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Lost my twin and really struggling to get through the days

(53 Posts)
oneofapair Sat 05-Sep-09 11:09:34

I'm sorry if I have breached some unspoken rule by moving some earlier posts to here. I didn't know there was a bereavement thread on Mumsnet until last night. een

My twin sister has just died of cancer just three weeks after the initial diagnosis at age 32. Although we were not identical (I was a boy) we were very close all our lives. We went to the same University, never lived more than 50 miles apart and I saw her about every three weeks.

It was her funeral yesterday and today was supposed to be just Mum, Dad and I mourning Caroline. Mum and I are desolate in our different ways but Dad seems entirely focussed on Caroline's will, what he will do with the money and what a relief it will be to inherit her shares in the family business. (He got 48% from Grandad some years ago and would get another 26% from Caroline.)

I cannot even speak to him about nasty he sounds. In the last few days of her life my darling sister Caroline made it quite clear what she wanted to happen at her funeral. Dad ignored what she wanted and now is doing all this!!!

cathcat Sat 05-Sep-09 11:19:29

I am so sorry for your loss.
I don't know why your dad is behaving like this, only that in times like these everyone copes differently. He may be struggling with grieving for your sister and is focusing on the legal/money side instead.
If the funeral is over then there is not much you can do about the fact it was not what she wanted. Why not decide on a way to celebrate her life that would be personal to you, or in way closer to what she requested? Ask some of her friends to help you with this.
I am so sorry again and about the difficult situation with your dad.

oneofapair Sat 05-Sep-09 12:23:46

I am just so so tired.

I just want to be somewhere warm and calm and to be with Caroline again. I don't want to be with my Dad doing his "head of the household act", his "well somebody has the think about money round here act" or his "price of everything, value of nothing act".

Grit my teeth and battle on I suppose.

NotPlayingAnyMore Sat 05-Sep-09 12:58:45

So sorry for your loss. Most of us can't even begin to imagine how you're feeling right now

Well done for getting through the funeral, regardless of how it actually went. I think cathcat's idea is spot on: you do need to celebrate her life in a way which is appropriate to both yourself and Caroline.

(If you don't mind me also saying so
- having read about the note on your other thread -
although it may have been confusing at first, please take comfort in the fact that she passed knowing that you would find it and understand one day, even if that day has not yet come ).

Thinking of you x x x

lumnag Sat 05-Sep-09 21:27:11

Thinking of you and Caroline.sad

oneofapair Sun 06-Sep-09 14:24:08

I am feeling a bit more together today than yesterday. In the end I had to opt out of the family mourning day because Dad was just doing my head in. I drove over to Caroline’s house, spent some time responding to emails and starting to think about what I would like to do to remember her. Some friends have already come up with ideas some of which I would like to use. I slept in the spare room and managed to get a few hours of decent sleep which has helped me. Solicitors tomorrow.

oneofapair Mon 07-Sep-09 20:09:18

I'm feeling dreadfully restless tonight. If I stay at Mum and Dad's there will be rows about Caroline's Will, if I stay at my home I feel I am not doing anything useful and if I stay at Caroline's even silly little things make the pain come back. The latest mistake was finding the Scrabble set that we used to use on wet Saturdays.

cathcat Mon 07-Sep-09 20:41:17

Hi One, sorry you are unsettled but I think that is normal and to be expected. Why not stay at yours and at least be surrounded by your own things. Is there a friend who could come and chat with you for a while? There are phonelines for this sort of thing too (I am thinking of Breathing Space, I will google to check that in a minute, off the top of my head)
You must take care of yourself and not expect too much of yourself. One day at a time.

cathcat Mon 07-Sep-09 20:43:28

Breathing Space site

oneofapair Tue 08-Sep-09 17:03:53

I went for my first session with a bereavement councillor today. It was kind of my employer to both find them and to fund the course of 5 one hour sessions. Despite the risk of seeming ungrateful I don’t feel that the first session was terribly helpful. We explored my emotions which made me feel worse, explored my relationship with my twin which made me feel worse and for good measure attempted to set me some targets for going back to work next week which made me feel worse.

I tried hard to diverge off the well planned agenda the councillor had in mind without much success. He had no idea why I can sleep reasonably well in Caroline’s house but lie awake for hours in my own house. Also I am still very puzzled why my solicitor decided to read out Caroline’s letter to me, that she had stored with her will, to my parents. The envelope and the letter heading could not have been clearer, it was for my eyes only.

Monty100 Tue 15-Sep-09 23:58:25

Hi oneofapair, how are you doing. I'm so very sorry about your loss and cannot imagine how grim it must be. I think Caroline would want you to be strong and carry on. I'm a twin myself and that's what I would want for her were anything to happen to me and she would be the same.
It's hard to know what to say as it must hurt so bad.

My sincere condolences and a very big hug.

hmc Wed 16-Sep-09 00:06:12

I'm so sorry oneofapair

oneofapair Wed 16-Sep-09 13:55:22

You are quite right about Caroline wanting me to be strong. In the "beyond the grave" she left for me she wrote:

"Remember in the dark days you are going through that I will love you for ever and ever and I will wait here quietly for you to come to me.

