My mother died 4 years ago and I still feel guilty because I did not encourage her to go further with treatment. Doctors gave her 6-12 mo.

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She said she wanted to come home, to our house. I abided by her wishes but I don't think others thought that because she was not vocal about it. It was harder than hard taking care of her. I even asked her if she wanted to go to my brothers or back to the nursing home because I felt I was not taking good care of her. I gave her one pill of ativan per the nurses instruction and she became delirious and flailing about. When I became very upset with the hospice nurses, they sent two the next day. I guess they were afraid of liabilty, but I was furious. I have no one to really talk to about this. My husband is patient but not any help and my son and his wife, they all say I did everything I could. My brother and his family are estranged. He was never any help, although I think he was her favorite one. I could not leave her in the nursing home. We had always said if one of us died the other would be there. I have been recently diagnosed bi-polar.I did everything for her for 25 years.



Your mom wanted to be surrounded by her loved ones when her time came, and you did the right thing by bringing her home. I've said it before in this forum, and I'll say it again. There's nothing scarier for someone who knows his/her life is coming to an end than the thought of dying alone or surrounded by strangers -- which is pretty much the same thing.

You did everything you could and couldn't for your mother, and in retrospect perhaps there were a few things you could have done better. But there's no point in blaming yourself for not being perfect. Besides, your mother knew that you loved her deeply and that for 25 years there really wasn't anyone else you could count on. ... And she was grateful for every single thing you did to enhance the quality of her life. What matters now is how you're going to fill that void in a positive manner and begin the healing process.

Wherever your mom is now, she's smiling at you and her spirit will always be with you. And she definitely wants you to be happy and move forward.

I send you a big hug from NYC, and keep us posted.

-- ED
I am so sorry to hear of this tremendously heavy load of guilt.

You meniton a recent diagnosis with Bipolar Disorder. Which version?

What meds are you taking and how long have you been taking them?

Are your medications workig?

Are you seeing a therapist to help you with the bipolar and if so how often?

If you have a therapist, have you disgussed this guilt with your therapist? 4 years in an incredibly long time to be carrying this burden of guilt. This tells me that you have been long stuck in the grieving process. Google healthy and unhealthy grief to see more on this. The fact that your family has not been able to help you is a sign that you very likely need an objective 3 person to help you work through off all this mess. At this point, your grief sounds confiicted as seen in this extreme guilt.

