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Old 09-17-2013, 08:20 AM
 
1,627 posts, read 2,639,789 times
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The other day I opened up a email account I seldom use and there is a email sent from a grief support group on-line that I belong to. The content of this email, brought back a wave of memories for me. This woman had just lost her partner (lesbian) and she felt isolated, lonely, fearful, not supportive, deep loss, and she was crying out in pain. She apologized for rambling. I reflected back when I first came here to post when I lost my husband. I reached out to this woman, suggested she seek grief support with Hospice and she wasn't alone, she had all the support she needed by all of us.

I find that when our loved one dies, we are now faced with being alone, our major support and love is gone, and we feel isolated in our own world, as people from the outside world can't possibly identify from our loss. Most of us feel abandoned, isolated, lonely, and we feel no one cares. And to be honest, until you yourself experience a deep loss of a loved one, you weren't able to identify to those who had.

Although, I am working on my 15th month, I still find myself missing my husband, missing the companionship, the deep seated friendship and love we possessed for one another. Knowing I am not ever going to find that special love again, mainly I am not interested in having a relationship.

Grief is a process, it has no time schedule and it has no should/should nots, it is what it is. Grief is the expression of loss of memories we hold close. We all should acknowledge that we are all separate from each other and although some people here have moved on at a faster pace than others, those of us that have no friends or family or very little, we tend to take a little more time to move on.

I was reading a post from the other grief message board on-line. A widow was discussing her first year of loss and grief, she described exactly how I felt. Her second year, she is describing exactly how I am feeling. Her first year of mourning she felt stuck, unable to leave the house, she had no energy, she just needed time to process her new life. Her second year, she has gained more energy and has the desire to be on the go more often. Another widow is on year 4, she is still struggling with her loss.

For those of us that lost our soul mate, we are thrust into a new life, for many of us we were faced with less income. Our roles in life changed over-night, we were thrust into a different world unfamiliar to us. We are now single, in a couples world. Our life-style changed due to income loss, so we have to pinch pennies and eat out less and be comfortable eating by ourselves. And we realize life goes on, friends have their own lives, their own family and we are here by ourselves, left holding all of our precious memories.

Last night I went on YouTube watching weddings and wedding proposals. It really made me happy, as four decades ago, my DH proposed to me and we had a small wedding, it was the happiest day of my life.

I find myself having to live in the moment but at times I slip back yearning the old days and that is quite alright and normal. Our past defines who we are today. I am not trying to recapture the past by thinking of them, the memories just bring me happiness and contentment and sometimes make me sad that my life will never be the same without my DH in it.

The day will come I will move on in my life, I will be ready to be more social and carve out a new life but for now, I am still processing all the changes, becoming comfortable just being alone with no friends or family. The holidays are approaching and I know I will be by myself and they are meaningless to me, just another day. I am comfortable with that because I know my life will change. Life is constant change. Nameste.
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Old 09-17-2013, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Southwest Desert
4,166 posts, read 5,180,508 times
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Smilin...Fantastic post! Thanks for all you wrote and shared!...Nice of you to reach out and offer the lady who just lost her husband caring and compassion and support...I'll come back and write more soon. Please keep posting! Thanks again!
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Old 09-17-2013, 08:02 PM
 
8,440 posts, read 10,726,243 times
Reputation: 6201
Quote:
Originally Posted by smilinpretty View Post
The other day I opened up a email account I seldom use and there is a email sent from a grief support group on-line that I belong to. The content of this email, brought back a wave of memories for me. This woman had just lost her partner (lesbian) and she felt isolated, lonely, fearful, not supportive, deep loss, and she was crying out in pain. She apologized for rambling. I reflected back when I first came here to post when I lost my husband. I reached out to this woman, suggested she seek grief support with Hospice and she wasn't alone, she had all the support she needed by all of us.

I find that when our loved one dies, we are now faced with being alone, our major support and love is gone, and we feel isolated in our own world, as people from the outside world can't possibly identify from our loss. Most of us feel abandoned, isolated, lonely, and we feel no one cares. And to be honest, until you yourself experience a deep loss of a loved one, you weren't able to identify to those who had.

