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I Lost My Precious Mother

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I lost my mother on Thanksgiving to a very rare form of uterine cancer, carcinosarcoma. She battled this disease for 2 years along with Parkinson's Disease for 21 years. I am so lost in the world without her. She meant everything to me. I am now watching the world through someone else's eyes, not mine. The world keeps going, but I am stuck. My 78 year old father has been staying at my house and is sucking what little life I have left right out of me. He is the only one grieving her loss he feels. It is impossible to even get out of bed in the morning. I also have 2 little boys, 4 year old twins who don't understand and are just awaiting Xmas, something I can't nearly cope with at the moment. It is just us, and life is very difficult. Thanks for listening.


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I am so sorry for your loss. I am glad you found this site.

Do you have other family members that can help with your dad? It doesn't sound like you have any energy to take care of yourself. You need to worry about yourself too. Make sure you eat and drink and rest when you need too. (not easy to do with 4 yr old twins!) Keep posting here, it really does help to know you are not alone and there are so many wonderful people here. Take care of yourself. Again, I am sorry about your mom. My mom died Dec 06 and my dad died Oct 07.

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Sorry to hear of your losses. I have 2 brothers but they are both out of the state. There were hear before my mom died and stayed 2 weeks. They tried to get my dad to go home with them but he refused. We have no family here. The hardest part is having no time for myself. I have to take care of everyone else and there is no one to take care of me. It is an awful feeling.

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I don't know your financial situation, but would one of your friends watch the boys and dad could stay home by himself so you could go get a massage, pedicure, manicure or all three? Or they could maybe go to a friends house so you could just take a long hot bubble bath and listen to some soothing music.

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I wish that were possible. I have lived in Phoenix for almost 4 years but I have very few friends, all who work. It's funny how people say, if you need anything just call. I never ask anything of anyone but last week I was in a bind and needed someone to watch the boys for an hour while I went to the dr. I called everyone I can think of, and everyone said no. I know I sound like I feel sorry for myself and maybe I do. I figure I can feel however I want right now. The truth is I really don't have any support here. I am thinking maybe I should move back to CA. I have a lot of family and support there. But for now, I just have to deal with it because first and foremost I am a mom and just have to deal with the fact that I lost mine. Life is really awful right now.

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((((((ChrisJ2)))))))) Hugs for you hon. I'm so sorry about Mom. And it sounds like you definitely need some respite! Is there any way your Dad could watch the boys for a bit for you once in awhile? It might be good for him and the boys!

I have learned.. (the hard way) that if I don't take care of me... within a fairly short period of time... I'm absolutely NO good to anyone else.

Grab whatever minutes you can to yourself. If the boys attend nursery or preschool.. make at least SOME of that time about you. Either use it to take a nap.. a walk.. read.. relax.. etc. Or once they are in bed.... maybe spend a bit of time with Dad but then shortly I would retreat into your room for some alone time.

If you haven't been able to get to the Doc.. and Dad can't help you.. call the office and let them know you have no choice but to bring the kids with you. Explain to the staff what has happened and see if they can't accomodate you somehow. Because the Doc may be just the resource for you to tap into right now.

And hon.. it might be time to, as gently as you can, remind Dad that you TOO are grieving. That he is definitely NOT alone. I understand he refused to go back with your brothers.. but your brothers may indeed be able to still help you via talking to Dad on the phone and support you by listening to you and helping you think and brainstorm ways to make this terribly difficult time a bit easier.

Is there a plan yet to have Dad move back into his own place? I know this is hard.. but I know he will have to go back at some point, if he is physically able that is.

Yes moving back to where you have more support is something you can consider someday in the future.. but for right now... tap into whatever is available for you right now where you are. If you do not have a regular babysitter... you could call any local churches around to see if they have "Babysitter Lists". Also contact perhaps a Girl Scout Troop Leader nearby for gals who have their Babysitting badge.. etc. It would probably be a relief to you to have someone you can count on to watch the boyz when you need.

I talk to my Mom all of the time... maybe you could talk to yours too... Her body is gone... yes.. but her love... never dies.

Keep us posted on how you are doing..ok?


