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Forums / Grief and loss / Losing my mom and feeling like those closest to me dont understand

Topic: Losing my mom and feeling like those closest to me dont understand

5 posts, 0 answered
  1. MaybeINeedHelp
    MaybeINeedHelp avatar
    2 posts
    11 May 2016

    Hello everyone.

    First, i'm so sincerely sorry for the pain you feel/have felt/continue to feel at the loss of a loved one and the fallout (with family) that seems to follow. I've read a a few threads and for the first time in many weeks feel like I am amongst people to truly understand what its like.

    I lost my mom very suddenly on the 10th of April. My parents live overseas and I saw her in December - she seemed well at the time. When I rushed back home in April things were very different. She had an emergency surgery that hadnt gone well, she was on life support and heavily sedated for the pain. We lost her a week later without ever having had a chance to say goodbye. The guilt I feel for not being there for her in her last conscious moments is extreme. Having to leave my father all by himself was no less difficult.

    My husband has been incredibly supportive, as have many close friends but no one has experienced grief or loss - most times I feel there is an expectation that I will "shrug it off" and feel better. I sometimes feel that I am failing to do what is expected of me. And, I'm having real trouble with my in-laws. My husband's mother and sister expect me to be normal - becuause I lived away from my mom and only saw her infrequently they think I couldnt possibly have cared for her very much and dont understand when I am sad to have lost her. When my husband has tried to explain my need to distance myself from them for a while (because who can take the feeling of being judged and found wanting when they are at their lowest point?) they have retaliated and said that I'm a bad influence on the family and that I am taking my husband away from them.

    I'm floored by it all. Up until my mother's death I've had an amicable relationship with my in-laws; we've helped each other out often. So I dont understand why they seem to have turned on me. I dont know if I'm over-reacting or whether I've done something wrong by them.

    My mother was an incredibly strong woman - I miss her encouragement and support every day. I feel so let down by the people I thought would help me through her loss.

    What can I do?

  2. pipsy
    pipsy avatar
    2255 posts
    11 May 2016 in reply to MaybeINeedHelp

    Dear MaybeINeedHelp. Please accept my sincerest condolences in your most recent, painful loss. The grief and pain you're experiencing is terrible, plus the guilt you feel for not being able to 'be there' in your mum's final moments. People who tell you to shrug it off, get over it etc, are very cruel and thoughtless. Your pain is horrendous and you need time to process what's happened. The remarks made by your MIL and SIL haven't helped either. Have you thought about getting some grief counselling? Your hubby has tried to help, but he has no idea how to help you because each of us deal with loss of any sort in our own way. I'm sure your mother understood why you couldn't be there. I'm also positive she is there with you, in spirit. You need time to heal, this time is different for everyone. Some people seem to 'bounce' back almost overnight, how I don't know. Others never really get past the loss they feel. You say your mum was a strong person, I presume you mean emotionally. Perhaps you could try writing her a letter, tell her about your life, if you have children, share this with her. Try to ignore the thoughtless, cruel remarks. I realize how hard this is, but if you can, eventually, try also to forgive your MIL and SIL. Your hubby's family are showing incredible selfishness at this time. Your hubby also sounds as though he's quite disappointed in his family. Keep your distance from these people till you feel emotionally strong enough to deal with their insensitive remarks. How long you take is your business, no-one has the right to make remarks about your grieving process.

    If you need to talk further, there are counsellors here ready to listen. Also perhaps ask your Dr about a grief counsellor.


  3. Alan1
    Alan1 avatar
    52 posts
    11 May 2016 in reply to MaybeINeedHelp

    Firstly I would like to send my sincere condolenses for your loss, it is a very sad time.

    I have found that grief is very personal and we all deal with in in different ways and yes I do believe people expect us to shrug it off and move non. But in reality more of us deal with very difficult times where the emotion just comes to the forefront and it leave us in a state of despair and somehow it can be almost debilitating. As I have said in my post how we care, and it is the price of love, is how I see it. I feel that as long as we share talk to someone even on this site is shows that there are other people out there dealing with the same issues. It has been 20 months since my mum passed and I am finding it very difficult still and will always I am sure. I was on the way after my sister called me to get to my mum before she passed but we were about 1/2 an hour late. I too wish I could have shared that last moment. But my sister was with her which is a relief to me, she wasn't alone.

    Please take the time to cry, laugh, write on this site it all helps.

    Please take care take all the time to grieve its different for us all


  4. pipsy
    pipsy avatar
    2255 posts
    11 May 2016 in reply to Alan1

    Hi Alan. I know it's been 20 months, not long really. Please accept my condolences at your loss. Losing anyone close is hard, be it parent, child, spouse, the loss is real and painful. Try to focus on the good times, remember your mum laughing, joking. If you had a pet name for her, use it whenever you need to. Your mum will always be part of you and your sibling/s. Were you able to write your mum to say goodbye? Writing down the good and bad things somehow seems to ease the pain a bit. The bad times are differences you had with mum, the good times, making up and remaining friends. Everyone has differences with their mum, we all know we don't mean the cross words we use, but we say things in anger. I'm sure your mum would've known you would've been there if you could've. If you have children, look for 'mum' in them, the way they smile, certain ways they hold their head. Different things they may say that mum might've said. Your mum will always be there in spirit.


  5. MaybeINeedHelp
    MaybeINeedHelp avatar
    2 posts
    12 May 2016 in reply to pipsy

    Hi Lynda and Alan, thank you for your words. I feel like its ok to feel how I feel for perhaps the first time since my mom passed. I think I've been trying to meet other people's expectations of me without really letting myself feel what I need to feel so that I can "get better".

    Alan, I love your sentiment about grief being the price of love, perhaps the reason you are still coming to terms - you must have loved your mom very much and she must have meant a great deal to you - I'm sure she knew you were with you in thought if not in person when she passed.

    Lynda, I hadnt really thought about grief counselling, but I think I'll take your advice and speak to my GP this week.

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