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anxious

Obsessed with the prospect of inevitable death

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I feel very guilty sharing this on a forum of people already grieving. My heart goes out to you so much. However, I am not sure where to turn.
I am very, very close to my parents. I still live with them at 25 years old. They are my best friends, and we do everything together. I don’t think I have been separated from them for longer than two weeks. I suppose my relationship with them is a dependent one. Everything I do, I do for them.
Lately I have become obsessed with the thought of their inevitable deaths. I spend all day browsing websites about grief, convincing myself that I would survive. However, I am just not sure that I would. Suicide seems like the only appropriate response. I cry all day, and I’m anxious from the moment I wake up. I have trouble sleeping, eating and doing anything enjoyable. My parents are currently in good health, but they are rather old and time is ticking. I know it is inevitable and happens to all of us, but I do not want my childhood to die forever, settling for a life in which I will never feel true happiness again. I have been diagnosed with anxiety, depression and Asperger’s syndrome, and I don’t think I will survive life without them. I’m not sure I want to. I know the obvious solution is to become more independent from them, but I worry that our lives have already become so intertwined that I will never recover.
I made an appointment to see a psychologist (again) soon, but any advice is welcome. Apologies for the strange post.

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Dear anxious,

I'm so sorry to hear how you feel. I know you love your parents very much. And its only natural to have some fears about death. To be honest, even though I know death is fact of life. I never knew how it felt till it happened to me. And nothing I could have done before hand could have prepared me. Nothing. I think I am learning to accept its part of the circle of life and we must all find ways to cope and carry on the best we can. Its hard not to feel overwhelmed sometimes but I am trying.

Glad you are going to speak to a psychologist about this. I hope he or she will give you the tools and skills to help cope. I too have tried talking to a counsellor and joining a support group. We just do everything we can to help ourselves cope with this part of life.

Wishing you all the best.

 

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I worry that I love them too much. I know it is normal to fear death, but I have become paralysed, unable to live my life. I wish I believed in God or the paranormal, but I don't. I don't fully understand it when people say 'he/she would not have wanted you to kill yourself' or 'live to make him/her proud' when that person isn't around anymore. It's like they are talking about a hypothetical person. It seems so unfair that after people die, those left behind seem to have to settle for a second-rate existence for the remainder of their lives (or perhaps I have been reading too many grief forums, and some people do in fact regain happiness, and they simply don't take to the internet?). I know I should cherish the moments I have left with my parents, but I find this to be almost impossible. I burst into tears when I consider the perfection of certain moments, and the perfection of our life as it is now, knowing that it will one day end. I wish we could collectively die, quickly, in some kind of major disaster, morbid though that is.
Thank you for responding, @reader. I have seen you all over the forums responding to people, offering a helping hand. You must be such a good person. What is your own loss, if you don't mind my asking?

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Dear anxious,

Thank you for your kind words. I don't think we can ever love anyone too much especially our parents. They say grief is the price we pay for love. And you are right, it is a very steep price.

My father passed away almost 6 months ago. It has been devastating for me. I knew death was a fact of life that none of us can live forever, but to know that my dad was no longer part of this earth was too much for me. It has been very hard. I do have supportive friends and family and everyone expects me to carry on. I know I must too, but that doesn't mean I don't have my difficult days. The counsellor showed me a grief model and says that how I am feeling is normal. Grief is universal sadly.

I had the same feelings as you my friend. I wanted my world, my bubble to stay the same. I think there is something in my personality that doesn't accept change easily. Please try to remain kind and gentle with yourself. I hope talking to the psychologist will offer you some comfort.

Please continue to post on this forum. We are all here to listen.

Take care. Wishing you all the best.

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@reader I feel like six months is very little time (although a very long time to actually get through!), so I would expect it to (still?) be very hard at that point. I'm worried that I would remain in the acute grief stage for ten years, or perhaps forever. Of course everyone is different, but do you feel that you are feeling even slightly better now? I very much hope so. Do you still have your mother? (If you want to answer that question at all!)
The bursting of a 'bubble' is so unbearable to think about. I almost find myself not wanting to make new memories, since I suppose they will only make the inevitable loss harder, but this is no way to live, of course. 

