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Sometimes the remarks hit me hard and leave me reeling for hours and I get into fear as I really don't know where I'll go after, so that contributes to my insecurities. I seem to be kinda super sensitive right now. What I am wanting from others is empathy, support, encouragement. cadams

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What I do is try to distance myself as much as possible from people who offer unsolicited and usually unhelpful and frequently hurtful advice. A great way to do that is cut down contact in person or on phone and rely more on email or not contacting them except for an occasional card. I also try not to talk about issues that I don't want opinions on. I rely more on the internet, columns, books, newspapers for companionship and entertainment. Sometimes I have a brief friendly quick exchange with a clerk, business person, banker during the day so I get some social interaction, not when they are busy or have waiting customers though.

Sometimes the people I am cutting out are relatives or people who have some good qualities, but right now they are not worth it. Also there are some intelligent, kind people out there that don't say a lot of stupid things. I hope you run across some.
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I'm making some assumptions. Some may be wrong. I'm assuming you have been living with mom, caring for her at the expense of your own life and career.its from those assumptions that I offer my opinion.

Fine mess people get themselves into. We see it here all the time. Someone decides, "hey, I'm going to move in with mom and take care of her. Won't need a job because I'll basically be living for free. In the beginning, I think it sounds pretty cool.

And then the months grind by . . . Caregiving becomes darned near impossible for one person. Yet the caregiver is sort of stuck. No job. No savings. No place to live outside of mom's house. Trapped.

And then moms journey begins winding down. Now what? The caregiver is going to lose their loved one...a way of life...a place to live. Relatives that figure you can just pick up your life from where you left off.

Very much easier said than done. Scary.
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We all react to serious illnesses and death differently.

My sig other carries all the deaths in his family on his shoulders daily... if you ask him about someone in his family the first thing he will talk about is the last week of that person's life, even if that person passed on decades years ago.... my gosh, I couldn't imaging spending 80 some years on this earth only for a son to talk about that last 5 days of it, and nothing more. But that is how his family reacts.

Even this evening, sig other was saying don't be surprised if the next phone call you get is a serious issue with my parents [they are in their mid-90's]. Yes, Mr. Positive, let's keep putting the negative spin on EVERYTHING.
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I would say to a particularly insensitive remark, REALLY?!!! That will often make your point, and to others, say I'd appreciate not having to think about that right now, and LUCKYLU, to the person asking for her outfit, I would flat out say to her, THAT IS AN EXTREMELY RUDE THING TO SAY! and that aught to shut her up, because it was!
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Some people are insensitive to what other's are going through in their life. If you can just look over as much of these comments as possible that upset you then you will be better off. Easier said then done because we all have been in a ordeal where someone said something that got under our skin, and we just analazed what they possibly could have meant. Or did they mean anything? That's why I say look over ignorance, and concentrate on making your self happy. We can only be accountable for our own personal actions, and it's too bad their aren't more caring people like the ones on here I see posting that care for people. Wow. The world could be an actual nice place to live:)
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Emily, yes it d*mn well can wait. Tell them to have some shame.
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Cadams, I know exactly how you feel. I live in 4 family house. Mom and I in separate apartments. She is at home with end stage cancer. It's like while I'm dealing with losing my mom a little more each day I'm supposed to have a plan all mapped out for where I will be moving so the house can be sold and 2 other cousins who are part owners can get their share. It feels so heartless. Like can't this wait at least until my mom is gone and I have some time to grieve?
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Open mouth, insert other foot.
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Sorry, your mom is still with us, in hospice? I should have remembered that is why this is so hard for you each day.
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Luckylu, my uncle's doctor at a well known E.R. asked him, "Didn't your mother believe in giving vaccinations? They didn't discover the polio vaccine back when he was a child. This bright remark from a doctor!
No one really knows what to say.
I am sorry that both parents have died, Luckylu. Be as strong for yourself as possible, and come here to AC when you want. You are a part of a community that cares.
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My Dad was handicapped with polio.I saw people mimic his limp in his walk behind him as a child.I still carry heartbreak from that.After he died,I had people say,"Now,he can run in Heaven".I hope so,but Noone really knows because no one has been back from Heaven to tell us about it.I think"Im sorry" is a nice remark.luckylu
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I think it depends on the motive behind the remarks - in addition to how they deliver it - that makes a difference. If it is someone that you know really has your best interest at heart and is CONCERNED about you, the response would be different from someone who doesn't care about you and is just trying to worry you. You could say to that person - 'why do you think that?' or 'do you really believe that?'
And then, in your best 'church lady' voice tell them thanks for sharing.
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Respond as the fancy takes you, I should. It's all very well, and it's true, to know that people don't mean to be hurtful or insulting; on the other hand if they are I don't see why you should feel responsible for sparing their feelings by not saying so.

But it depends how patient you're prepared to be, and whether the person saying something clumsy or tasteless is worth the trouble of a second thought. The handful of people who really pissed me off I just gave a "look" and they went away; or if you're on the phone try the flat contradiction - e.g. "mom is in a better place" "no, not really." Or just tut and move the conversation on.
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Its not you!People can say the rudest things,A so called friend of my Mother said to me'"When your Mother dies,I want the outfit shes wearing today".Ive heard all kinds of low comments.Some people have no couthe.luckylu
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Oh I know people do the best they can and often just don't know what to say and honestly feel they ARE helping. It's probably me more than them. I just seem to be super sensitive right now, anxious about where I will go afterwards, fears, the grief surrounding losing her, etc....... It was a recent remark a friend made, telling me my mom is getting older and just won't be around long and then asking me about plans after that just set me off. Seems harmless enough, but somehow it just hit me hard, so just bear with me. I think I will take pamstegma up on the ativan..... I'm trying hard to be be positive for mom, for me, for family.............some times are harder than others. Thanks for listening. cadams
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Ativan helped me. Maybe you should ask for some.
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I struggled for years with what to say to bereaved folks. Ive settled on "im sorry for your loss". Cadams, I'm sorry that you are grieving and feeling stressed. Most people don't mean anything offensive when they try to give you comfort. Please try to take these comments in the spirit in which they are given.
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One of the hardest things in the world is knowing what to say to people who are grieving. While it might comfort me to know that "mom is in a better place" you might think "what was wrong with where she was at?". See what I mean? Even something as seemingly benign as "It was God's will" will irritate the snot out of someone who doesn't see it that way. Entire books have been written on this subject. Certainly not everyone believes in God and Heaven, but the thought that there is somewhere nice ahead for us is a great comfort for most people.

The best thing for you to do is realize that most people mean well, and aren't really trying to piss you off. Don't feel you have to rebut every comment, just say Thank you for your thoughts. I appreciate your prayers. We will miss her when she's gone.

I'm sorry that you are having to go through this and that it is causing you distress. While we will be going through a similar situation, no one is having the exact process you and your family are. You have my sympathy. (Hugs)
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Cadams, people sometimes do the best they can, most of the time they do not think about what comes out of their mouths. What sorts of statements are they making? One that may have been said/asked is whether you will be relived when she passes. In my case yes, I will be relieved when Mom passes, but for someone else to say what is my private thought or wish is another thing entirely. I would just let it go in one ear and out the other. Recognize that these people are doing the best they can and leave it at that.
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Could you give some examples of these remarks? Sometimes there are ways of responding which turn the question back on the asker, or divert it, or just make it clear it's not appropriate.
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