Gransnet forums

Bereavement

Am I being uncaring and insensitive following my loss

(79 Posts)
Happyally55 Sat 30-Mar-19 11:58:41

I’m at war with myself... almost 10 years ago now I lost my 20 yr old daughter to suicide and to say it knocked my world off it’s axis is an understatement.

I keep in contact, albeit irregularly now, with The mother of a good school friend of my daughters who yesterday messaged me to say how devastated she was that her daughter was moving 3 hrs away for a new life with her boyfriend. She contemplated life not being ‘round the corner’ and when grandchildren arrive and how sad she was. Normally I respond straight away but her words have made me sad & angry so I have not replied yet. I am struggling when I really want to shout that her daughter is not dead like mine, that 3hrs is nothing in the grand scheme of things, that my daughter won’t ever feel the wonderment of holding her own baby let alone me holding a grandchild.

I’m just asking for advice on what I can say when to be honest I feel she is being a) insensitive to me (especially as Mother’s Day is tomorrow and I will forever be broken) and b) over reacting when 3hrs is a mornings travel that’s all whereas I do t ever see my daughter again 🙁

Just to add a work colleague has this morning posted an emotional message on Facebook that she experienced a terrible dream last night from which she awoke in tears as she dreamed all who she loved were taken from her. A subsequent ‘pity party’ of supportive messages followed. Oh my god it was just a dream!!!!

Help me stop feeling so angry and emotional please. 😥😥

PamelaJ1 Sat 30-Mar-19 17:18:42

Perhaps your friend has already realised that she has been very thoughtless.
None of us know what sort of relationship you have with her.
I have a friend that sometimes says quite hurtful things but because I’m quite a strong, happy person I take no notice.
She has upset a lot of others though. I think she’s a bit autistic. Is your friend a little bit like that?
I can’t imagine what I would feel like if I had suffered the loss that you and many other son GN have. You will all have been devastated
think carefully before responding negatively. You may feel worse afterwards if you do.

kathsue Sat 30-Mar-19 17:26:56

flowers to all those who dread Mother's Day as I do.
My daughter took her life 12 years ago. Most of the people who knew her have drifted away and those who are still around never mention her unless I speak about her first.
While your DD is still in the forefront of your mind your friend probably doesn't think about her much at all. She was insensitive and cruel but not intentionally so.
If you want to keep her as a friend I would let her know, tactfully, how hurtful her remarks were.

Happyally55 Sat 30-Mar-19 17:57:59

Well... this is my first ever tentative post on these forums and I am overwhelmed by the compassion and empathy that has been wrapped up in your heartfelt words of comfort.

I am going to re-read all your lovely advice and sleep on it.

I will write again tomorrow.

Just want to say Thankyou.

Every day is a Burden worn like a heavy coat but mother’s day is always especially hard.
In

Chloe took her own life the summer of 2009 age just 30yrs 7months and 5 days. Forever broken, forever changed.

mumofmadboys Sat 30-Mar-19 18:25:33

Do you have any other children Happyally or did your DD have any children? I expect your friend momentarily forgot your enormous loss and just shared what was on her mind. Having sent you that message she may have subsequently realised that it was tactless and unloving but I'm sure it wasn't intentional. Hope tomorrow brings happy memories of things you and your DD shared during her life.x

Baggs Sat 30-Mar-19 18:36:44

That is a lovely post, anja.

janeainsworth Sat 30-Mar-19 19:56:01

Happyally you asked whether you were being uncaring and insensitive.
No, you’re not. You were understandably hurt by your friend’s apparent lack of sensitivity to your own loss.
I can’t add to anja’s kind and compassionate words but I will think of you tomorrow flowers

Ginny42 Sat 30-Mar-19 20:31:10

I understand why you feel upset, it must be horrible to feel at war with yourself. You're not in regular touch with this mother of your daughter's friend, so try to let the emotions wash over you for now and see how you feel in a while. You can judge then whether you want the friendship to continue. Your silence will probably say more than any words.

