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Mothers Day And A Lack Of Support

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I'm new to this site so I hope I'm posting in the right place. My mother died two years ago. She got a paper cut on a Friday that got infected and turned into cellulitis. I live across the country and before I could get home, she died the following Friday. My grandmother told me that the stress of me being on the opposite coast was what made her sick and refused to let me read a eulogy at the funeral. Since then my life has fallen apart. My dad developed a drinking and drug habit and is clean now but has spent almost all of his money and is about to lose the house. My grandfather (who is the closest person to me after my mom) has Alzheimers and cancer and will not be around very much longer. I don't have any siblings and I literally lost all of my friends when my mom passed. People who I had been friends with for years couldn't be bothered to send their condolences or did once and then never wanted to hear about the subject again. The "Call if you need anything - anytime!" line? It was just that - a line. I confronted a number of them and mentioned how I had been there for them over the years and how this was the one time I really needed them. Most apologized but nothing changed and as hard as I tried I just couldn't forgive them. Growing up I was really happy-go-lucky - always laughing - and now I have this image that if I ever mention serious issues to future friends, boyfriends, etc. I'll lose them. I've tried to reach out to relatives but my dad's side of the family has racial issues and my mom's side has no interest in who I am as a person...they just want me to be the living reminder of my mom.

Mothers Day is this Sunday and I feel so emotional. Every time someone so much as tweets about Mothers Day I either get mad to the point where my ears turn red or I fight back tears. I just want one person to call and ask how I'm doing. I feel like I'll never heal without support, but if "friends" and relatives who've known me for years don't care why would anyone else? I've tried to date and find a good guy but guys in my city freak out if you're bigger than a size 2 or don't have your nails done. I have those things going for me but since they're repulsed by things that shallow, I don't see anyone being willing to take on even part of my baggage.

The sad part is, if someone met me in person they'd never know I wrote this. In the line of work that I'm in you have to be flawless, charming, and "on" 24/7 and I do that. So some girls hate me because they think I have a perfect life when in reality when I come home, sit on the couch and cry because I lost the closest person in the world to me and no one cares enough to ask "Are you okay?"

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hi JEM0952,

I am so sorry for the loss of your Mom. Welcome to our online family. While none of us can take away your pain, make anything easier or better I hope you will come to realise that as alone as you feel right now you will find others here who can relate to you. We all feel and deal with it differently but coming here has made me realise that I am not the one and only person in the world feeling like I do, someone else can nod and agree and understand and it means a lot ...........makes me feel "normal" as abnormal as I feel, my life feels and the world now feels.

I am so sorry too that your Grandmother said that to you and refused to let you do the eulogy .........was she your Mother's Mom ? Such a heavy load to land on you and it's far from the truth, you are not the cause of your Mom getting sick, I hope you know that. Perhaps the shock of losing her daughter so suddenly caused her to lash out and you unfortunately were the one she took it out on you, it's not an excuse for what she did but maybe just a possible reason. Do you talk with your Grandmother now, hear from her ?

I'm glad your Dad is clean now, how awful for him having gone down that road. Do you have him to talk to these days ?

I'm sorry your friends jumped ship right at a time when you needed them, you needed them not to give up on you and to just stick by your side. I do hate the line "call if you need anything" .........for me personally I found it hard and still do struggle to make calls to people, I still need them to be the ones to contact me for the most part. How brave of you to confront them, it's sad to hear nothing changed even though they apologised to you. I think grief scares a lot of people, especially when they have no experience of it, they don't know what to say or do so they avoid it and that's the last thing some grieving needs. I don't blame you for not being able to forgive them. For now I've lost contact with cousins who were like brothers and sisters to me all through our lives, I too am an only child. My cousins lost their Mom 5 years ago so I thought of all people they would understand but unfortunately I didn't get the type of support I needed from them and I had to pull away for now.

I'm sorry you don't have any support from your Dad or Mom's family, that's just so so wrong. All I can say to you is that none of this lack of support is your fault, it's not because you want to talk about how you're feeling, because you want to talk about serious issues ........the problem is with others who do not have compassion and patience that you deserve. I hope you know that.

Of course Mother's Day on Sunday is going to make you feel so emotional, it's a horrible hard day when your Mom is not here. I get feeling mad at any mention of the day, last year was my first Father's Day without my Dad. Seeing cards in shops, ads everywhere for what to buy a Dad was just so cruel and hard to see. So unfair that I couldn't go shopping for a cool gift for him.

Have you ever thought about a grief support group ? I went to an 8 week one recently, only reason I went was because my Mom wanted me to go with her. It was refreshing to see someone face to face just nod when I spoke and know where I was coming from. It made me realise that I wasn't the only one in this country feeling like I did. This website has and continues to be my lifeline, I have no clue how I would have survived the last 16months without everyone here but being able to sit face to face with someone else going through it at the same time was good. Of course none of it eased my pain or hurt but there is something to be said just knowing others can relate to how you feel. Because everything you think and feel is perfectly normal...........it's not a normal we are used to, it's not a normal we wanted or chose, it was forced on us.

