Loss and Grief: How are you doing?

Posted by Teresa, Volunteer Mentor @hopeful33250, Jan 16, 2018

When my dad passed away several years ago I lost my keys 4 times in one month, I would wake up at 3 a.m. several days every week feeling startled. Sound familiar? These are reactions to grief. Grief is a very personal experience – everyone grieves differently – even in the same family because the relationship of a father is different than that of a wife or a granddaughter. Unfortunately, often we grieve alone. Sometimes we don’t want to “bother others” with our grief, and sometimes friends and family tell us that we should be over it by now. After all the person we lost was ill for a long time or was very old and “it was their time” or “they are in a better place now.” Sound familiar?

Grieving is often described as the “work of grief.” It does feel like hard work doesn’t it? Grief can be difficult because of the many factors related to the loss. If the loss followed a prolonged, serious illness you undoubtedly did some “anticipatory grief work” prior to the actual death of the loved one. If the loss, however, was sudden, i.e., accident related, suicide, a result of crime, etc. the sense of grief is coupled with shock.

The relationship that you had with the loved one also affects your grief experience, i.e. was your relationship close or had it been strained? Do you feel guilt that you were not closer or do you feel guilty because you don’t feel you did enough to help while your loved one was ill?

Sometimes anger plays a part in the grief process. Did your loved one get poor medical treatment or a wrong and/or late diagnosis? Did your loved one not follow your doctor’s orders with regard to their health (diet, smoking, attention to meds or exercise)? All of these factors contribute to your experience of grief.

Also, some losses are not so evident to others. These would include a miscarriage or a stillborn. Sometimes these losses are not considered as relevant to others as the loss of a person who has lived a longer life. In the case of a miscarriage, others might not even be aware of your loss.

You may think of that person on anniversary dates (their birthday, date of their death) or you might think of them constantly. Unfortunately, sometime people say things that can multiply grief. Have you ever heard someone say, “you should be over this by now?” or “I had a similar experience and I’m OK.” Well, most likely their similar experience was not the same as yours. Thinking you should be over it might compound your grief with feelings of guilt or frustration.

Whether a recent loss, or a loss you experienced a long time ago, let’s talk about it. Whatever your experience, I’d like to hear your stories and together find a way to relocate that loved one so that we can experience peace in our lifetime.

Together let us support each other in our grief journey.

Teresa

@gman007

@jimhd, @muppey I understand much of what you are both saying but would like to make a suggestion. At times, it feels to me as if you are painting all church people with a broad brush, and that may just be my reading into your posts something not there. There are quite a few people I see (virtually) on here who get their greatest support from a church family or minister. Please don't take that away from them. I am a child of the church as we never missed a time when the doors were open. My Mom told me recently that she now thinks that her insistence on being there for everything when me and my brother were younger was probably not one of her best parenting moves. As an adult I have always been in church regularly until I got sick and have a fear of large groups borne of opiates`, but did not begin to have a true relationship with my savior until after I got sick and learned to let him drive the bus and become needy in His presence. I still try to take the wheel at times and it never works out very well. Our religious experiences are always very unique to us and in every person's past is a "pillar" of the church who turned out to not be and for some that is an entire group. Jim, like you I stopped for a phone conference and have forgotten where I was and what I was thinking, so maybe I can pick it back up later.

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@jimhd I hope I don't have to have that convo with my psych. You are absolutely right about the whole church being unrighteous and I guess that is why those who are filled with self-righteousness are so frustrating, but that is just one more thing for me to work on. I can't remember where I wrote it, but I have a book titled "Religiously transmitted diseases". It is not a page turner and I have not gotten all the way through it, but universally, going back to the crusades, and likely farther, there have been many wrongs committed in the name of religion, but even so…I believe your statement about the church being a source for good that is greater than the bad is definitely correct. I certainly hope so. I wish we could get together in Rochester and talk theology, but that is just too far for me to venture from home.
Blessings, Gary

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Thanks for your post. A linking object is one that sparks memories and provides a measure of comfort. This definition applies to objects, not people.

