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Why are grieving people supposed to be so strong 
Started by graceful1
01 May 2015, 3:36 PM

I have had people ell me to get over it, "it" being my husbands unexpected passing on Jan of this year. That was about 5 wks after his passing.

What was that all about?

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Reply by moderator | modératrice
01 May 2015, 6:03 PM

Hi Graceful,

Welcome to Virtual Hospice.

It's obvious to me that the people telling you to get over it have not walked in your shoes. People can say hurtful things. And I appreciate that it is hard to know what to say when ytalking with someone who has just lost her life partner, but telling someone how and when she should deal with grief is always wrong. 

Am I right that you don't have many people in your circle of friends and family who have lost someone close to them? Who is your biggest supporter helping you manage?

We'd like to get to know a little more about you. And to also show you that you are not alone. 

Thinking of you.
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Reply by graceful1
01 May 2015, 7:39 PM

My biggest supporter, who was around almost for a straight two mths is my daughter. I told her to look after her familyand she was reluctant but did as I asked.

For the most part I'm alonem I have an acquaintance who to;d me its her jib to antangonize me, make me angry so I get it out. That same person told me just yesterday she doesn't come around because we would end up talking about it. I'm so confused about things like that.


I have two siblings that won't call, because in their words: I make them feel depressed because I'm so angry. Of course they are referring to a few facebook posts that they decided were directed at them. I tried to talk to one of them last nite but, once more it was pointless because "I need to consider their feelings before I post or say anything". Very confusing.... I did inform her that I am empty and need to find a way to fill myself back up again which she totally ignored...Things went down hill from there and once she started to yell at me, I said goodbye and hung up.

His family has chosen to pretend I don't exist.

I drive transport for a living and recently received my layoff notice...Great begginning of 2015.  I would like to change careers completely and get out of driving for a living. So, that is on my to do list among other things.

May 9th I put my husband's remains in a gazebo style burial spot. I would have it done but the sister I was mentioning above informed me that it's not very sisterly to make it on a day she coudn't attend...sigh...

The sibling's do not call me, I have to call them.

I don't discuss this with my kids as they have enough on their plates.

I have been told that because I'm angry people don't want anything to do with me and I'm the one driving (pushing) them away.

It's too much drama for me and I am willing to deal with only so much.

That's been my life for past four mths, that and so mucg more...


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Reply by KathCull_admin
02 May 2015, 4:56 PM

Dear Graceful1/Linda

Life is often like that isn't it - not just one loss or 'thing to deal with' but an accumulation of events, words, losses. As I am writing - it makes me think of those tumbleweeds - just keeps getting bigger and bigger as it rolls along. And then the icing on the cake - receiving your layoff notice!

A few months ago another member, My rock started lost from a broken heart . On that thread you will meet Mark99, eKIM , My rock and NatR. Each person's loss and grief is unique but as Colleen mentioned, here - you are not alone.

I see that you are from London. I am not sure if you are aware of services and programs that might be available to you. If you go to Programs and Services it will take you to a page on our website that lists those resources. Are you familiar with these resources?

Where do your children live?



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Reply by JennJilks
03 May 2015, 10:53 AM

Linda - what a tough time you are having. As if mourning, grief and bereavement wasn't enough to deal with.

I am familiar with the extended family issues. We were told, by my older cousins, to change the date of Mom's memorial service. We aren't speaking. There was more, but you get the gist. Don't let them control you, or incite your anger. Don't give them that power. You can only manage yourself. I have had to let it all go. It's difficult. 

People say and do stupid things. The thing about grief is that it is never 'over.'  You will always hold loved ones in your hearts. When grief arises, whether it is with your friends or extended family, they don't want to live through your grief, and their grieving process comes to the surface. That doesn't help you, but I have found that it is true. 

For example, We had a teacher die in a tragic incident. The teaching community came together. We, in other schools, got together to cover the classes for the teachers in her school. The entire staff went to the funeral. What I was told is that my friends, who were her friends, found that this sad time brought up all sorts of their grief issues, whether they'd lost friends or family. It all bubbles up to the surface. 