I only wish I could clone a couple of my friends and send them to you because there are angels to me. Do you ever hear from your friends now ? I wish I had advice, I wish I had words of comfort, I wish I could guarantee everything would be ok but I can't and there just really are no real words of comfort for this nightmare.

All I can do is promise that we are always here & can share with you.

Sending you a big ((hug)), lots of comfort and peace hun,


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I am so sorry for your loss and for what your "friends" have put you through. I lost my husband a year ago and I agree with you that when people say call me it is just a pie in the sky thing. They never really mean it and feel better themselves for saying it.

Try not to think about it and maybe volunteer your time in a homeless shelter or food pantry. I have found it is a positve way to spend my time and I tend not to think about my loss but about how much I can help others.

My children lost their father to cancer in a very short time so I know what you are going through. You have lost your best friend, but I believe she is still watching over you.

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@niamh Thank you so much for your support. My grandmother was my mom's mom. I see her about once a year and talk to her on the phone maybe once a month...mostly because my dad insists on it. It's the whole "Even though you don't get along now, someday you won't be able to make that call" guilt trip. I'm civil with her but try to keep it the conversation very superficial because I just don't trust her. Ironically, the better I do in my career the more she wants to talk to me...like that makes me worth conversing with. I've never been close with my dad. He messed up a number of times in my childhood in ways that are unimaginable and at best I see him as an acquaintance. I've been trying to work on my relationship with him because I think it's important to have family but it's hard because sometimes I feel like I deserve more than what he's capable of giving. He's never the one who initiates phone calls, he has a hard time keeping track of what's going on in my life, and he says he supports me but makes snide comments that suggest otherwise. I've discussed all this with him but I feel like a fool expecting for him to change.

I agree about needing friends to reach out first. In the past when I told someone that I needed support, if they asked how I was at that point I felt like they were asking because they felt like they had to and not because they really cared. I'm sorry to hear about your cousins, you would think that they would be the first ones there for you since they understand how intense that pain is. Thank you for saying that it's not my fault...I felt like something had to be wrong with me for so many people to abandon me like that. When I was 13 a couple classmates lost their parents. They weren't people I was extremely close to, but I knew they were going thru a hard time and thought I should be there for them in any way I could. It amazes me that I had that sense at 13 but people in their 20s and older are too selfish to do the same thing.

I've been a little hesitant to go to a grief support group. I went to Alanon when my dad started drinking and just felt really uncomfortable. It's a Catch 22 because I would love to have support but at the same time don't want my grief to be the only thing people see me for. There's something about the circle and group setting of it that makes me feel put on the spot. As for hearing from my friends, I only hear from people on facebook when they want to know how my career is going. It's funny that it's so easy for them to ask me 99 questions about what I'm working on and have no regard for anything else. I was home about a month ago and some of my mom's old friends insisted on seeing me...even though they had never shown an interest in me or life before that. When I saw them they just wanted to reminisce on memories of my mom and talk about ways I reminded them of her. Like "I can't see her in Heaven but I guess you'll do." It really hurts, it just makes me feel so worthless. I literally have no one in my life right now that seems to care about how I feel or even really who I am - not what I am.

My mom was the opposite. Someone could name a food and she could tell you if I liked it, loved it, hated it, etc. She knew what music, clothes, movies, etc. I would enjoy. She would pick up on me being nervous/upset/etc. when no one else could tell and would give my hand a little squeeze to let me know it was going to be okay. I talked to her every day and was closer to her than my dad, grandparents, etc. were. Yet at the funeral relatives I barely knew told me that I would be fine cuz I was strong but they were worried about my dad and grandfather. As if my feelings weren't relevant. I just have no idea how to trust people again. But I really appreciate you being there.

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@west Yes, exactly! When it first happened and people were giving the "I'm there for you" lines, I felt like it was really self-serving. Like they did what they felt were supposed to do, were proud of themselves for it, and then wanted to get back to talking about boys and going to clubs. Volunteering is a beautiful thing, my worry though is that I can't distract myself forever. I have responsibilities that keep me busy, but I'm trying to work on processing everything. I have an ex who lost his father when he was 15 and I can tell it still deeply affects him at 30. Partially because it's something that will always be with you but partially because I don't think he ever really took the time to grieve. I'm very sorry for the loss of your husband, I know that's not an easy thing to go through.

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@kawaiinicole I'm sorry about your mom. That was so recent. I think the first month can be the hardest, I was told it would get better but didn't fully believe it then. Eventually it becomes bearable but still hard. Mother's Day, her birthday, and the anniversary are definitely difficult, glad to hear you're getting support on these boards.

