A forum for people to support each other after the loss of a loved one

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Proud Wife
Posts: 733
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 9:28 am

Worried about my son...

Postby Proud Wife » Tue Apr 25, 2017 8:35 pm

My son is 21. We lost his dad (my husband) 10 months ago. They were incredibly close and idolised each other. He has coped so very well....up to now and the one person who I want to turn to for advice is of course no longer here.

My son was able to carry his dad's coffin into the crematorium. He was able to stand up and deliver an amazing tribute to his dad without so much as a wobble. He's spent the past 10 months looking out for me and helping me stay strong (ish).

Not only has he lost his dad but has also moved home with me and started a new job after being made redundant at the end of last year. So basically, everything that was familiar and comforting to him has changed. And exactly like me, he doesn't do change well.

We had a really nice day on Sunday and on Monday morning he went into work as usual. Suddenly, totally out of the blue, he just couldn't control his emotions and hasn't been able to since. He was sent home by his really lovely and understanding colleagues.Obviously, the more he cries, the more I cry with him (and without him).

I've coped with grief by keeping my husband's memory alive. I've plastered his face all over the walls of our new home and I'm constantly talking to him and about him. I don't allow myself to think that he's gone forever as that's too painful.

Who knows what the right or wrong way is to deal with grief but I'm doing okay, actually I thinking 'm doing really really well considering and I just find different coping mechanisms.

However, my son finds it really difficult to talk about his dad and doesn't want to look at photos. He says he doesn't want to torture himself. I know what he means because the photos/canvasses I have on the walls were all taken during treatment and that's okay but when I look back at family holidays and I see hubby smiling, looking well and just so so handsome and I find that terribly difficult.

Has anyone else been in this situation with similar aged sons or daughters? I've arranged for him to go to the GP tomorrow, more just to get a sick note in case work don't believe him and a bereavement counselling session on Thursday. A tiny part of me thinks I should be forcing him to look at the good photos in order to try to come to terms with what's happened but I haven't got a clue what's right or wrong.

Anyone have any advice for me please?

Thank you
Proud Wife xx

Justamo
Posts: 465
Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2016 10:38 pm

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Justamo » Tue Apr 25, 2017 9:01 pm

PW, that's an awful situation, but I think that you are the wrong person to try to fix it for him. You are coming to the loss of your husband and his father from two different directions.

Seeing the GP is a good start. I think that in your place I would stand back a little and let him find his own way; I don't mean just let him muddle on, obviously, but everyone has their own way of dealing with grief. You don't mourn a father in the same way as you mourn a partner.

I feel desperately sorry for you both but feel sure that someone on this forum will have helpful suggestions. You have dealt with everything so well through all the illness and loss and I think now you have to stand back and let the professionals help your son.

A friend of mine went to Cruse Bereavement but didn't find them helpful. Might be worth a try though ? Maybe Marmalade will have some ideas from her hospice courses ? Meantime I'll pray for both of you.
Much love
Mo

sandraW
Posts: 1033
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2013 5:38 pm

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby sandraW » Tue Apr 25, 2017 10:58 pm

PW,
Sorry to hear about your son not being able to cope too well at the moment, My elder son is 44 and even though its just 2 years since we lost Trevor, he too isn't coping well. He has worked with his Dad in our transport business since he left school, and even though they bickered constantly he thought the world of his Dad, and he is still struggling.
I don't know what the answer is either he won't go and see anyone, though he has spoken to his GP, its all such a worry.
I do hope the counselling helps, perhaps he has being brave for you and now the floodgates have opened he will have found some relief. 10 months is no time at all in the journey of
grief. sending love and cyber hugs to you both take care sandrax xx

charney
Posts: 73
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2012 2:29 pm

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby charney » Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:54 am

My daughter was 21 when her Dad died, she was like your son, wouldn't talk or look at pictures, she was also very angry and went through a stage of being very nasty to me, she though refused counselling. We got through it and she is 25 now, we talk about her dad,my husband all the time now and we can smile and laugh at good memories. We still have bad days and miss him terribly and even after three years it still seems surreal. I don't post very often but still come on this forum and see how everyone is doing. I remember how hard it was with her and how worried I was, but she got there .