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@kdawn32

@muppey I think "things" or trinkets, for some people, are used to say what that person can not put into words. However if the person on the receiving end doesn't communicate that way it is meaningless for them. So it all gets lost. The giver gets upset and the receiver is confused. So you might think about this the next time some one gives you something. Thank them for thinking of you. Say something like "is there a special meaning". A lot of us do tend to put to much attachment into "Things".

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Hi merpreb, In the footer of the email notification you’ll see the sentence “Unsubscribe to this thread.”
1. Click the unsubscribe link.
2. Select “no emails”
3. Click Update.

You can learn more about subscribing and unsubscribing here: https://connect.mayoclinic.org/get-started-on-connect/

Liked by Lisa Lucier

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@IndianaScott

I think, especially in these types of conversations, it's important for us to remember we are each unique. In that each of us are individuals complete with our own differing needs, points of view, beliefs, and personal situations which influence our views of life, perceptions, and our beliefs.

One is not correct just as another is not incorrect. Our views and lives are like art … some folks love Picasso while others love Monet. One is not good art while one bad. There are just different views and we each have our own tastes in art.

Likewise we each grieve in our own way and for our own personalized reasons. As I have continued in my own journey with grief I've come to more fully realize, now more than ever before, how individualized grief is.

Just my two cents, plain.

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@IndianaScott

There are so many grief triggers. One for me is the loss of my vocation. I know that many people feel lost when they retire, but I had to retire 10+ years sooner than I expected, and it happened when I was in a very bad place mentally and emotionally. I have been affected more by that loss than the deaths of my parents and a younger sister.

Some things stick with us for the rest of our lives. I'm grateful for the people who have helped me find the strength to move forward. The way I think of it is that my moving forward is a track that runs parallel to the track of things like loss, past trauma or damaged relationships. Those things will possibly be close by, but I'm not having to carry them around all the time, like rocks in my backpack. Or as Dr. Seuss put it, rocks in my socks. (I think it was the good doctor who wrote that.)

Jim

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@kdawn32

@muppey I think "things" or trinkets, for some people, are used to say what that person can not put into words. However if the person on the receiving end doesn't communicate that way it is meaningless for them. So it all gets lost. The giver gets upset and the receiver is confused. So you might think about this the next time some one gives you something. Thank them for thinking of you. Say something like "is there a special meaning". A lot of us do tend to put to much attachment into "Things".

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@muppey Thank you for your responses. I appreciate your sharing and your prayer for me. I am aware that I "write hard" and my head-on approach to so many things overwhelms most people. You and I both know how it feels to share an intimate feeling in confidence and be betrayed later and/or have that bit of information transposed into something completely different than what it was. You and I are both caring helpers with no strings; which makes us great caregivers. Do you remember The Gong Show? There was a character called The Unknown Comic that wore a paper bag over his head while delivering puns. We can call ourselves The Unknown Wingmen. lol Blessings

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@IndianaScott

I think, especially in these types of conversations, it's important for us to remember we are each unique. In that each of us are individuals complete with our own differing needs, points of view, beliefs, and personal situations which influence our views of life, perceptions, and our beliefs.

One is not correct just as another is not incorrect. Our views and lives are like art … some folks love Picasso while others love Monet. One is not good art while one bad. There are just different views and we each have our own tastes in art.

Likewise we each grieve in our own way and for our own personalized reasons. As I have continued in my own journey with grief I've come to more fully realize, now more than ever before, how individualized grief is.

Just my two cents, plain.

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@jimhd

I've seen that analogy before of the tracks side by side – loss on one side and the present and future on the other track. It is a great word picture!

