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Forums / Grief and loss / Supporting my Aunt

Topic: Supporting my Aunt

4 posts, 0 answered
  1. Jackson H
    Jackson H avatar
    1 posts
    14 November 2020

    Hi there,

    first time poster. I recently went through one of the worst experiences of my life during covid. My uncle was in hospital during stage 4 lockdown whose condition deteriorated immensely (non covid related) and with no visitors allowed to see him he receded into advanced dementia and passed away.
    This has been the worst thing to my aunt as she would not visit him and when she visited him when we got out of lockdown, she had to see her husband health rapidly deteriorating and him passing away.

    She has now removed herself from taking her usual tasks around house, cooking or anything. She still talks and acts well but is fearful of living by herself (they had no kids)

    I am visiting her during day and working from her home to keep company and also bring her at my place over weekends.

    I just don’t know what options exists in regards to support as she’s not keen to move to aged care this soon & suggestion of this at this time isn’t even suited.

    Keen to hear from anyone who probably have gone through this and what has worked best. I work fulltime, she has a niece who lives next door however not everyone is available full time for care, medication, home maintenance.

    Jackson

  2. Sophie_M
    Community Moderator
    • Works for beyondblue moderating these forums
    Sophie_M avatar
    3641 posts
    14 November 2020 in reply to Jackson H
    Hey Jackson,

    We are so grateful that you decided to reach out here to our kind forums for support. It sounds like things have been incredibly difficult for you and your aunt, and we are so sorry to hear of the loss of your uncle. We can hear that this must have been a particularly tough period during lockdown restrictions, and being unable to visit your uncle in the hospital. You sound like such a caring and considerate person to be helping support your aunt, and our wonderful community are here to help provide advice and their support during this really difficult time.

    If you feel up to it, we'd also really encourage you and your aunt to reach out to our friends at Griefline on 1300 845 745. They offer confidential counselling support to those experiencing grief, loss and/or trauma and are available 6am-midnight (AEST) to talk through these feelings. We hope you also always feel welcome to get in touch with our Beyond Blue Support Service, available to you day or night, on 1300 22 4636 or through webchat at www.beyondblue.org.au/getsupport. One of the kind counsellors can provide support, and advice on how best to help support your aunt, and talk through some options to help you through your loss, as it is also really important that you also take care of yourself during this time. It must be really tough to cope with all of this on your own, and we think you've shown so much strength in reaching out here today.

    We hope that you can find some comfort in the forums and please feel free to keep us updated here on your thread throughout your journey.

     
  3. Croix
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    Croix avatar
    9185 posts
    20 November 2020 in reply to Jackson H

    Dear Jackson,

    Your Aunt is surrounded by your love, which is the best thing possible -it does not matter if you are with her all the time or not, she is loved.

    The hole in her heart left by your Uncle passing away, and the sadness and frustration she must have felt at the enforced separation is something that changes a person. Not being interested in daily tasks is a small thing, the fact she talks with you is so much more important. It injects life in to her life.

    There are schemes that do allow a person to remain in their own home for as long as is possible, and as far as I am aware it takes the services of an experienced professional, a peer support worker, social worker or similar to set out the paperwork in such a way that it is accepted in full. It is easy to use the wrong words.

    My own mother-in-law was in a similar situation and lived may years at home after her husband died. She had services come in and clean and help with meals and shopping, and later to shower and dress.

    She still enjoyed her garden and the view from her windows, as well as mundane things like TV. Plus -and this was important to her, she has a little dog. Truth to tell I felt it looked more like a rat, and always asked how Ratty was. My MIL enjoyed the banter.

    The regulations have changed recently so I have no practical tips to give.

    I'd be interested to know how you get on wiht those links.

    I'd also like to ask who is there to help support you, after all the burden is more than one can reasonably bear alone for very long

    Croix

  4. Tay100
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Tay100 avatar
    531 posts
    21 November 2020 in reply to Jackson H

    Hi Jackson H

    It's good to see you reaching our on your aunt's behalf- playing a support role is a great role to do. We hope you find solidarity and insight here on the forums. To further discuss your mental health tourney, feel free to contact Beyond Blue at; The Beyond Blue Support Service provides advice and support via telephone 24/7 (just call 1300 22 4636), daily web chat (between 3pm–12am) and email (with a response provided within 24 hours). Feel free to continue updating us on your progress with her here as well.

    Tay100

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