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I hear you, anxious. I know everything is easier said than done. My father had survived his stroke. His health was in a delicate state, but I still never believed he would die on me. I tried to make each day as happy as possible for him. I let him have all his favorite food and drinks. I tried very hard to make his life comfortable. I believe now I was in denial about the possibility of his death.

People say that grief's intensity will lessen over time. I get asked that a lot, are you okay? Well, yes and no. The grief comes to me waves. I've talked to friends who have lost a parent and it all depends on the person, but people say it can take anywhere from one year to 5 years before you can accept the loss. And the counsellor says I could still feel this way in 10 years if I do not address my feelings. Part of me wants to remain in denial and anger but I know its not healthy.

About my mother, she is still alive, but she cannot comfort me. She divorced my father over 20 years ago. She survived cancer and during her treatments, I never believed she would die either. Even though friends, family and colleagues were facing losses, I just never believed it would happen to me. Naively, I hoped it would not happen till I was in my 50s or 60s or even 70s. I know that is not realistic given that my father had children late in life.

I know so many men and women who have never married and continued living and caring for their parents into their 40s, 50s, 60s and one at 70. Losing a parent will hurt no matter what age we are or how much we see our parents. It never consumed my thoughts that my parents would ever leave me. But now that my dad has passed, the way he died, the last three years of his life is what bothers me the most. Yet, I don't worry about my mom passing or anyone else passing at this point. It is my father's passing that I cannot get over.

Sorry for how you feel. It is understandable, but I don't want it to impede the quality of your life. I really hope the psychologist will help.

 

 

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@reader I am very sorry about your father. It sounds like you took excellent care of him, even if seems to you like having been in denial. May I ask why you are so bothered about his final years, given that you (by the sound of it) did everything in your power to make him feel comfortable? 
I am glad that you still have people inquiring about whether you are okay, although that may be a difficult question to answer. I often hear about people being left behind by their friends following a major loss. I hope you will continue to have close friends like these. I'm sorry your mother is of no comfort to you. My father also didn't have me until he was 50 (he is extremely socially awkward, like me); my mother was 40.
I really admire your ability to not be concerned about future losses. I hope to be (more) like that one day. A really horrible thought I have is that when my parents have died at least I will have the worst behind me, my worst nightmare will have come true and nothing could ever make a bigger impact. I am wondering if I might even experience a slight sense of relief. I feel really guilty for thinking this, however.

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Thank you for your condolences.

I had a lot of anger and resentment building after my dad came home from the stroke. I felt I had the bulk of the responsibility and burden of caring for my dad. My siblings did not seem to care about how much I was doing. There was no offer of help or I felt concern for me personally.  There were many challenges with my dad's care, his house, my own work and everything started to snowball till I was burned out. But I didn't see it at the time. I lost my compassion and good judgement in the end.

 My father died in hospital. I didn't recognize he was dying and believed I would see him the next day. After I left his bedside, 2 hours later, the doctor called to tell me, he had passed. It was a terrible shock. My father had no one around him the moment he died. The nurse was the only one that witnessed his last breath. I know I can't go back in time but I wish I had done things differently. I should have reached out more to my siblings. Maybe I should have gone to counselling sooner.

What you said is true. That's how I feel. The worst has happened me, my father died. And going forward nothing scares me now. Not even the possibility of losing my mother or other family members at this point. This feels weird to say, but the closest person to me is lost and no one else will ever compare to this pain. I know true sorrow now. My siblings expect me to feel relief that I no longer have to worry about my father, but this is not my experience. I still feel pain because I felt I could have done something different to save him and keep him longer on this earth. Its probably not realistic, but that is what I think. 

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Dear anxious, I can relate to a lot of things you said.   I'm sorry that you are suffering from these obsessive thoughts.  I'm not a psychologist, but it sounds like you could have a form of OCD, which can be helped through cognitive behavioral therapy and medication. 

