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Old 01-26-2007, 07:35 PM   #1
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Mom's been gone almost 2 mos now, dad doesn't have much to say

My mom passed away a little over two months ago. We miss my mom a lot and I know my dad is grieving in his own way. He has been gathering mom's handbags, shoes, hats, clothing and donating to local thrift store. When I go and visit him, he really doesn't have much to say to me. I then realize he isn't really much of a talker, and now that mom's gone, I'm wondering how to be alone with him for any length of time. Mom was my best friend, someone I could talk to about anything. I noticed the changes in my dad when my mom got sick. His patience wore thin and many times he was short and curt with my mom because she would ask the same questions over and over.

He has really shown changes in his own personality, he swears more, is difficult to get along with, quiet, distant. I finally realized once he goes I will be an orphan (so to speak). I have asked dad to make certain arrangements with his banks so that his assets aren't taken from him if he should end up in a nursing home, but he fights me on that and wants to do it his way.

I am pulling back since he doesn't want me to call him so much. It seems like he's falling more often and I'm afraid to let him drive. I do as much driving for him as I can.

I realize now how important the support of friends is, albeit I don't have any social life since I've focused much of my energy on helping my dad care for my mom for the past five years or more. Now that I have more time on my hands, I don't really feel much like reaching out, but know that if I don't, I will really feel alone once my dad goes. Why do they call these the golden years?

 
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Old 01-27-2007, 03:46 AM   #2
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Re: Mom's been gone almost 2 mos now, dad doesn't have much to say

Dear Blanche, it is never too late to make new friends. I spent most of my 5 years in NYC working and taking care of Mom, then I moved ut here to northern Indiana. My daughter lives 3 miles from my apartment, and I do spend time with her and her family, especially child minding. BUT, I have also made many new friends. Some through church, some though the neighborhood, or the local library. It is very important to have a social life again; I really missed that in NY.

I hope your dad gradually gets over his grief and loneliness. Does he have any friends? Relatives besides you? People shoud make a special effort to invite him to go out with them now. It is a good sign that he is donating your Mom's things to charities.

My mother was widowed at age 69, and it took a year before she was halfway normal again. For awhile she wasn't eating properly, and had little interest in outside activities. Thank God she found a Senior Center where she went for lunch, gradually got involved in various committees, became the exercise leader, and a voluntteer at La Guardia airport, and had a life again. It was very different from her previous life with my father, but it fulfilled her.

I wish you and your dad all the best.

Love,
Martha

 
Old 01-27-2007, 11:09 AM   #3
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Re: Mom's been gone almost 2 mos now, dad doesn't have much to say

Thank you, Martha. Surprisingly, my dad was only invited to one family's home for Sunday dinner. I even mentioned to him today that I was surprised his next door neighbors haven't even invited him over for a meal. What's wrong with people? My dad is the nicest man. They did come to my mom's funeral and cementary but that was it. They offered to help him in any way if he needed anything which was nice. But overall, people more or less come to pay their respects when there is a death, but afterwards, you're basically on your own, at least we are. I guess people figure you're in mourning, but I keep telling him he needs to get out more. He was going to check out the senior center. He also hasn't heard from a few women he used to work with who get together once a month for lunch. They were supposed to call him but he has yet to get a call. I told him to try calling the woman but he doesn't have her phone #. He's doing his best as I know he's really missing mom. They were married over 60 years.

I really need to start forcing myself to connect with people because I'm more of a homebody and I always feel most comfortable at home where I'm in my own safe space. I am estranged from my brother and once my dad goes, if he goes before me, I will basically be alone.

Thanks again Martha.

 
Old 01-27-2007, 05:24 PM   #4
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Re: Mom's been gone almost 2 mos now, dad doesn't have much to say

He might also be giving off vibes that tell everybody "Go Away" my Mum did it after my Dad passed away for MONTHS... but her few friends rallied and helped out and forced her to join the land of the living.

Give him time, don't judge other's too harshly, your still raw emotionally yourself. Time does heal all wounds, the hurt remains but we do go on.

Cheers

 
Old 01-27-2007, 06:03 PM   #5
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Re: Mom's been gone almost 2 mos now, dad doesn't have much to say

Yes, I agree. After we lost my MIL - my FIL would come over for dinner every night and when it came time for him to leave, he would cry. (they were married 50 years and 2 weeks). He got rid of all her stuff right away. Then we talked him into selling his house and moving to a nice apartment. That was a blessing. After a couple of months, I introduced him to a nice women friend of our family. They hit it off and dated for 10 years! They finally broke it off when they both had to give up driving, but they are still friends. It's sad getting old and lonely. I hope you can make some new friends for yourself. I'm a homebody too. I gave up the working life and friends to stay at home with my kids. Now I'm helping my FIL and my Mother, who neither one drive, and our kids are now teens who do drive. I am working part-time now but it's just so hard to push myself to get out there in the real world and meet new people. I am married, but my hubby has different interests than me. I pass my time on the computer (thank God for that). I hope you land in a soft, friendly place with new friends and hope your Dad does the same. Best of all, C

 
Old 01-28-2007, 03:04 AM   #6
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Re: Mom's been gone almost 2 mos now, dad doesn't have much to say

Thanks Angel_Bear and Cyt. I appreciate your kind words.

 
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