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How to cope with a sibling not advising us of fathers death..


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Hi everyone,

I'm very new to this type of forum but I am in desperate need of some advice and guidance. Not sure which way to turn but I know that I need some closure and I don't know how to get it. My situation may be very unique to some and sadly not for others. It is long and I apologize for that, but so much has happened and I no longer know how to deal with it.

My mother sadly passed away from cancer in October 2006 at 67. She was the glue that kept all of us together and she was my best friend. I thought I could never feel that kind of pain when she passed. Seeing her suffer and dwindle away to nothing was devastating. I miss my mom every day, I still cry when I think of her. I talked to my mom every day, not a day went by I didn't say hello. We had an amazing relationship that I will treasure forever.

My father could not handle losing his wife of almost 50 years so one day he just grabbed his bag of prescriptions and boarded a plane with just the clothes on his back and headed to my brothers place up in northern Canada. It was painful to see the hurt he was experiencing, the loss of the one person he loved more than life itself. By the time he showed up at my brothers doorstep he was a mess, he no longer wanted to be around my mother’s things, everything reminded him of her. He simply lost it and left.

Sadly I only saw my dad twice in the 6 years he was up there. We flew out in Nov 2012 and again May 2013 for his 78th birthday. I am a single mom and financially could not afford the trip out to see him. I did however talk to him almost every day. I was his only daughter and although our relationship was strained when I was growing up it only got closer as I got older and when my mom passed it only helped draw us together.

Due to some issues I had with my brother on the handling of my father’s finances while he was out there, we had a huge falling out. My brother was absent most of my parent’s life. He moved away when he was 18 and only came home every couple of years to visit and those visits were short and sweet and then off to see their friends. My younger brother and I were always there for my parents.

During the 5 years that my father was in a home my brother would not divulge any medical information to me. They had given the home strict instruction not to tell me anything which I felt was so vindictive and cruel as this is my father too I don't care that he and I did not see eye to eye but this was my father and I felt I had a right to know what was going on with him. I believe he abused his privileges of being POA. My dad could only tell me so much due to the progression of the disease so I had to rely on him to tell me what was going on. It wasn't until our visit in November that my brother finally allowed me access to his medical situation. He didn’t disclose anything to me other than allow me to speak to the nurses about his health. Not sure the change of heart but I was ever so grateful that now I could finally find out exactly how he was doing.

When my dad started having problems communicating I spoke to the RPN’s every day. They were extremely kind, compassionate and understanding of my situation. My dad was getting quite agitated and was turning violent. They had to sedate him to a point of almost being comatose. He could no longer speak, feed or dress himself and he was now confined to a wheelchair due to the sedation.

Two weeks prior to his passing my brother totally cut me off again. My dad was declining at an alarming rate and now I wasn't allowed to know what was going on with him. I was told they could no longer tell me anything about my dad that I either had to speak to my brother or be added as a POA which I knew would never happen. I was in shock. I couldn’t understand why it had all of a sudden changed.

I finally got an email from his 'wife' on Tuesday and all it said was they did his end of life papers today and he's on morphine and Ativan. We'll let you know when he passes. It felt like someone had knocked the wind right out of me. I felt sick, scared and stunned that I got an email not a personal call. I called the home right away and asked that someone take a phone to my dad so I could say my final goodbyes. I was numb. I just wanted to be with him and tell him how much I loved him and what a wonderful dad he was and how much we are going to miss him. It was the most heartbreaking thing I’ve ever had to do and not being there for him was devastating.

I woke up Saturday morning to a vm from the home asking that I call them when I get the message. They told me he passed away. I was inconsolable. I asked when he passed and hung up. Tried dozens of times to call my brother but they wouldn’t pick up. No vm. I was so angry that he would do that to us. He was OUR father too. It eats me up inside every time I think about it. I can’t get past the pain and anger.

I waited for an announcement to come out in the papers, but nothing. I called the home and spoke with the director and asked where they took my father. She had no idea. They never told her. I asked what funeral homes were close to them and she listed them off for me. I started to call and ask if my dad was there and it was the most horrific feeling I have ever experienced. I finally found out where they had taken him and had asked for a copy of the death certificate so we could do something here for him but was told that is up to the POA to issue them out. This was like a living nightmare with no end.

It's been 3 weeks and I have yet to hear from my brother. I have sent numerous emails, left vm finally but nothing. I'm so sad that I have yet to really mourn the loss of my father due to the circumstances surrounding his passing. It makes me angry. My dad didn't deserve any of this drama. It's unforgiveable to me. I still can't believe he is gone. I feel like I have no closure at all. Although I had the opportunity to say my goodbyes to him, not knowing what they have done with him leaves open wounds for us. The pain I feel everytime I look at his picture makes me just want to die inside. I don't know how to deal with the anger I have towards my brother for cutting us off prior to my dad passing. If I had at least got a call saying he passed away and this is what we are doing I would have at least accepted it. I needed to hear the sorrow from him that he was sad he was gone, something. It hurts me to the very core.

I cry every time I think of my dad. They didn't do anything for him. My mom had a full funeral service and we all had our closure. But my dad, it's like it never happened. I don't know how to explain it really, I just feel so empty inside. Words cannot describe how I feel about my older brother. I just want him to call and tell us he's sorry that dad passed away and for not letting us know. I thought sending an email about how I felt would ease the pain but sadly it has not. I thought maybe I could reach out to someone and see if they have experienced anything like this and how they coped with their pain and how they got closure. It hurts that he acted like he was the only sibling, it didn’t matter to him that his sister and brother and his only niece were left out of everything. My dad would be so hurt by what he did to us. I did have a dream shortly after he passed and saw my dad and all he said to me was “don’t be angry” and I woke up. I believe he came to me that night because of the pain we are going through and he just doesn’t want to see us hurt anymore… how do I let it go? Can anyone out there help us ease the pain?

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