Your loving twin

Caroline XXX"

Monty100 Wed 16-Sep-09 23:45:52

Caroline sounds so lovely. What a terrible loss this must be.

Is there anything we can do?

If you want to talk to a twin my email is phena 100 at aol dot com.

I probably should namechange as I've never said it before on here that I have lost a young daughter (cotdeath) and a 39 year old brother (heart failure)a few years ago.

I sound like the grim reaper. Just saying I know loss.

I hope Caroline is looking over you and helping you through.

With heartfelt sympathy. x

twirlymum Wed 16-Sep-09 23:53:20

What a terrible shock, so quickly after her diagnosis.
Maybe it's your dad's way of coping? I know some men (particularly older men) find showing emotion very difficult.
I hope the counsellor will be of some help.
Thinking of you.

Monty100 Wed 16-Sep-09 23:56:43

Oneofapair, sorry above was so short. I hope you are ok. Are you back at work? Have you sorted things with your Dad?

Holding on to Caroline's part of the business may be him trying to hold on to her. People do the strangest things in bereavement. Your parents must be devastated too, and I'm sure they are devastated for you.

Prayers for Caroline. xx sad

oneofapair Fri 18-Sep-09 10:05:07

The last couple of days have been very difficult. The solicitor dealing with Caroline's estate was so concerned about the way Dad was acting that he spoke to the Police who spoke to Social Services who spoke to Mum and I and Dad's GP - and, to cut the long story short, Dad has been taken away to a secure unit for 14 or 28 days (not clear which) on the grounds he was a danger to himself and other people.

In a curious way this has helped me because I can visit the family business and family home without any of the shouting and screaming and horrid, horrid allegations.

My GP has put me on beta blockers to stop the "fight or flight" mechanism. This has improved my quality of life a lot since the first night after taking a tablet I slept for 11 hours rather than the previous 3 or 4.

Conundrumish Fri 18-Sep-09 22:20:50

Hi Oneofapair - I read one of your first posts and have now found this on here.

I'm sorry both about your loss and your Dad's behaviour. At least now you know that your father wasn't just being horrible, but had good reason for behaving the reason he was, whatever that may be.

I'm not surprised you have been feeling dreadful if you have been having 3 or 4 hours of sleep a night on top of everything else. Well done for going to the GP and I hope you continue to get some good sleep.

You must be feeling so dreadfully sad and lost without your twin sad. Thinking of you.

Monty100 Fri 18-Sep-09 23:26:54

Hi oneofapair, I hope your dad is on the road to some sort of recovery in terms of his mental health. Some respite for you too although this must be really hard to deal with on top of everything. It must be extremely difficult for all of you. I think you have to stick with counselling to see any success, it never worked for me but we're all different.

I can understand why you can sleep better at Caroline's - you probably feel really close to her there. sad

Thinking of you.

oneofapair Sat 19-Sep-09 11:38:37

Sorting out the sleep problems - I got 10 hours last night - seems to have helped with the not bothering to eat issue. I ate two meals yesterday rather than almost nothing and have eaten breakfast today for the first time since Caroline died.

We are not allowed to see Dad for the first five days in the secure unit so Mum and I are trying to progress as many of the problem areas as we can without Dad's "help".

I am starting to consider renting out my own home and living in Caroline's (also now mine I suppose sad. Travel time to my work and family home is about the same and I feel so much more peaceful here.

I have found sitting on the bench in the churchyard where Caroline's ashes will be buried quite theraputic. It is so quiet and nobody is surprised if I am looking sad sitting there with a hankie box beside me.

Monty100 Sat 19-Sep-09 16:37:23

Hi Oneofapair. I'm glad you are sleeping and eating better.

Have you got some support from friends? You sound a bit isolated.

As for the issue of Caroline's clothes, just do it when you are ready.

Take care.

oneofapair Sun 20-Sep-09 17:27:21

Although I am geting lots of support from my friends I am still finding it a sad and lonely existence without Caroline.

I wasm't too impressed with one of Mum's friends who visited her for an hour today but said exactly two sentences to me, "Is your Mother in?" at the start and "Take good care of her." at the end. This is a lady has known me for 30 years!

Back to the GP tomorrow but hopefully I am not going to be sent to the hospital as my weight loss has slowed down to only 0.6kg lost this week. (It was over 2kg the previous week)

Fingers crossed at 09:10AM please!!

Conundrumish Mon 21-Sep-09 12:46:32

How are you doing today Oneof?

oneofapair Mon 21-Sep-09 14:24:23

I'm not too bad today. The doctor weighed me today and I am 9 stone 1 lbs (at 5 ft 10in) which puts me in the bottom 3% for Body Mass Index. I cannot go back to work until I gain enough weight to get back to at least the 6% level. I think that means about 4-5lbs to gain somehow.

I was warned a few days ago that I would go though the feeling "annoyed" stage of mourning during which I will "blame" Caroline for dying and leaving me feeling lonely and sad. I think it is starting to kick in today which is so unfair on every possible level.

Conundrumish Mon 21-Sep-09 16:39:25

I'm glad your Dr is being supportive. That is awfully low a weight for someone of your height. I think I read you have had a session of grief counselling (or was that someone else?). Could you have some more? it sounds as though you need to speak to someone with experience of this. Take care.

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