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My husband passed away peacefully on Sunday, following an 8-day hospitalization, a three week stay in a skilled nursing facility and 24 hours at home in hospice. His family were all here and it was a relatively easy passing. Now I am riddled with guilt about the angry feelings that were a big part of his final months as I tried to deal with his violent behavior-a horrible part of frontal/temporal lobe dementia with vascular issues as well. His passing left me at once relieved and in deep mourning. And now that I am no longer a caregiver, who am I? To top it off I will, on Dec. 1st, lose nearly half my income, as his pension plan is that kind. I guess I really knew this, but the reality of it is going to kick in soon. There is no life insurance, and our home was sold in May with a move to a small apartment, allowing money to pay off a few bills and the many expenses his illness requires, yet one that I will no longer be able to afford, but for which I signed a year long lease in August. I alternate between determination to get paperwork done, planning a committal service, being absolutely numb and shedding tears of loss. The one light is that we had purchased a funeral plan that has been a true godsend. I try hard to remember the years when we were happy. He was a quiet, yet funny and joyfully talented man I fell in love with the night we met. I am alone for the first time in 38 years, and my fear grows daily.

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Addressing the fear: you're contracted to rent your apartment until August but you don't think you'll be able to afford it?

Write down the numbers and look at them. Present fears are less than horrible imaginings. It will then be clear whether or not you can let this go. If you can't keep the apartment even with reasonable economy, then you need to negotiate an early termination of the lease. Was there no break clause at three or six months? Even if not, in the circumstances it's reasonable to expect some latitude from the lessor.

Ideally you could place this in the hands of a trusted friend or advisor. Do you not have anyone to turn to?

The thing is, you need to be free to sit still and grieve. Once this very real problem is under control it will stop polluting your thoughts and you can take the time you need. Otherwise I'd say don't try to do anything at all until you're ready, but I think the worry is really making the pain worse, isn't it?
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She1934 Nov 15, 2018
Thank you for your reminder.
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Losing a spouse is difficult. My husband of 62 years died 10/6 in the Haven Hospice Center where we both were well cared for. I took care of him at home with the help of Hospice. I think anger is part of caregiving for most of us, but it is mixed with love, strength, patience and a whole lot more. Forgive yourself for your anger. You are only human. Move on in your life with thankfulness for each day. Know that in your grieving there will be many different emotions. We do the best we can do.
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HVsdaughter Nov 17, 2018
Well said, Bett.
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Many welfare agencies run a financial advice service which includes personal counselling (well of course!), and it might be a helpful place to go for a chat. Sometimes even a chance to talk yourself, helps you to move on in your own head instead of going round and round. It's even better if they can give some useful advice. I am not surprised that this is all horribly hard to cope with. Yours, Margaret
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She1934, I am so very sorry for the loss of your beloved husband. He sounds like a wonderful man. To fall in love the first night you met him -- what a beautiful love story! And what a terrible loss for you.
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Reply to SnoopyLove
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I’m so sorry for your loss. I hope with time you’ll be able to concentrate more on the happy memories of your husband and think less of the bad times that cruel illness brought. I also hope you’ll find good advice about your path forward, you certainly have a huge life change you’re facing and will need good guidance. The funeral home my parents did their prepayment with provided some counseling and guidance for us, maybe yours will also? Don’t try to go it alone or make quick decisions. Be kind to yourself, you’ve done well in the most trying times
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Reply to Daughterof1930
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So sorry for your loss. You need to let the guilt feelings go. It could not have been easy dealing with him when he was violent and you kept him home to care for him. It had to be frightening at times.

Baby steps. Funeral first then SS to find out what u can receive. Give yourself time and baby steps. Talk to ur landlord, maybe he will be willing to let u out of the lease under the circumstances.
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She
I am very sorry for your loss. No matter how close death is, it always seems to bring with it a measure of surprise.

I know you only had the one day of hospice but they do have grief counselors. Perhaps they can help you begin to piece the bits together.
i hope you can get some good rest before you tackle all the logistics.
Hugs
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Reply to 97yroldmom
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She1934 Nov 15, 2018
Yes, they have reached out to me and I will plan to use their program. It is just so hard to get through the many calls, the paperwork and the service and notifying family and find time to sit quietly to accept that his journey is, mercifully, over.
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She,
So very sorry for your loss and the emotions that you are having and facing. Praying for you.
You will be ok, it is still very fresh.
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Reply to smeshque
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Grief is full of lots of emotions... and that’s normal. You do not need to feel guilty for the reality of a disease process over something with which you had no control. Guilt is very normal for caregivers to feel but it is not always warranted, healthy or rational. It sounds like you loved him a lot so be proud of your 38 year marriage and remember that many marriages are based on the premise of “for better or worse.” Disease can fall under the ‘worse’ category but that doesn’t mean your marriage wasn’t successful. There’s no guidebook for how to get through these things so we do the best we can....and that’s all we can do as people dealing with unique circumstances with a unique person.
If your husband we’re still here, I suspect he would want you to focus on managing your finances and practical matters to the best of your ability without worrying over his last months. He would want to know you are safe and not distracted by unnecessary guilt about him. Cry when you need to cry to let it out but don’t dwell as it will make your present more difficult. My condolences for your loss and may you find strength to address your practical matters one step at a time.
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Reply to Target456
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It is early days yet and the wounds are raw, you can't expect to begin to find your equilibrium for weeks and months. One day at a time.
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