Although, I am working on my 15th month, I still find myself missing my husband, missing the companionship, the deep seated friendship and love we possessed for one another. Knowing I am not ever going to find that special love again, mainly I am not interested in having a relationship.

Grief is a process, it has no time schedule and it has no should/should nots, it is what it is. Grief is the expression of loss of memories we hold close. We all should acknowledge that we are all separate from each other and although some people here have moved on at a faster pace than others, those of us that have no friends or family or very little, we tend to take a little more time to move on.

I was reading a post from the other grief message board on-line. A widow was discussing her first year of loss and grief, she described exactly how I felt. Her second year, she is describing exactly how I am feeling. Her first year of mourning she felt stuck, unable to leave the house, she had no energy, she just needed time to process her new life. Her second year, she has gained more energy and has the desire to be on the go more often. Another widow is on year 4, she is still struggling with her loss.

For those of us that lost our soul mate, we are thrust into a new life, for many of us we were faced with less income. Our roles in life changed over-night, we were thrust into a different world unfamiliar to us. We are now single, in a couples world. Our life-style changed due to income loss, so we have to pinch pennies and eat out less and be comfortable eating by ourselves. And we realize life goes on, friends have their own lives, their own family and we are here by ourselves, left holding all of our precious memories.

Last night I went on YouTube watching weddings and wedding proposals. It really made me happy, as four decades ago, my DH proposed to me and we had a small wedding, it was the happiest day of my life.

I find myself having to live in the moment but at times I slip back yearning the old days and that is quite alright and normal. Our past defines who we are today. I am not trying to recapture the past by thinking of them, the memories just bring me happiness and contentment and sometimes make me sad that my life will never be the same without my DH in it.

The day will come I will move on in my life, I will be ready to be more social and carve out a new life but for now, I am still processing all the changes, becoming comfortable just being alone with no friends or family. The holidays are approaching and I know I will be by myself and they are meaningless to me, just another day. I am comfortable with that because I know my life will change. Life is constant change. Nameste.
Smilinpretty,

A superb post! I tried to rep you and I couldn't rep again.


You touched on so many key points that I believe are relevant to everyone who has lost the person they counted on the most.

Many here have had the opportunity to be married or partners with their best friend. I read those wonderful posts and think of what a great blessing some experienced. I never wonder why those who faced the world daily with the person the poster selected to share his/her life with, and was happy, each day and are uncertain if they want another spouse/partner. I wonder why some can't understand their lack of interest in others as potential romantic interests. It's clear to me given who they HAVE HAD and still do in their lives.

Some of us are odd ducks who didn't have the spouse, partner, child, sibling etc. with whom we developed a closeness and felt the deepest non-romantic love we've ever known. To have another understand our needs, know what we needed and vice versa more than any other person we've encountered, grieve for many of the same reasons.

How many people with small children, remain in a marriage because a neighbor, co-worker friend or other person understood and met needs a spouse/partner could never understand? That doesn't mean the spouse/partner or relatives didn't try to understand, they simply couldn't understand the depth of previous losses or life events another could.

You are so right, smilinpretty. For many of us losing our "rock" creates a totally different life the moment our beloved ones passes. Often there is a change in our financial security, job, living situation and much more. And who really understands us at the same level? Whom do we talk with about anything and not have to filter what we say?

My point is those of us who didn't lose a spouse/partner have lost often many of the same things those who lost a spouse/partner have. Often there are different losses spouses/partners don't face.

What we all share are the loss of another that feels absolutely impossible for us to bare some days for even an hour at a time. We also share understanding other lives' change in many ways when they have lost their precious one or " one(s)".

We also share an understanding that new people come into our lives, but no one will be the dear one(s) we no longer physically have in our daily lives.

Finally, we know recovery/ healing happens at the pace each of us can handle. So many unique factors each of us need to address to heal.

Hopefully we all share the knowledge our pain will decrease with time and others are here to help us on the bad days.

