Life after the death of a parent

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by Rikter8, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. Rikter8

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    For those of you that have experienced the death of a parent, or sibling, how has life been afterward?

    If the death of a parent, how do you deal with supporting the family and making difficult decisions?

    Since the passing of my father, I've tried to do my best on keeping things pulled together, but many things seem to be creeping farther apart.

    Some major decisions that were made early, now are turning out to be majorly bad moves. Accomplishments are turning into nightmares.

    Hindsight is always 20/20. I'm not sure if I should erase all of what I've done the past 3 years and start over, or if I should try to fix what i've done and where i've gone.

    Anybody have any life lessons to lay straight tracks?
     
  2. shad24

    shad24 New Member

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    I know the feeling. and I am sorry. My dad passed 12/06. sorry to go on a rant but anyway... He had been going to the same dr. for 25 yrs or so, when he became sick the "DR" said he might have the flu, then it was a cold then pnumonia, we FORCED my dad to go to a different Dr, 15 minutes later the new DR came in and told us he was ate up with cancer and had maybe a month to live. it was 22 days later. but. I seem to hear dads voice all the time I imagine him standing there beside me like he had always done in life. I really miss him and when my life starts going the wrong way I just think of what he would tell me and it works! I stopped doing stupid shit and Damn gotta go!
     
  3. IntoxicatingToxin

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    My mother passed from cancer in May of '06. It's not easy. I do what shad24 said.... I just think of what she would tell me, and I do it. It keeps her memory alive in me, and it also keeps me alive half the time. :tongue:
     
  4. nudeyorker

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    I am very sorry for your loss. I have lost both my parents and each was very difficult. One thing that I did was I did not make any major decisions or moves for a year.
    I spent alot of time alone to sort out my feelings and deal with all the details.
    Because I lost my mother and father about a year apart, I met with a psycholigist for a few months to deal with the depression and anger.
    I wish you the best... Good luck with everything!
     
  5. nakedwally

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    my stepdad who is more like a fateher to me than my real father is passed away a few years back and it has been really hard there are still times like hlidays, b-days and anniversarries when i get really emotional, all i can say is it takes time to heal and you gotta build up a support system so you can have friend to go to when yo need someone that's what works for me
     
  6. SpeedoGuy

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    My dad died while I was about 12 and the previous happy family life changed for the worse. Former family friends rejected or ignored us afterwards perhaps because our family was seen as being too different minus a father. My mother went to pieces emotionally and I basically had to raise myself from that age onwards. We were financially sound but my mother was unavailable for much parenting or guidance or anything.

    It was a bleak time. I could have used a father's love and support many times in my teens and afterwards but I didn't have it. I don't know how I survived in anything resembling an intact state.
     
  7. snoozan

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    My father died on April 18, 2005. It was one day before my 27th birthday and two weeks before my son was born. I got to see him for about six hours on the Saturday before he died. I hadn't seen him in about a year before that.

    I still miss him, and there are things that trigger memories of him that make me happy and tearful at the same time. I should have spent more time with him and called him more. I shouldn't have been so angry with him most of my adult life.

    I wish I had taken a photo of him in his hospital bed when he was dying to remind me of how fragile and fleeting life is.

    I can't give you advice on the practical things because you haven't really outlined what they are, specifically, for you. Just do the best you can, love your family and treat them well, and take care of yourself while you're still dealing with this. If things are really stressful and affecting your life a lot, maybe go talk to someone-- a counselor, religious leader, etc.
     
  8. njack

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    Unfortunately, I am all too familiar with losing loved ones (close sister, father, grandmother, several aunts and uncles). I think the best advice is to get support. There are excellent resources at hospice organizations. There are support groups and one-on-one bereavement options. I think it is brave to ask for help and you can getting better if you are willing to address your pain. I wish you well.
     
  9. biguy2738

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    I'm terribly sorry for your loss - my deepest condolences.

    This is a question that I have been grappling with for about a week. We found out last week that my Mom will have to undergo quite a large operation fairly soon which will leave her in ICU afterwards. I haven't encountered much death in my life and the only ones have been that of people that weren't very close to me.

    I've been spending a lot of time wondering what I would do and how I would move forward should.... Right now I'm just very numb inside. So thank you, this thread is very helpful and gives me a lot to think about.

    I truly wish you healing and everything of the best!
     
  10. Onslow

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    Father died on a Thursday, was buried on a Saturday--I went to the funeral and to the cemetery and waited three years to react--and did not do so in a nice manner.

    Mother died on a Thursday and was cremated on a Saturday. I did not attend a service, I did however finish signing the divorce papers to wife #2 and kept a doctor appointment on the Friday. Two weeks later I pranced completely out of the closet much to the chagrin (and terror) of my straightlaced brothers (all 4 of them) and to the big happy smile and welcoming hug of my sister, which brings me to the worst moment.