I wilsh you well in this journey
After years of crappy therapy in my adult life (my really good therapist died many years ago), therapists that didn't or couldn't diagnose me was more depressing. I wrote a letter to President Obama. I know that sounds crazy. I felt suicidal. He sent in the "calvary". Next thing I knew, the local Crisis organization called.and I met them at a restaurant, where we went out to their van. They had someone with them that was for their protection, I guess, but I'm not violent. I never have liked medication (except for in the 60's...) but a few months later I finally went to a psychiatrist. It was at an office where I swore I would never go back to, but this time, ten years later, I found a psychiatrist I trusted as much as I could. She was great, she actually talked with me in our visits. She is from India originally, which I liked. She prescribed the only medication I have ever found to work, Lactimer (?). I am still on it. I cycle I guess, with pretty deep lows and my mania isn't so high. I did not lose my creativity. She has been awared psychiatrist of the year through some organization for 2008 and 2009. I am also in talk therapy with a very good therapist in the same office. I have commented and read some other comments on this site about hoarding, after I posted on this subject). I wish I could have found this site sooner. It helps so much realizing their are others out there like yourself. It was a mixed blessing finding I was bi-polar because for so long I was desperate to find out what was wrong with me. Then I found out, knew that it fit exactly, and had to realize this is not something that will be "fixed", but the management I think is really helping me turn the corner. Thank you for tour help.
Hi, your mothers doctors knew her situation was terminal that is why they gave her only 6-12 months and hospice was called in. Hospice is called in to help the patient be comfortable and die with dignity as much as possible. They do not give medications to prolong life but to make the life that is left as comfortable as possible. Most of us caregivers are not medically trained we only know what the professionals tell us and advise us. When my dad was bed ridden from strokes hospice told me that he, my dad, would let me know when he no longer wanted food. That means that death is at the most a couple of weeks away. My dad would lock his teeth together but I would still get that spoon full of food in. I thought maybe he doesn't realize what he is doing and if he doesn't eat he dies. I didn't want his death to be because I starved him to death. I made hospice come in and witness this so they could tell me to stop feeding him and it not be my call. He passed a couple of days latter. My point being that we can only do so much for our dying loved one and just know that you fulfilled your mothers wishes. If I have to feel guilty about anything it is the fact that I didn't stand up to my mother when she insisted that I grind up meat and vegetables for him when what he really wanted was pie. He always loved pie. When I am dying and on my death bed please somebody GIVE ME PIE. Death comes to all of us and I hope you come to this reality and know you did the best you could do at the time. We are all trying. God bless you all
Thank you all for your sharing. I would jump up and get her whatever she wanted. Inevitably she would throw it up. I ran to the store to get her coffee a few days before she passed. I was scared to death she wouldn't like it but she really did. She ate mostly watermelon that I fed her. She would squeeze it in her mouth and then stick the pulp out on her tongue for me to take. However, ninety nine percent of the time she would ask me for something and I would go into the kitchen immediately to fix it and when I returned just a minute or a few minutes later she wouldn't want it. There was a type of medication that supposedly costs like $500 or so that was supposed to stop nausea and throwing up but the hospice wouldn't order it. They had me putting some sort of patches on her inner arm for nausea. I put plastic over them thinking that would make her arm retain heat and the medicine would be absorbed faster.I don't think I got anytthing right much. I want pie too when I go. And between dying in a nursing home or at home under some idiots care (me), well, you're damned if you do and damned if you don't. Dear Mr Crowemagnum, I am taking lamictal and see the shrink about every 2 weeks. The lamictal helps a lot. My shrink received psychiatrist of the year for 2008 and 2009 through some professional organization.
you cant feel guilty, its so not your fault God called her home. it sounds like you made her last days as good as anybody could, she knows..
I totally! totally! understand. I lost the only thing that I've ever loved. My mother died on Decembe 17, 2010. It was the worst day of my life. I don't know what to do. I feel like quitting my job, giving up my career, and going into hiding. I'm guilt-ridden because I feel like I didn't do enough. The day that hospice came out to evaluate her as a possible candidate, was the day that she died. I live in another state, but traveled back and forth to be with her. Please be thankful that you have a husband. I have no children, no husband, and no one to call my own. I miss my mother terribly. My soul is hurt. I don't know you. But, be thankful that your loving husband is there for you. Be encouraged!
I am about to go to work in 2 hours. It's 4:26 am and I haven't slept all night. My mother passed away 4 years ago too. I was an only child and very close to both my parents, but far closer to my Mum. It sounds cliche, but she really was my best friend. We moved a few times due to my Dad's job, and I was shy so didn't make friends really well, I mostly got picked on. I got along well with my teachers, but the few friends I had drifted away. I made friends at work, but I don't try hard enough to keep them. I kept my focus too much on family, I guess. Only problem is, my Father passed away in 1996, so have both sets of grandparents, one cousin and most of my Aunts and Uncles. Since my Mum passed it's like I have no-one left. It took me 4 years to deal with her townhouse and all her stuff. I donated a lot to charity and binned alot, but I also kept a lot. I am not a hoarder, but our place is small, so we will probably buy a house, but I feel guilty because it's Mum's money from the sale of her townhouse that's allowing us to do this. I also feel guilty because I was at work when she had the stroke and even though the doctor said it was so massive it wouldn't have mattered if I'd been in the next room...the words don't help. Then they talked me into withdrawing feeding saying she'd be a vegetable fed by a tube in her stomach. I didn't want to lose her and I wasn't sure I trusted him, but my husband and her cousin both seemed certain she wouldn't want that. He showed me the scan which looked pretty drastic the size of the dark spot covered most of her brain. I agonized over it and finally agreed after days of no change. Now I hear after the fact that sometimes people recover miraculously. In my head she was going to be up there with Dad and her parents and my Aunts and Uncles, but we don't really know for certain what happens after where have I sent her? Now my 21 year old cat might be dying, there are too many people off work and we were told there would be overtime, but I am stressed. My blood pressure is up to an alarming degree and 3 people I know havr died that were my age and were seemingly happy. I have less than a year to retirement and now we are being told we can't take sick days anymore and if we're stressed out it's in our minds and we should be able to just laugh it off. I tried really hard to laugh this off but it's not working... oh and the stress symptoms are manifesting physically...I am getting hives and boils and rashes. They seem to go away when I am calmer and come back when the pressure is on and my blood is boiling. I may have aquired mrsa when my Mum came home from the hospital the year previous. She had it-colonisec not infected. No-one at work knows what it is and I just keep washing my hands to avoid passing it around.
My husband is also being pushed too hard at work, and he was so marvelous when Mum was ill. He's still marvelous, but he's stressing me out complaining about work when he comes home. When I am at work there are 2 women who sit behind me that do nothing but complain about everyone else and then they whisper and giggle. felt better to type this all out.
And to everyone who has posted in here.... I feel for you all and hope things improve. Whenever I had problems it was Mum I discussed them with.

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