It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Grief & Loss Message Board
Post New Thread   Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 10-28-2007, 03:33 PM   #1
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: houston, tx, usa
Posts: 992
mcr285 HB Usermcr285 HB User
how can i help my mom???

my dad died of stage iv cancer in august. since then, i've been trying to help my mom cope, but it is so hard! my parents are young! she's 55 and he was turning 60 this year. people keep telling her that she should find comfort in that she'll see him again in heaven. and they tell her that she should just go out and serve others and to do more to make memories with her kids and grandkids. and that she just needs to get through all the firsts of all the major holidays and events and then she'll be fine. well, she gets so angry and upset when they tell her these things... not in front of them, but later, when it's just her and me.... and she starts going on and on about how nobody will allow her to have feelings or to grieve, and that inevitably leads to how she's had such a rotten life and that everyone else gets to be married for 50 or 60 years, but she only got to be married 35 years. and nobody else has had to go through all the trials that she has gone through in her life, and why is God picking on her?

and i try to be open minded and to listen to her and i try to be understanding, but i just don't get the constant need to dwell on depressing negative things. i'm not a horrible uncaring person! he was my dad, and i miss him more than i could possibly say! i hate that he is gone and that my kids won't get to know him and what an incredible person he was! i hate it and if i allow myself to go down that path, thinking about all the things that will not happen, then i might not come back, so i don't allow myself to go that way very often, and if i do, it's when i'm all by myself so that nobody else can contribute and take me further down that path than i'm prepared to go.... did that make sense???

anyway, is the constant dwelling on negative things just a normal part of grieving for some people? i worry so much that she'll get into a slump of depression that she can't pull herself out of. it scares me because she is SO negative all the time, and what if she can't get through this? she isn't even a glass half empty person.... her glass was dropped, shattered, and run over with a steam roller!!! sometimes it seems like she'll sit and start thinking of sad things on purpose so that she can get depressed and cry.

and she is always telling people things like, "well, last night i started thinking about my husband and i just started crying and crying because i'm just so sad," and why is she telling people these things? does she like the attention? not to random strangers, they're friends, but they're people that she wouldn't ordinarily confide in. is this normal?

i am trying so hard to be here for her and to be a comfort for her, but it's starting to be too much for me. the other day she said something about my dad being cheated out of so much because he died. my response was something like, "but he also got to do so many things in the last several years that a lot of people don't get to do in a whole lifetime," and she just went off on a tangent about how i am always telling her she is wrong and that nobody will allow her to have any feelings and that she should be allowed to grieve.... and she was yelling at me like i'd said something horrible, when all i was trying to do was turn the conversation from depressing and negative, to looking at all the good things my dad did get to do in his life.

anyway, it's really starting to wear me down, and it's putting a horrible strain on my relationship with my mother. i don't know what to do or say to her that can give her any comfort, and that is all i want to do. i hate to see her hurting like she is and i know it's a natural process that she has to go through, but is it a normal thing to be so incredibly negative about everything?

i know i probably sound like a terribly spoiled selfish daughter, who's grieving mother is an inconvinience, but it's not like that at all. my mom has been my best friend for years and i'm just worried about her and i only want to help her.

 
Sponsors Lightbulb
   
Old 10-28-2007, 07:10 PM   #2
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Burnet, Texas USA
Posts: 4,313
Misty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB UserMisty800 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

Find a grief support group for yourself and your mother.
The funeral home probably has one. Many churches have grief support groups.

Everyone grieves in a different way.

How about just let your mother say what she wants and you just smile and love her. She will have no reason to make a comeback to you. This is a very trying time for both of you. You cannot change your mother's way of grieving. We are all different. Some become bitter with God and will need time to understand.

No one can know exactly what another person is feeling. Both of you are still in the grief stage.

My sympathy to both of you.

