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I lost my mother four years ago


Estefanie

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I am 20 years old and I lost my mother to suicide when I was 16. I never wanted to find professional help after that happened because I thought I was strong enough to take it and keep on with my life. Big mistake. Through the years, I have had endless problems and emotional breakdowns. And it just keeps getting worse. I have had a couple of boyfriends since then and, in general, my relationships with men are not healthy. I am going through a very hard moment now, again. I don't know who to talk to, I don't know where to look for help, I am very desperate. I am scared. I don't want to spend my life being too sad to enjoy anything, but I don't know what to do. I don't even know what to say.

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dizzydancingway

I lost my mom 3 years ago and I was in my 20s, so on the younger side. What helped me in my grief was talking about my experience as much as possible. I shared what I was going through with friends and coworkers. I found more people than I expected could relate in some way, and MOST of those that didn't still listened with compassion.

Talking and sharing helps your processing of what you are facing. I even found a meetup group in my city for "motherless daughters."

I also went to therapy and grief counseling and that experience also helped a good deal.

If you have close friends you can open up to, express that you are having a difficult time coping, I know that will help. If you can't think of the right person/people, find a therapist or counselor. You will not believe how much good that'll do you.

Also remember you are not in this alone. Losing my mom devastated me, and still does, and while I cherish the memories I have of her, I also cherish the connections I made after I lost her.

Hope you are doing well and keeping good thoughts in your heart.

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Estefanie, It's been five years since I lost my father when I was 17 years old, and like yourself, I initially thought I could will myself to live courageously like nothing was wrong. All the while, I moved away from my mother and brother from home to go to school and have lost most of the meaningfulness in my relations with them. I feel that I have become so distanced that I can't even call my mom when I'm having a bad day. Every day I think about how much I love my brother, but I've never told him that, and I can't come to myself to initiate any form of contact with him. I don't really even know how this has happened. Maybe we just never knew how to handle our emotions and grief, but somehow convinced ourselves that by not communicating with each other we could subvert the hurt and hide behind our straight faces. At times, I feel like I don't have a family; like I don't have anyone to share the highs and lows in my life with. I am dating a girl at my university, but I can't stand to bring her down with my frequent misery. My emotional life has become a perilous juggling act and as I am getting thrust into the role of an independent adult, I worry about my stability to persevere and will to stay motivated. Like you, I am scared. I want time to stop so I can figure everything out before I take on the next steps in life.

I do want to let you know about something that helps me though. I am a Counselor for Camp Kesem, which provides a free week of summer camp for children ages 6-16 whose parents have been afflicted by cancer in someway. I understand that the circumstances for their grief are different than yours, but being around those (specifically the young kids) has given me the most beautiful moments to be a kid. Although I was a teen when my father was diagnosed and eventually passed away, I loss part of my childhood. We may be in our 20s, but you can never be too old to have an inner child. The younger children can exhibit a naive and imaginative wonder one minute and in the next they will offer their shoulder to cry on. Literally, the weeks that I am at Camp are the happiest I've had ever since I lost my dad.

I guess the take away message from my experience is that this will never be easy. There will always be a reason at every stage of my life that I wish I had my father here for. However, I have found some comfort and a sense of family by opening up and embracing people who have suffered what I have and accept everything about me. I would encourage you to do the same. I am currently looking for a local support group because I am graduating and my time with Camp Kesem is ending. I always want to stress that some of my closest friends, some who are still in high school, are those who I opened up with and talked to at Camp Kesem. I wish I realized it earlier, but support groups aren't just therapeutic and protocol driven. They can be fun and life changing.

Thank you for sharing. I wish you all the best.

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