Teresa

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@badboys1965

I am so sorry for everyone that lost someone that they loved deeply. My dad has been gone since 2001. God i still miss him so much!! When he died, it was a shock to my whole family. Who would of thought he would die before my mother. My mother passed away three years later. She was in a nursing home for twenty-five years due to a stroke she had. My dad visited her every day come rain or come shine. I still am not over their passing away. They were good people. I still cry sometimes when i think of them and still have vivid dreams about them to this day. It got easier to deal with their loss with the help from my husband Mark who loss his mother a few years ago too. prayers for everyone who loss someone, Trudy

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@muppey. Yes i do love my cat. I had her since she was a kitten. She is now 12 years old and doing well. I do have someone to talk to and someone happens to be my husband of 24 years. He also is my caregiver and best friend. My family if you want to call it that, does not talk to me. Am learning to let go of them and to tell you the truth it is not easy. My husband said people will be people and you cant change that. I always thought you could change people into something better but i guess not. My brothers and sisters will never change and that is something i have to learn. i am getting on with my life and leaving the negative things behind me and my family too. ill survive and hopefully make new and lasting friendships here. Trudy

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@badboys1965

I am so sorry for everyone that lost someone that they loved deeply. My dad has been gone since 2001. God i still miss him so much!! When he died, it was a shock to my whole family. Who would of thought he would die before my mother. My mother passed away three years later. She was in a nursing home for twenty-five years due to a stroke she had. My dad visited her every day come rain or come shine. I still am not over their passing away. They were good people. I still cry sometimes when i think of them and still have vivid dreams about them to this day. It got easier to deal with their loss with the help from my husband Mark who loss his mother a few years ago too. prayers for everyone who loss someone, Trudy

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badboys1986,
Glad you have your husband with you. Maybe you've answered this to someone about why your family is mad at you. That's gotta hurt a lot.
Wasn't getting any email notice's then just thought to look in my spam folder and there were a lot of them. Told my stupid computer not to diss these people as they're some of the nicest I've met, even if it is over the net, don't think that matters any.
Hope you figure this out!
I divert sometimes because I need a little air, that's why I talked about the cats. Never thought I'd ever have a litter in my living room. Videos were pretty funny.
Take care.
Mark

Liked by Kdawn

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@kdawn32

@muppey I think "things" or trinkets, for some people, are used to say what that person can not put into words. However if the person on the receiving end doesn't communicate that way it is meaningless for them. So it all gets lost. The giver gets upset and the receiver is confused. So you might think about this the next time some one gives you something. Thank them for thinking of you. Say something like "is there a special meaning". A lot of us do tend to put to much attachment into "Things".

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@2011panc, Hi again, just dug a lot of emails from my spam file. Told the stupid computer not to do that. Doubt if I ever missed any of The Gong Show, funniest guy and goofy. The Unknown Comic was a funny guy too. Went to a costume party once where I really disguised myself and had the best time. Something about incognito I think.

I really appreciate your writing because it smacks me upside the head and makes me think. I prefer honest rather than sneak attack, don't think I'll ever get over that, coupled with the gossip bombs.

How far back does your betrayal go? MIne is Feb 1 + plus what I see on the phone bill, not going back and checking, one month is enough. Mean stuff, so not to long ago.

Strange thing happened yesterday. At the store I ran into a young lady I've known for a long time as friends, she was married and then in January she was ghosted by her husband and I can't believe it…she's a sweat heart and a little thing, but don't let that fool you. Anyway she told me to call if I want to talk and she'd bring her infant son by and visit. She had her horse on my property for a few years. Don't know what happened but I felt better than I had in a long time. Probably because she's the first human I've talked with in over a month. She gave me a hug. I'm an old guy and she's young so we're just friends. I do say hello and stuff to the grocery clerk and others and sometimes I can make them laugh like this morning, I said something to the grocery lady and she laughed and said, "You just woke me up." Funny.