 
Old 11-09-2007, 10:54 AM   #3
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: houston, tx, usa
Posts: 992
mcr285 HB Usermcr285 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

thanks to both of you for your responses....

i am starting to understand my mom a little better now thanks to feedback i get from others who are grieving, or have gone through the process. it really does help to be able to talk to others!

as far as getting into a group, or seeing a counselor, she won't go for it. i don't know if it's because she relies on me for her therapy (it's been our running joke for years now that i am her therapist!!!), or if she is afraid of being surrounded by a bunch of really depressed people, or if she just doesn't want to share those feelings with strangers.... not sure.... but she won't do it!

i've been trying to just bite my tongue and let her say what she wants to say and to let her be depressed and feel bad when she wants to, but it gets really hard to sit back and listen to her when she starts saying things like maybe my dad didn't really love her and that's why he left her (like stage iv cancer gave him that choice!!!). i just can't sit and agree to that kind of talk! and then she gets mad at me for "always taking his side," even though in reality i am not taking anyone's side, i just can't have her saying she was worthless and my dad didn't love her!

any thoughts???

Last edited by mcr285; 11-09-2007 at 10:54 AM.

 
Old 11-11-2007, 04:43 PM   #4
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 1,178
duzford HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

i've been trying to just bite my tongue and let her say what she wants to say and to let her be depressed and feel bad when she wants to, but it gets really hard to sit back and listen to her when she starts saying things like maybe my dad didn't really love her and that's why he left her (like stage iv cancer gave him that choice!!!). i just can't sit and agree to that kind of talk! and then she gets mad at me for "always taking his side," even though in reality i am not taking anyone's side, i just can't have her saying she was worthless and my dad didn't love her!

any thoughts???[/QUOTE]

Yes - she need you to agree with her or she needs to think you agree with her that he "didn't really love her and that is why he died". A HUGE part of overcoming grief is getting anger and realizing for yourself what the anger is. Many years ago I was a victim of a crime and after the tears were gone I yelled at God for doing this to me. After that happened I began to heal. And I be know means want this to be a lecture on religion.

My friend had a still birth at 81/2 months 3 months ago and two weekends she was in her OB office for a follow up and she just started screaming at him for what "he did". She is not the type of person to usually do this but he let her do it and then apologized - it was the first night she went to bed without crying herself to sleep.

The best thing you can do for Mom is to let her get angry - hell if you have to help her get angry it is such an important step in the grieifing process. It is often overlooked because people don't realize they are "allowed to feel" this way. If she won't go for group counseling get her involved in something physical where she can take out aggression - boxing classes are great for this.

I think the mere fact that you posted on the boards proves you are NOT selfish. You have own grief to overcome but yet you are more worried about Mom. Good for you.

Good luck and bless you both.

 
Old 11-12-2007, 02:44 PM   #5
Junior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: NH
Posts: 18
mac7707 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

I am so sorry on the loss of your dad. The last months must have been really hard for you and your mom.

I felt I must reply. I am 56 and lost my husband (age 60) of stage 4 cancer in July, one month short of our 35th anniversary. Maybe I can let you know how it may feel for her. Your mom is angry. This is not the life she planned. I am sure she and your dad had lots more things they wanted to do together. Anger is a normal response. It is much easier to be angry with him for leaving her than to feel the overwhelming grief and hurt of losing him. I read obituaries and wonder why some people live to be 90 or 100 and think my husband and I were cheated of 30 or more years together. Then I read one for someone who died at 30 and I am grateful for the 35 years we did have. She will talk of it to others - it is such a large life changing event for her she cannot get past it. She is no longer a wife - she is now a widow. She is no longer half of a couple - she is single. She sleeps alone. She cooks meals for one and no longer has a reason to make his favorite meal. The first time I did laundry after I lost him, I wondered why only my clothes were in the basket and it hit me that I would never again have his clothes in with mine. A small thing to be sure but enough to make my heart ache and tears to fall. She will see something on TV that would make him laugh and realize he is not there to share it.