You seem highly intelligent.  Smart people tend to worry more than average.  You will need a highly intelligent psychologist to help you -- not sure how to find one though. I went through four therapists to help me with my grief, but found it only somewhat helpful, because none of them used cognitive behavioral therapy, even though they claimed to know how to use it. 

I found some links that might be helpful to you:

 
 
 
18 hours ago, anxious said:

 I don't fully understand it when people say 'he/she would not have wanted you to kill yourself' or 'live to make him/her proud' when that person isn't around anymore. It's like they are talking about a hypothetical person. It seems so unfair that after people die, those left behind seem to have to settle for a second-rate existence for the remainder of their lives (or perhaps I have been reading too many grief forums, and some people do in fact regain happiness, and they simply don't take to the internet?).

I know what you mean, but I think even if our late parents don't physically or spiritually survive death, the idea of them still continues to exist.  It is our duty as their children to carry on their legacy with honor and responsibility.  It's like patriotism -- a country only exists in the minds of its citizens, but no one with honor would betray their country's ideals of liberty and justice for all.  Our parents raised us to live and enjoy the fruits of their labor and our own.  I also hate that grief seems to condemn us to a second-rate existence for the remainder of our lives.  I try to look at it as a challenge -- I only have one life so I want to find a way to be happy again.  I may never be happy in the same way as I was with my beloved father, but I think it is possible to be happy in a new way.  If I didn't think that, then I would probably be suicidal.  Still, I would only commit suicide if I was experiencing unbearable pain -- otherwise, I would be too ashamed to make people think that my father had failed me in some way or that I had failed him.  I do feel like I failed him as a caregiver, because he died, but that is a normal part of grief -- it's normal to lay blame when something terrible happens.  And even if he did make the mistake of making me too dependent on him, which is arguable, I love him so much and I'm so grateful for the gift of life and the things that he taught me that I could not destroy that which he helped to create.   

My dad died over two years ago, and I do feel better than I did the first year.  I had never been alone before, so about eight months into my grief,  I let my gardener move in with me and that helped a lot for me to feel less lonely.  We don't have an ideal relationship, but it's always nice to have someone to talk to, even argue with.  My gardener does more for me than my relatives, so I feel like he is a godsend.  He's also good practice for a real relationship should I meet someone who can love me the way I want to be loved.

You never know who you are going to meet in life.  My gardener came knocking on my door out of the blue.  I thought I would never see him again.  You might fall in love or find a mentor who helps to make life worth living.  Even a loving pet can improve the quality of one's life.  I wish you and everyone here the best as we struggle with the sadness and uncertainties of life. 

 

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@reader I'm really sorry you've had so much to deal with. It sounds exhausting and lonely. I can't imagine the state of shock you must have been in after finding out that your father had passed in your absence. Were you closer to your father than your siblings were? (Given that you seem to have been his primary caretaker, I would imagine so). I am an only child, which will be hard, but I think being around siblings that don't really understand would be an even lonelier experience. I hope that that is not the case, and that you find some comfort in talking to them. I'm sorry you don't feel relief (this sounds weirdly cruel, but I hope you understand what I mean). I think I can understand your wanting to remain in anger and denial. Do you feel guilty not doing so? In a weird way, I think that I would feel that remaining depressed for the rest of my days would be like a tribute to the relationship I had with my parents, somehow proving that they were everything to me. Of course, this is unhealthy. I hope I'm not bringing you down by sharing my feelings. I wish you lots of love, as well as happiness (eventually). 

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8 hours ago, MissionBlue said:

Dear anxious, I can relate to a lot of things you said.   I'm sorry that you are suffering from these obsessive thoughts.  I'm not a psychologist, but it sounds like you could have a form of OCD, which can be helped through cognitive behavioral therapy and medication. 

You seem highly intelligent.  Smart people tend to worry more than average.  You will need a highly intelligent psychologist to help you -- not sure how to find one though. I went through four therapists to help me with my grief, but found it only somewhat helpful, because none of them used cognitive behavioral therapy, even though they claimed to know how to use it. 

