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I had a friend ask me, rather facetiously, how long do we continue on this site, how long does it take? As if there is some magical time frame by which we've crossed the border on taking more than our allotted time...

I told her, as long as we want...as long as it takes. You see, we are friends here, this is our family, and grief doesn't know a time table, grief continues. Oh, it might change form, it might ebb and flow, know it's ups and downs, but how can you say a definitive time...a year, three years, five...what difference does it make?

Some of us go through other things, new griefs, they add to the original one...and it is our friends here that get us through it...we all get each OTHER through these spots in life. How long indeed? As long as it takes...

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I can't give solutions to all of life's problems, doubts,

or fears. But I can listen to you, and together we will

search for answers.

I can't change your past with all it's heartache and pain,

nor the future with its untold stories.

But I can be there now when you need me to care.

I can't keep your feet from stumbling.

I can only offer my hand that you may grasp it and not fall.

Your joys, triumphs, successes, and happiness are not mine;

Yet I can share in your laughter.

Your decisions in life are not mine to make, nor to judge;

I can only support you, encourage you,

and help you when you ask.

I can't prevent you from falling away from friendship,

from your values, from me.

I can only pray for you, talk to you and wait for you.

I can't give you boundaries which I have determined for you,

But I can give you the room to change, room to grow,

room to be yourself.

I can't keep your heart from breaking and hurting,

But I can cry with you and help you pick up the pieces

and put them back in place.

I can't tell you who you are.

I can only love you and be your friend.

Love Always,

Wendy :wub:

Kay I know some of us will probably never leave whether it is because we will never fully heal or because we are so grateful for the love and compassion we were shown when we came here that we want to return the favor ourselves to anyone new coming in and joining our family. So to answer How Long? As long as it takes or as long as we are needed !

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I raise my glass to you, Kay, "Here...Here." When we get to a point when we are somewhat comfortable with things, that's the time to continue to be here - just because we've been there and truly understand. As far as I know, I'll be here for a long time watching for a moment when I might be able to offer a positive proof that we do get through it, and safely. My hat goes off to you, my friend, Kay.

Love, Karen :wub:

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I look at this site in 2 ways one was already mentioned, there will be other grief in life in its ups and downs and people will be here when that happens. I never really thought about how long to stay on this site. I come and go sometimes not posting for awhile. I stay in touch as I am subscribed to this forum on here so I see evry new post that comes through in my e-mail. Sometimes I log on and there are so many posts already that have said what I would have said so I don't post. I stay here however to offer hope to someone who is just starting. If us old timers (if almost 3 years can be considered that) if we didn't stay on and it was just those who are fresh in grief how would they know that life ever so slowly does get better? Even at 3 years I still have my ups and downs and I am sure there will be more. So I don't like to put a time frame on any of this, to each there own, we are all different in how long it takes to get better. All of you have been like family to me, have been there for me and I am grateful to have shared a little part of my life with you all, and look forward to continueing to share lifes ups and downs with you.

Love always

Derek

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Hi All,

I know it has almost been four years for me and there has not been a day that I have not thought of my mom or dad... Today I found out that my friend lost her mom to a massive stroke last Wednesday and the thoughts of losing my mom came all back to me... So I do not know how long grief lasts but to me I think that you will always miss your loved one but you learn to deal with the loss better as time goes by... I hope this helps... Shelley

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Hi Kay,

My hat goes off to you for telling that person, as long as it takes, some people just don't know what to say.

I am so gratful you are here and was here when I got here, you have been a great help to me.

And whom ever said that must have not had a lost because they will know it takes whatever it takes and however long

it takes. It it not all the time we talk about our grief just our life and that is how long it takes a lifetime.

Proud of you for setting that person clear. Everyone thanks for being here I need you all.

Jackie

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I have had similar questions, like doesn't it bring me down and make me worse, isn't it prolonging my grief so that I'll never get over it, etc. Like some of the others have said, if you say ONE thing to help someone else along it is all worth it. If it were only newbies how could they help each other. It gives us hope and yet let's us feel normal when we fall backwards. At least we know we have a safety net here. You can say whatever you want and where else can you do that. So if I'm here 30 years from now whose business is it but mine.

If I leave here I may leave some friends and I really hope some day to meet some of these people face to face.

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Hi Kay and everyone:

Even if I was completly not grieving (which I doubt very much), our lives have changed forever and we will always miss our spouses. I will still come to this site no matter what. I have found very good friends here and I hope to keep in contact with you all.

