Bereaved adult children

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  • #20592
    amber
    Participant

    Hello,
    I’ve joined today. I’m just wondering if there are others out there that want to share their experiences and coping methods. I’m sorry if this post is chaotic I’m not the best at explaining how I feel.
    2019 I lost my mum to suicide. It was unexpected. She didn’t leave a note. Mum struggled with mental illness throughout her life, she had it tough and didn’t make the best decisions at times but I certainly always felt loved by her. Dad and her split when I was young and from there she was pretty much on her own, she never had much but us kids always had the best time with her. She was funny and creative and truely one of a kind, the kind of mum you could tell anything to, she would never judge, she was always supportive. When mum passed it was at a time when my two brothers were living with her. Long story short, my two brothers came to live with me, two years later they finally left. I think in the time that I was caring for them I never got the chance to care for myself. Mums passing changed me, I’m not sure how but I just don’t feel the same anymore. I don’t feel the kind of youthfulness and happiness that I once did. In fact I sometimes feel like I’m just watching the world go by, all these wonderful things are happening around me and I just can’t feel anything towards them. I just wonder where everyone else that’s has lost someone this way is? I’ve never met anyone, sometimes I feel like I’m the only one. How do you cope in life/what do you do?

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  • #20648
    VM-PG
    Participant

    Hi Amber,
    Thank you for reaching out; you are definitely not alone. It can be incredibly difficult to lose a parent, especially one who played such a positive and supportive role. It sounds like your mother was a loving and wonderful woman.
    From your description it seems like you may have been so busy caring for your brothers that you may not have had a chance to process your own grief following your mother’s passing. Self-care often gets sacrificed when we are grieving or focussed on helping others. It is important to make sure we have daily routines that will support us through this time. It may sound simplistic, but it can be incredibly helpful to ensure that you have healthy, structured approaches to basic things like eating and sleeping. We have some information on our website available here: https://griefline.org.au/resources/east-toolkit/ I recommend taking a look as a first step.
    Also, when we experience grief, we can often be reluctant to talk to other people about it. But doing so can be incredibly beneficial, especially if they have experienced something similar. But even if they haven’t, just having someone to listen to us can be therapeutic. Is there anyone among your family, friends, or workmates that you would feel comfortable to talk to? Perhaps reaching out to community or social groups might also be good. There are more suggestions for ways to get help from others if you go here: https://griefline.org.au/resources/understanding-the-symptoms-of-grief/ as well as some ideas for how to continue your bond with your mother even though she is no longer here.
    I really hope some of these ideas can be useful for you. Please remember that you are not alone, and that there is no timeline for grief, and no ‘right’ way to do it. But by practicing self-care, reaching out to others, and taking time to yourself when you need it, you can find a way through.

    #20660
    VM-Sunflower22
    Participant

    Hello @Amber,

    I am soo sorry that you lost your mother to suicide. I can imagine it would feel like your grief has somehow been left behind when the world just kept on moving forward, especially as you were busy caring for your two brothers. I have experienced that feeling you describe where it felt like everyone just kept going on with their lives, celebrating, having fun, rolling with life’s changes and there I was feeling stuck and like I just couldn’t move. It can be a very isolating and lonely experience. I think this feeling can also make it feel much harder to accept where you are, leading to a loneliness as you grieve. I see a great strength in you by reaching out on the forums.

    How are you feeling today? I would love to hear how you are going. I hope you are able to feel more supported here and less alone in your grief. Others have shared similar losses such as @suraus and @katb

    Take care.

    #20650
    VM-Mancha1
    Participant

    Hello @Amber,

    thank you for sharing your story. I know it can feel like we’re all alone and the ‘only one not coping’, and it’s sometimes strange to look up and be brave – as you have – and ask if we’re alone in this, only to find out how many others feel the same. Grief touches us all, and whilst we sometimes think we’re the only ones feeling like we are falling apart and not coping, everybody goes through something like this, at least some of the time. It’s a normal response to such a drastic loss in our lives.

    I lost my father when I was 24, having never reconciled after earlier issues. I thought he’d be there forever, and was truly shocked and floored by the loss. I, like you, thought I was alone. One of the most empowering moments for me was being brave enough to stand up and tell others I wasn’t coping, and to have several others admit to the same – I wasn’t alone! If you read the forums here you’ll find others in a similar place; their loss is not the same as yours, all of our losses are unique to us – but their stories and coping mechanisms might help you. I encourage you to reach out to this community, and connect to the others here who can share their stories with you.

    You are truly brave to reach out, that’s a strength you should recognise in yourself.

    I also recommend taking a good look at the resources available on the Griefline site, for example this page has a lot of great information on coping strategies: https://griefline.org.au/resources/understanding-the-symptoms-of-grief/

    Stay in touch Amber, and let us know how you’re doing.

    #20594
    Moon
    Participant

    Hi Amber, I hear you and am listening. Courageous of you, to ask, am I the only one, when it feels most so. I can assure you are not.
    Others will also relate and respond ok, you’ll see, we can find a path together, I hope.
    Sometimes a part of grief gets delayed when you are busy looking after others. I know I ran on stress adrenal after burying my father and looking after 4 under 5, should have put my hand up earlier. Your mum sounds kinda like me, I reckon she’d want you to try live your childhood dreams now xx

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