I found some links that might be helpful to you:

 
 
 

I know what you mean, but I think even if our late parents don't physically or spiritually survive death, the idea of them still continues to exist.  It is our duty as their children to carry on their legacy with honor and responsibility.  It's like patriotism -- a country only exists in the minds of its citizens, but no one with honor would betray their country's ideals of liberty and justice for all.  Our parents raised us to live and enjoy the fruits of their labor and our own.  I also hate that grief seems to condemn us to a second-rate existence for the remainder of our lives.  I try to look at it as a challenge -- I only have one life so I want to find a way to be happy again.  I may never be happy in the same way as I was with my beloved father, but I think it is possible to be happy in a new way.  If I didn't think that, then I would probably be suicidal.  Still, I would only commit suicide if I was experiencing unbearable pain -- otherwise, I would be too ashamed to make people think that my father had failed me in some way or that I had failed him.  I do feel like I failed him as a caregiver, because he died, but that is a normal part of grief -- it's normal to lay blame when something terrible happens.  And even if he did make the mistake of making me too dependent on him, which is arguable, I love him so much and I'm so grateful for the gift of life and the things that he taught me that I could not destroy that which he helped to create.   

My dad died over two years ago, and I do feel better than I did the first year.  I had never been alone before, so about eight months into my grief,  I let my gardener move in with me and that helped a lot for me to feel less lonely.  We don't have an ideal relationship, but it's always nice to have someone to talk to, even argue with.  My gardener does more for me than my relatives, so I feel like he is a godsend.  He's also good practice for a real relationship should I meet someone who can love me the way I want to be loved.

You never know who you are going to meet in life.  My gardener came knocking on my door out of the blue.  I thought I would never see him again.  You might fall in love or find a mentor who helps to make life worth living.  Even a loving pet can improve the quality of one's life.  I wish you and everyone here the best as we struggle with the sadness and uncertainties of life. 

 


Thank you for your response. You must have a keen psychological eye, because I have also wondered if I have the ‘pure O’ type of OCD. I will also begrudgingly admit that I have found some of my previous therapists to have been a little simplistic in their approaches. Did you ultimately find a therapist that suited your needs? I hope so. I’m glad you seem to have found effective therapy in CBT. 

I have read the article in The Guardian before (although I found the response to be somewhat disappointing), but I have never seen the second link before (despite my obsessive reading about grief all day, haha), so thank you very much for that!

I do want to make the most of my life, and I do not wish to leave this planet without having somehow improved the lives of others in a real and lasting way. I do find myself secretly hoping that I will make a real change in the world before my parents die, so I can silently exit when they do, without feeling regret. More unhealthy thinking, I know.
I am glad you don’t report experiencing unbearable pain. I tend to lay the blame of my dependency on myself (should I have moved out at 18, like a normal person in my country?!), but perhaps my parents are also partially responsible, as maybe your father was.

I am so glad that you feel better than before. I also like that you live with your gardener. That is such a cool and unusual living arrangement (or maybe it isn’t so unusual where you live?). Do you keep a pet?
I am sorry for the wall of text...

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Dear anxious,

Please don't worry about sharing your feelings, you are not bringing me down at all. What you are sharing is universal. I think we all ask ourselves these questions at one point in our lives.

I think my anger and denial is just part of the grief journey. It's true I do not want my father to be forgotten. My mother wanted to erase him from our lives. But I had to be his advocate. I have spent my life trying to be present for him. For the simple things like changing a light bulb to the more serious things like getting him home after the stroke. It is the only life I know and to longer have him here on earth is too much for my brain to process. And yes, I have lots of guilt too about our last year together. It doesn't matter how many times I replay what happened it does not change the fact that my dad has passed. Nothing will but I keep berating myself even though others have told me to stop. I think I must have some OCD as well. I too have been reading about grief and trying to understand myself. I do hope to move forward and try to find some happiness but its hard to know what that looks like.