Hugs
Cheryl

Paige
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Mar 04, 2016 5:21 pm

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Paige » Wed Apr 26, 2017 10:03 am

Hi PW,

Sorry to hear your son is having a particularly hard time at the moment. I am a little older than your son, i am 26 and went back to work quite quickly after my Dad dying, i plodded a long not too badly at work for a few months, in fact i think the distraction was very helpful at the time, then suddenly, like your son out of the blue had a complete melt down in work, my manager was amazingly supportive and sent me home. I think it is really good that you have set up a bereavement councelling session for your son, i know they aren't for everyone but i started councelling last year shortly after the melt down i began to have and i found such a sense of relief from talking to a complete stranger about everything, it allows you to open up and feel you are not burdening anyone. I can honestly say that i feel the councelling helped me a lot, i am not even sure why, it just did, i started to feel more in control again after a period of feeling completely overwhelmed. I hope your son finds the councelling helpful and i hope things improve soon.

Paige
X

Didge
Posts: 825
Joined: Sun Dec 29, 2013 10:35 am

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Didge » Wed Apr 26, 2017 7:07 pm

Hi PW
There is no right way to do things but it has struck me that as he lives with you, he has been sucked into doing it your way, which is working (sort of) for you but may not work for him at all. I don't think you should be forcing him to look at any photos (but in actual fact he is forced to look at the ones you have put up anyway!). I think it's a common problem when 2 or more people who live together want to grieve in very different ways for a loved one. I do hope he goes to the counselling (even though you arranged it and not him!) as it often helps so much and as we know (think Prince Harry) men are often reluctant to go down the counselling route at first. It does sound, however, that he is having a totally natural (and healthy) meltdown - he is just doing it later in the day than some. Each to his own. Good luck to him and lots of love to you too xx

Veema
Posts: 503
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2015 5:35 pm

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Veema » Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:02 pm

PW...I had my first counselling session on Thursday and my main worry is Phoebe as I don't think she is grieving at all - she actually told me that she doesn't really miss her dad the other day! I know she is so much younger than your son, but the counsellor said that I've just got to let her do it her way...she might not properly process what has happened for many years and it may be much later on when she finally lets it out, if she does at all. I've just got to make sure she knows that it's okay to cry and feel sad; that she can come and talk to me about anything without worrying about upsetting me; and that it's also okay to be happy and enjoy our life.

He'll find his way...and you'll support him as he does.

Vx

raun cesar
Posts: 30
Joined: Thu Mar 02, 2017 9:22 am

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby raun cesar » Thu Apr 27, 2017 8:55 am

This is the most difficult situation to be in and am deeply sorry to hear it. I reconn seing a GP and counceller, instead of working with photos. It is natural to have initial resistance...Good Luck!!

Proud Wife
Posts: 733
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 9:28 am

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Proud Wife » Fri Apr 28, 2017 2:30 pm

Thank you all for some really good pointers. He went to GP and for first counselling session yesterday. Small steps. Bereavement is such an individual thing, can affect in some many different ways and at all different times.

I will let him deal with this in his own way and with help from the professionals.

Love to all my forum family members x

Justamo
Posts: 465
Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2016 10:38 pm

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Justamo » Mon May 01, 2017 10:08 am

Hey Lisa.

There were a couple of good articles on bereavement and grief in the Guardian/Observer yesterday. I was going to e-mail you a link directly to your e-mail address, but thought that perhaps other people might be following this thread and the info would be helpful for them too.

Take care,
Love
Mo

Proud Wife
Posts: 733
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 9:28 am

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Proud Wife » Mon May 22, 2017 9:27 am

Hi Mo

Just seen your last post - missed it before. If you've still go that link, can you copy and paste here? I'm sure it would help others too.

I don't know if I ever mourned the loss of my mum and dad or whether it's because this is a totally different loss but I am surprised at the depth of feelings almost one year on. 12 June will be the first anniversary of hubby's passing, I don't know where the time has gone. I still doesn't seem possible that he died, let alone a year ago.

Mostly, when I think about hubby, it's always reliving either the morning of diagnosis or his final minutes, both of which will probably haunt me for life I think. Or when I look at his photos for too long, the tears just flow....from nowhere.

However, today is a brand new emotion. Anger. Anger that the one person I needed to help me guide our son on what could potentially affect the rest of his life, is not here to help me

Perhaps it's the nightly dreams that are getting me down now, every single night the theme is the same and it will either involve my mum, dad or hubby and death. Sometimes they are alive in my dream and have left me, sometimes they are dying. But they are not happy dreams.