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Dear Amy,

You are right. It is hard. It will get easier, but it takes time. You need to keep yourself healthy as you have a lot of responsibility with your dad and your children. That includes some time off. Do they all nap at the same time, so you can read, write or sit and gaze out the window? Are there any grief support groups that offer child care? A group may be able to help your dad as well. We have a gentleman that is 90 and lost his wife 10 years ago that comes to mine. I'm sorry there are no close friends that can help. I have 2 children also and it became such a burden to even ask for help, that I do cartwheels just to handle it all myself. Please use whatever time you can muster to look into local churches. They may even be able to offer some low cost childcare on occasion. They may even be able to help with the Christmas shopping so you don't have to. Sickness follows exhaustion and is pretty common. So, do take care. We know it can be tough sleeping, eating, and functioning, so go easy on yourself for the time being. You came to a good place, here. We can give emotional love and support, but please look into local resources. There are many organizations that want to help single moms with young children.

Lifting you in prayer,


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All very good suggestions. The boys are not in day care right now. I am off work at the moment so putting them there is not currently an option. My father is of NO help to me at all. He is wrapped up in his own world, doesn't talk to me and sleeps all day and night. He is in a very selfish mode, he even told me and my brother when my mom was dying that he was the only one losing someone and the only one affected. That hurt a whole bunch to think he has no consideration that I lost my precious mother. But that is his mentality and it will never change. I think it would help me if he went home but he has not mentioned that at all. He is like having a 3rd child in the house and waits for me to serve him just as my mom did, and my mom did it while pushing a walker. I'm just a little resentful.

I'm going to the group grief counseling this week. Hope I will can get something out of it. I just need some time to be alone. I am yearning for some time for myself. I will need to figure it out.

Thanks all,


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Amy Great news that you are able to go to a grief group by you! At least you know you have that time alone to deal with and express your grief. That's ME time for you and sorely needed I'm sure.

Your Dad sounds like he could greatly benefit from going to a grief group for folks who have lost their spouses. See if you can get any info about any near his place that meet.

It sounds like he is dragging you down and making things WAY more difficult for you. He could easily do what he does at your place at his own place. You might not want to wait for him to "mention" going back home. You may need to broach the topic yourself. Why not seek some opinions on that at your group session?

I know he is hurting something awful right now. But... so are you. I hear you ... he is in selfish mode. And he has every right to feel horrible but he doesn't have the right to treat you or your children poorly. So I would draw the line there if I were you.

I understand he is wanting someone to take care of him & his needs right now and that's ALL very understandable... it's just that there must come a time when he does indeed start his life once again in his own home. HOWever.. your resentment is Also very understandable. ((((Hugs))))

It's a challenge right now for sure for you.

How about for right now... you make your kitchen self serve.... Call him in for lunch or whatever meal and have the bread out.. tell him where the luncheon items are and hand him a knife.... :) I'm sure he can handle it. And you go ahead and make the boys' up and your own. He'll catch on.

And call him in at supper time too. Ask him to help you prepare the meal itself or set the table or show the boys how to set the table.. etc...

Ask him to help tyou sort or fold the laundry. If he won't come to you ... you go to him. Plunk down on the couch or bed next to him and say, "Dad I could use some help." and hand him one of the boys (or his own) shirts to fold. I would look for opportunities for him to help a bit here & there. And slowly you may be able to draw him out of himself a bit.

He is hibernating there at your place right now it sounds like ... and like I said.. that's very understandable. But I would try to discuss with him when he is going to go back to his own place. (You could also ask your brothers for help with this.)

Maybe he needs you (and your brothers) to take the lead on this... even though he seems like he wouldn't want that. He may be just lost right now and need you to help him take those first steps back into life without your Mom.

If he was used to Mom doing everything.... you may need to write down a bunch of regular chores info for him. Like how to run the washer & dryer... dishwasher, if he has one.. the vacuum etc... Maybe put it all in a notebook for him. (I know when my Mom had her various major surgeries I had to do this for my Dad and I remember even taping the instructions onto the washer & dryer. LOL He did pretty good and he was one to be waited on if you let him get away with that, too. But he managed the house pretty well for the most part while Mom was in hospital or recovering at home.)