Often I do feel like an only child because my siblings are better at going about their lives without any concern for me or my father when he was alive. And even now, I still feel alone. They all think everything is okay. But I think I must be hyper sensitive and feeling hurt a lot of the time. Something else I need to work on and heal myself.

I have to agree with Mission. In my heart, I must honor what my father sacrificed for his family but continue to live and live well. I hope that does not sound too cheesy. But I think it is true. I am his blood. I am the only one that will regularly visit him at the grave site. Bring him flowers and his favorite coffee. I still have to present so to speak. I do have my dark moments but I try not go there if possible. Day by day. I've almost at 6 months and I think there will be a day it will be the 5 year anniversary, 10 year anniversary and so forth. I will continue to try and honor my father and remember him fondly if I can. I need to put things into the right perspective.

Wishing you well my friend. Thank you for your kindness.

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@reader Thank you for letting me ramble on. I am sure that it is extremely common to feel like there is no more purpose in living after a (major) loss, but I imagine that feeling must be worse if you found your sense of purpose in caring for that very person. I hope you will be able to stop berating yourself one day, even if I truly understand (or believe I do, anyway). I wonder if grief might be even worse on those with obsessive personalities. Hopefully you will be able to find some happiness in small things, initially, and more substantial things later on. I definitely don't think it is a sign of hypersensitivity to be feeling deeply hurt after only six months of grieving! (Although you may well also be a highly sensitive person, of course). Do you have a relationship or pet? I wish I could hug so many people frequenting this forum. :/

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Dear anxious,

Thank you for your kindness.

Me, too, my friend. In so many ways, I wish I could take away everyone's pain including my own. When I read other's experiences, I know I am not alone in my thoughts and feelings. I do feel it normalizes my experience somewhat. But the most selfish part of me just wishes I didn't have to be here at this forum. Wishing so badly my dad could still be alive. I know no one can live forever including myself but why couldn't my dad get another year? 

I think that is the hardest part. I am truly alone. No pet. No partner. No kids. I do have friends and family but they all have their own lives. I need to make my own life. People ask what are you doing for yourself? And sometimes I don't want to do anything. I feel like a very old soul. I don't think I am cut out for life in general. I know I have to make the best of it, so hopefully slowly I can learn a new purpose.

Thank you for your thoughtful words. I do appreciate them. I think so many of us grieving feel misunderstood, so I am always grateful to people who truly understand.

I hope you find talking to the psychologist helpful. Please let us know how are you doing afterwards.

Have a good week! And a Happy Easter! Take care.

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Dear anxious:

I never did find a therapist who used cognitive behavioral therapy on me.  Then when I let my gardener move in with me, I didn't feel like I needed therapy anymore, because I had someone to talk to on a daily basis.  He has anger issues and is also a recovering alcoholic, so he would share with me some of the insights he learned from anger management classes and AA.  He also lost his beloved father and grandfather, so he can relate to loss.  My roommate is sort of a badass so I feel safe when he's around.   We started as a normal dating relationship.  He had known my father from when he worked for us before.  He had liked my dad very much.  The first thing he did for me was take me to the cemetery to visit my father's grave and that instantly endeared him to me.   I don't drive, which is probably the root of all my problems.  However, I eventually discovered that he's not romantic enough for me, so now we are just roommates.  We still care about each other,  but we both want to be the boss in the relationship and that hasn't worked out. 

I had many pets growing up, but none since my pet parakeet died about ten years ago.  Luckily, my rooommate's son has a very nice dog, a cross between a pit bull and an Indian Pariah dog.  She comes to visit and I think she loves me more than anyone on this earth.  She's so happy when she sees me in the morning.  She's very intelligent and loves the attention I give her.  I'm lucky, because I don't have to take care of her, but I buy her toys and just bought her a new Serta dog bed for when she sleeps over. 