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I'm so sorry to hear about your loss, your situation is very difficult, and I'm sorry you have to go through it, as if it wasn't hard enough not being there at the end to go through all this as well.. do you still live where you lived when your mother passed?

I too came to this site due to "friends" not being there after so many years of being there for them, I've heard before unfortunately it's during crisis like these that they can't step up to the plate, which is horrible to have to deal w/that as well as your loss.. if you can, I'd really advise you to attend some support groups or some one on one counseling if you can.. I feel also alone and I also live far from my family which doesn't help matters. I hope you reach out and find the support you need, doesn't matter if they're strangers, they'll know so much more about your situation and can sympathize a lot better than "friends" who don't know what it's like, can. Even a friend of mine who had experienced a loss was showing insensitivity..

It's also hard, but I feel these situations do tend to make one really look at who they are.. which can be a good thing, and the one thing I'm learning is you really need to make yourself your own best friend and learn not to rely on others.. support's always good, but I think it also helps to learn to rely on yourself for comfort and understanding..

hang in there

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Hi there,

I am very sorry for your loss. Losing a Mom is one of the worst experiences I think a human can go through. Even though I am a guy, I have had (and still have) some serious emotional problems since my Mom left 11 months and 3 days ago. Like you, she was my best friend in my entire life. I am walking around in a fog since then and don't know if I am coming or going. I can relate to your feelings. For more on my pathetic story, you can read my posts if you're interested.

I can tell how close you were t oyour Mom. I certainly nknow how it is when nobody seems to be there. Even my own family has been very lacking in support. My girlfriend is trying to be great about it (and she is) but she has no idea what I am going through at all. I really feel very alone most of the time. My dog (who was also my Mom's dog) is grieving with me. We are all we each have I feel sometime. She understands me and I understand her. Her heart is brotken over this loss too. My Mom loved her and she loved my Mom.

Please try to keep reaching out though. Go to support groups and read any and all kinds of books on parental loss. It has helped me a little. Most of all come here a lot. Wonderful people here. This place has saved my sanity many times.

Please keep in touch!

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@Lilac I do live in the same place still. I did one-on-one counseling on-and-off for a while with a great therapist but at the end of the day as compassionate as she is, I feel like any therapist is just doing their job. The first counselor I tried going to mentioned that her friend had lost her mom and she avoided the friend because the subject made her uncomfortable. As for the distance, I recently went to visit my grandfather - it was supposed to be my chance to say goodbye. I was glad I got the opportunity then, but now I feel like I would be devastated if I was across the country when he passes...I don't think that I could relive that again.

I'm sorry that you've had to deal with the lack of support as well. Saying it feels like a slap in the face is an understatement. I agree that situations like this force you to learn about yourself which is a positive thing. I don't believe that people were placed on the earth to be completely self-reliant though...kind of makes for a lonely existence. It's great to be able to take care of yourself, but I think you need to know there's at least one person you could rely on IF you ever needed that for whatever reason. Relationships are give and take...being able to provide everything for yourself can sometimes attract the wrong type of people.

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Hi @Aquarius7. I wasn't able to find your previous posts, only topics it said you had responded to for some reason. Feel free to share your story here. I would imagine that it's just as hard for a guy. In a lot of situations the mother is the one who people come to for advice, emotional support, understanding, etc. That's a serious bond to break. I agree, I think it's one of the worst things that anyone goes through. I remember the fog. I used to walk to the grocery store or to work and look down in amazement that I was putting one foot in front of the other...how my body knew to carry on even when my heart didn't. In some ways it's a relief when it goes away because it feels like you're starting to heal and make progress. At the same time it sucks because you're stuck with this emptiness...I feel like I come off so boring and personality-less. It sounds dramatic but I literally feel like part of my soul went with her.

Your second paragraph made me cry. What really hurts is that people make excuses like "They don't know what to say" "They're afraid of losing their own parents" "They don't want to upset you". In a few cases that's true but the bottom line is that a lot of people just don't care. You can see it in their facial expressions, tone of voice, body language. Uncomfortable and disinterested are two emotions that don't usually look alike. It's amazing how intelligent animals are. 10 days after my mom died my cat (who was living with my mom) gave up. I'm so glad you have your dog though. She understands that your mom is gone and I'm sure just being able to give her a hug brings a little comfort. It's good that your girlfriend has stuck by you through this. Has she gained more of an understanding from you talking to her about it?

I've read a lot on the subject, unfortunately in terms of support groups even if I decided to check one out I only found one that's pretty far away from me. Which doesn't make sense because they have Alanons and meetings of that nature everywhere. You're right in terms of reaching out. I've tried to heal on my own and obviously it's not enough. I think eventually I'll find a strong circle of friends but I'm going to have to be willing to put myself out there and deal with/weed out some not-so-compassionate people before that happens. Hope that your Mother's Day is tolerable!

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