I know you and many on this thread are going to have a difficult day tomorrow, but if it helps to know that others are thinking of you, you can be sure that I will be. xx

Harris27 Sat 30-Mar-19 21:08:31

Oh anniebach I feel so sorry about your daughter. You take care and do something that means something for you tomorrow as you say the day will pass. Sending you hugs and 💐💐💐.xx

Happyally55 Sat 30-Mar-19 22:52:54

Yes I have 2 other daughters. Now aged 26 and 15 (and good at it!) Chloe would have celebrated her 30th birthday this January had she still been here.

Chloe’s passing changed all our lives.

I’m so sorry so many of us share this sorrow 🙁😥 sometimes there are no words.

CocoPops Sun 31-Mar-19 04:12:55

Try not to feel angry. Your friend did not have her brain engaged. If I were you I would not reply.

Marjgran Sun 31-Mar-19 11:31:56

So true

CarlyD7 Sun 31-Mar-19 11:32:10

I lost my daughter 23 years ago. I honestly feel that people just forget about your loss - most are really only interested in themselves and their family (and some close friends). Sorry but there it is; I'm not being judgemental - it's just being realistic. I'm constantly bombarded by news of how well other people's children are doing, and news of their grandchildren -I have neither. A few weeks ago, a friend (whose shoulder I cried on when my daughter died) sent me a WhatsApp of their new grandson and a photo, and I couldn't bring myself to respond. She then messaged me a few days later to ask if I'd received it (I still haven't responded and probably won't). I have spent years trying to come to terms with my loss, and now it's just part of who I am and I focus on other aspects of life but I never forget, and sometimes it overwhelms me. For years I have put on a brave face but lately this has become harder and, despite my own sense of guilt, am more honest about how I'm feeling. I do think it's important to have some people in your life who have gone through a similar experience - then it becomes a normal part of your life that you can talk about and people are sensitive to your loss. I'm so sorry that your friend was so insensitive (I'm sure it was that and not done deliberately).

Marjgran Sun 31-Mar-19 11:38:40

Your loss sounds unbearable. Your friend is anticipating a loss too, true totally a different scale, and shared it without thinking. I agree with others, that a simple “I am sure you are dreading your daughter moving away. I would love my daughter to be 3 hours away”. You say she is not a close friend and it seems she didn’t think about her effect on you. I imagine for you such a terrible loss is ever present although you get on with life.

123coco Sun 31-Mar-19 11:39:44

Happyally55 I’m sorry for your loss. However , I do feel you are definitely being unreasonable. People move on and your grief is no less than other people’s ’. How can other people LIVE your grief still after 10 yrs. grief comes in many forms. Loosing a pet. a job , and a marriage ( that will shatter your world I assure you !) etc may seem trivial to you but you are not to judge people in that way and decide your grief is bigger than theirs. Why should people be stilll walking on eggshells 10 yrs later. I speak from personal experience. Recently had a falling out with my sister because she told me she was still ‘reeling ‘ from the fact that I had used the word grief 6 months after her daughter died. At the time I was feeling my grief and why should I have looked up dates and then decided I had no right to my feelings and to use that word ? I had even donated my own pre paid burial plot to her after her death and felt so upset that all the kindness I had shown at the time has been overshadowed by the fact she had been holding onto to that day I said that. We haven’t made it up yet but I’ve decided my overly generous nature stops now. I couldn’t have children due to ill health but I have to listen all the time about her children and grandchildren. ( and I come on here and sometimes it sounds like a bragging match but I don’t ask you all not to do that ) Of course I could still cry and often do , at my loss , but I don’t expect people to live their lives around my loss. So yes you are being unreasonable and you must accept people move on from other people’s grief, and that’s the way it should be !

123coco Sun 31-Mar-19 11:58:57

Happyally55. So I could say you are being insensitive talking about your children but I’m not! ( I couldn’t have children through ill health ) And yes Mother’s Day isn’t very pleasant for me either but I don’t go around asking people to be sensitive to my feelings on that day.

Theoddbird Sun 31-Mar-19 12:01:38

I think Jane10 has the right reply...

Sending love and peace x

littleflo Sun 31-Mar-19 12:06:01

I know that grief like yours is all consuming, but I would not mention anything about what was said. She would feel like she can never have a normal conversation with you, as it is unlikely that any concern of hers will ever be as bad at what you continue to suffer.

