Mom loved my dad very much, but has all of these resentments towards other women that she believes he had relationships with...which I know is not true. Any advice please? - AgingCare.com

Mom loved my dad very much, but has all of these resentments towards other women that she believes he had relationships with...which I know is not true. Any advice please?

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My father died on Thanksgiving day. He had dementia, was under hospice care and passed at home very peacefully. We are holding a memorial at my home. My mother loved my dad very much but has all of these resentments towards other women that she believes he had relationships with... which I know is not true. This has been an ongoing saga over the years, my mom was terrible jealous of all women, including me. I could go on and on.. but a few of these individuals she resents are part of larger families that will be attending the memorial and she wants me to tell them not to come. This is very challenging and I am not sure what to do as I feel those who loved my dad should come to pay last respects. This drama feels very unfair as I am trying to grieve and plan all this for him and others. Any advice please? Thank-you.

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You all are wonderful and provided such sage and valuable advice. I think that asking mom to be dignified and gracious really hits both a sensible and loving chord. It's funny how the particular dysfunction that is our family continues, even after my precious dad's passing. My mom was stuck for so many years with her skewed thinking (drove my father to distraction AND despair at times.. though he loved her, too). I hope that she can find some peace and put this behind her. I don't think she will ever admit she was wrong, but I hope that it is true what people say.. that the bad memories whittle away and the good ones stand prominent. Thanks again to you all.
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Sometimes the grieving widow is in a adjoining room with other family members. Those that wish offer sympathies privately speaking to her. Would a setup like that be possible and the screening of friends happen before individual greetings to your mom there?
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Condolences on your father's death. How wonderful that he was able to die at home.

What a terrible dilemma you have been placed in. There seem to be no choices here that will please everyone.

Would this approach appeal to your mother? "Whatever may have happened in the past, now is the time to forgive and move forward. You are his widow and this is your chance to show what a gracious person you are."

Or this? "Whatever is in the past should stay in the past. Making certain persons conspicuous by their absence just gives tongues a chance to wag. Mother, you don't deserve to have gossip going on. You deserve to be a dignified widow."

(I am assuming that you can't talk her out of her beliefs and that you couldn't go as far as accepting them. But "whatever happened" might be neutral enough.)

Personally, I don't think I could have such an event in my own home and disinvite people. I might also try to arrange a low-key immediate-family-only event, perhaps in the funeral home, and tell mother you will understand if she wants to attend only that.

Disinviting certain individuals would likely cause hurt in their families. Mother may not want to see those women again, but she may regret cutting herself off from several families!

It is hard and unfair for you to have to deal with this. Do your best, and whatever you decide, don't beat yourself up about it later. There are no "right" answers here.
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I am sorry for your loss. I am sorry you have to deal with the additional drama on top of your own grieving and desire to comfort your mom. If she is holding on to this belief, she will not let go.

Personally, I would take the easy way out and have a small intimate funeral, then advise others, they can always drop by the cemetery, say a prayer, light a candle or make a donation in his name.
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My sincere condolences on the loss of your father, but wonderful he was able to pass peacefully at home.

What a difficult thing to deal with, especially since you mom has suspected for years that dad has been unfaithful but he has not. You can understand her discomfort, but maybe if you assure her that so many loved him and want to say goodbye. He was with your mom up until the end, in spite of her accusations, that says what a good man he was. Not many would be able to live with this for such a long time.

Others may have better ideas, that have been through similar problems. I have not and sure hope I never have to.
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