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Cannot deal with loss of younger brother.


lindsaygirl1984

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lindsaygirl1984

I was 5 months pregnant and at work on November 4, 2010 when my youngest brother called my cell phone and said "Did dad call you yet? Eric is dead". Eric was my other younger brother who had been dealing with depression and prescription drugs and pot. I raced down the hall and called to the nurses to please take over my patients and I ran out the backdoor and literally fell to my knees hysterically crying, like a scene from a movie or something. Of course they all followed me and made me tell them. I called my Dad and he confirmed that Eric had passed away. My Dad found him face down in his bed and his lips were blue. I screamed "no no no no, is he breathing, is he breathing?". The paramedics were there and still "working" on him. I told my Dad that if they were working on him that was a good sign and to hold on I was coming home. The nurses kept trying to get me up off the ground but I couldnt stand, I couldnt think, it was so terrible. They got me inside and to an empty exam room and someone called my Husband to come get me. I live in Georgia and my family was in Virginia. I was picked up, went home to get clothing, and drove 8 hours to Virginia. I had to help make funneral arrangements, pick out his suit, and photos for the memorial. I had to be strong because my parents couldnt. I also had to be strong because I was pregnant and couldnt risk going into preterm labor.

I've shoved everything, anger, sadness, anxiety, all of it down as deep as I can. I never got a chance to grieve. I now have horrible dreams, cannot sleep at night because I play out what happened, or how I could have changed it if I were there, and find myself questioning my faith and with a new fear of death.

Please I need some help.

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Dear lindsaygirl - I am so so sorry for the loss of your brother. What a devastating phone call that

was and to be states away must have made you feel so desperate. My situation is so different than

yours: my 29 year old daughter died of leukemia in August of 2010, but I have a younger daughter

who is 28 now, and I know how she so misses her sister.

I wanted to respond to you to acknowledge that there are people on this website who read and

understand what it is like to lose someone you love so much. Please continue to post when you

can, because I truly believe it is healing to get your thoughts and feelings into words. Grief is a very

taxing and tiring road, and anything we can do to process what we are going through, is healing,

even if it's an inch at a time. My prayers to you and your family.

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lindsaygirl1984

Dear lindsaygirl - I am so so sorry for the loss of your brother. What a devastating phone call that

was and to be states away must have made you feel so desperate. My situation is so different than

yours: my 29 year old daughter died of leukemia in August of 2010, but I have a younger daughter

who is 28 now, and I know how she so misses her sister.

I wanted to respond to you to acknowledge that there are people on this website who read and

understand what it is like to lose someone you love so much. Please continue to post when you

can, because I truly believe it is healing to get your thoughts and feelings into words. Grief is a very

taxing and tiring road, and anything we can do to process what we are going through, is healing,

even if it's an inch at a time. My prayers to you and your family.

Thank you for responding.

I am so sorry for your loss.

I don't think death is ever easy but I do think it is harder when it is unexpected. There are so many questions left unanswered.

My brothers death was ruled a suicide even though nobody in my family believes thats true. There was no note left, and he would never leave his 3 children like that, never, no matter what.

I actually just woke up because my Husband couldn't find his keys, but I was dreaming about my brother again.

Now I keep questioning whether he was sleeping peacefully or if he struggled and no one was there to help him. Thats terrible, that I think these things. I can literally picture the whole scene.

I cant talk to my parents because I am the one who is being strong for them, and my husband doesnt understand. I don't have time with a 10 month old to see a professional. I am just desperate to find some sort of closure. I am not the same person. I fear dying, leaving my daughter, or losing my daughter. I have questioned my faith. I am lost.

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Dear all,

I too lost my brother suddenly. We were very close, very similar in both age and personality. People used to ask us if we were twins. In the last year, we grew apart because he had been dealing with depression, self-medicating in dangerous ways that scared and angered me. The loss happened around Christmas time at the end of 2006, and it is still hard for me to think about. I was/am almost completely alone in my grief. "Friends" scattered, and I would go weeks without anyone asking me how I was feeling. I found strength in constant and meaningful work, taking a few months to travel away from familiar surrounding, and in meeting my husband. It gets more manageable after the first two years, in that the agonizing horrifying feeling becomes gradually less frequent. Instead of falling apart several times an hour every hour every day and night, by now I fall apart a couple of times a week only. I tried to see a few different therapists, but found the experience completely useless. Unless someone has lost a sibling, they truly have no idea what it's like. Friends, coworkers, professors, and bosses were ridiculously unempathetic, and expected me to "get over it" and stop talking about it. I still feel guilty over not saving my brother, but it is not as acute of a feeling as before, but instead it is a chronic under-the-radar feeling. I also have a constant fear of something terrible happening to my husband, parents, and sister, because unlike most 30-year olds in America, I know worst-case scenarios can have do happen. One thing I found strangely comforting was volunteering for community organizations that helped refugees of war, whose loss was even greater than mine. I also found it good to read books about people who lost everything and managed to go on.