People can be thoughtless and often don’t have the right words. I rang my DiL today as this is her first Mothering Sunday without her mum. I had to leave a message so said I was thinking of her and then, when I signed off the message, I said something that may have sounded crass. I keep going over it in my mind.

I think at the time of another’s Grief it can be very hard to say the right words

Annaram1 Sun 31-Mar-19 12:14:19

My brother committed suicide at 28 because the girl he loved did not want to marry him. My family were all devastated, especially my mum. Dad had passed away a few years before. Now I feel really sad having read these grief filled posts from other people left behind. My brother felt so alone and bereft, and yet if he had only waited a year or so he might have met another girl.... But people don't think about that at the time. Such a waste of a promising young life.
Happyally, I am with you on this day and always.

rmayatt Sun 31-Mar-19 12:26:31

You had a horrible experience and grief us something that may change but never goes away. Sometimes when many years have passed, people who've never had that experience dont realise how something can bring it back as though it was yesterday.
Your experience was devastating but your friend hasnt experienced it herself. However she is experiencing her own grief at the loss of her daughter by being further away..it doesnt compare to yours but why should it? We don't need to compete with who is more devastated than others, and im sure she wasnt thinking but blurted out how she was feeling. I think the fact she told you shows she trusted you as a friend to be able to voice her sadness - yes, possibly thoughtless in not remembering your own loss, but not enough to lose a friend over. In fact im sure if you said you felt for her but at least her daughter is only 3 hours away whereas you miss yours every day, she might put things in perspective.

Hellsbelles Sun 31-Mar-19 12:29:43

I can understand your feelings.....but..... I do have to say nobody's feelings of loss outweighs anothers. We are all entitled to have our own feelings and emotions. Just contact her and say you will be available for her if she needs a chat.
I'm sorry for the loss of your daughter especially in this Mother's Day.

Mygran Sun 31-Mar-19 12:31:11

As a grieving mum I am afraid I have little patience when people crash on about what I now call trivia.
Before it didn't seem like that but tradgedy is difficult to deal with and it has made me a lot more intolerant.
I do now try and talk to friends and explain that I accept and understand they want to be as"normal as possible" because that's how they cope with my daughters death however- ask me how I am -gauge my mood be a good friend and please talk about my lovely girl.

Would I have been a good friend and been sensitive?
Probably not to be fair so must make allowances and let friends know how to help. x

Chucky Sun 31-Mar-19 12:38:38

I am lucky, in that I still have all my dear children and grandchildren! I cannot imagine just how terrible those of you, that have lost a dear child, must feel. My family is my life and I would give my life for any of them. 💐💐💐 to all those who have lost a dearly loved child.

Hazeld Sun 31-Mar-19 12:52:37

It's bad enough losing a parent but for a parent to lose a child is just incomprehensible unless you've actually been through it yourself. I'm sure your friend didn't think about how much it would hurt you when she said what she did, she was probably so horrified at her daughter moving away she just didn't think. I know we always say we should think before we open our mouths but we don't always do we? I know it seems thoughtless of her and to some extent it is but to her it is an awful wrench. Nowhere near the same as losing a child but for her it's a terrible thing to be happening. I hate the expression 'I'm sorry for your loss' It seems so meaningless, something one says because they can't think of anything else to say, so I will just say, I feel for you, I can't imagine being without my children so I can't imagine how you feel. My sympathies are with you. xx

Cobweb01 Sun 31-Mar-19 13:19:57

My daughter lives three hours away but I get to see her several times a year and speak to her at least once a week. I cherish every moment and also those with my son. My heart goes out to evey single one of you who have lost a child as I can't even begin to understand how you feel, regardless of how long ago it may have been. My daughter is the same age as yours would have been Happyally55. I would give your friend the benefit of the doubt but explain to her how you feel and I am sure she will understand. Sending a big hug.

ExaltedWombat Sun 31-Mar-19 13:23:39

The person who loses an arm can still bandage a friend's cut finger. The smaller things in life still matter.

I imagine you must sometimes feel they don't, and wonder whether it's worth bothering with eating, breathing, living at all? I can offer nothing beyond (partial) understanding and sympathy.