc. You will need to be proactive, without being pushy, IYSWIM.

cocolepew Wed 03-Jun-09 20:32:18

How awful, I'm so sorry for your loss.

differentID Wed 03-Jun-09 20:35:27

oh no Spidermama.

Sincere condolences to your family and to hers.

My mum's closest friend died suddenly about 10 years ago now- she was very fit and healthy( a PE teacher in fact). She was outside in her garden, waved to her son who was revising for exams who waved back, he looked down for less than a minute- he had dropped something on the floor, when he looked back up she had vanished. She had collapsed and died there and then. Tragic. I don't believe they discovered cause of death.

My mum was around for the family for a while after that- she went out and did some cooking and cleaning for them and being someone the children could speak to about their mother.

herbietea Wed 03-Jun-09 20:38:27

Message withdrawn

Haribosmummy Wed 03-Jun-09 20:42:30

SM - I am really sorry to hear about your friend.

This happened to my cousin's DH.. He was 36 and in good health... just didn't wake up one morning.

Practical stuff is the way to go.

Please don't wait to be asked.. If there is something you know the kids would want / need just offer it.

Meals / childcare / laundry / anything your friend would normally take care of.

sorry. HM

iheartdusty Wed 03-Jun-09 20:42:35

agree with other posters - he won't call you. It will be too hard to even think what he needs, let alone call someone he doesn't know well.

so sorry to hear about your friend.

you could mention websites like Winston's Wish (for bereaved children) when he feels able to take it on board, and maybe drop round a book or two that he can read with them. The winston's wish site has several suggestions.

DadInsteadofMum Wed 03-Jun-09 20:43:05

Please don't wait until he calls. When my wife died I didn't know which way was up, it was all I could do to make myself get out of bed and make sure the kids were dressed.

Everybody offers to help, nice but pointless. The really could ones just do. My house sprung washing fairies, I still don't know who did it but dirty laundry would reappear a fews days later clean and ironed. Sit down and make a Tesco/Sainsbury list with him and go and get it.

If your kids are at the same school are any notes/monies for school trips due in over the next few weeks?

He will probably want his kids close by, but there are things he will need to do like registering the death and arranging the funeral at these times he probably won't want the kids around.

You don't need to do all this yourself but talk to others around and organise so that stuff is shared out (I am almost certain one of the dons in the local mums mafia took on this role here).

Food is nice but it is the first practical thing that everybody thinks of, I have to confess I had so much that I had to throw some out.

Most importantly still be there in three months time, not the huge effort that he needs now but the little things like the odd reminder about school notes, or the occasional meal.

And when he is ready point him at WAY (widowed and young) it has been a huge help to me and quite a few others on here.

jenwyn Wed 03-Jun-09 20:46:28

Unhappily I have known several people who have died young -albeit through cancer forums -and left young families.
The consensus seems to be that any practical help is appreciated but that attempts to take the children are not.Obviously this is not written in stone but usually families want to stay very close together and the children need to see what is happening at home. They do not want to be entertained during the early days after a death.
So doing the washing and ironing , getting meals or ingredients together,talking to the children while weeding the garden or taking the dog out for a walk .
Im so sorry you have lost your good friend.Talking with those that loved her too will help you all.

jenwyn Wed 03-Jun-09 20:49:45

Sorry -edited the post and now it reads like a dictators speech.sad

mumblecrumble Wed 03-Jun-09 20:50:52

Oh how awful. Hope you are ok too.

I knew someone who said the best thing [though bit painful] someone did for him was to look for photos that he hadn;t seen of her before and pass them on to him.

Washing fairies sound the way forward.

SO awful

OmicronPersei8 Wed 03-Jun-09 20:55:58

How sad. So sorry for your loss and for your friend's husband and children.

Spidermama Wed 03-Jun-09 21:01:44

Thanks all and especially thanks DadinsteadofMum.

I will call tomorrow or the next day. When I dropped the card in tonight he had the telly on. The police have been there all day. He found her in the morning and just said she wouldn't wake up.

Thanks all for your help. Really really helpful.

AnarchyAunt Wed 03-Jun-09 21:08:51

Oh Spidermama, I'm so so sorry for you and the family.

I have very little practical advice other than what others have said. I hope the family and friends get some answers soon.

SuperWasher Wed 03-Jun-09 21:13:44

No advice but wanted to say sorry for the loss of your friend.

Spidermama Wed 03-Jun-09 23:48:50

I was just looking at her twitter page and the last thing she tweeted was last night just after half ten and she said,

"Got loads of testimonials from clients to go on my website. I love you all. Going to bed happy."

I can't believe she has gone when she had so much to look forward to. She was just building up her career again after having taken time out to be with her boys for ten years. She had put in so much work to get working again.

sad

DadInsteadofMum Wed 03-Jun-09 23:55:14

Don't be afraid to share those memories and thoughts with her husband.

Everybody went around on eggshells afraid to upset me and the kids, but we wanted to hear the stories, the memories and how much other people thought of her.

Spidermama Thu 04-Jun-09 00:05:31

That's good to know.

I want her dh to know she went to bed happy.

I'm also trying to collect some shows she and I presented together for a community radio station. It was a hobby we had and we got some great guests on. She was so funny and her personality came out beautifully on air. I will get copies for her dh but perhaps hold back for a while before I give them.

Dadinstead do you mind my asking how long has it been? And how are you all doing?

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