She does not realize she is hurting you. Her hurt is so large and so raw she cannot see yours. My son said he had to stop asking me how I was doing because it made me cry and my grief made his loss even harder to deal with. I now try to be upbeat with my children. It doesn't always work - some times the pain is so overwheming you cannot hide it. It will get easier.

What can you do for her? Continue to listen - even when she doesn't make sense. My sister listened to me one night rant it wasn't fair that our dad had lived to be 82 drinking and smoking and my beloved husband who did neither died at 60. Did I mean it? Yes I didn't think losing my husabd early is fair. Did I want my fahter to have died younger - of course not really. Did I mean it at the moment I said it - yes. Suggest she finds an online web site like this one maybe for widows. And most of all take care of yourself. You have also suffered a huge loss. The last months have been vey hard for you as well and you are a caring daughter to take the time to write. Time will help and everyone heals at a different rate.

Best wishes,

mac

 
Old 11-15-2007, 07:15 PM   #6
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: houston, tx, usa
Posts: 992
mcr285 HB Usermcr285 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

thanks to both of you for your thoughts.

mac, i am truly sorry for your loss. what you shared sounds so much like my mom (are you my mom???). the anger, the tremendous hurt, the unfairness of it all, even the part about your dad smoking and drinking his way to age 82.... my mom's dad never really took care of himself, has had cancer twice, and is in his late 80's now. it really doesn't make sense does it?

i think it's especially hard right now with the holidays coming up. any advice on how i can help her get through it? i call her every single day and try to keep it upbeat as much as i can, but when she needs to vent, i do let her vent. it's been so much easier to be more empathetic and understanding lately (largely due to the responses i've received here, so again, thank you!), but i don't know if i'm really helping her.

one thing that gets me - and not in a bad way.... it doesn't hurt my feelings or bother me, i just think it's interesting - is that i will tell my mom something (that has to do with grieving, my dad, etc...) a hundred million times and she doesn't ever seem to believe me.... but then another woman will tell my mother the exact same thing, and my mom comes back to me and says "susie- q said...." like it was something she's never heard before, and i'm just thinking, "BUT THAT IS EXACTLY WHAT I TOLD YOU YESTERDAY!!!" i just think it's funny.

anyway..... any advice on how to make the holidays a little easier on her?

 
Old 11-17-2007, 07:54 AM   #7
Junior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: NH
Posts: 18
mac7707 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

Dear MCR

I wish I could help with how to get through the holidays. My goal right now is to just get through them as best I can. My goal is to celebrate with my grandkids and not even pretend it's the same old holiday - it isn't. Our son invited our daughter and her family and myself to his place for Thanksgiving. None of us were up to the "traditional Thanksgiving at mom's". We are changing the location to attempt to minimize the pain we will feel.

Letter her vent is all you can do. My advice - don't try to make it a happy festive holiday or the same as usual. It isn't and will never be the same. I read a book which helped me - in short - the book said if you feel your life ended when your loved one died - it did. Your life is not the same. I translated this to mean starting a new life which started July 7th - not the life I would have chosen but the life I have. For me that helps as I do not even pretent it is life "as usual" - it's life "as different".

Your comment about your mom not listening to you but taking the same advice from others made me smile. It is not that she doesn't see you as smart or your advice as valuable, she sees you still as her child. My dad never listened to anything we (I am one of 7 children) said (even in our 50's he thought of us as young!!) She may never change. When it happens smile to yourself - as you know your advice is obviously right - and someone else's mom will defintely listen to you!!!!

I am sure your mom would agree with me on one thing - you are her biggest blessing. I thank God every day for my son and daughter and their spouses and children. I would not have gotten this far without them and my family. I am told it will get easier to deal with - not better - just easier, and I hold on to that for hope.

mac

 
Old 11-17-2007, 09:23 AM   #8
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: houston, tx, usa
Posts: 992
mcr285 HB Usermcr285 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

thank you, mac. my kids are currently bouncing off the walls, so i can't elaborate more right now, but thank you!

