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Did our father's death change my sister?


Sphinxy8

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We lost our dad July 3rd of this year he was 50. He had been fighting cancer for most of his life. Starting with testicular around 1987, kidney around 2003 and we found out the kidney cancer spread to his bones around 2009 and then to his lungs early Aug. 2011. Getting to my question. I wanted to know if anyone had a similar reaction with a family member or themselves. My sister still lived at home with our parents and since she didnt work much she became dad's care taker while mom worked to keep the bills paid. Well now that he has passed my sister has been getting mean and reckless. Our mom gave her money to take a college course and she is failing and seems not to care. And then she lashes out at us and our friends and other family. I have tried to talk to her and ask her if she wanted to see a therapist or even talk to me about anything. But she doesnt want to talk to a stranger and she believes that she will burden me and mom with her problems. Im worried that she will mess up her chance to do something I myself messed up and I regretted it. Is there anyway I can get to her before its too late? She has been to a doctor and is taking citalopram but I dont think a pill is going to help her if she wont let out what is wrong with her. Thanks in advance for any advice.

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I wish I had great advice. I would just suggest you be there for her and offer her encouragement and support. This may be her way of dealing with the loss, even if it is hurting herself and others. I am so very sorry for your loss. Since she was the primary caregiver it may be affecting her much differently than others. There is a lot of guilt with the death of a loved one, even if you were loving and gave good care. I hope things turn around for her. I know that you care about her and want what is best for her. Take care.

We lost our dad July 3rd of this year he was 50. He had been fighting cancer for most of his life. Starting with testicular around 1987, kidney around 2003 and we found out the kidney cancer spread to his bones around 2009 and then to his lungs early Aug. 2011. Getting to my question. I wanted to know if anyone had a similar reaction with a family member or themselves. My sister still lived at home with our parents and since she didnt work much she became dad's care taker while mom worked to keep the bills paid. Well now that he has passed my sister has been getting mean and reckless. Our mom gave her money to take a college course and she is failing and seems not to care. And then she lashes out at us and our friends and other family. I have tried to talk to her and ask her if she wanted to see a therapist or even talk to me about anything. But she doesnt want to talk to a stranger and she believes that she will burden me and mom with her problems. Im worried that she will mess up her chance to do something I myself messed up and I regretted it. Is there anyway I can get to her before its too late? She has been to a doctor and is taking citalopram but I dont think a pill is going to help her if she wont let out what is wrong with her. Thanks in advance for any advice.

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stillfighting431

Hi,

I'm sorry for your loss.I feel your pain.My mom passed away 24 july this year,after recovering from a total hip replacement done on 9 may 2010.She had gotten a lot better,was walking around after extensive physiotherapy but slowly developed a chest congestion & never recovered from that.It had always been just the 4 of us,my mom,dad,my elder sister & I.We stay with our parents & are their caregivers.While my mom was sick my dad a complete nervous breakdown,after struggling to take care of 2 sick parents we were finally able to help him get better.It was the 4th doctor that we changed for him that helped him the most.He is still on antidepressants & totally dependent on us for physical & emotional support.

While we all loved our mom dearly ,my sister was the one closest to mom.Mom was our rock,the center of our world,a very courageous,kind ,generous person,never giving up no matter how hard life became.While I was mostly making sure that the house was running smoothly,my sister was the one who took care of all of mom's needs,her meds,physiotherapy,baths etc.She had dedicated her heart & soul to make her better.When mom died in spite of all our hard work we we're all devastated,but my sister took it the hardest.It's been 41/2 months now,but she isn't doing much better.She lately has just two modes,either she's mad biting people's heads off or she's crying her eyes out saying she can't make it without mom.I was the baby of the family spoiled,overprotected,but with mom gone,my dad mopping & sighing all day & my sister a wreck I find myself in charge of the whole house.I'm struggling to keep it all together.

I've talked to my sister about getting grief counseling,but she says talking to some stranger who doesn't know what she's been through wouldn't help her.She says she just needs to talk to someone who has been through what she's been through,like me,to help her process her grief,help her find answers to all the questions storming inside her head.She says she feels guilty ,she lied to mom,promised her she'll get better.She says she doesn't deserve to be happy.Just this afternoon while I made lunch I told my sister to spend sometime on the computer,surfing for her android phone apps which she used to love.She was there for a while,I was taking a nap,when I woke up to her sobbing.She always had a do or die attitude just like our mom & making mom well was her purpose in life,her biggest project.She's lost without mom.She never admits defeat,but life crushed her.Now there's no going back,no second chances.All I could do was hug her & tell her I was there for her & she could always count on me.

Coming to the point,I think this is what your sister is going through....

Anger because all her hard work went in vain....She couldn't save her dear dad.......

Survivor's guilt..she thinks she didn't do enough.......she doesn't deserve to be happy...

She also wants you to talk to her about how it was like for her ,being so close to your dad's suffering..she needs you to listen to her pain..She also wants you to grieve with her,like she is grieving inside.....remember your dad ....talk about him..... keep his memory alive....But most of all she needs time to heal .......A loss as big as this takes a lot of time to come to terms to...Everyone processes grief differently...She is still in her early stages denial,anger,disbelief...

Talk to her...tell her you want to know & understand her pain...But most of all & I say this from my personal experience don't be mad at her.....Get her to open up to you......It's a very painful,exhausting process,but it's the only way you can help her....

Good luck....

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I wish I had great advice. I would just suggest you be there for her and offer her encouragement and support. This may be her way of dealing with the loss, even if it is hurting herself and others. I am so very sorry for your loss. Since she was the primary caregiver it may be affecting her much differently than others. There is a lot of guilt with the death of a loved one, even if you were loving and gave good care. I hope things turn around for her. I know that you care about her and want what is best for her. Take care.

I understand, i feel like your sister sometimes, don't know what to do. I miss my mom terribly. I wish ii could have done this or that. This particular nursing home wasn't taking good care of her. She died on Nov 14. I am crushed and heartbroken. I am sitting here now missing her so i know how you all feel. Life is not the same, it seems somewhat colder. When i feel warm and cozy inside then i remember mom is gone and i feel terrified.

Hope things get better with you and your sister and I hope i get better as well. Debbie

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