Has anyone had the same experience? And how do we stop ourselves thinking solely about very few bad memories, rather than remembering the good.

1 year on, I feel just as sad. I miss hubby more each and every day. And loneliness now starts to kick in.

Sorry for the gloom and doom xx

Elaine123
Posts: 204
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2016 6:49 pm

Re: Worried about my son.

Postby Elaine123 » Mon May 22, 2017 11:21 pm

Hi Lisa I hope that your son can work through his feelings with the counselling sessions. Like you I cannot believe that it will be six weeks this Wed since Pete passed and also I am still seeming to think for some crazy reason that he will come back , I know those thoughts are totally irrational but they come into my head from nowhere. You are so right we all grieve in different ways and in different stages. I really hope that your son can work this through. Take care Lisa. Xxx

Proud Wife
Posts: 733
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 9:28 am

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Proud Wife » Tue May 23, 2017 12:05 pm

Thanks Elaine. Those last 6 weeks must have passed in a haze for you I'm sure. I'd like to tell you it gets better with time but I'm still waiting.

I too share that feeling that hubby will come back although I know perfectly well he won't and I still can't believe that. I'm starting to wonder whether I ever will.

I just wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy.

Don't forget, you can always message me if you just want to offload. You've got to have the t shirt to really, really understand what it feels like xxx

Veema
Posts: 503
Joined: Mon Feb 02, 2015 5:35 pm

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Veema » Tue May 23, 2017 9:41 pm

I haven't dreamed about Nige at all until about a week ago...I dreamed I was cutting his toenails...I never, ever, even at his most ill, cut his toenails! Then a couple of nights later I dreamed he was with us in the camper van (which I've not yet got)...nothing since. I don't ever feel he is with me, it's like he's just vanished from my life totally.

I too relive that last day over and over and wish I'd done something different...I wish I hadn't wasted time talking to the macmillan nurses, or the hospice nurse...I wish I'd just spent that time with Nige...such a waste. I wish I'd stayed with him a bit longer after he'd died, just him and me, but I had to get back to tell Phoebe.

It's 8 months today since he died. In some ways it seems like a lifetime ago, but then it feels like yesterday. I hate being a widow...I hate not being married anymore, not being a wife. I hate being a single parent. I hate Phoebe not having a Daddy. I hate having to make all the decisions by myself.

It would have been our 12th wedding anniversary last Sunday...12 years...it's no time at all.

I agree PW...it doesn't really seem to get much easier at all. Yes, we all bumble along and get on with it, but it's hard...it's so bloody hard.

And to top it all off, I've just got used to my counsellor woman (who I speak to over the phone) and I had my last session last week, so feel bereft all over again...

Anyway...that's my miserable musings...sorry.

Vx

Proud Wife
Posts: 733
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 9:28 am

Re: Worried about my son...

Postby Proud Wife » Tue May 23, 2017 10:44 pm

Did you find the counselling worked Veema? I've only had one session so far and am not sure what I'm going to gain by it - it won't bring hubby back. But, if it's helping you, can't you ask for more or fund yourself? I think you just had to do whatever it takes to get through, my party trick is to keep running away.

I too had our first wedding anniversary 2 weeks ago - oh boy, that one stung. 22 years. When we got married, he promised me 50.

Looking back, we were never really invited or made to feel that we could stay after hubby passed away. I remember the head nurse telling me it was going to be a very hot day and they needed to move him ASAP. didn't think much about it at the time but now, I think that was a bit tactless. I read stories about how partners crawled into bed with their loved ones and held them in their arms. That thought never crossed my mind - I was always so afraid to cause him any more pain. That haunts me and will always be a regret. But then I suppose that last hug was never going to be enough anyhow.

I can't even remember if I was holding hubby's hand when he passed or what I was saying. I'm sure I was but I'd like to remember that bit- all I can remember is his half opened glazed eyes, strange puffing noises and thinking that he moved his head to talk to me. Instead it was to vomit what I assume was old blood and it really scared me at the time, I didn't know what was going to happen next. However, I remember your story very, very clearly Veema and I know it was much much tougher on your family.

Is it really 8 months already for you? If only we could turn back time.

Stay safe everyone. Tonight my thoughts are with those poor poor families in Manchester who have lost their loved ones, especially such young children. Just horrendous xx