MSR
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Old 09-17-2013, 08:20 PM
 
8,440 posts, read 10,726,243 times
Reputation: 6201
Quote:
Originally Posted by CArizona View Post
Smilin...Fantastic post! Thanks for all you wrote and shared!...Nice of you to reach out and offer the lady who just lost her husband caring and compassion and support...I'll come back and write more soon. Please keep posting! Thanks again!
I was thinking the same thing, CA. It was extremely nice and kind of smilinpretty to offer help to the woman.

Many here do offer what they emotionally can to others. But it does change based on multiple factors in others' lives. Fortunately for the one struggling today smilinpretty could offer what she did today.

MSR
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Old 09-18-2013, 08:44 AM
 
Location: Southwest Desert
4,166 posts, read 5,180,508 times
Reputation: 3514
MSR...I agree with what you wrote...Our grief and our sense of "loss" is based on the bond we had with the person who died. (Or even a pet.)...It's not just about losing a spouse or child or family member per se...It sounds like you and your friend were super-close and I know her death has been "shattering" for you...I have a few friends (left) who understand me but they live far away...I don't really have anyone who understands me the way that my husband and son did in my everyday life. And this has been a big "loss."...My cat "Little T" was with me for over 16 years and we understood each other pretty well...I've had to go through another "big loss" since he died a few weeks ago...I love my son's cat "Gracie" and we've been working to understand each other better since "Little T" (and everyone else) died....It takes time to form "strong bonds." And it takes time to gain understanding...It doesn't always happen "overnight" with anyone...I get "turned-off" by people who hand me a lot of "shoulds." Or people who act like I'm "crazy" because I'm still going through grief...I feel like telling them: "What's the matter with you? Don't you have any feelings? Haven't you ever loved anyone? Are you made of steel or stone?"...But of course I don't say this because I'm "too nice!" And I care about other peoples' feelings!..Don't want to "hurt" anyone!
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Old 09-18-2013, 09:35 AM
 
Location: WY
4,911 posts, read 3,492,196 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CArizona View Post
It doesn't always happen "overnight" with anyone...I get "turned-off" by people who hand me a lot of "shoulds." Or people who act like I'm "crazy" because I'm still going through grief...I feel like telling them: "What's the matter with you? Don't you have any feelings? Haven't you ever loved anyone? Are you made of steel or stone?"...But of course I don't say this because I'm "too nice!" And I care about other peoples' feelings!..Don't want to "hurt" anyone!
I've been very lucky in one sense. There are very very few people that I call friends, but the ones that I do, understand me well. Two women back in Tennessee who were professional colleagues of mine, and it has developed into what looks like now long-term, and dear friendships. They have never said such stupid things to me that unthinking people have said to some who are in pain on this board. They just know - it's too deep, too painful and shatters you to the core. They're there for me if and when I want to talk and I know that.

CArizona, you're a much nicer and kinder person than I am, and care much more about people's feelings than I do. I think (know) I would be saying some pretty direct things to people who have NO IDEA WHAT THE HELL THEY'RE TALKING ABOUT and who should just shut the hell up.
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Old 09-18-2013, 09:57 AM
 
Location: Southwest Desert
4,166 posts, read 5,180,508 times
Reputation: 3514
I know that it's hard to "give" what we never "got" (or received) ourselves...Some people have gone through "losses" (or problems) in their life with little to no "support."...The whole concept of "support" is foreign and unfamiliar to people like this...Asking or needing or expecting "support" seems "unmanly" to them. (Even if they are women!)...And I've definitely been around a lot of "macho" and "tough hombre" women during my lifetime! No "soft-spots" allowed!...Anyway it's hard for people who take pride in being "super strong" all the time (and totally self-reliant) to understand someone else's prolonged grief. Have you noticed this?...They have a tendency to to try to get others to "toughen-up" fast! (Because this is all they have "known.")
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Old 09-18-2013, 10:11 AM
 
