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

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susikus
Posts: 188
Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2012 11:01 am

Bereavement Support Groups

Postby susikus » Sun Feb 03, 2013 1:39 pm

I have been sent an invitation to a bereavement support group that starts in April and meets monthly for 6 months (run by Macmillan). I wondered if anyone had any experience of such groups. I am thinking about going. I, like so many others before me, am reaching the stage where support is fading away (rightly so, I am not complaining) and the days seem never-ending. I cry every day, but I also laugh and work and comfort others. And then I catch myself thinking 'what's the point?'

Pete was my best friend for 32 years and, frankly, widowhood sucks. I love my dogs to bits and they give me a reason to get out of bed every day, but it's hard to see how life will get any better.

Thanks for listening
Sue
xxx

DRAD3
Posts: 435
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 11:22 am

Re: Bereavement Support Groups

Postby DRAD3 » Sun Feb 03, 2013 4:51 pm

Hi Sue - you are right, widowhood does suck and I've had a dark few days myself. Had a vivid dream last night about Gary - he always comes when I need him most but it has left me missing him all the more today and have had a secret cry. I can't give you any useful advice about the bereavement support group because I have no experience of them but my feeling is that you should give it a go and just see if it is helpful. You are always here for everyone but remember that we are here for you too and I totally understand how you feel and how lonely it is to go about each day carrying all that we have experienced (and lost) around with us like some enormous rucksack. I feel like I am a totally different person and my every new experience and decision is tainted by what I have been through. I am certainly less tolerant of people whinging about petty things and less inclined to listen to moaners (I was always everyone's agony aunt). I handed in my notice at work last week as I am now finding working for the NHS totally soul destroying and have decided to go temping - something I would never have done before but I just want to not waste a single moment of my life doing things that make me unhappy or dissatisified. Find what makes you happy, Sue and live just as you did while Pete was ill - noticing the small things and beauty that is around us, be with friends and family and love and care for them as you have always done - that's the only point of life in my view. lots of love to you.
Deb
x

yorkypaul
Posts: 136
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2012 12:23 am

Re: Bereavement Support Groups

Postby yorkypaul » Sun Feb 03, 2013 10:59 pm

Hi Sue. I would give anything a try if I thought it might help. We have nothing to lose and you can always walk away from it if it's not for you. I'm still getting support from my friends but I am very confused by my feelings. When people want me to be with them, I somewhat guiltily feel I want to be on my own but, on the other hand, when I am alone I think of Andrea constantly and crave the company of friends. It's very odd and a no-win situation. I suppose the bottom line is that I just want back what has been taken from me. Deep down, I know I can not have what I want, but it doesn't stop me yearning for it almost constantly. I know all the stages of grief that we have to go through...but it doesn't stop me feeling totally crap right now.
Hugs to you and to Deb.
Paul x

PCUK Nurse Jeni
Posts: 1014
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 1:30 pm

Re: Bereavement Support Groups

Postby PCUK Nurse Jeni » Mon Feb 04, 2013 10:42 am

Hi Sue, Debs and Paul,

So sorry to hear that you are going through such a rough time right now. It is so hard for you - all still young and having lost your loved ones.

Have only had experience of bereavement groups professionally, and they do seem to be a good source of comfort and help to people. Helps people to discover their feelings, and verbalise them, and often other creative ways too.

Debs - sorry to hear that you are giving up your job, but as you say, you would rather be doing something where you feel happier.

It is really good that you are on the forums, and hopefully, this is a source of support to you all.

Hope things pick up soon.

Jeni.

susikus
Posts: 188
Joined: Wed Sep 05, 2012 11:01 am

Re: Bereavement Support Groups

Postby susikus » Mon Feb 04, 2013 4:56 pm

Thank you Deb, Paul and Jeni. I have rung up today and booked my place. There is also a memorial service to go to next month, again organised by Macmillan. The bereavement support group starts in April and goes on till September, luckily meeting on my one day off each week (perhaps it was meant to be!). I take my hat off to you for giving up your job Deb. I hope the temping goes really well - do you think you might find another area of work altogether? It is only at work that I feel relatively normal and luckily I have always loved my job.

I think this weekend just gone has been my worst time since Pete died - I finished clearing out and cleaning our bedroom and also finished all the paperwork and financial side of things. It is also my daughter's 25th birthday and I have been remembering her birth. I could not sleep. I am going to a neighbour's for supper tonight and think I might have a drink (or two!!!)

love to you all
Sue

PCUK Nurse Jeni
Posts: 1014
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 1:30 pm

Re: Bereavement Support Groups

Postby PCUK Nurse Jeni » Mon Feb 04, 2013 5:29 pm

Sorry to hear that Sue - those memories, painful and happy at the same time.

Hope the meal goes well tonight, and that you have some time to try and benefit from the company of others.

Your post highlights that in the midst of having to do the ordinary things, the necessary things which some of do not know about also have to be taken care of. Such a difficult path.

Take good care,

Jeni.

DRAD3
Posts: 435
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 11:22 am

Re: Bereavement Support Groups

Postby DRAD3 » Mon Feb 04, 2013 9:27 pm

Hi Sue, Paul and Jeni
Well done for booking your place, Sue, absolutely meant to be if it coincided with your day off. I do hope it is helpful - do let us know won't you? I am sure others, who may be thinking of doing the same, would benefit from your thoughts.
So glad that you are getting some benefit from work and it is helping.
Just as Gary fell ill, my department began a major re-design and whilst I was in the midst of dealing with his diagnosis and treatment, the place I had worked for 10 years (and felt was my home from home) was closed down and my colleagues and I redeployed to other offices. It was such a blow and I felt that my home and work life was crumbling around me. I put my work life on the back burner whilst I focussed on Gary and when I returned to work after his death, found that my old job had pretty much disappeared - I have felt a double bereavement in a sense and have been desperately trying to make the new job work but have finally, a year on, decided that I can't do it. I am lucky to be able to say that some of my work colleagues are now my close friends too and I will still have the benefit of that wonderful support system but am looking forward to getting out and about and trying my hand at new things and perhaps finding my new purpose.
I hope work is helping you Paul and can also relate to the feeling of never feeling particularly comfortable in social situations. I am trying to be very brave by doing things on my own but it does feel very strange and scary.
I, like you Sue, was doing some admin yesterday and found the diary I kept whilst Gary was ill and turned to this time last year - memories came flooding back - so vivid. I thought I had managed to bury them deep - they are obviously just below the surface, ready to emerge!
Thank you so much Jeni, for your continued support. I was thinking yesterday of how this time last year I was your constant email buddy! I know I have told you a million times, but I could not have coped without you. I know that others continue to benefit from your expertise and kindness and you and the rest of the team are much appreciated by us all.
lots of love everyone
Deb
x

PCUK Nurse Jeni
Posts: 1014
Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 1:30 pm

Re: Bereavement Support Groups

Postby PCUK Nurse Jeni » Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:53 am

Thank you Debs for your encouragement and appreciation.

As ever, you are an amazing source of support to others on here.

Thank you for all you do.

Jeni.