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My 93 year old Nan

(6 Posts)
Sittingonthesofa Wed 11-Jan-17 16:14:51

My Grandpa died a year ago. They were married when they were 21, so the loss to my Nan is tremendous. She's obviously still grieving for him but lately she's been waking up in the morning and can hear him breathing in bed next to her. It's scaring her and she doesn't know what to do.

My Nan is coping well in other ways. She lives alone but has good neighbours and my mum lives nearby. She hasn't lost any of her mental alacrity. My mum has told her to laugh it off and to tell DH to shut up. She's spoken to me about it and I want to help but I don't know how.

I've told her to speak to her GP but she was very reluctant as she didn't want to bother him, as she's not ill.

Anyone got any suggestions please.

AnxiousCarer Wed 11-Jan-17 18:19:21

If its only just started I wonder if theres another explaination, like a problem with her hearing thats becoming apparent when its quiet at night. If you can encourage her to see the GP the might be able to shed some light on it.

Blossomdeary Wed 11-Jan-17 18:32:30

When I worked with bereaved people it was very common indeed for people to hear or see their loved one. I used two explanations which seemed to help:
- your brain has been programmed by so many years together and it will take a while for it to reprogramme into the new reality.
- it is a bit like when you look into the sun and you go on seeing it when you look away - your loved one was such a strong influence on your life that this sort of after-vision is not surprising.

What helped more than anything was telling the person that this was very common, almost to the point of being normal.

Sittingonthesofa Wed 11-Jan-17 20:06:09

Thanks very much for the replies.

booellesmum Wed 11-Jan-17 20:09:22

Blossomdeary that is such a good explanation.
My dad died last year at 89 and my mum still feels he is there sometimes. This will be so helpful to say.

RockyBird Wed 11-Jan-17 20:13:37

Bless her. My gran is also 93 but lost my Granda 10 years ago. They were together from age 14 and 15 respectively.

She tells me she still speaks to him every day.

I get the looking into the sun thing. When I go on holiday I still feel my cats winding their way round my legs when I get up in the morning.

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