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Losing A Sister In Law

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Where to I begin. Bernice started getting sick in November and got worse in December. It was so bad that my husband and I drove to her house in PA and took her to the emergency room the next morning. They did a biopsy on her the next day and it shoewed no cancer so they thought it was female related and she was going to have a hysterectomy well that all changed when they went in the urologist did not find cancer but when the OB/GYN who was using robotics she found the cancer and the urologist took out some of her bladder and they thought they got all the cancer. Well she was recovering but then things started to get bad again and my husband and I where trying to get her into John Hopkins for Chemo because that is where she wanted to go for Chemo. Well she was to weak to go for Chemo and She had a very rare form of cancer that was very aggressive and she passed away on 3/10/2012. I miss her really bad. She and I where really close we where more like sisters and my best friend. We talked on the phone every day for almost 5 years and I miss that we always talked in the evening and on weekends. There are times that I want to cry but fight back the tears. I am dealing with alot of grief right now because not only did my sister in law pass away, but a good friend of mine her newborn grandson passed away, and then a former pastor's wife of mine passed away and my Pastor's father passed away. So there is alot going on. I am really having a hard time dealing with all of this.

I still find it hard to believe that my sister in law is gone, but she is. It feels like someon ripped a whole out of my heart and there is a major void there.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Dear Sherryann, I'm so sorry that it's taken so long for you to receive a response from one or more of our members! Unfortunately that happens sometimes ~ but knowing our membership as I do, I'm sure that someone will respond in time. Please know that it's certainly NOT because people do not care.

It may seem to you that no one is concerned enough to respond to your post, and you may then conclude that you must deal with your grief all by yourself – but I can assure you that is not the case.

One of the benefits of our site is that it offers visitors like yourself a safe place to put your feelings. Like a journal, it's always there, 24 hours a day, free of charge and ready to "listen" without judgment or reproach. Unfortunately, however, the forums are set up in such a way that whenever a new topic is started by someone, the other messages already posted can get "lost," unless our visitors are savvy enough to go deeper into a given forum to find them.

When a message has been left unanswered, it does not mean that no one cares enough to post a response. Many, many people are on this site just reading others' posts, and do not necessarily join in the conversation. On the "Loss of a Sibling" page that lists the titles of all topics in that forum, for example, I do note that your original message has been viewed by others at least 27 times. Sometimes a member may not have time to post an appropriate response, or may not be able to find the words. Sometimes just reading through all the other postings is enough to provide the emotional support and inspiration someone may need.

It may help for you to know that as moderator on the site, I am careful NOT to respond to each and every post (although I do read each and every one of them), because I do not want to be perceived as thinking I am the "grief expert" on the site. (I want our members to see themselves as the experts in their own mourning process.) Oftentimes I will deliberately hold back on responding to a given post, just to see if another member will step in and do so -- and most of the time, that happens. Ordinarily I don't let a post go more than 24 hours without a response, because I want our members to know that I am paying attention to them and to the site. Unfortunately in your case, I did not see your post until this very moment, and for that I am deeply sorry.

There is so much loss going on in your life that is complicating the grief you feel at losing your beloved sister-in-law. It's no wonder that you're feeling overwhelmed and having a hard time dealing with all of this. Even if you don't feel supported here, I hope that as a gift you can give yourself, you will look for other sources of help that may be offered at no cost.

Most communities nowadays have bereavement support groups sponsored by local hospices, mortuaries, churches or synagogues. Call your telephone operator or public library and ask for the numbers for your local mental health association or your local suicide prevention center. Either agency will have good grief referral lists. As I've said elsewhere on this board, you need not be suicidal to get a grief referral from a suicide prevention center.

Use the Yellow Pages and call whatever hospitals and hospices are near you – or go to http://nhpco.org/cus...ectory/main.cfm where you can search for bereavement services in your area. Call and ask to speak with the Bereavement Coordinator, Social Worker, or Chaplain's Office to get a local grief referral. Many hospitals and hospices provide individual and family grief support to clients for up to one year following a death, and offer bereavement support groups to the general public at no cost. Grief is such hard work, and you ought not to be trying to do it all alone.

I also suggest you spend some time doing a little reading about what normal grief looks like, so you'll have a better understanding of what you're going through and what to expect – it also may reassure you that what you're experiencing is quite normal under the circumstances. You might consider visiting and spending some time exploring my Grief Healing Web site, at http://www.griefhealing.com. It is my sincere hope that you will find some useful information as well as some comfort there.

Now that I've posted my own message to you this morning, I am hoping that other members soon will follow suit. In any event, please know that you are being heard, I sincerely welcome you to our site, and I hope that you will continue to feel welcome here.

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I agree with you. When someone takes the effort to post about their grief here, it's only basic courtesy for this community to give you some kind of response. There are a couple reasons why some posts get neglected. Some of the forums, like the Loss of a Sibling or Twin forum, are quite slow. Frequently weeks will pass by in this forum before something new gets posted. And then, sometimes, the new post is ignored. Yup, the larger community here, me included, ignored your post.

This online grieving community in total numbers of active posters is quite small. Probably less than a hundred people post here with any regularity. But there is also a benefit to being small. Once you connect with people here, you will probably find the strong support you are looking for. It just takes a some patience and effort to take root within our community.

The only forum that has a lot of traffic is the Loss of a Spouse forum. It may seem ridiculous for you to start posting over there, because you didn't lose your spouse! But that's where people get a lot of feedback here. There are some super posters over there, most notably Kayc and mfh, whose reply posts run into the thousands. They are gifted in counseling others, and most everybody else also tries to help when they can.

I was more trouble than help when I came to this community 3 years ago. I was pretty hostile and angry after losing my mother. I argued with people, and probably said a few things that were less than supportive. Despite my negativity, others here somehow found patience to deal with me. Thinking back, why did people here help me when I was such a brat? Yet that support from others did help dissolve some of my dark emotion. Turned me around, my anger diffused after feeling the care was very real. Knowing that others cared made all the difference.

All of us here struggle, often intensely, with our own grief issues. We get overwhelmed and are sometimes very self-centered. I am so sorry we let your initial post go without response.

I hope you can find the support you need. Here or elsewhere. We are good people, just sometimes a bit neglectful. Apologies for that.

Ron B.

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Hi Sherryann,

Please accept my condolences for the passing of your sister-in-law. Also, please accept my apology for not responding to your post. It does feel better to write out some of the pain, but, it can hurt when no response comes. As I have learned, many people read the posts, but not nearly as many write.

We are grieving different relatives (as it is my mother who died last year on May 12th), but in losing her physically on this planet, I know how lonely and sad it feels to no longer have my very best friend to share my life with. I still feel the NEED to call her on the phone everyday, but now, I just talk - and cry - to her picture. I miss her so much!!

You sure are dealing with a lot of loss right now, and I feel for you. I don't write everyday on this site, but I do read new - and old - posts daily. Just know, when you write -- we are reading. It helps me to know that this pain is normal, and felt by others. My thoughts and prayers go out to you.

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