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2 and a half months on and mum is really not coping

(15 Posts)
DrNortherner Mon 29-Jun-09 19:07:31

Dad dies in April. She had lots of support directly after, I stayed with her for a week, she stayed with us for a week, the her sister stayed with her.

I live 85 miles away, but visit every other weekend. She has family visiting her every day, but she finds sundays hard.

Speaking to her just now, she could not even talk, she was sobbing and breaking her heart. She says she is not eating or sleeping (though when I stay with her she does eat and sleep)

She is feeling very angry and bitter (no one is here/no one cares/no one is suporting me etc etc) this is very dificult for me to hear.

She won't call the doctor, she won't call Cruse. She just wants to sit and cry and cry. Yesterday she said she felt like throwing herself under a bus.

I am an only child. She only pours out her grief to me.

I am so sad that this is her life now, this is her future.

How can I help her?

bargainhuntingbetty Mon 29-Jun-09 19:08:48

No real advicce just bumping for you. FWIW grreif takes time and time is a great healer.

Hassled Mon 29-Jun-09 19:10:58

My father died 6 years ago, and it's only really in the past year or so that my stepmother has become anything like her old self. And it is heartbreaking to watch, because there's nothing you can really do - just give what support you can, and wait it out. It is still very, very recent for both of you.

Just stick with it, and in a few months have another go at getting her to bereavement counselling. It will improve, but not so soon. This won't necessarily be her future.

nickytwotimes Mon 29-Jun-09 19:13:50

HI Dr.
My Mum lost Dad 4 years ago. I am an only too - my Dad had 2 boys too, but I am MUm's only.
It is still early days, but I would say that being on her own is the last thing she needs atm. When Dad died, I was fortunately able to stay with her until she moved nearer us. This was something she was meant to be doing with Dad when he died suddenly. She only lives up the road from me and dh and ds so she has her own space but isn't alone much between us and her sister and her friends.

It is A LOT for you to carry. Too much really, if she is pouring her greif out to you . COuld she stay with you or her sister for a few weeks now and then? Then she might get okay enough to contact her gp or Cruse.

SOrry for your loss. In many ways this periosd is even harder than the immediate aftermath as the numbness is wearing off for all of you, but it is still so very recent.

sad

elvislives Mon 29-Jun-09 19:31:41

It is still very early days. I suppose it was lucky for my mum that she was still working when my dad died. She had people around all the time to sort of shore her up. She also made a lot of effort to go out and meet other people. I do recognise the no-one cares routine

No advice really because she has to want to help herself.

TheProfiteroleThief Mon 29-Jun-09 19:35:42

iirc this was a particular low point with my mum after losing dad. It was honestly the most awful thing I had ever seen.

wish I had something useful to say

MummyDragon Mon 29-Jun-09 21:54:27

Same here Dr - lost my dad 4.5 years ago, am also an only child, mum would pour her heart out to me, say she wanted to die, etc ... it is heartbreaking but it is, unfortunately, a natural part of the grieving process for someone who has been widowed. It's probably much too early for your mum to contact Cruse: usually they (Cruse) recommend 7 months after the bereavement at the earliest.

On a practical level - what your mum is going through is normal. Terribly terribly sad, but normal unfortunately. It will get better with time, but you may need to prepare yourself for a couple of years of this. Sorry - it's not easy. Please make sure that you grieve for your dad in your own way, and whilst you want to support and help your mum, don't feel that you must try to take her pain away - because you can't, and she has to go through this horrible process. I am so sorry. It will get better. Your mum will come to terms with things in her own way. Just keep telling her that you love her.

And now, about you: in my very humble opinion, you don't have to listen to the "no-one cares / I wish I was dead" routine - she is still your mother, she shouldn't be saying that to you. (I know she doesn't feel that she has anyone else to say it to, but that doesn't mean that you, who have lost your dad, should have to hear it). Find some way to not take this personally - you could contact Cruse now, they are excellent. I found them really helpful.