Location: WY
4,911 posts, read 3,492,196 times
Reputation: 5386
Quote:
Originally Posted by CArizona View Post
I know that it's hard to "give" what we never "got" (or received) ourselves...Some people have gone through "losses" (or problems) in their life with little to no "support."...The whole concept of "support" is foreign and unfamiliar to people like this...Asking or needing or expecting "support" seems "unmanly" to them. (Even if they are women!)...And I've definitely been around a lot of "macho" and "tough hombre" women during my lifetime! No "soft-spots" allowed!...Anyway it's hard for people who take pride in being "super strong" all the time (and totally self-reliant) to understand someone else's prolonged grief. Have you noticed this?...They have a tendency to to try to get others to "toughen-up" fast! (Because this is all they have "known.")
CArizona, I could slice and dice people's psychological makeup all day long and none it changes the fact that people (as has already been said many times on this forum) grieve in their own ways and need their own time. They have a RIGHT to do that. Nobody has the right to impose their OK-time-to-suck-it-up-and-get-on-with-your-life time frame on anybody else.

My point was that I have learned along the way whose feelings, opinions and thoughts matter to me, and whose don't. Those who don't matter to me need to just.......be quiet. Or I will happily tell them to be quiet. Those who are dear and close to me (and that is few people, but those who are, are very dear to me) know me well enough to respect me, care for me and be there for me. They matter. Others don't.

That works for me, and I'm not trying to impose my thoughts on anyone else, or tell anyone else what they should and shouldn't do. Folks on this forum have enough on their plate already. They don't need ANYONE telling what they should or shouldn't feel, or how they should and shouldn't act. They can keep their "tendencies" to themselves.
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Old 09-18-2013, 02:38 PM
 
Location: Southwest Desert
4,166 posts, read 5,180,508 times
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juneaubound...Thanks for taking the time to write. Thanks for caring! I'm glad you have a few close-close friends who understand your grief...I feel sad and sorry for people who haven't had any (or much) "support" during their lives...People who think that "being responsible" or "being smart" or mature means pushing their emotions aside...Lately I've been spending time with a widow-friend who can be as "tough as nails." It's taken her a long time to trust me. But now she feels "safe" and okay crying (in front of me) when she talks about her husband...She knows I'm not going to call her a big "cry-baby." Or think "less" of her...I totally understand since I lost my husband too!.. And I reach-out and hug and comfort her without making her feel "weak" or "stupid." (The way others have treated her.)...Of course she goes right back to being as "tough as nails" but she knows she can cry (when need be) around me and I'll never judge her. Or put her "down."
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Old 09-20-2013, 04:31 AM
 
Location: "Daytonnati"
4,245 posts, read 5,755,682 times
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To the OP: I have to join with the others in complementing you on your thread header post. So true! So very true!. So much of what you wrote mirrors my experience.

Quote:
I find that when our loved one dies, we are now faced with being alone, our major support and love is gone, and we feel isolated in our own world, as people from the outside world can't possibly identify from our loss. Most of us feel abandoned, isolated, lonely, and we feel no one cares. And to be honest, until you yourself experience a deep loss of a loved one, you weren't able to identify to those who had.

Although, I am working on my 15th month, I still find myself missing my husband, missing the companionship, the deep seated friendship and love we possessed for one another. Knowing I am not ever going to find that special love again, mainly I am not interested in having a relationship.

For me it will be four years this October, and I think I have settled, sort of, into an new life. But I am still bound to my partner. The memories and sense of loss remain, the loneliness. I find these memories and sense of loss now sort of recede and then return.

That my life with Johnnie is in the past, and becoming distant...but then he and our time togher becomes more current, somehow, that the past becomes part of my present life again. Hard to put this into words.

There are times when I am in the here & now and even plan a bit (I do live in the day or in the week, not long term anymore), but then other times I live more in memory and thinking of times gone by and trying to hold on to memories of my partner... and also wishing my partner was around to experience new things with me.

I've had two lovers since my partner. Affairs of just a few months....which I kept open-ended. In a way there was a therapeutic element to this, but these affairs reinforced my realization there will never be another Johnny....how lucky I was, how fortunate...that he came into my life, and that we made it work.

God gave me this good fortune, and I am grateful for that, thankful, even if Johnnie is no longer with me. It was a good life together, true soulmates.
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