    Less than a year ago, while I was in rehab for my descent back to hell from sex, drugs and booze, my sister Olivia died. Olivia suffered from mental illness and passed away in a facility. My brothers (the church going hypocrites) decided the facility could dispose of her and toss her in an unmarked grave. I took as much control as I could of the situation and with the help of the people from the rehab and from the facility where my sister had been, got her a small service, a burial and a flat marker (lays flat on the ground) with her name and date of birth and passing along with a quote that she liked. I have not spoken with three of my brothers since then (not even the holier than thou one who is a minister).


    We make decisions as things happen and some can in retrospect seem wrong. Even of a decision was wrong, the fact remains that it has happened, the best that can be done now is to attempt to smooth out any rough patches. I figure if I at least make a decision, it shows I had some involvement somewhere in there. Accomplishments which have turned to nightmares, still have the beauty of having at one time been an accomplishment and at the time having been the right moves. Time changes things and people change as well and how things are viewed is no longer what it was for you three years ago.

    In the words of my hero Teddy Roosevelt: "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." In other words, you can't allow yourself to get mired in the woulda coulda shoulda--that'll just put you laying in the grave next to your loved one, which will accomplish nothing. Straighten up your shoulders and march forward, doing your best--that's all anyone can do.

    As to life lessons, you learn them as they happen and not one second before.
     
  11. Skull Mason

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    Wow before I read this post I was ready to type something exactly like it. My father died when I was 12. Any resemblance to a happy family disappeared with it. My two older brothers were either in college or out of college, either way not home. Extended family all of a sudden vanished. It was just me and my mom from then on for the most part.

    She has basically gone crazy since then. Its unfortunate, whenever I see her or spend time with her or talk to her or see her number on my phone I get sad. It just reminds me of what used to be and what has become of her since my dad died. Unfortunately we weren't very well off financially so this also burdens me regarding my mom. Its such a heavy burden to carry around, worried about her but can't do anything about it. I sometimes wish she would find a new man or run into a ton of money or something...

    If you want some advice maybe provide some more details. Where do you stand in your family? Are you the oldest sibling? Are you the youngest? Just remember, life moves on with you or without you. Just think about how your father or mother would want you to live on without them. They wouldn't want you all sad and upset about things. If a passed on loved one could give you advice I'm sure they would tell you to stop sweating the little things in life and go out and enjoy it, NO REGRETS!
     
  12. Dalt

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    My dad died 10 years ago--we just passed the anniversary of his death last week. It was a difficult day, even after all these years.

    When my dad died, I lost my best friend, mentor, and the father I loved and respected very deeply. My mom has had her good times and bad, and my sisters have been the same way. His death changed the personality of my family and how it works--or doesn't. I have been the one to tend to needs for my mom and my dad's older sister... I've had to fight the personalities of my older sisters who still see me as a kid. They are always there to give their opinions, but don't do much of anything to help. When I ask for help, I'm met with indifference and/or excuses. They're setting great examples for their kids in how to treat their family and parents.

    It has been extra difficult because my dad died of a very rare disease that is relatively unknown in the general public, and our gov't doesn't like to talk about it openly. I've had discussions with people at the CDC and National Institutes of Health, just to be put off. (Most everyone who encounters this disease gets the same treatment.) For several years I read every e-mail, visited every website, and went to every meeting that was held regarding the disease he had...all that did was make me more depressed. I've backed off from that some, but I still keep track of the research--or lack thereof--about his disease.

    I also keep track of my mom's and aunt's needs, and will be their caretaker as the years go on. As a result, I've gone from being pretty much happy go lucky and laid back, to trying to show a laid-back appearance, but in reality I have a pretty high stress level.
     
  13. viking1

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    Sorry to hear about your loss.

    My dad died 2/06 and my mom is now in a nursing home with Alzheimer's.
    It's definitely a life changing thing to lose a parent. It's made me question many things about my life. I still haven't been able to answer most of them. I'm trying to keep a cool head, and not do something stupid. It's hard. I feel like getting a one way ticket to somewhere far away. Running from my problems won't help, though. Maybe I will get things sorted out one day. Maybe not.

    Loneliness is one of the worst things for me. I don't really know what to do about that either. I don't have much of a support group.

    I would say the main thing is not to make any rash decisions, or sudden changes. Let things calm down some first. Find a good support group of close friends. If you can. I have no close friends, so that didn't happen for me. That's what I'm trying to do...sort things out logically. Before I do something really stupid that I will regret for many years.

    Good luck!
     
  14. chico8

    chico8 New Member

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    November of 2004, my mother's mother, Hulda, died and November 2005, my father's mother, Erna, died. Hulda was 87 and Erna was 98. Hulda collapsed at a friend's funeral and died two days later. She lived on her own until the end. Erna's last year was rough but until the last month she was in pretty good shape. They were both great women and I did shed a few tears but was thankful that they had such long and reasonably good lives and most importantly that the end was quick.