I recommend:

Night, by Elie Wiesel

and

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier, by Ishmael Beah

I am at the point that I would love to help anyone else going through the loss of a sibling. Please let me know how I could help.

Sincerely,

Solange

-----

I was 5 months pregnant and at work on November 4, 2010 when my youngest brother called my cell phone and said "Did dad call you yet? Eric is dead". Eric was my other younger brother who had been dealing with depression and prescription drugs and pot. I raced down the hall and called to the nurses to please take over my patients and I ran out the backdoor and literally fell to my knees hysterically crying, like a scene from a movie or something. Of course they all followed me and made me tell them. I called my Dad and he confirmed that Eric had passed away. My Dad found him face down in his bed and his lips were blue. I screamed "no no no no, is he breathing, is he breathing?". The paramedics were there and still "working" on him. I told my Dad that if they were working on him that was a good sign and to hold on I was coming home. The nurses kept trying to get me up off the ground but I couldnt stand, I couldnt think, it was so terrible. They got me inside and to an empty exam room and someone called my Husband to come get me. I live in Georgia and my family was in Virginia. I was picked up, went home to get clothing, and drove 8 hours to Virginia. I had to help make funneral arrangements, pick out his suit, and photos for the memorial. I had to be strong because my parents couldnt. I also had to be strong because I was pregnant and couldnt risk going into preterm labor.

I've shoved everything, anger, sadness, anxiety, all of it down as deep as I can. I never got a chance to grieve. I now have horrible dreams, cannot sleep at night because I play out what happened, or how I could have changed it if I were there, and find myself questioning my faith and with a new fear of death.

Please I need some help.

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lindsaygirl1984

Thank you for your response Solange. Very pretty name by the way :)

I can really relate to you, especially feeling that those around are unempathetic, and also fear of something happening to those I love, and also myself.

I am a stay at home Momma to a 10 month old daughter and don't get out much because finances are tight. When I do get out I feel I don't think about it as much as when we are at home. I do however see him in so much. He was an amazing person and so talented. He was a born entertainer. He could dance, sing, rhyme at the drop of a hat. He made everyone around him smile and his own was contagious. I still feel very uncomfortable if death is brought up. The word alone, in a movie, a tv show, song, conversation, anything.

Nobody understands. My Husband asks me all the time what is wrong and if I say that Ive had a dream or thought about Eric that upset me he says oh, and carries on. I know it makes him uncomfortable because he doesnt know waht to say or do, but it makes me feel bad.

I wish there was something I could do to better be able to deal with all of these crazy emotions and thoughts.

I dont want to picture him in his casket or play out what happened in my head everytime I close my eyes, it freaks me out bad.

Dear all,

I too lost my brother suddenly. We were very close, very similar in both age and personality. People used to ask us if we were twins. In the last year, we grew apart because he had been dealing with depression, self-medicating in dangerous ways that scared and angered me. The loss happened around Christmas time at the end of 2006, and it is still hard for me to think about. I was/am almost completely alone in my grief. "Friends" scattered, and I would go weeks without anyone asking me how I was feeling. I found strength in constant and meaningful work, taking a few months to travel away from familiar surrounding, and in meeting my husband. It gets more manageable after the first two years, in that the agonizing horrifying feeling becomes gradually less frequent. Instead of falling apart several times an hour every hour every day and night, by now I fall apart a couple of times a week only. I tried to see a few different therapists, but found the experience completely useless. Unless someone has lost a sibling, they truly have no idea what it's like. Friends, coworkers, professors, and bosses were ridiculously unempathetic, and expected me to "get over it" and stop talking about it. I still feel guilty over not saving my brother, but it is not as acute of a feeling as before, but instead it is a chronic under-the-radar feeling. I also have a constant fear of something terrible happening to my husband, parents, and sister, because unlike most 30-year olds in Amca, I know worst-case scenarios can have do happen. One thing I found strangely comforting was volunteering for community organizations that helped refugees of war, whose loss was even greater than mine. I also found it good to read books about people who lost everything and managed to go on.