It's not easy for only children, like us, to lose our parents, but like reader said, once the worst possible fear comes to realization, there's not much more left to fear.  I still fear my own death, because there are still a lot of things I haven't had the chance to do yet.  I also don't trust the medical system that much, but I am more afraid of suicide, because it's too easy to do it wrong and end up a vegetable.  On the radio I heard the story of a woman who was depressed and threw herself off the roof of a building. On the way down she immediately regretted it.  She spent a long time in the hospital, dependent on others for her well-being, but it changed her outlook on life.  Now she appreciates her autonomy a lot better. 

Sending love and hugs to you and everyone here....

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@reader I also wish I could take away your pain. You may experience things that are ‘normal’ in grief, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t incredibly hard, obviously. I do find it somewhat comforting to read that other people also consider their parents to be everything to them. :) I hope you will find companionship, should you want to one day (and are ready). What kinds of things did you enjoy doing before your father’s passing? I imagine a lot of your time was spent taking care of him, so I could understand if nothing comes to mind. I agree it is probably essential having ‘your own life’, but I also relate very much to feeling like you are not cut out for life. Life just seems like such a cruel joke much of the time. Do you ever feel like letting go of your guilt would, in turn, make you feel guilty? 
It is perhaps a bit perverse for me to continue to post on this forum even though I did not suffer any recent losses, but I find the people here to be so understanding. It is such a weird thought that (almost) everyone experiences major loss, yet it doesn’t seem like everyone is marked by it for the rest of their lives. Or maybe people are just adept at hiding their feelings in public, I don’t know.
I made an appointment with a psychologist that lives on my block today. I am worried, in a way, that if I stop obsessing over the death of my parents, I will be unprepared when it happens. Of course, one is never truly prepared…

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On 10 April 2017 at 3:56 AM, MissionBlue said:

Dear anxious:

I never did find a therapist who used cognitive behavioral therapy on me.  Then when I let my gardener move in with me, I didn't feel like I needed therapy anymore, because I had someone to talk to on a daily basis.  He has anger issues and is also a recovering alcoholic, so he would share with me some of the insights he learned from anger management classes and AA.  He also lost his beloved father and grandfather, so he can relate to loss.  My roommate is sort of a badass so I feel safe when he's around.   We started as a normal dating relationship.  He had known my father from when he worked for us before.  He had liked my dad very much.  The first thing he did for me was take me to the cemetery to visit my father's grave and that instantly endeared him to me.   I don't drive, which is probably the root of all my problems.  However, I eventually discovered that he's not romantic enough for me, so now we are just roommates.  We still care about each other,  but we both want to be the boss in the relationship and that hasn't worked out. 

I had many pets growing up, but none since my pet parakeet died about ten years ago.  Luckily, my rooommate's son has a very nice dog, a cross between a pit bull and an Indian Pariah dog.  She comes to visit and I think she loves me more than anyone on this earth.  She's so happy when she sees me in the morning.  She's very intelligent and loves the attention I give her.  I'm lucky, because I don't have to take care of her, but I buy her toys and just bought her a new Serta dog bed for when she sleeps over. 

It's not easy for only children, like us, to lose our parents, but like reader said, once the worst possible fear comes to realization, there's not much more left to fear.  I still fear my own death, because there are still a lot of things I haven't had the chance to do yet.  I also don't trust the medical system that much, but I am more afraid of suicide, because it's too easy to do it wrong and end up a vegetable.  On the radio I heard the story of a woman who was depressed and threw herself off the roof of a building. On the way down she immediately regretted it.  She spent a long time in the hospital, dependent on others for her well-being, but it changed her outlook on life.  Now she appreciates her autonomy a lot better. 

Sending love and hugs to you and everyone here....