    My mother's brother died in her home the summer of 2005. It was really traumatic for my mother. She simply can't talk about her feelings and that made it much worse. She lives locked inside of herself and it's hard to talk to her due to all the pain and fantasies she surrounds herself with.

    My father isn't one to talk about his feelings either and since he was an only child and his father had died 16 years earlier, he was on his own.

    The point of all this is, is that it made me realize that when someone is gone, they're gone. So for the past two years I've done my best to get closer to my parents. It hasn't really gone that well but it has made me feel better about who I am.

    When my mom dies and she's probably not got much longer as her health is pretty bad, I'll cry mostly for the fact that she was never able to find a way out of the prison she created. When my dad dies and it's probably a matter of only a few years, I'll know that I did what I could.

    What scares me the most is that my younger sister, who is extremely obese, is probably going to die before I do. She's a really good friend of mine and I don't know how I'll handle that. I've done all I can to encourage her to change her ways, but nothing's made a difference.

    I think too many people feel bad about their relationships with their close family when in truth, probably not much could be done to change it. However, it's important to make the effort.

    You'll face the pain one way or another, so might as well get it over with now.
     
  15. camper joe

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    Rikter8 I wish you well

    My dad passed when I was only 11. I was really to young to understand how his death affected everything, it's only now that I understand. Life is short and time doesn't stand still, even thought day to day it might seem that nothing is happening, it's these days that really are really are our lives.
     
  16. cklover

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    What a bizarre thread on this site! I sympathize with all of the other posters. In the past very few years, I've lost my father and one of my 2 sisters (younger than me). I moved my mother and other sister in (very hard after living in Boston for 30 yrs, on my own, etc....lol)....they both have conditions that will kill them very soon. It seems like that when I hit 40, the shit hit the fan....aunts/uncles/cousins/friends...I will do everything I can possibly do to keep my mother and sister going...but sometimes, it's hard to balance out the energy I have...gotta keep me going too.
     
  17. Rikter8

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    Thank you everyone for your posts, kind words, and sincerity. My deepest sympathy for others that have lost a parent, or sibling.

    A few details, and it may sound trivial, but i'ts got me in such a deep depression that im having a very difficult time snapping out of it.
    My father passed in 03, from medical malpractice. The official documented was "Necrotizing pneumonia". This in itself is a horror story that i'll keep short.

    Since then, it seems that everything is slowly sliding apart. Immediate family distant, and slow to communicate due to lack of interest.
    (Mabee just everybody getting older?) My sister doesn't help out my mom very much, and when I call her, she waits for the answering machine to pick up to see whos calling, rather than just picking up the phone.

    To do, or not to do:
    My father asked me to "get mom north and out of the city", so thats what I did. We built my mom a house on the land that my parents purchased. The builders gave us a hell of a deal, and they helped us out a LOT during the hard months after his death, which when I look at it now, I don't have regrets.

    Then the MI economy took a spiral downfall, and things quickly started to deteriorate.

    Fix it, Fix it again, and then do it all over again.
    During my dad's stay in the hospital, his truck developed an intake gasket leak. I took time off of work to repair it, and to get my mind off of all the trauma going about in the hospital, and with our family. Got that up and running, and then dad went comatose. so I never got the chance to tell him, I fixed it up for him. (He was always so proud of my accomplishments)
    He passed, and then my mom's car engine exploded (Literally) shortly after his passing.
    I installed a new remanufactured engine, and last week, that went bad too. So, I've got to put ANOTHER engine in.
    Meanwhile, it's all my fault according to my mother (Even though I dont drive the car, and I didnt build the engine), and my other sibling gives me ZERO help anytime I ask for a hand.
    As a matter of fact, Nobody helps me because of people being "Busy" or "Out of town" and a myrad of other excuses.
    If I want help, I have to pay for it, or go without.
    Pulling an engine out of a front wheel drive car is not an easy feat, and even moreso difficult without a car Hoist. I've pulled the old one, put in the new one, and pulled the new one back out, all by myself. It's an accomplishment in the ability, but in the scheme of things it just seems like Im not doing the right things as far as "Fix it" or get rid of it.

    It's those types of things that I question daily. What is the right thing to do when situations arise. Do I lay low and go with the flow, or do I try to head on the problem like I have been doing.
    What's the right thing to do, obviously depends on the situation at hand, but i'm not sure if i'm making clear decisions.
    Onslow, your quote from Roosevelt is quite comforting, and appreciated. Thank You.
    I guess I need to work on keeping my chin up, and take the blows as they come.
     
  18. hypolimnas

    hypolimnas Well-Known Member

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