So sorry.

everlong Mon 29-Jun-09 23:08:19

I feel so sad to read this. 10 weeks is such a short time. Your mum has lost part of herself, her life. It is such a truly terrible time, nothing that anybody can say or do will help, she literally needs to go through it. Only time will help her. I know it is a cliche but it is true.

Keep calling her, write her a letter, just keep in touch. She has to go through this time to get through the other side.

I lost my eldest son ( Oliver aged 20 ) in Nov 08, at first I honestly thought that his death would kill me, the grief is torture, so unatural, so alien.

So I can try and imagine how your mum is feeling. Just keep doing what your are doing, be there for her.

Take care of yourself too xx

DrNortherner Mon 06-Jul-09 18:32:08

Just a quick update, after a wek or so of horrendous phone calls to my Mum, she ha finally agreed and has an appointment to see her GP tomorrow. She is going to get some anti D's.

She is completley at rock bottom, and at the moment, seems quite happy to be there, which is heartbreaking and very tiring for me sad

Thanks for all your advice, I only hope things get better soon, as quite frankly, they surely can not get worse.

Lemonylemon Tue 07-Jul-09 13:11:02

Does she have internet access? There's a website called merry widow. It's a place where she can post about what's happening to her.....

Onlyjoking Tue 07-Jul-09 14:51:10

how did your mum get on at the doctors?
i spent a lot of time at rock bottom and it wasn't that i wanted to be there it was just how it was at the time, i am doing much better this last couple of weeks.
when you lose your life partner nothing is ever the same everything has a conection with the person who has died it takes a long time to make a different life from the one you were happy with and move on to one you didn't chose.
It is hard for you to see your mums grief as you yourself are also grieving both the loss of your dad and the loss of what your mum used to be to you, do you have someone you can talk to?

DrNortherner Wed 08-Jul-09 16:00:28

Thanks OJ, your post really helped me get some perspective.

Mum did go to the doc's, he gave her some tablets and she rang Cruse. She is coming to stay with me for 4 days on Friday so she is looking forward to seeing me, dh and ds. A distraction is what she needs I feel.

Lemonylemon Fri 10-Jul-09 11:59:26

DN: I've just remembered, there's a thing called the "three month low", then there's the six month low etc. Your mum can read about it on www.merrywidow.me.uk. It's a website run by a lady called Katie Boydell and it's a lifeline for lots of widows and widowers (and a genuine site).

When my OH died nearly 2 years ago, the first 3 months were just appalling. The thing is, that when your partner dies, your life is thrown out of kilter to such a degree, that apart from the pain, shock etc. you can also feel absolutely petrified of what's going to happen to you. How on earth are you going to make it through the years until it is your turn to go? How to even think about life without your OH. It's just unbearable at times.

Everything that OJ said is absolutely true. HTH

kanga5 Fri 10-Jul-09 12:19:17

i am going through it too.

my dad died suddenly in may and he and mum were just about to celebrate 44 years marriage.

We are 3 hours drive away and have 5 children aged 8 to 3 months. we try to support by being there when we can, but so hard for me to see dad's things.

I call every 2nd day just to say hello and provide some support. She came to stay with us which a good distraction and showed she can still enjoy things and her grandchilderen.

i try to help with practical things where possible too. mum is very negative, but keeps up with her interests and friends.

she feels angry with dad for leaving her with all this stuff to deal with, and has not cried yet.

i think she was shocked when i said i felt too young to lose a parent, and it wasn't right. You have to grieve too and get support yourself.

My brother gets married in 2 weeks and we are a bit apprehensive. it will be very emotional.

i can't offer any other advice only what we are coping with, it is a day to day existance.

DrNortherner Sun 12-Jul-09 23:22:08

You're so right Kanga, it is day to day. Sometimes even hour by hour. One moment I'm Ok, then I'm missing him so much it actually hurts and I never understood what that meant before.

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