Cooking.. well.. there's always the ready made meals like Healthy Choice for dinners and I imagine he can handle making himself some sandwiches for lunch and cereal for breakfast. You could make a big vat of stew up for him once in awhile and freeze it up in one meal portions. Or as you cook for the three of you... make up a fourth portion and freeze it & label it for him. (You could make a show of doing all of this cooking and maybe even asking him what he would like to have in his freezer at home.) And also ask him to keep you company in the kitchen while you are cooking. Make some of his favorites... That should give him a good start in the kitchen and something to look forward to as something he doesn't need to worry about as well.

I'm so sorry your Dad hasn't been able to understand any of what you are going through. I'm sorry he isn't supporting you or even attempting to help you at all. I know it is awful that he lost his wife and I'm so sorry for his loss too.

But please try to remember... the way things are right now may not be the way they will always be. See if he can join you and the boys with making some cookies... or some Christmas craft or watching a video or something.. ANYthing....etc. The kids may be your best allies with him. It's mighty hard to resist a 4 year old saying with much exuberance: "Look what I made Grandpa??!!!"

Maybe draw him slowly back to life within your own house and he will feel more ready to go back to his own. And if he really continues to resist any involvement in life at your place... a call to his Dr. may be in order. But this may take some time and probably loads of effort on your part. But.. if you keep trying to involve him and get him to help you a bit now, the sooner he may be able to tip-toe back into his own life.

Know we are here for you, so keep us posted & let us know how your group goes.


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Yes you are correct. He is dragging me down bad at the moment. Every day I feel more and more resentful. There is a lot of history there between he and mom, lots that I saw occuring that is making me not like him very much becuase he is doing the same things to me that he did to my mom, and she was disabled. I do want to scream but I am going to keep it together. He tolsd my brother 4 days ago that he was going home in a few days and still no mention. I think once we get through X-Mas I am going to bring it up as gently as I can, like so....what are your plans? I am trying to get through each day as it comes and I feel successful at surviving another day. You are right, my dad is able bodied and can cook, clean, do his own laundry, get his own coffee, etc. This morning I asked my boys what they would like for breakfast. My dad replied, make me an egg and get me a cup of coffee. It was all I could do not to scream!! He doesn't even say can you please or do you mind, I know you're busy with the boys, I know you're depressed because your precious mother just died! No, it is all about him. This will take me a lot of therapy to get through but at least I recognize it. I am going to the group session tomorrow evening and I hope I find it helpful.



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make me an egg and get me a cup of coffee

Can you try:

"Gee Dad I'm kinda of busy with the boys at the moment... the coffee is in the carafe, please help yourself."

And if you would like to not wait til after the holidays to find out what hi splans are.... ask him now:

"So you are going home in a few days Dad?" Then if he says something like: "I didn't say that.", you can always say, "Oh, that's what (fill in brother's name) told me. What are your plans then Dad?"

Sounds like he has a history of being on the self centered & manipulative side (and perhaps more....). Amy..... it's been my experience that people who are that way will attempt to manipulate ANYone to do what they want.

Be strong Girl! You are a Mom with two boys sitting there like sponges.... taking it all in. You must watch for yourself and them. Do not allow him to treat you as he treated your Mom. You already know that doesn't work. You already know that's not for you.

So... find something different that does work for you. I can well imagine you are not wanting to feel resentment or anger right now. So I would nip this in the bud... and soon.... with Dad.

There doesn't need to be any hollering or anything. Just kill him with kindess.. and literally... don't make yourself a doormat.

I think the last thing you need right now is him sitting there waiting to be "served". And perhaps the more you ask of him the faster he will want to be outta there. lol So keep asking him to help himself or to help you.

I have learned that no one.. I don't care who it is.... has the right to manipulate me or order me about or abuse me. The only way that happens is if I LET them.

I'm sending all kinds of empowering thoughts your way hon.

Let us know how the group goes. And yeah.. I applaud you for considering the counselling. I've been there and been very glad I did that. It was hard work but.. the payoff? ..... priceless. Made me a much better Mom, wife and person.



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