Make my think!
Take care.
Mark

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Lisalucier suggested I post this here. I was a bit confused by what happened yesterday. I also found lots of email stuck in my spam folder so dug all those out just an hour ago. Anyway…
Hi lisalucier, I'm trying to figure something out and not sure who to ask, or tell. Everyone seems great here. Just wondering why I'm feeling so good at the moment and am wondering if it's one of those come and go things. Can't get better suddenly? I did talk with a young lady who's been ghosted recently. Known her a long time and she told me to call and that she would drop by and bring her little son and we could talk. Just confused. OK?
We're long time friends and I've mentioned her before. I feel bad for her being dumped like that and now she has to raise little Bodin by herself. Beautiful kid and he shook my hand at the grocery store and smiled at me. I like kids. First time in a month I had a conversation with a live person. Nothing against here, you guys have helped me a lot.

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@kathy4385

I really dont even know where to start. I lost my best friend, lover and husband to liver cancer 2.5 years ago. Didnt really start to grieve till last year. As to, I believe having recieved 2 foster kids 6 mos after he died. So poured everything into the kids. and delayed my grieving, untill they left my home 5 months later. Then it was like I lost and was grieving all 3 at the same time. To say the least, Im not doing so well. My friends and neighbors dont understand, and say I push them away, (not what I wanted to do, or intended to do) just didnt know how to express myself. so ended up more alone, and felt abandoned. I am a christian, and have been studying all I can in the word about grief, depression, and loneliness. My family lives far away, I thought I had the church family, but feel I dont fit in anymore, and they quit reaching out cause they feel I should be over it by now. and they dont know what to do with me, I dont fit in any of the groups that we used to be in. All I really want is to feel needed, wanted, and to belong to something, cant find the new normal, dont seem to fit in, feel more alone in a crowd, so I just stay home alone. know that is not the answer either, but dont know what to do. Want to go home to be with my husband, and all the loved ones who have died before me. At times it seems the only answer. Just waiting to die of a broken heart. I get up each day, because I have animals to care for, so all I am living for now.

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jimhd, Re read your post. Not sure how I can just let things slide by. In AA we are taught to make amends and forgive those who've offended. I've done that with others and I called Mary and left a message of apology, (because I'm not worthy of them they didn't answer), for any grief I'd caused and for making her cry last time I saw her at my house when she was getting her stuff. I know they all listened as that's there habit at her sons house. Jon would often put the phone on speaker. They all watch tv together and talk, the center of the house.
When someone makes a mistake and says something dumb or does something dumb, that's one thing. A calculated attack is another thing. How do you deal with someone when you know they had planned everything out.
Mary and I were planning to move to a retirement place in around two-three years. I'd created a file with letters greeting, and of acceptance and other stuff. Mary told me that she had canceled my name out of the whole deal after she left. Yesterday I went to look at the file because they have other facilities's. Mary had taken all the letters and approvals and every dmn thing. How's that? She also took other documents and etc. She had to do it while I was gone naturally because the file is right here.
It's also my life and she messed it up pretty good.

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@muppey

Lisalucier suggested I post this here. I was a bit confused by what happened yesterday. I also found lots of email stuck in my spam folder so dug all those out just an hour ago. Anyway…
Hi lisalucier, I'm trying to figure something out and not sure who to ask, or tell. Everyone seems great here. Just wondering why I'm feeling so good at the moment and am wondering if it's one of those come and go things. Can't get better suddenly? I did talk with a young lady who's been ghosted recently. Known her a long time and she told me to call and that she would drop by and bring her little son and we could talk. Just confused. OK?
We're long time friends and I've mentioned her before. I feel bad for her being dumped like that and now she has to raise little Bodin by herself. Beautiful kid and he shook my hand at the grocery store and smiled at me. I like kids. First time in a month I had a conversation with a live person. Nothing against here, you guys have helped me a lot.

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Hello @muppey

I realize that these thoughts were directed to @lisalucier however, I might have some ideas to help you hear. I have heard, on numerous occasions that recovery from loss is more like a zig zag rather than a straight line – so you might feel very good one day and feel like it all under control and then another day have the loss hit again and you will feel very burdened.

Your work in therapy and here on Connect should help prepare you to once again interact with "live people" so this is a good thing. Both venues are important to you now. Counseling, online support here at Connect and also spending time with friends/family who can understand and spend time with you.