I’m sorry that your romantic relationship with your gardener didn’t work out. Still, it must be really nice to have a companion, especially one that has lived through grief and that makes you feel protected. Also, you must have an impressive garden. :) I do have a boyfriend of sorts (for lack of a better term), but he’s a paranoid schizophrenic and doesn’t do talking about feelings. I also don’t really like going over to his house because he never cleans. He says he will take care of me when my parents have died, but I’m not sure he is capable of taking care of himself at all.
It must also be nice having a dog around. I read about the existence of grief therapy dogs the other day, which warmed my heart somewhat. I do have a dog that I love very dearly, but I wonder whether she will be enough to keep me around when my parents have died. Of course, the thought of her not having anyone to take care of her is kind of heartbreaking. 
It’s probably good, in a way, that you still fear death, since it means life hasn’t made you completely numb. I think my worst fear is living to be very old, with my parents gone and no will to live whatsoever. What kinds of things would you still like to do? I hope you get to do them. Nothing like a death in the family to provide you with a sense of urgency, I suppose. :/

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Dear anxious,

Thank you for your kind words. I appreciate it.

As I am learning, its not healthy to obsess too much about one thing. I know its hard to accept that one day our parents will no longer be part of this earth. Its not something any of us really want to think about. My main concern is that it prevents you from enjoying their company now. Now is the most important time. Please do not take the time you have with them for granted. Try to be as happy as possible. I know its easier said than done. That is my main regret, I was so busy running errands that I did not try to create more happy moments for my dad. I could  have taken him out to the mall even to push him around in the wheelchair. Or made him join a senior's group. Or told him, we would take one more road trip. He was not in the best health, but maybe I could have boosted his spirits with more car rides. Just something to make him his life richer before he passed. I think back now and maybe he felt like a prisoner. Life had turned into one doctor appointment after another and about waiting in doctor office's. I can't remember anything good right now.

That is the thing. I don't think I ever enjoyed very much. Maybe the odd movie, or song or book, but I don't think I have a real passion for anything. Life is something to get over and endure. But I cannot find any meaning right now. Why I'm still here? People say I have to pretend that my dad is watching over me. That I must live a bigger and bolder life now. I just don't know how. The guilt is not something that I feel guilty about letting go. There is just something in my personality that won't stop dwelling on my dad's passing. Maybe I am in too much of a rush. I have not given it enough time. Maybe time will give me more clarity.

I hope your appointment goes well. Please keep us posted. Take care.

 

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Dear anxious, I'm surprised that you fear your parents' death but you don't fear your own.  I assume you're not numb yet, if you still enjoy having your parents with you and your dog.  You said everything you do, you do for your parents, so does that mean you no longer have any fun in life?  Hopefully, by the time your parents pass on your health will be better and you'll find a reason for living.  To me, life is short enough already.  Time flies even when you're not having fun, but I hear you about old age.  I have read that if you wish for death, your body will eventually accommodate you, which is why I try to stay positive.  I fear serious illness and pain more than death.   There is so much I haven't done yet -- I haven't even been to Disneyland. :)   I knocked bowling off my bucket list last year.   I'd love to go back to Las Vegas.  I only went there once in the year 2000 and had a great time.   I won enough money to pay for my expenses and my companions' expenses as well.   I'd like to see the poppy fields in Lancaster CA before I die.  There will always be some sadness that my dad can't enjoy these things with me, but I have to convince myself that if he really wanted to do any of these things, then he would have done them.  Some people like to stay home.  I think as long as I'm able to surf the Internet, read a good book, listen to music and enjoy a good movie, then life is still worth living, even if I'm not as happy as when my father was alive.  Once I'm relocated I plan to do volunteer work to try to help other people.  Maybe I'll get involved with politics.  If World War III comes along, there should be plenty of things to do.   Maybe the future will be a non-issue.  Take care and I hope your psychologist visit goes well.  

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@reader You are right, I have tremendous difficulty appreciating the time I have with my parents. I am worried about making new memories with them, because I fear it will be unbearable to look back on them. I do realize this is crazy. I’m sorry there were so few nice memories in your time with your father. Obviously running errands is crucial too, so I hope this doesn’t add to your guilt. It truly sounds like you did everything you could for him. 
I know what you mean about not feeling any true passion about anything in life. Would you say you suffer from depression? I truly hope you find something to ‘live for’.

