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This site is run by widowed people, for widowed people

Widowed Village connects peers with each other for friendship and sharing. The moderators, administrators, and others involved in running this site are not professionals.

Please don't interpret anything you read here as medical, legal, or otherwise expert advice. Don't disregard any expert's advice or take any action as a result of what you read here.

We're friends, not doctors, financial or legal professionals, and we're not "grief experts." But we are here, and we've been "there."

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Suddenly Widowed

For those widowed suddenly or unexpectedly by any cause. 

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Members: 1623
Latest Activity: on Friday

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Comment by Mich2018 on Friday

Hi Melissa 

Thanks for the welcome. I'm glad to hear it gets a but easier. These past three weeks have me questioning my sanity.  Yesterday was pretty good,  today not so much. 

 I understand how you feel about your sons. I feel the same way about ours. My daughter lives very close and she'll be popping over this weekend. I'll admit I'm looking forward to some company. 

It's good meeting you and I hope you're having a good day.

Comment by Melissa on Thursday

Hi Michele,

It's nice to meet you. I'm sorry it's under these circumstances. My heart goes out to you; I'm so terribly sorry for your loss. My husband died last November and although it's getting easier, I still feel like a hurricane survivor stumbling through the wreckage. 

My husband and I also spent all of our time together as well. We both worked from home. The end of the work day is hardest for me too, because that's when we'd do most of our talking and laughing. Gilbert was brilliant and always gave me food for thought; different ways of seeing things. Even when we disagreed, it was a good discussion. We were both voracious readers, and he would always say, "Listen to this!" and read out loud from his book. 

Now there is only silence. I have two grown sons who are wonderful and supportive, but I don't want to rely on them too much, or be a burden to them. 

This is a very healing place to come during difficult times. You will find that whatever you're going through, you're not alone. 

Comment by Mich2018 on Wednesday

hello all. thank you for letting me join you and im so sorry we all have to be here.  

My dear husband passed away January 30. Kissed me goodbye, went to his part time job. An hour later I got a call about him falling and an hour after that I was sitting in a hospital ER when they pronounced him. Massive heart attack. Part of my brain is mercifully still in shock and the other part is going through the all the things which need to be done.  We were empty nesters and extremely happy together. Im so blessed to know that we said all the things we needed to say and there is no "i wish i had one more day to tell him this or have him tell me that". It's my greatest comfort. We spent all of our free time together and have since we met 12  years ago.  Day times are tolerable but the end of the work day is brutal.  Its just quiet. We talked about everything, all the time. we didnt always agree on everything , of course, but we were shared all of our ideas and both had extreme respect for the others opinion. Anyway.. 

We each have adult children from prior marriage and all five of them have been wonderful. I know its very difficult for them all but we've all been trying to help each other. He would be proud of how they're trying to help me out. I am very thankful. Some other family members are a different story, but I wont go there now,lol.

so, Hello...nice to meet you all.

Michele

Comment by Gunnerx2 on Tuesday

Frank, 

Your story of your cats reminds me of mine.  They too have taken to sleeping with me at night since Dennis passed.  Sometimes fighting over who gets to sleep at the top of the bed, closest to my head.  I have said that Dennis' spirit is in Butter, who had always been quite distant and was Dennis' buddy.  Now Butter seems to want to follow me everywhere.  I think we saved each other in a way - I know they saved me.  Peanut and Butter were home all day while Dennis lie on the floor of the shower.  He looked so peaceful, almost as if he were sleeping and when I came home and found him, they were sitting at the shower with him.  I often see Butter in the bathroom staring at the shower. He is probably talking to his buddy. (yes, mine do the Feline 500 most evenings :))  On another note, I have an irrational fear of leaving them for any type of out of town trip, etc.

Carol

Comment by Frank on Tuesday

Hi Happy,

I'm sorry you are here, but here is the best place to be. Here you can cry, rage, scream, sob, and improve.

I just read your note, and as I did, I realized that I too said No.  Just today.  Reading your comments and thinking about today, brought a smile to my face.  Susan and I raised German Shepherds while we lived in Norfolk, VA, and then years later, a job change bought us to Colorado and we had to sell our kennel.  We had a job that came with a 2 br apartment and we lasted about two weeks when Susan said that she missed our furry friends.  Dogs would not do, so we picked up two 6 month old kittens (dog toys, I used to call them). 

They were around 2 years old when Susan passed.  One took to me and slept in my lap as we watched TV and the other was Susan's lap cat.  She's been gone 6, nearly 7 years now and Susan's cat has finally decided that my lap will work (in a pinch).  Honestly, I could swear that Susan is pulling that cat's strings.  If I'm in a slump, she is right there pestering me for strokes and being quite vocal if I don't pay attention to her. Each night I talk to Susan , telling her that I'd made through another day, and summarizing the day.  The cat is sitting on my chest as I do that.  When I roll over to go to sleep, she tries to burrow under the covers and pesters me till I lift up the quilt and she walks in then turns around, and with just her head showing, she starts kneading. She keeps this up until she gets tired and then leaves to spend the night on Susan's side of the bed.