I hope this weekend will be good for you.

Teresa

Liked by muppey

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@muppey

Lisalucier suggested I post this here. I was a bit confused by what happened yesterday. I also found lots of email stuck in my spam folder so dug all those out just an hour ago. Anyway…
Hi lisalucier, I'm trying to figure something out and not sure who to ask, or tell. Everyone seems great here. Just wondering why I'm feeling so good at the moment and am wondering if it's one of those come and go things. Can't get better suddenly? I did talk with a young lady who's been ghosted recently. Known her a long time and she told me to call and that she would drop by and bring her little son and we could talk. Just confused. OK?
We're long time friends and I've mentioned her before. I feel bad for her being dumped like that and now she has to raise little Bodin by herself. Beautiful kid and he shook my hand at the grocery store and smiled at me. I like kids. First time in a month I had a conversation with a live person. Nothing against here, you guys have helped me a lot.

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@hopeful33250, Thanks, I understand that these things have lasting impacts. Gossip is out of my control, it's out there but I don't think that many people are to concerned about me for it to be a bigger problem than already faced. I'll do without them when it comes to it. It's not like I'm a public person so it shouldn't go to far. Just lost two 'friends', that's all.

I intend to carry on with the therapy as the VA helped me when I needed to work out some Army related situations. I did not go to Vietnam, but it was violent none the less and lasted most of my 18 months there, not every day but often enough.

Reading about other peoples trials and such is helpful to me as my problems seen to become less after people talk of their long lasting depression and other pains, with thoughts of suicide and overbearing loneliness. Sure I'd like to talk with a person and seeomg little Mezi at the store with her infant son was nice. Talked for maybe five minutes but it was nice.

Been alone before and I can do it again, that's not a pity party it's just the way things go. I watched my brother Mike come into town and within a few days he's got friends and I've been here a lot longer than he. Just personalities is all.

Really am doing better since being on this site, I appreciate the help, advice and insight. Am able to adjust a little now.
Thanks
Mark

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@muppey

Lisalucier suggested I post this here. I was a bit confused by what happened yesterday. I also found lots of email stuck in my spam folder so dug all those out just an hour ago. Anyway…
Hi lisalucier, I'm trying to figure something out and not sure who to ask, or tell. Everyone seems great here. Just wondering why I'm feeling so good at the moment and am wondering if it's one of those come and go things. Can't get better suddenly? I did talk with a young lady who's been ghosted recently. Known her a long time and she told me to call and that she would drop by and bring her little son and we could talk. Just confused. OK?
We're long time friends and I've mentioned her before. I feel bad for her being dumped like that and now she has to raise little Bodin by herself. Beautiful kid and he shook my hand at the grocery store and smiled at me. I like kids. First time in a month I had a conversation with a live person. Nothing against here, you guys have helped me a lot.

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@muppey Hi Mark:

Glad to hear that Connect is helping!

Teresa

Liked by muppey

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@muppey

Lisalucier suggested I post this here. I was a bit confused by what happened yesterday. I also found lots of email stuck in my spam folder so dug all those out just an hour ago. Anyway…
Hi lisalucier, I'm trying to figure something out and not sure who to ask, or tell. Everyone seems great here. Just wondering why I'm feeling so good at the moment and am wondering if it's one of those come and go things. Can't get better suddenly? I did talk with a young lady who's been ghosted recently. Known her a long time and she told me to call and that she would drop by and bring her little son and we could talk. Just confused. OK?
We're long time friends and I've mentioned her before. I feel bad for her being dumped like that and now she has to raise little Bodin by herself. Beautiful kid and he shook my hand at the grocery store and smiled at me. I like kids. First time in a month I had a conversation with a live person. Nothing against here, you guys have helped me a lot.

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They say every little bit helps. Spent an hour talking with my niece this morning. Another broken heart, seems like no end to it sometimes. She wasn't ghosted but he was taken in the back of the Sheriffs car. Bummer's.

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