After talking with my oldest brother I have decided to try and educate myself with as much information as possible. Very long story short, my dad died in February. We had not spoken in over 20 years after I told my mum that my dad had sexually abused me as a child. His death opened up lots of emotions and thoughts from the past. My father in law then died in March of old age but it was an upsetting time watching my husband be so upset. Worst of all my mum died of Covid in March which has left me devastated. My mum and I were partners in crime, she was my best fiend and my strength when I needed her. The hole she has left is painful and the fact I wasn’t with her or held her hand as she died is hard to live with. I now find myself surrounded by men, I have a husband, 3 sons and 2 brothers. I find that men deal with situations differently than women and I feel very alone in my views. I don’t like to upset anyone so I say nothing to keep the peace but find myself getting more hurt. Girl friends have been amazing but I never know how I should be acting or feeling. I am keeping very busy and trying to carry on like nothing has happened when I’m effect my life and all the constants I knew have gone. I know my situation is unusual but any advice or comfort would be great. Thank you
Hi. Nikki1. Welcome. I am so sorry to hear such sad new. Trying to educate yourself in regard to grief is a good start, but taking care of yourself is important too. So is helping others to cope. You are right about men reacting differently. It’s why, on this site the majority are women. Women find it a lot easier to express emotions than men. The reason being that boys are brought up to look and behave in a manly way. (whatever that means!). ‘Men don’t cry’. They do you know! You should act or feel as you want to and in your own way and time. Does it really matter what others think? It’s your pain not theirs. You may not believe this, but your situation is not all that unusual. I speak from experience as a retired counsellor.
You were not with your mum when she died. But we can’t always manage things as we would have liked. As a woman being surrounded by men, can have an adverse effect on your thinking. Their views and emotions will be so different to yours. Try and understand them. Your girlfriends sound helpful, and it’s good you have them. As for comfort, it’s difficult at this stage to offer any. You may well find it later because you are among friends here who all know how you feel.
Take care of yourself, and try and take it a day at a time.
Thank you for your message, hopefully by hearing other people’s stories I won’t feel so alone. Thanks again
There are a few people who are members of this forum, who have lost their mothers. Would you like me to ask Priscilla to flag them with your circumstances, I hope that you do not think I am interfering in your posts but I felt so sorry that you are going through so much.
Take care and stay safe.
That would be lovely thank you.
So sorry you lost your mum. I lost my mum too and I’m left with my lovely dad and brother. My dad is wonderful but there is nothing like a mother’s love and for some people it just can’t be replicated no matter what. Although I know there are people on here that have that kind of relationship with their dads. But I miss my mums warmth and kindness. Her loving hugs and sensitive soul. When I cry over my mum my dad can’t handle it at all. He says “cheer up”. . Yet when he cries I hug him. Men are so different. I know it’s different for everyone and it very much depends on each persons relationship with their parent. But I do understand what you are saying.
Hi. Nikki. Men are not different in the sense you mean, but I do agree that there is big difference in the way men react to loss. As boys we are taught such nonsense as ‘men don’t cry’. Crying is not ‘manly’ whatever that means!! Has it not occurred to you that why is it that the majority on this site are women? Women express their emotions so much more easily than men. The feminine side is there and emotions are allowed. Most men ‘bottle up’ for fear of ridicule. Try breaking down in front of a women and you will get empathy and understanding. It you do it in front of a man there will be embarrassment. Men too have a feminine side just as women have a masculine side. It’s in an approximate 80% either way. When men realise they have a feminine side they are well on the way. Look at a dad with a new born baby. The feminine nurturing side comes out. It gave me a great degree of comfort that when I cried buckets I knew it was my feminine side coming out. Women also have a built in nurturing and caring aspect. Like all animals it is there for the female to protect the young. Look at a pride of Lions. It’s the female who rushes out to protect the young. The male Lion sits on his backside and watches. Now who does that remind you of? Someone I bet!! Of course, it does happen that the complexes get mixed, but that’s another story!!
Take care and Blessings. John.
Hi Nikki, I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve lost both parents and your father-in-law, and that your dad sexually abused you as a child. Even though you weren’t in touch with your dad, it is understandable that his death has affected you and brought up some old feelings, and the other two losses on top of this must have been overwhelming.
Here are some links to conversations between people who have lost both parents:
And here are some conversations where people discuss losing a parent they were estranged from - these are all a few months old now, but might still be useful to read:
And some recent and very active conversations between people who have lost their mums:
Please feel free to post a reply in those or any conversation, if you see someone you’d like to talk more to.
I hope that you’ve had the support that you need for the sexual abuse you went through, but if you need to talk to someone about this, NAPAC offers a telephone helpline and email support for adult survivors of childhood abuse: https://napac.org.uk/
Hey, I’m really sorry for your loss.
I wrote the post mentioned above about losing my estranged dad in March . I struggle with this most days and I have a lot of guilt because actually I pushed my dad away a lot but we have a very different circumstance to yourself. I can complete understand how strange it is to feel something when you spend most of your life thinking you’d have no feeling what so ever. I’m totally here if you ever wanna chat