I recommend:

Night, by Elie Wiesel

and

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier, by Ishmael Beah

I am at the point that I would love to help anyone else going through the loss of a sibling. Please let me know how I could help.

Sincerely,

Solange

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Dear Lindsay,

Thanks for your reply. I agree that staying at home brings up too many opportunities to ruminate, and being out and busy helps. I also freak out whenever the word "death" comes up, even in movies. I assume your husband has met Eric? I think our husbands feel sad when we feel sad, and they feel powerless to change the cause of our pain. I have talked to my husband to make him better understand what I need from him, and this has helped.

I think over time though, you'll be surprised at the strength you develop to deal with anything that comes your way. You'll also be a better mother than someone who doesn't understand loss. For me, I try harder to make an impact on people around me, than I would otherwise. I am a teacher, and I try to help my students have the future my brother no longer has.

Because I have never been addicted to anything, it's hard for me to understand what my brother went through. A few times I went to a support group for addicts to hear their perspectives, and it helped me to hear first-hand that there is pretty much nothing we could have done to cure an addicted family member. It was also a prescription drug (Disulfiram) that killed my brother, and it sickens me whenever a pharmaceutical drug ad comes on TV. In most other countries those are illegal. Many doctors receive payments (essentially bribes) from pharmaceutical companies to prescribe their drugs, although there is some legislation that may eventually be passed for disclosure of this ( http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/17/health/policy/us-to-tell-drug-makers-to-disclose-payments-to-doctors.html?_r=1&scp=8&sq=pharmaceutical&st=cse ).

I have also read some things on experience of people who died for a couple of minutes, and when they return they can remember things that happened in the room while they were clinically dead. tp://www.iands.org/research/vanLommel/vanLommel.php There have been some strangely lucky things happen to me after my brother passed, things that are statistically highly unlikely, and makes he wonder if he somehow he is out there, helping me from beyond.

Wishing you a peaceful night,

Solange

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lindsaygirl1984

Solange,

I struggled for years, and sometimes still struggle with understanding additction. My Mother is an alcoholic and also abuses prescription drugs, my Father used heroin when I was a young child. My Father was lucky and got treatment that helped, my Mother got treatment, and more treatment, and more treatment and never got better. I can see how this, could have pushed my Brother to seek out an "escape". To an extent I am mad at my parents for giving a bad example, and especially for the behavior and verbal abuse from my Mother. I do however realize that it was his choice to abuse the drugs.

I scanned through the website you provided a link to, NDE, and found that it gave me a sense of relief and hope that he can see all of us and watch his children and my Daughter grow up.

I also just watched Joel Osteen on television and felt like he was preaching right to me. I feel good today. I might not an hour from now, a day from now, a week from now, but RIGHT NOW I feel good. Joel said "This test will soon be your testimony." That is going to stick with me.

Dear Lindsay,

Thanks for your reply. I agree that staying at home brings up too many opportunities to ruminate, and being out and busy helps. I also freak out whenever the word "death" comes up, even in movies. I assume your husband has met Eric? I think our husbands feel sad when we feel sad, and they feel powerless to change the cause of our pain. I have talked to my husband to make him better understand what I need from him, and this has helped.

I think over time though, you'll be surprised at the strength you develop to deal with anything that comes your way. You'll also be a better mother than someone who doesn't understand loss. For me, I try harder to make an impact on people around me, than I would otherwise. I am a teacher, and I try to help my students have the future my brother no longer has.

Because I have never been addicted to anything, it's hard for me to understand what my brother went through. A few times I went to a support group for addicts to hear their perspectives, and it helped me to hear first-hand that there is pretty much nothing we could have done to cure an addicted family member. It was also a prescription drug (Disulfiram) that killed my brother, and it sickens me whenever a pharmaceutical drug ad comes on TV. In most other countries those are illegal. Many doctors receive payments (essentially bribes) from pharmaceutical companies to prescribe their drugs, although there is some legislation that may eventually be passed for disclosure of this ( http://www.nytimes.c...ceutical&st=cse ).

I have also read some things on experience of people who died for a couple of minutes, and when they return they can remember things that happened in the room while they were clinically dead. tp://www.iands.org/research/vanLommel/vanLommel.php There have been some strangely lucky things happen to me after my brother passed, things that are statistically highly unlikely, and makes he wonder if he somehow he is out there, helping me from beyond.

Wishing you a peaceful night,

Solange

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