Has anyone else found that after your loved one passed that you have become less cautious?

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For instance, since my Mom passed I have found myself doing things spur of the moment more. Not weighing the pros and cons of things. Doing things that are in fact foolhardy. Going for walks in the middle of the night, for instance. Just throwing caution to the wind. Why would this be?


Any intellectual types out there who would like to tackle this question.

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It could be a sub conscious feeling of "seize the day". It could also be tied to the hopeless belief that life sucks and then you die, so what difference does it make whether you die sooner or later.
Are you still seeing a therapist?
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"There is no shame in getting a little therapy now, is there?" - - - a line from the movie "Mumford" (years back).
Actually, there is a stigma for anyone going to therapy or having a mental illness. One is assumed to be mentally ill if going for therapy, and that is not always the case. Everybody needs some support at times in their lives, and a third party can often help, if just to listen, and you leave feeling heard.

Starting with an evaluation by a psychiatrist, then a referral to a counselor seems a good plan of action, for any caregiver who has had to set aside their lives for someone else for so long, and has therefore not tended to themselves properly for so long-like a garden left untended-one must get in there, do the heavy weed clearing, find yourself and plant stuff that reflects the new you.
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I have considered taking my motorcycle test, does that count?

But mostly I'm the opposite - keep catastrophising. Slight slip on the stairs, and in a flash I see myself lying at the bottom with a broken neck and the dog howling the house down until I'm discovered half-eaten three weeks later.

Going for a walk in the middle of the night doesn't sound insanely reckless. If you start picking up strange men or joining a base-jumping group, now...

Are you having a lot of trouble sleeping?
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Yes CM, that has been an ongoing problem for me. Even before Mom died and I think if I actually considered going to a therapist then I would know for sure that I'm a goner. I know they do a lot of good for a lot of people but I personally had to go to a few when I was very young and suffering from an eating disorder and I don't think I'd go there again. When you are pouring your heart out and you wonder why the doc keeps staring at something behind your head, you turn around and look, realize it's the clock and then at the dot of noon, his secretary walks in with his lunch and he smiles condescendingly and says, "Well, thats all for today," when you are in midsentence.......... well, I guess I need not say more.
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In Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, concluding all therapists will be like the one you saw a long time ago is called "All or nothing thinking". In CBT, one can learn how errors in their own thinking can block a person from moving forward. Once informed, given these tools in therapy, a person can learn to help themselves and correct their own thinking.
I too dislike the kind of therapy where one learns to contemplate their belly button f o r e v e r , lining the pockets of the therapist.

There are some self-help books that can teach CBT.
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An adjustment of priorities and values?

It isn't quite the same, but I have noticed that whereas before I used to counsel myself not to worry too much about other people's opinion of me, nowadays I don't need to do even that: I really don't care. For example, encountering snotty shop assistants. Before, I'd remind myself "you don't dress to impress somebody who works on a checkout." Now, I wouldn't even notice, or if I did I'd just note internally that this young person has a lot to learn.

Could it be a rebound from having a responsibility lifted, do you think? Are you worried about it, or can you think of positive ways even to exploit it perhaps?
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I think we go into a phase of being a teenager again... doing things at the spur of the moment. I find myself buying or wanting clothes I normally wouldn't buy for my age :P
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CM forget the motorcycle, dog would never keep up and probably give himself a heart attack. Plus the helmet would mess up your hair.
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I'm not sure I've changed so much since my husband Coy and/or my mother died, but I think my attitude shifted a little when Coy developed dementia. Early in the disease, in a lucid moment, he raged, "Is this what I took such good care of myself for? I wish I had died at a much younger age like all my brothers! Why am I the one who lived long enough to get dementia?!"

I haven't become reckless, I'm still a fairly cautious person, but I have become less judgmental of my own and other people's occasional lapses. I know that each of us is going to die, no matter what we do. And some of us are going to suffer in that process. I still take my pills and take reasonable (if not rigorous) care of my diabetes. I wear my seat belt. I have all the medical tests I'm supposed to have, more or less on schedule. I don't put myself in harm's way. But I know I'm not going to live forever and I'm a little more accepting of that idea than I was before Coy developed dementia.

Does that make sense, Gershun? Is it at all like what you are experiencing?
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CM I think if it were just a matter of being less concerned with others opinions or something like that I would not be worried but I have always been the kind of person who deliberated things very carefully before I'd make a move. But I've been doing things spur of the moment lately. Nothing obscene or criminal. Just stupid things like going for a walk in the middle of the night. Let me preface this by saying it was cause I was tired of tossing and turning and just couldn't handle staring at the ceiling wide awake all night. But then one time I went for a walk after dark and walked around this dark trail that runs along a dyke. As I noticed it getting darker my inner voice said "probably not the brightest thing to be doing" but I just said blank it and went anyway. Lied to my husband cause I knew he'd freak.

This kind of behavior is not like me. I hope I don't sound like I'm reading too much into something that is not important but I am just curious I guess and wondered if anyone else on here who had lost a parent had changed in odd ways too.
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