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Enabler FIL dying DH in pieces

(63 Posts)
NCwithOutlaws Sun 17-May-15 08:08:20

I don't know if any of you remember my previous thread which was about Narc MIL and Enabler FIL writing to my DC's headteacher asking for an update on progress. We've been NC with Pil for several months.

Now DH has had several flying monkeys contacting him telling him his F is in hospital dying. D is in bits crying. He feels conflicted as he knows from Therapist the letter to headteacher was deplorable, threatening and game playing. Furthermore, that they'd crossed a line and that there is no chance of reconciliation as result. However, with the bombardment of messages from relatives telling him how he should be there for his father, let bygones be bygones and so forth he's in bits. I'd appreciate any thoughts.

MythicalKings Sun 17-May-15 08:10:44

He can still go to see his dying father without forgiving their awful behaviour.

My feeling is that he will regret not going. He should do it for himself, not for FiL.

Cabrinha Sun 17-May-15 08:13:26

Call me cynical, but I'd be calling the hospital to find out if he was even it it, let alone dying hmm Seems convenient. He's probably just had an ingrowing toenail hmm

If he's really dying, it just depends how awful he's been I suppose. It's fine to visit him minimally and pretend it's resolved for selfish reasons - wider family harmony, getting people off his back, making sure he doesn't himself feel he should have, after FIL dies.

Hassled Sun 17-May-15 08:14:48

I agree - a visit is not the same as a reconciliation or acceptance that FIL's behaviour was OK. And having regrets and "what-ifs?" afterwards, if he didn't visit, would be awful.

PotteringAlong Sun 17-May-15 08:16:41

I'd go to the hospital.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 17-May-15 08:17:45

Is this man really dying?. I would call the hospital and find out what his current condition actually is before making any further decisions about visiting.

Continue to ignore the well meaning but utterly useless flying monkeys who have been roped in to do their dirty work for them.

NCwithOutlaws Sun 17-May-15 08:19:27

See that's what I thought Cabrinha, about whether he actually is dying.

The problem for DH is that pretty much all PIL and SIL's aggressive, negative and vile behaviour has been directed at me. He is "their boy" and therefore, any boundary setting and refusal to allow our DC and us to be manipulated, abused, etc is according to them due to my unreasonableness.

We've had a year's worth of therapy to unravel their awful behaviour. The Therapist suggested we should go NC and not look back.

diddlediddledumpling Sun 17-May-15 08:44:19

If it's true that he's dying, I really think he has to go to the hospital. nobody gets an instruction manual for life and lots of people get things spectacularly wrong. FIL has made mistakes, but he's your dh's father, and I foresee a whole lot more therapy needed to deal with the regret that would come from not visiting a dying parent.
Think about how you would feel in FIL's position.

Phoenix0x0 Sun 17-May-15 08:45:14

Call the hospital and then decide.

JammyGeorge Sun 17-May-15 09:10:43

Ring the hospital. I'll eat hay with an ass if he's dying.

We've been here with my mil and her cancer scare (that never was).

'Normal' people don't think behaviour like this happens but it does.

JammyGeorge Sun 17-May-15 09:13:42

I will add to that mind if he is actually dying in your situation I would encourage DH to go and see him, I think.

Mostlyjustaluker Sun 17-May-15 09:13:53

The hospital won't discuss FIL condition without FIL's permission, this is due to privacy in the same way the head teacher would not give out information about a child performance to grand parents.

MythicalKings Sun 17-May-15 09:24:53

But what if he is dying? I would leave it to your DH to decide, it's his father. Tell him you support him whatever he decides to do.

He may never forgive in years to come you if you influence him and persuade him not to go.

Anniegetyourgun Sun 17-May-15 09:28:18

Well... if he goes to see him and finds out he's nowhere near dying, you can always reinstate the NC.

Penfold007 Sun 17-May-15 09:32:54

Your dh should contactc his therapist and arrange a meeting to talk through this issue. I'd also contact hospital to confirm the situation or otherwise.

Meerka Sun 17-May-15 09:39:42

firstly I think that your husband needs to tell the flying monkeys "thank you for your message, you've given it once, that's enough. Now was there anything else you wished to discuss? If not, we are busy".

Draw a line with them. Informed once is enough. Cut the conversation short after that. (is there anyone reasonable in the family? could he cultivate contact with them and phase it out with the rest, when it regards FIL?).

Secondly hospitals do not give out information but you can sometimes wriggle something out of a kinder nurse - I've been in the same position as I live overseas. "If I don't come to see him now, will I regret it in 2 months' time?"

If he is actually dying, your husband needs to think what he wants to do. A very good question is: If you don't go to say goodbye, how will he feel in 15 years' time when he looks back? Actually some people regret not having a final meeting but others are neutral about it. But how -he- feels is the important thing.

Having said that, I do believe that for most people goodbyes are important. Not quite all though. But it can be a way of processing and of saying goodbye.

Good luck. Very difficult position he's in, and by extension you.

Penfold007 Sun 17-May-15 09:49:16

Meerka has given some excellent advice

NCwithOutlaws Sun 17-May-15 09:54:17

Thank you for all your comments and advice. I should have made it clear that I've repeatedly told DH the decision is his and his alone to make.

Meerka, there is nobody in DH's family who is reasonable.

Meerka Sun 17-May-15 10:00:02

ugh, that does make it even worse if there's no one at all sad

HeyDuggee Sun 17-May-15 10:07:51

let your DH ask the people who are pestering for his visit to tell him specific details on his dad's condition, who his doctor is, etc. DH can explain they've cried wolf in the past and he wants proof.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 17-May-15 10:31:02

I would talk to the medical staff rather than the flying monkeys in any event.

magoria Sun 17-May-15 11:36:05

I am very cynical after years on MN that this very bad life threatening illness has conveniently developed now.

Even if it is true.

You can let bygones be bygones, wish others health without having any contact.

And finally FIL has not made contact himself...

sadwidow28 Sun 17-May-15 11:50:38

I would phone the hospital. Family members can be given basic information.

I live at a distance from my family and I have to make judgements about when/if to travel. (I am low-contact rather than NC). My trick is to say to the nurse, "My younger sister [name] contacted me...." As my younger sister is known to staff, they know I am genuine.

In both my Mother's case and my brother's case, I was able to get regular updates on the phone and could judge for myself if I needed to get in the car. I have visited my mother outside of visiting-hours to avoid coming into contact with other members of my family. I shared the vigil rota for my elder brother when he was finally taken into a hospice.

I went NC with one of my younger brothers and he died suddenly. I ended up posting here on MN because I was conflicted by the emotions I felt. I am satisfied that my reasons for NC were correct and don't regret not seeing him before he died, but I still attended his funeral so I could celebrate the good parts of him/his life and be there for my niece and nephew.

Once you know for definite that FIL is dying, let your DH decide what he feels is best for him. Your DH is currently in conflict and turmoil (crying), so just ask him what would help him at this time - then support him in doing that. Don't try to persuade your DH either way otherwise it could lead to 'blaming' afterwards.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 17-May-15 11:59:20

Family members can be given information.

(DH was fully told about his father's condition and care when his dad was in hospital).

sadwidow28 Sun 17-May-15 12:12:10

Exactly Meerkat. I wanted to counter those who are saying that OP's DH won't be given information via phone.

I once was told that a dear friend was in hospital following a major stroke. he was not expected to recover. I phoned the hospital when news from the family dried up (I thought he must have not come out of his coma). I did say immediately, "I am not a family member, but I wonder if there is any news you can tell me". The nurse said, "He's doing as well as expected. Would you like to speak to him?"

And 7 years on....he is still with us!

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