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Old 10-05-2018, 04:42 PM
 
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It has been 3.5 years since losing my mother to horrific effects of stroke brain damage (she became paralyzed, couldn't speak or eat). I have done everything I am supposed to do. I went to grief groups, sought therapy, tried anti-depressants.

Has anyone else had the pain linger for this long? Did you get "better" as time went on?
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Old 10-05-2018, 10:35 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
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I am sorry that your grief has been that intense for so long. Is it possible that part of it is post traumatic stress from seeing the unexpected effect the event had upon your mother? That could serve to anchor the immediacy of distress in ways that groups might not recognize and A-Ds might not help.

If available, you might seek an interview at a university teaching hospital that has done work with PTSD. There is no "normal" with grief timelines, but if you are still experiencing that significant pain after 3.5 years, it makes sense to explore outside simple grief counseling.
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Old 10-06-2018, 12:48 AM
ERH
 
Location: Cary, NC
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My mother died nearly 3 years ago. Dad and I shared caregiving responsibilities for the last year of Mom's life, and that was very difficult on him. When Mom first died, he was stricken with grief, of course, but he also experienced a huge wave of relief that he no longer had to structure his day to day around her every need. This is common among caregivers.

The first year passed, and now we're deep into the second, and he has become extremely anxious about being alone in the house. He has always been a worrier, and now these thoughts chase each other around in his mind all day without end. I live in another state but visit relatively often, usually staying for 4-6 weeks at a time. My brother and his wife live nearby; they work a pretty full schedule but visit with Dad 2-3 nights each week. During the summer, they spend every other weekend away. While I was back in my home state in August/September, he began having panic attacks when left alone for the weekend.

Since his anxiety and depression have worsened, we've taken steps to address it. He recently started a low-dose anti-depressant, and he is booked to see a LCSW to begin talk therapy week after next.

All of this is to say -- grief is a journey as unique as you are, and you are not alone. Get help -- there's no need to suffer if you don't have to.
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Old 10-06-2018, 05:12 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
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Not a doc, but panic attacks might be lessened with beta-blockers. They can be used in high blood pressure treatment and they limit the adrenaline effects.
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Old 10-06-2018, 05:35 AM
 
Location: Worcester MA
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I'm very sorry about the pain from the loss of your mother that you're still going through. I too lost my mother from a stroke and miss her a lot to this day.
Have you tried very strenuous exercise? I have found that focusing on accomplishing some physical exercise can be a good way to "get away" from yourself and the sadness that you're feeling. Also have found volunteering with people to be very beneficial in calming and soothing oneself.
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Old 10-06-2018, 07:52 AM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
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Sorry to hear this Eeko....perhaps more counseling would be beneficial.

Have you checked into grief support groups in your area? You might find them very helpful. I am not a "joiner" but did find a divorce support group very
understanding and supportive.

As said, time does heal but perhaps not as fast as we'd like. Would you be able to set aside 30 min twice a day to think about your mom and do grief work, them keep busy and focus on other things? Not good to stay mired in pain all day long.
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Old 10-06-2018, 09:34 AM
 
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Thank you everyone for these kind responses - they really do help.

I actually have thought that I might have some form of PTSD as I keep flashing back to her suffering and even right after she died, what her skin felt like, how they "rolled her up" and took her away. Sorry, I don't mean to be grim.

Fortunately, I don't have panic attacks. I do have General Anxiety Disorder in addition to Major Depressive Disorder, but I don't really get panic attacks.

Yes, I did join a grief group for several months. It did help. I think I should go back, even though I have "completed" it. The camaraderie helped.

ERH, what "low-dose AD" did they give your Dad? I am still experimenting trying to find the right one.
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Old 10-06-2018, 10:49 AM
ERH
 
Location: Cary, NC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eeko156 View Post
ERH, what "low-dose AD" did they give your Dad? I am still experimenting trying to find the right one.
His longtime doctor prescribed Xanax 25 (2/night) for Dad's sleep issues, so he's been on this for over a year. The new doctor prescribed Lexapro 10mg. It's too early to tell if it's making a difference, especially since he acts differently while I'm here and is not as prone to anxiety. I'm hoping he will continue the talk therapy while I'm not here (2 months leading up to the Christmas holidays), as that will be the time when he reverts back to being alone most of the time.

While I have emerged from my grief quite well, I do battle MDD and GAD. I actively manage it with regular talk therapy and AD (Cymbalta). I had taken Effexor for a long time, but it stopped working effectively, so I went through a cycle of trying several until I hit on the Cymbalta. At some point, it will likely stop being effective, and I'll have to go through another trial. It's not fun, but it's what I have to do to manage.
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Old 10-06-2018, 01:54 PM
 
Location: SWFL
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If anyone is interested in a natural "happy pill", I suggest St. John's Wart. Look it up and see if it's okay with you. It really did make me feel better after I went through my first death.
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Old 10-06-2018, 04:01 PM
 
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Op....so sorry that this transition has been latent ...I get where your struggles can be stalled.

From 3 months prior to my mom's eventual last breath I knew I was spiralling. It took months after the loss to be diagnosed with ptsd. To this day I still go thru bouts of high anxiety and re-living those horrendous moments (flashbacks). Not to mention .. grief doesn't 'go away'..so long as I remember her...I carry all the gifts that grief parlays. I'd suggest a consultation with a qualified psychologist. They could recommend some alternate remedies. Mine was aroma therapy.. along with meditation. Some of us are more in tune to our grief and we get a bit stuck in the phases. You are aware and that is a step to consider what can move you onwards.
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