 
Old 11-29-2007, 02:48 AM   #9
652 652 is offline
Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: LA
Posts: 53
652 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

I know how you're feeling. My father just passed a month ago. It was very sudden. My life is very sad now. My main concern is my mom, though. She is not even the same person right now. She says wierd things and I have also learned to bite my tongue and let her be depressed. I hope she gets better. The circumstances were about the same-she is 57 and my dad was 60. I want to help her so bad as it kills me to see her in pain, but I am lost.....

 
Old 11-29-2007, 10:19 AM   #10
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,338
rudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB Userrudiraven HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

Just be there to listen to her, even when she repeats the same thing 100 times, feels sorry for herself or gets nasty with you or whatever. I lost my husband a year ago, Nov. 13, from cancer. He was 59. I was 58. It's tough no matter when it happens but we didn't expect to be widows at this age. We were hoping to do things together now that we're ready to retire, the kids are on their own and we can afford it, but God had other plans. Just be patient and take care of yourself too. You lost your Dad. Let your Mom know that you're grieving too. Sometimes we get so self involved that we forget others are suffering as well. I have one son that lives close by and he's been a wonderful support for me. I hope I've been able to help and you're a great son to try to help. God Bless

 
Old 11-29-2007, 01:29 PM   #11
Junior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 43
Shirley M HB User
Thumbs up Re: how can i help my mom???

I lost my husband too and know what your Mother is going through. God knows it's no fun to suddenly find yourself totally alone. My children live a long way from me amd I don't see them or anyone else most of the time. I go to church on Sunday and to Dr's appts. alone. I have lumps in my breast and a bad hip that is hurting really bad.

I also lost a young son at 10 yrs. old. I still think of him everyday of my life.
BUT young or old we all have to go sometime.

This grieving is self imposed and we won't let our self be happy,so we can just wallow in it OR we can go on and make the best of our life. Only God can relieve our agony and soothe our tired minds ! I will never forget my husband or my son but they are gone now---and I'm not! I will cry out to God to relieve my pain and misery,and I know that he has and will, take care of me. Jesus died on the cross for our sins, so that we may be saved. I will take God at his word and keep on going until my time comes to meet again with my famiy in Heaven.
With or without us---The world will still go on !
Love Shirley

 
Old 12-09-2007, 01:43 PM   #12
Inactive
(female)
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: houston, tx, usa
Posts: 992
mcr285 HB Usermcr285 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

Thanks for all the responses here. My Mom is having more good moments than bad ones now, so it's encouraging. I've taken all the advice here to heart and I'm trying so hard to remember it when I'm talking to her. I just want her to be happy.

 
Old 12-09-2007, 06:40 PM   #13
Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: NH
Posts: 337
dazedandconfused10 HB User
Re: how can i help my mom???

She is clearly having a tough time and I think a support group and/or a counselor might help. I think she needs more sympathy right now. And maybe from several people. Its turned her world upside down. And I don't think she has a clue the impact it has on you. You are not selfish, you are both dealing with it differently. I am so sorry for you and the loss of your dad. Hang in there, you are not doing anything wrong.

 
Closed Thread

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Board Replies Last Post
Retin-a-micro success stories.... Dom Acne 2 01-18-2003 07:06 AM
Rules of the Board - please read moderator2 Acne 0 06-10-2002 08:06 PM
If you feel suicidal, please read here.... moderator2 Acne 0 05-29-2002 06:54 PM
All members..... moderator2 Acne 2 05-16-2002 08:18 PM
How to use this message board.... moderator2 Acne 0 04-17-2002 07:33 PM




Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Sign Up Today!

Ask our community of thousands of members your health questions, and learn from others experiences. Join the conversation!

I want my free account

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:03 PM.



Site owned and operated by HealthBoards.comô
Terms of Use © 1998-2014 HealthBoards.comô All rights reserved.
Do not copy or redistribute in any form!