Another thing, my ex-husband died suddenly, while having chemo for colon cancer. He had a heart attack. My daughter (age 36) gave him CPR, but he was gone. She asked her stepmother to dial 911, but she was unable to. She has Early Onset Dementia.
Our kids and their significant others came. My son and his (now) wife were there, too. Her father had died the year before. Her grief was fresh in her mind. My son gave her and her family much support, there in B.C.
J. got up to give his father's eulogy, and it was very moving. I sat with her and she was quite wise. She was about to lose it. She said to me, 'I have to remember that this isn't about me.'  She was aware that she needed to support my son in HIS grief. I thought about this, when I read your story.

It's your time to grieve the way you need to. There aren't time lines. You have to do it your way.
That said, there are bereavement support programs and groups, this is the one in London, delivered through hospices all across this country. They are comforting and educational.  They will provide individual support, for free, as well. 

Let us know how it is going. Deep breath. You'll get through all this. 
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Reply by Razz
03 May 2015, 2:53 PM

(((graceful1)))) <- these are hugs 

This is about YOU and not about what others may say or think.  Some may have good intentions but are confused and uncertain as to how to respond.  This makes them uncomfortable and as a result they say or do things that are not helpful to YOU but may help them feel a bit better.  Others because of their discomfort may just as soon sweep the whole topic of death and dying under the carpet rather than have to deal with it.  THEY may want you to show a stiff upper-lip as it takes them off the hook.  But it's not about THEM... it's about YOU and I'm sorry you're getting such a lack of understanding.  

There is no time line nor set parameters on how grief and mourning "should" effect each person.  And while there are similarities in each person's journey ..... they all have to walk it in their own way and each have a unique path they'll travel.  

I feel that being in contact with others who have understand this experience is very helpful as you try to find your way.  Forums such as this, support groups and even one-on-one therapy can be such useful things and will validate what you are feeling.  For what ever you are feeling right now is not wrong but is valid for what you are going through right now.  

Accept that those around you who you think should understand or be more considerate don't "get it".  "If you keep going to an empty well you'll always come back with an empty bucket"   Do not judge them but instead find those people and things that can help you fill your bucket.  

be good to you - Razz  
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Reply by graceful1
04 May 2015, 3:02 PM

I want all of you to know that This is very helpful and after reading your comments; each and every one of you are correct. It is a very complex thing grief. There is no way that I could even begin to understand another's grief except as I have experienced.

I am currently doing better after being able to vent to a source that is private and with no judgement. It has lifted such a huge weight off my shoulders that I actually feel lighter and sense a somewhat peace now although as everyone is aware fragile. But it is enough that I can keep moving forward.

As for the nay sayers in my life they will always have a spot with me as I can now see them in a different light and perhaps even a loving light and as a beacon for me incase I slip. (Hope, that makes sense)

This is one roller coaster that has no stop once it gets going; however, I do believe it will slow down at some point.

Thank each and everyone of you for responding, I will never be able to express my gratitude enough for the virtual support. I would like to keep checking back every once in awhile and perhaps add my two cents worth here or there.

I am looking for actual support now that I feel safer and doing that will take out into public. Something I believe I'm ready for.

Thank you



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Reply by Xenia
04 May 2015, 4:00 PM

Dear Graceful:

Welcome to CVH where you will find a lot of understanding and support as you can see by the messages being sent to you.

I too lost my husband in January and it was very difficult.  Having been married 59 years, he passed away 5 days before our 59th anniversary made it so much harder.

I believe that our family and friends do not realize what they are saying when they offer us condolences or tell us to be strong. I never realized how glib our responses are to others who have lost a loved one.  We do not know what to say so it is so easy to say:  He/she lived a good life, you must be strong and go on."

I know I have said this to my friends and family and until my husband died I didn't really understand the pain of losing a loved one.  I do believe their intentions are good but come out badly.  It is sad that you are not receiving support from those you considered family or friends.  

As the others on CVH have said there is no time limit on grieving we each do it on our own way and for those who do not understand the pain you are going through there is support on this message board all without judgment but with caring compasison and understanding as they too have gone or are going through what you have faced.

Take care and keep in touch with us.


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Reply by KathCull_admin
08 May 2015, 7:36 PM

Hello everyone, 
I am so glad, but not surprised that you have found support here Graceful1. 

A new member, LauraRa67 who has also experienced great loss, started a new thread yesterday I though I was dealing maybe I am not   Could I ask those of you who are able to consider responding to her post?

Thanks so much for thinking about it.

ps I am curious about your nickname Graceful1- is there a story there?  
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