1. Our next Q&A session is on the topic of Christmas and dementia.This time we want our Q&A to involve our resident experts, you! Share tips and advice on navigating Christmas here in this thread.

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Just to know that you know is very comforting

Discussion in 'After dementia — dealing with loss' started by jawuk, Jun 10, 2015.

  1. jawuk

    jawuk Registered User

    I'm back after a long absence because I need you. My lovely husband died in February after spending 4 months in hospital. I thought I was staring to cope but I'm not. Before he was admitted to hospital we had agreed to sell the house and had an offer accepted on a suitable place near one of our daughters. In January I moved house alone from Shropshire to Leicestershire. Other than my daughter I know only one other person I can talk to about Jeff, and I don't like to burden my daughter with my sadnesses. I feel so alone. No one here knows how Jeff was and if I mention that I'm newly widowed I find they say things such as meeting in the afterlife, or that they know a good Medium who might be able to convey messages. Except for my friend who is herself 2 years along the path of widowhood I have no one who knows or seems able to imagine what it's like to keep your husband's ashes by the bed and talk to them, or to have days when the only thing you're capable of doing is going downstairs in your dressing gown for coffee and spending the day crying and looking through photos and wishing you'd known enough to never get impatient. I'm wracked with guilt.

    But then tonight I can't sleep and suddenly thought of all you empathetic people who actually do know how it feels and I read of others who keep their loved one's ashes close and suddenly I feel as if I'm not going mad. So thank you.
  2. LYN T

    LYN T Registered User

    Aug 30, 2012
    Brixham Devon
    No you aren't going mad. My OH died six months ago and it's hard at times to pick yourself up. I went through a stage of taking Pete's ashes to bed with me (now stopped) but I still talk to his photo and move his ashes from room to room. You don't stop loving and you don't stop caring.

    People try to be kind-they try really hard at times-but unless they have experienced caring for someone with Dementia they haven't a clue.

    You are right to come on this Forum as this is the one place where people have the experience and know how you feel. Don't worry about the duvet days; but try to set yourself little goals like clearing a cupboard, gardening, doing the ironing:( anything to make you feel that you have done something.

    It's difficult to motivate yourself at times-I do know that, as all I want is my life back. Your daughter may want to talk to you about Jeff and she is probably worried about you, so try not to isolate her from your feelings.

    Keep posting and let us know how you are feeling


    Lyn T XX
  3. Grey Lad

    Grey Lad Registered User

    Sep 12, 2014
    North East Lincs
    Hi jawuk you are not going mad grief is a personal response to losing a loved one. You have nothing to feel guilty about. It is hard for others to know what to say especially if they don't know you or never knew your husband. I remember some of the puzzling things that were said to me when my first wife died at a very young age. One of the things I found helpful was a book called a Grief Observed by C S Lewis. It might just help - I hope so. Take good care G L.
  4. Kjn

    Kjn Registered User

    Jul 27, 2013
    I'm pleased you've come back , a lot of understanding here xxx
  5. AlsoConfused

    AlsoConfused Registered User

    Sep 17, 2010
    I also wonder whether joining an organisation like Cruse (for the recently bereaved) might help? They must have telephone link-ups organised so that members who say they want such help can be supported through the really dark times.

    Being able to develop more social contacts in the area could help a bit too. There's a very good University of the Third Age (U3A) branch in Lutterworth.
  6. jawuk

    jawuk Registered User

    U3A have a meeting tomorrow morning and all being well I shall attend and hopefully join. I tried Cruse and hope in August to be put on their waiting list for counselling. My local surgery doesn't offer access to counselling and going by their advertisements private local ones don't seem to offer my sort of thing.

    So far today, after a totally sleepless night I'm doing a little better, but I think only because I promised myself that I would try to avoid thinking.
  7. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    Hello jawuk

    I`m really sorry you lost your husband and relocated too.

    I lost my husband in January 2014 and remember not trying hard to do anything. All I seemed to do was drift.

    I`m still drifting , going through times when I think I`m doing really well until a meaningful piece of music or song , a memory or event brings me to tears.

    I don`t think we are under any obligation to do what others expect of us. We can grieve as we wish . Talking Point is the one place where we can be as we wish and i`m pleased to welcome you back .
  8. jawuk

    jawuk Registered User

    Thank you for your replies, as supportive as you've been in the past. I didn't get to U3A today as not having slept at all on Tuesday night I really overslept this morning, even through the alarm clock. But on the whole I'm not too sorry - I think maybe I'm not yet up to socialising with a group of strangers. Perhaps next month or the one after.

    In the meantime I'm girding my loins for a week with my daughter and family in Cornwall next month. They're camping and I'm in a 'log pod' with the dog in the next field along. That way I shall be close to them but have my own space to be able to spend time alone and I think I will cope better without having to stay cheery for the children's sake all week.
  9. WIFE

    WIFE Registered User

    May 23, 2014
    Like so many here on TP I'm drifting too Jawuk even though I'm now five months along the road of widowhood which I hate still thinking of myself as a WIFE. I too, like Lyn, regularly move my husband's ashes from room to room. He suffered very badly from claustrophobia in his last few years and I even got up at three the other morning because I remembered I had left him in a corner of the kitchen and thought he might mind! How mad is that? Personally I think its better to just "drift" until you are really ready to "join" or take part in something with strangers. I sometimes find even walking the dog and having to converse "normally" with people I know in the village is tiring. Just don't get forced into anything you are not yet ready for - take your time. Loving thoughts WIFE
  10. jawuk

    jawuk Registered User

    I've been thinking today about Jeff's last week or two, when he was dying. Right until the very end I didn't believe that it would happen, that it could happen. I should have known, in fact I'd as much as been told - after all he was in a hospice for the last 8 days and hadn't eaten or drunk or woken for 10 days before he died. But it's so hard to take in. Even now I find it incredible that I will never see his lovely face again, or hold his hand, or have a hug. Thinking of his end makes me first tremendously sad, and then guilty that I could have done more. But then to my shame it turns to self pity and I think that I shall never know that companionship, that closeness and love, Never have anyone to share my life story who was actually there with me as he was. No one will ever know me again.

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