I may not need to tell you of the Feline 500 race that occurs at sometime during the night, always after 2am.  One will swipe the other, and they are off to the races, down the hall across the couch, the love seat, back down the hall onto the bed across me, and back down the hall, finally settling down on the bed on Susan's side of the bed one toward the top and one at the foot.  Do your cats conduct the Feline 500? 

don't know what I'd have done without my two Attack House Cats. They have bravely defended their home against a bear, a bobcat, and numerous deer, all from the safety of the large double pane windows in the house.  I won't let them outside, too many things from Eagles to owls, to four footed critters who would make snacks out of them, live in the area and visit every once in a while.

((HUGS))

Frank

Comment by happylilykatz on February 18, 2018 at 6:39pm

I'm wishing us all peace and a good night's rest as a mini "vacation" from our grief. Yesterday was the 2 year anniversary of the death of the love of my life, my husband, my best friend. So much of what I've read here resonates with me...my sister in law wanted to organize a party only 3 months after my husband's death, and I put a stop to that, since she immediately began telling me that her grandson's wedding was her biggest priority that weekend. It sounded as though I was going to be responsible for the entire party...yes, cost-wise and every other way! I asked my stepson to talk to her, since I knew I would tell her what I really thought of her if she gave me one second's worth of attitude about it.  My stepson is a good man, just married a wonderful woman and he is truly happy for the first time since I met him in 2004. I only wish his Dad was alive to meet his wife.  I told him "your Dad sees how happy you are, and he's so proud of you!"   So I do have relatives who are solid as a rock. I will put on a music-filled party for my husband some day, and I will bury the beautiful urn that holds his ashes some day, too. But not yet.

It has been very painful to discover that members of my own family, as well as my husband's, have acted like cretins. Perhaps they're not capable of adult behavior when faced with their own life stresses.  All I know is that life is short, and I will not waste my remaining time and my limited energy on anyone who acts like a jerk to me or to my stepson. Some people stepped up and gave me their time and energy in wonderfully surprising ways in the last 2 years, and I am glad they are in my life.

I made plenty of my own mistakes during this journey down a path lined with the small cold stones of grief. Now the terribly sharp pains of sorrow are morphing into a  quiet emptiness that sometimes explodes into serious sobbing at the most inopportune times. I give myself great credit for hanging in there, for growing long fingernails and hanging on, even on the worst days. One new behavior I've found very helpful is to say "no" to someone who asks me to do something I am unwilling or unable to do. No apology or explanation is necessary, either. As one of our good friends used to say, "The word "no" is a complete sentence."   What a revelation, that my caretaker heart can say "no" to someone without guilt or anxiety!  Thanks to walking several miles every day (or shoveling, as I did this morning) and some healthy dietary changes, my health is slowly improving. Our two cats miss my husband, of course, and we have been a great comfort to each other since our loss. They cuddled with me yesterday and last night as i cried, slept, read and sometimes paced the floor. They don't bother me when I cry, they just purr louder. 

Comment by ForeverMourning on February 18, 2018 at 12:59pm

Hello, new poster.  My husband died unexpectedly 5 months ago.  I have been having a tough time in general and most of all my in-laws have been driving me crazy.  However, I am very sorry for everyone who has had in-laws cut them right out of their lives.  Though they are annoying me to no end, I know they wouldn't disown me or have any type of service without inviting me.  However, I can totally picture my MIL planning one and then inviting me to it.  My biggest problem with my in-laws is they wanted my husband buried and I wanted him cremated.  I compromised or should I say felt guilty and gave them half his ashes.  I still sort of regret that but slowly accepting I made the decision and I still have a big part of him.  Now that they have their half, they plan on burying them and placing a headstone.  Since this is their thing they are informing me of the progress but aren't including me in the plans and they were planning on not having my name and as far as I could tell, no reference to wife on the headstone.  Because you know, I'm young and will probably get married again. :(  We are 40. I did the best I could, being super passive and all, that I would appreciate some acknowledgement of me.  It appears they will leave some room for my name yet they are dominantly displaying "son of...." that is practically bigger than my husband's name.  I feel since I gave them half the ashes to do as they wish, I have no choice but to accept it.  Yet what bugs me the most is they are so invasive and want to know EVERYTHING about everything.  Did he have insurance, how much, when you getting it, did you do this, do that, what's happening with probate, etc. etc.  I guess I am just super passive and they are not.   When I try to talk to anyone about anything, I get horrible advice and pressure to just tell them what you want on the tombstone...tell them to mind their own business and leave you alone... but I just can't do that.  As I'm typing this, I'm thinking I wish they would disown me.  Hugs to all and hoping everyone has the courage and strength to deal with their in-laws!

