What do you do when your mom isn't over her second husband who died 38 months ago?

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She says she is unhappy, and she will be this way until she dies. What do I tell her?
She is unhappy inside. Pami

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When sitting with caregivers after a loved one had died. I found that the one thing the family wanted to talk about was the recently departed. I would ask about his (usually a male) life, the thing he liked to do and in this area of NYS did he shoot the deer proudly displayed. How long ago did they move up from downstate, and I would be shown all kinds of achievemens.. There would be laughter and tears and someone would make coffee. It was a very special time. Sometimes I would meet a widow in the grocery store and they would talk fondly of that night and remember every detail of previous visits. By chance many years later I shared a room in the hospital with a widow when we were both having knee replacements and again met the family that had been gathered that day. She was very content with her loving family around her.
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Maria, That is so true. Most people don't know talking about a deceased loved one really helps. When we lose "our best friend" it is a depth of loss unknown to many. My mom died when she was 45. She left 6 kids. She always said it was a compliment to the departed spouse if they are able to have another relationship. That means it was not bad if they want to have another one!
Hugs to you!
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Pami also, her departed spouse would want her to move on with her life.
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My husband died 3 years and 9 months ago. Losing a spouse is utterly devastating and is rightly compared to losing half of yourself..............and then not knowing what to do with the other half.
Bill and I were so happy and when he died, the light went out of my life. I have learned to "fake it" around pretty much everybody because the acceptable time of grieving is long past... so I carry the pain privately - deep inside. It hurts when people refuse to mention his name. I love to be "allowed" to talk about him. The best gift you can give a grieving wife is ..........to freely talk about her dear husband. Don't erase him.
I have found great peace in my faith in God and look forward to being with Bill again.
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You may want to research the term "complicated grief" which is a term for grief which lasts far longer than average, and is far more intrusive on the person's life (causing deep depression, no desire to do anything, lack of joy in things that used to bring joy, etc.) She may benefit from treatment from a psychologist and psychiatrist that specializes in complicated grief, as it is a very specific field.
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The grieving process is different for all. It generally takes about 2 years but hard to put a number on it. Prolonged grieving which interferes with everyday life needs to be addressed. It is important to validate her grief. She will always miss him. One thing for us to remember is the love of a spouse is different from the love of a parent/step parent. Let her talk about him...... just listen. Ask her what is your happiest memory of him. If she is constantly dwelling on him, time for a bereavement group. Find one and go with her the first few times. Also her volunteering somewhere may help to pass her time/feel appreciated. An antidepressant may also may be needed as a stepping stone.
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My mother lost my father 23 yrs ago and is still not over it. It is what it is. I think after 37 yrs it's gonna be till she dies that she can get over it. Let her mourn but get her a psych eval to help her deal with it. Good luck.
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I agree guys and thanbk you. a widows group would really be good for her. Pami
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Let her be. Mourning her husband is something she doesn't want to let go. Maybe as time passes she will relax her hold on this, maybe she won't. There's nothing you can do about how she feels, and it would be wrong to try to make it happen - all you'd do is stop her talking about it, you won't change anything inside her.
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Maybe you should call her MD and see if he can prescribe an antidepressant, but understand she has grief work to do. Visiting the grave helps, remembering birthdays and holidays. That said, my mother died at 37, and my father grieved her, and was angry for 40 years, until the day he died. He never worked it through. He remarried 6 years later and the marriage lasted less than a year. He went into it thinking everything would be the same; it wasn't. So, for mom, it will never be the same. If you can connect her to a widow's group, it might help. If she has a minister, he could counsel her. Grief work and mild medications may be a big help.
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