Love,

Jeanne

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Guest moparlicious

KayC,

Ditto to all that was already said. For me, I do believe I will never leave this site. I have found so many friends and my new family here, the compassion, love and growth we all experience together is something I will always cherish. We suffered huge losses already and to leave, isn't that another loss for all of us?????

Love, Kim

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We suffered huge losses already and to leave, isn't that another loss for all of us?????

Good point!

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I know I was brought up to believe that you have to "stop feeling sorry for yourself" and "not wallow in your grief". But that's all wrong. I am lucky enough to work at a college where a class on the psychology of death and dying and grief is offered. I took the class, and it was very helpful, and the professor pointed out that it's ridiculous to think that talking about your lost loved one is wallowing, or will "only remind you" of your grief. He said, "Do you think a parent who has lost a child or a wife/husband who has been widowed EVER forgets that for even one minute?"

Ann

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KayC,

Grieving is not something that has a time frame attached to it and those that think it does have not walked in the shoes of those who have lost their mate/spouse/partner. When people make a comment that implies an ending point for this type of grief I am reminded once again of some of the folks around me who have questioned my grief in the past. This was such a sore point with me that I devote a chapter of two to it in my book – “Finding My Banana Bread Man.” There are two poems I wrote which speaks directly to this issue. I may have shared them with this site in the past; however, there are many new faces – so here they are again. One is entitle – “I Became Their Greatest Fear” and the other is entitled “A Stunning Jolting Jar.”

“I Became Their Greatest Fear”

Some say that I can’t let go

Gentle hearts that think they know

Others say a buried past

Is where You should now rest at last

Others tell me that they know

How my past should be – “let go”

How to grieve and how to cry

How to feel – and when – and why

Those who do not understand

Have not been to this dark land

When they could not see you here

“I Became Their Greatest Fear”

Friends who where the closest to us

Fussed and cared and brought food to us

Once you were no longer here

I am now what they all fear

Calls and contact used to flourish

Constant tales to encourage

Now the message is quite clear

I am now what they all fear

Those who do not understand

Have not been to this dark land

When they could not see you here

”I Became Their Greatest Fear”

For those who think they know it all

And those who cannot make a call

Letting go that’s what I must do

But its not - You - that must go

They will become my buried past

It’s where They should now rest at last

Letting go that’s what I must do

But its not - You - that must go

Those who do not understand

Have not been to this dark land

When they could not see you here

“I Became Their Greatest Fear”

“A Stunning Jolting Jar”

For many months I stayed connected

I shared - reached out - and felt respected

But as the months and years have faded

I know your heart is feeling weighted

He was my bright shinning star

His loss “A Stunning Jolting Jar”

It’s not that I have changed my stance

I speak of love – and lost romance

I write of tears and grief that’s molten

Of broken hearts and futures stolen

I talked of pain that’s here and real

I made you think and made you feel

I seldom left without a passage

To lift your heart – and send a message

He was my bright shinning star

His loss - “A Stunning Jolting Jar”

I have tried with so much passion

To talk and teach and show compassion

All this despite - my own faith shaken

My spirit crushed - feeling forsaken

I tried to put you front and center

To help you grieve and to remember

But as the months and years have faded

I know your heart is feeling weighted

He was my bright shinning star

His loss - “A Stunning Jolting Jar”

My recovery spans a lifetime

Your’s is measured in much less time

He was my bright shinning star

His loss - “A Stunning Jolting Jar”

Some of you don’t want to hear

Of all the pain and all the fear

Run from all that’s here and real

Run and do not think or feel

Some of you I’m gently leaving

Letting go and sadly grieving

I seldom leave without a passage

To lift your heart – so here’s my message

He was my bright shinning star

His loss - “A Stunning Jolting Jar”

My recovery spans a lifetime

Your’s is measured in much less time

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Kay - very good question. There are many times when i feel a chasm between well-meaning friends and myself. I can, or did, before DH, spout my opinion about anything and everything. I find myself much more reticent now. It's difficult to explain to those who do love me exactly what I am feeling and going through. I'm struggling to figure it out myself! Plus, if I really said what I thought, I would probably scare the hell out of them. It's funny though (in a very good way) that I can express myself so well here - if there's one thing grief does, it tends to leave the crap behind. The emotions expressed here are raw and true; something not normally done in one's day to day "normal" life. And it's so very much appreciated. Peace, friends, Marsha

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Kay,

How do you always know just the right thing to say to people. You have a gift!

I love what AnnC's professor said...He said, "Do you think a parent who has lost a child or a wife/husband who has been widowed EVER forgets that for even one minute?" It's like getting a new pair of eyes. We see everything differently because of what we've endured.

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