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I know everyone is different but how long and how much is normal? My husband and I owned our own business so I don't have a job to go to. I've started not wanting to go to church. All I do is cry and lay in bed when there is so much I could be doing around the house. How do I know if it will ever get better?

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Hello,

I looked on your profile & saw your husband passed away October 2016.  That is only 5 months ago.  Do not let anyone tell you to "get over it"  or  "move on".  Even after two it's hard.  The best way I read was the volume just gets turned down as time passes.  You are still in the full blast time.  

My husband passed suddenly May 2013.  One of the hardest places was to go to church.  I went after 2 weeks a few times, then had to stop.  The staring, stupid questions and comments got too much.  I got panic attacks, which I had never had before in my life.  They are still not totally gone yet.  I know ladies who found the first year the hardest, some never wanted to leave the house, Some couldn't stand being in the house.  

When I was ready I went on Meetup.com (not a dating a site)  & tried to find groups I could join.  It took a few, then a man started a widow/widowers group.  It was the best.  It is for moving forward with people who understand.  Not a grief group.  

Does your church offer a grief support class?  I met nice ladies their.  The "class" wasn't great, but it was the meeting people, talking after knowing people are going thru the same things.  Especially when I thought I was going crazy.  I couldn't concentrate, remember things so frustrating.

Working out of the home makes things hard.  Tough when you are feeling good to get up & get to work.  For me I, I made myself check off at least one thing off the to-do list everyday.  Then a couple weeks later two things.

I really feel for you.  It is so hard doing this pain by ourselves.

Thank you Imogen. It has been 5 months but I have already decided I will never be able to move on. I had to close down the business since it was his dream. That leaves me with a bachelor degree in computer science that I haven't done anything except pay loans. He raised my two daughters with me. He wasn't their biological kids but he provided, coached, did everything with them. His kids are grown and didn't come around. Now that he has passed away my kids don't mean a damn thing to them. I know I need to get out of the house but I can't seem to make myself. I am not the most religious person but I have tried. All I do is cry every week. I feel like every message has to do with me. I haven't seen a support group for my situation but even if they did I can't talk about it without crying. I don't know if this will pass or if something is wrong with me that time won't help. I feel like I am punishing myself to the point it consumes every hour of the day. Even my dreams. All the what is and had I done this or noticed that are taking over my life. Hate is taking over my life as well.

I'm so sorry you have decided that you will never be able to move on. I lost my husband 02/26/17, and I know I will be able to move on eventually. There are nights I cry and don't think life is worth living without him. I cry a lot, lots of days I don't even want to get out of bed. And yes, I hate to admit hate has made a brief appearance in my life. I haven't even gone to the grocery store. I've been to 2 Hospice Bereavement meetings and to a couple of appointments with estate attorney. I went to one social dinner with my ladies' club on Friday and today I went to church. I don't have a job to go to... yet. We were married 24 years, it's going to be rough, but I can do it AND YOU WILL TOO.

Crying is good for you. It releases all the pent up sadness. I go to grief counseling once a week...one on one. The tears start to flow right when I open the door to the building where counseling takes place. I am on my 5th session, and now the tears don't start until I start talking during TH session....I see that as progress...maybe a minuscule amount of progress, but it is progress. It is important to talk about him and everything surrounding your loss and cry your eyes out if you need to. it is all part of grieving and working out the loss. It will help you move throuh the process of grief. For very teensy weeny step forward, I slide back just as many. I feel like my emotions are comparable to a yo-yo. I am almost 4 months out. Even when ai write on this site, I believe I have made some progress. The first few times I wrote here on the site, I cried with every word I typed. Now I can so,etimes write or respond without crying. So maybe try writing your thoughts and feelings here....might help you start working the grief process. ((Hugs)) to you.
You are grieving and there is really not a lot you can do but allow yourself to feel the sadness as this is part of the healing process. It's going to take time and a lot of patience and there isn't really a time frame for grief. We're all very different and comparing ourselves to others is pointless. Focus on the necessary things that need to be done and just be kind to yourself! Crying is normal. Things will improve with time--they'll be a lot of peaks and valleys but the emotions level out and we do find peace with our loss. It's an acceptance and although we never "get over it" or that it isn't something we continue to think about, it is no longer as crippling. We can move ahead with our lives.

As each day passes, remember you are one day closer to healing. Believe that on the other side of your grief journey, you will learn to be happy again. Maybe in some new and unexpected ways but continue to hold onto hope. It is good to cry and release the emotion but you can still store the positive thoughts in the back of your mind. It will get better, we learn how to survive. Don't be as concerned about the length of time it takes to reach that point but rather that you will reach it!

I don't have an answer. I am 9 months out. I can say this: "Longer than you think, but not forever." 

This was helpful:

http://connect.legacy.com/inspire/page/show?id=1984035%3APage%3A3302

I was married for nearly 28 years. It's been nearly 5 years for me. At about 7 or 8 months I stopped worrying so much about the future. Things are going well these days, but it did take time. It is still so hard to believe that Cindy is gone. My son has graduated from college. My daughter has also graduated from college and has gotten married. We are doing well as a family, so grateful for that! Sending good thoughts your way. One day at a time. 

Mac,
You must be proud of the kids, both obtaining degrees! I'm glad things are going well for you now. It took me about five years until things really improved. I felt at or around that point that the grieving was behind me and I felt a lot more stable. Of course there isn't a day that I don't think of my husband, I miss him and always will. There is a point though when we have to accept our loss and continue to live our lives. Wishing you continued peace, stay positive!

Crying, staying in bed & skipping out on church are normal. There were times I lay in bed too weak to get up - wishing I had a colostomy bag. I had to make myself fall off the bed to crawl to the bathroom - it was irritating to have to deal w/yet another body function! It was a very hard time especially when the only light I saw at the end of the tunnel was an oncoming train. You'll find commonalities w/other widows here even though everyone grieves differently yet the same. 

Its also normal to add more to your list of "no can do". I was often angry & belittling of myself for not being able to perform simple tasks or forgetting what I was about to do, losing my keys only to find them in the freezer, not recognizing my own neighborhood, not remembering when I showered last, then doing it & immediately going back to bed. Eventually, I started simplifying my life by reducing my responsibilities & obligations to use what little energy I had to focus on more important things like the kids, counseling, grief & take out food. The house did become a nightmare for sometime as well as the mail piling up, but those unimportant things were taken care of in due time.

These things happen when your life is shattered - complete devastation renders a person almost non-functional. It changes when you are ready to take baby steps toward recovery - however long it takes. Be patient & caring w/yourself. Grief changes & is the natural process in coming to terms w/loss & the many changes ahead.

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