Comment by Frank on February 15, 2018 at 10:04pm

When Susan passed, It was sudden.  She went to sleep on a Sunday night 6 years ago and did not wake up Monday morning.  She had diabetes, and over her 64 years of live suffered most of the side effects.  She died of a silent heart attack while recovering from a fall and a failing transplanted kidney.  They checked on her at 0400 and she was sleeping soundly.  At 0630 during shift change they found her not breathing.  Because of length of time that she'd been without oxygen, none of her organs were viable.  So, despite an intense desire to be a donor she could not be.  I fulfilled her desire by giving her to Science Care, and when they were done they cremated her (as we wished) and gave me her remains.  My youngest son rode with me into town to pick Susan up and bring her home.  When we pulled up to the house he asked if he could carry Mom into the home and I said OK.  I put her on a shelf behind where I'm typing and took some comfort knowing she was there behind me.  Our relatives were scattered all over the country so I told them that I would wait until September for her service. None of her family came that day, and none of my family came except for two of my three boys.  Life goes on for my family, we lived so far from them that they don't seem to give the fact that she is gone, nor its possible impact on me, any thought.  Her family once told me that they would be there for me, and none of her three sisters write or call.  She passed on the 17th of December and for a Christmas Card her older sister included their Annual Letter in which all they talked about was all of the places in the world that they had been that year and all the fun they had with their children and how successful they are.  Not one word about Susan or I.  Three months later her sister and her husband wrote and asked how I was doing.  I wound up writing a 4 page typed letter telling them how I was doing, how I was feeling, and how I was struggling.  They wrote me back a part of a half a page of paper essentially saying  that my letter was way more than they expected and signed it. I've not heard from them since. 

My boys and I are no longer in such a terrible place, and we are rebuilding ourselves as a family, now growing, laughing, and loving.

HUGS
Frank

Comment by Lissa on February 15, 2018 at 6:57pm

hi Senecagirl

I also am so very sorry for your loss. 

My husband died suddenly seven years ago. My MIL wanted to scatter my husband's ashes in the bay on father's day of that year along with her husband (my husband's father had died a month prior to his death after a very long illness). I realized I just wasn't ready to do that. I sent her a heart felt letter explaining my feelings. My letter prompted one of my brother in laws to send me an email telling me they didn't want to have anything to do with me from that point on. A few months later they had a service for my husband and did not invite me or our children.

It was three years later that we (my two children and myself) had a service for my husband and placed his ashes in a niche at our very peaceful city cemetery. It was a good decision for us. My adult children and I have a place to go and visit and we have on many occasions. I was glad for having the pastor for the ceremony and because he was a navy veteran we also had an honor guard present for the service.

I think you have to look out for yourself and do what you think is right for you. I kept my husband's ashes with me for three years. I needed to do that to keep him close. It was right for me.

I had to talk out what to do with a grief counselor that first year. I don't know how I could have gotten through that time without her help. She helped me make decisions that were right for me so I didn't get completely overwhelmed by my in-laws who also were grieving their loss of a brother and son.

I have struggled all my life with not being assertive, but this was so important to me. I am so glad I took the time I needed.

Comment by Melissa on February 10, 2018 at 10:42am

Hi Senecagirl. I'm so, so sorry for your loss. My husband died suddenly after 21 years of marriage, and I feel as if half of me is missing.

My husband always said he didn't want a funeral. He wanted a party at our house with music and wine and food and happy stories. He died in early November of 2017, and it was so close to the holidays that I thought I would wait to get through all of that and have the party for him in early March. I thought then that I would be better by now (wishful thinking, I guess), the weather would be nice, and we would have a good time.

Gilbert (my husband) was cremated, and his ashes were divided between his siblings and me. His siblings never liked me; they didn't even speak to me at the hospital when Gilbert died. I had to read on Facebook that his siblings were having a funeral for him, and I was not invited! Our friends didn't know what to do, I felt awkward and embarrassed and angry because his siblings knew as well as I did that he didn't want a funeral. He hated funerals.

I told our friends that if they wanted to attend the funeral, to please do so. It wouldn't hurt my feelings and we would still have our party.

I realized that my relationship with these people ended when Gilbert died. I don't have to worry about them anymore, which is frankly a relief. Your situation is more complicated, but grief is complicated. Nobody is thinking clearly so soon after your whole world has crumbled to dust (that's how it feels to me, anyway). Take care of yourself and grieve as you will.

You did not need this on top of everything else. I'm very sorry.

 

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