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On 12 April 2017 at 1:03 PM, MissionBlue said:

Dear anxious, I'm surprised that you fear your parents' death but you don't fear your own.  I assume you're not numb yet, if you still enjoy having your parents with you and your dog.  You said everything you do, you do for your parents, so does that mean you no longer have any fun in life?  Hopefully, by the time your parents pass on your health will be better and you'll find a reason for living.  To me, life is short enough already.  Time flies even when you're not having fun, but I hear you about old age.  I have read that if you wish for death, your body will eventually accommodate you, which is why I try to stay positive.  I fear serious illness and pain more than death.   There is so much I haven't done yet -- I haven't even been to Disneyland. :)   I knocked bowling off my bucket list last year.   I'd love to go back to Las Vegas.  I only went there once in the year 2000 and had a great time.   I won enough money to pay for my expenses and my companions' expenses as well.   I'd like to see the poppy fields in Lancaster CA before I die.  There will always be some sadness that my dad can't enjoy these things with me, but I have to convince myself that if he really wanted to do any of these things, then he would have done them.  Some people like to stay home.  I think as long as I'm able to surf the Internet, read a good book, listen to music and enjoy a good movie, then life is still worth living, even if I'm not as happy as when my father was alive.  Once I'm relocated I plan to do volunteer work to try to help other people.  Maybe I'll get involved with politics.  If World War III comes along, there should be plenty of things to do.   Maybe the future will be a non-issue.  Take care and I hope your psychologist visit goes well.  

I fear my death now, but I’m not sure I still would without my parents. They are the ones giving purpose to my life. I’m glad to read that you are trying to stay positive, though. Do you feel that you are able to be somewhat more positive now than after the first months after your loss? I hope so. It sounds like you still have some great things planned. I get to meet my new psychologist on the first of May, which is a pretty long time for now, but will hopefully prove useful.

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I definitely feel more positive than i did in the first months after my dad's death.  There was one night early on when I was so lonely and anxious that I called a suicide hotline just to speak to another human being.  I wasn't suicidal and said that up front.  The lady on the line talked to me for a few minutes.  Then when she put me on hold,  I felt guilty for using a resource for people with worse problems, so I cut it short.  I had never lived alone before.  I wasn't afraid of being alone from a safety standpoint, but it was being completely alone with the memories of watching my father die for 36 hours straight in "Comfort Care" which was hard on me.  The agonal respirations were hard to watch, knowing there was nothing I could do to save my beloved father.  It was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. I was alone most of that time with him because I am his only daughter with no husband or children. As I looked out the hospital window at day turning into night, I felt detached -- like the world was foreign to me and like I wasn't  connected to it anymore.  The only person left in the world who ever really loved me was dying.  I have a half brother and cousins who care about me, but they hardly see me, so it's not like they are going to lose sleep over me if I die.  They're too busy having fun.

If there were an easy, painless and sureproof way to commit suicide, who knows, I might have considered it, but I was raised Catholic and there's a big taboo about suicide in the Catholic religion.  In the old days, suicides weren't even allowed to be buried in hallowed ground.  Thankfully, the church stopped that nonsense and suicides are now accorded all the dignity and blessings of a normal funeral.  It just seems so disrespectful to kill oneself, not only to one's parents but to God himself.  Still, if a person is suffering from mental illness or from overwhelming pain, they really aren't to blame if they take their own life.  I think God would understand better than anyone. 

It's easy to say we want to die when what we really want is our old life back.  But it's not possible, just as it isn't possible to be young again.  That bird has flown.  So enjoy your youth while you can.  The only good thing about losing a loved one is an inheritance, if you're lucky enough to get one.  Then you can afford to do fun things, or buy a new home, but then your favorite companion is gone, so it's like a cruel joke. 

I remember watching a movie about Down's Syndrome with Tyne Daly, and I liked her speech at the end.  She said that raising a child with Down's Syndrome is like wanting to visit Italy but then having the plane diverted to Holland.  Holland isn't Italy, and never will be, but it has some nice things, too, such as tulips and windmills.  Life without our parents isn't going to be the same as it was, but it will still have its charms if we give it a chance.

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