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confused_father

has my daughter accepted her mothers death

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my daughter is 5 years old, i seperated from her mother after a terrible relationship during which she was often violent whilst drunk.

since then her life had spiralled out of control, she was drinking very heavily and it was getting to the stage where my daughter didnt want to go home after her weekend with me. eventually the school got in touch with me to say that she wasnt attending regularly and social services got involved so i made the decision to bring my daughter to live with me. i changed her school and she settled in brilliantly. her mothers behaviour became more and more eratic she was awarded visiting rights to my daughter unsupervised (which i strongly objected too) which led to me having to get the police when she refused to return her, she had taken her to a pub and got drunk. anyway the day before the court hearing where she was going to have to explain her behaviour, she hung herself, i was devastated.

this has been very traumatic for me especially since her family blame for what has happened, but my daughter didnt react to the news at all. whats more she refuses to talk about her mother apart from letting slip that she was sometimes left alone in the house. i would love her to tell me how she feels or even talk about her mam but i dont want to push her into talking about something if she doesnt want to. 

my family seem to think that she is just relieved to be in a proper settled enviroment now but i feel so useless if she cant tell me whats going on in her head.

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Confused father, 

I am so very sorry about this tragedy in your daughter's and your life. First off, you have no fault in the behavior of your ex. It was her behavior and her decisions that led to her death, not yours. 

That being said, I am certainly no professional, but I believe your daughter needs to talk to someone about all of this. I'm not sure a five-year-old has the capacity to feel so "relieved" that she is "over" her mother's death.  Make sure she is able to verbally express how she feels and is able to move forward. At the very least, your daughter was seriously neglected and has to deal with the trauma of that. A professional could help steer you on the right path for her.

We will be here with you,

ModKonnie

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thanks for the reply modkonnie, i am seeking help for her and there is a support worker at the school but he seems to want to wait for her to open up in her own time. 

the whole situation is horrible, i still loved her deep down but i despised the person that alcohol had turned her into, i wasnt even welcome at her funeral due to the abuse i received from her family.

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Dear Confused Father, 

I am so sorry for the loss of your wife. As Modkonnie said, it is not your fault and has nothing to do with you. There was an inability within her to cope with life. 

Being left behind from a suicide is a nightmare. A death from an accident or illness is one where they did not choose to leave loved ones behind but a suicide, they chose to leave us. We feel tons of guilt and feel like what did I do or didn't do or say? We have a million  questions that will never be answered.

It sounds to me you have been a loving and responsible Father and are doing your best. I am not sure a 5 year old truly understands the gravity of suicide but I would let her take her time to open up with her questions. Even though she was probably sad and disappointed in her Mom's behavior, she will always love her Mom. Keep a picture of her and tell her the happy times you all have had as a family. She is going to feel, why did Mommy leave me? Did I do something wrong, didn't she love me enough, etc... She may always feel inadequate but just reassure her what a wonderful child she is and that adults have problems and don't always make the right decisions but that Mommy loved her very much, she just had problems. That's why it is important to talk to our family about our problems. She can always come talk to you about anything. Consistency is so important.

Just let her know you love her and you will always be there for her and give her stability. She will ask questions when she is ready. 

May God bless you and your daughter. May he wrap his arms around you both and give you comfort and strength.

Sincerely, Sherry 

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thank you for your words sherry, i should of pointed out in my post that i havent told my daughter how her mam died, i just said she hadnt been very well and went up to live with the angels in heaven, i dont want her to remember her mam that way, i try to get her to talk about the good times they had together and things she liked to do with her mam, maybe it will just take a bit time for her to open up.

 

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