Newly bereaved

I really don’t feel much like interacting with anyone in person right now so I figured taking the “virtual” route would be best.

I lost my father-in-law on the 17 September 2023. He passed away in hospital aged 74 due to dehydration and malnutrition caused by dementia. I was not there when he died but I did see him in hospital 4 days before he did. He’d been sedated and was lying on his side, shaking violently. I could see bones poking through his skin.

After being notified of his death my husband and mother-in-law went to the hospital to see him. According to them he was in the general stroke unit with other patients and had the curtains pulled around his bed. Upon seeing him he was cold, lifeless and his eyes were open.

I am aware of the fact that he was not my relative by blood and only by law. I am markedly closer to my in-laws as they let me be myself; my mum and stepdad are more protective of me and worry over my safety a lot.

At the moment I am off work due to this situation - I don’t know for how long as the funeral may possibly take place on Friday and it appears that he may be buried in a plot of land opposite the care home where he was due to have stayed.

What I have written above is pretty much as much as I have said to anyone. I may get around to talking more about it - for now it just feels like a massive weight on my back pushing me down towards the ground. My mum and stepdad have health problems of their own and my husband is currently out of town to sort out the estate/will/funeral so I am spending my time alone in the flat either crying randomly, watching films, sleeping, doing the occasional housework or making tea/coffee. It’s been hard for me to sleep at bedtime and my appetite has been a bit lower.

I feel like I shouldn’t be acting/feeling this way about the death of a relative only bound by law, like I am overreacting, but I had never seen a dying person right in front of me and to imagine him potentially in the same way only with his eyes open is something I find so upsetting. :face_holding_back_tears:


Love is love. Titles, relationships, family trees etc are not always indicators of the amount of love we should or do have for a person. The part they play in our lives determines that. I don’t think having strong feelings at the loss of an in-law is strange at all.

My dad died 15 years ago. My family were at home, received a call from the hospital where he’d been for 3 months telling us he was unlikely to make it through the next few hours. We were asked if we wanted to be there. We all decided we didn’t want to be. I’ve never regretted that decision.

My mum died last week. She deteriorated rapidly in her last 24-48 hours. I saw her a couple of hours before she died and she looked shocking. I chose to leave before she died. On my way home I regretted going to see her that day. I wished the previous time I’d seen her, looking like she was asleep, had been my last memory of her.

Over the last week my views have changed. I needed to see her like that to understand it was the end. It was a reminder how much pain she was in and how now she isn’t suffering anymore.

Seeing loved ones on the verge of, or after death, is a shock. I think you’re perfectly normal for feeling like that. We see it all the time on TV but it’s not real and it’s not our loved ones.

I think what you’re feeling is normal grief :pensive:

Sorry of your loss. Your feelings are totallly normal so please don’t go down the road of “shoulds” and “shouldn’t’s” glad you’ve found the site xx

1 Like

I lost my dad last month, and my mother 44 yrs ago today. I’ve had momentoes of my dad made that contain his ashes, to feel close to him. I don’t sleep well since my dad died. My daughter said that I used to call for my mother in my sleep. Now its my dad. I was there when both parents died. Its a horrible memory. I have been in contact with a medium, now I am going to see another one.

I do feel for you. I am retired and have had a lot of loss in my life Recently lost the aunt I cared for for eight years. Good luck withe mefium.

Do you have any other family or friends you can lean on? I’m lucky to have my daughter & friends & family to lean on. I lost my mother at 13, but I find the loss of my dad has hit me harder as a adult. I’m hear if you want to talk. I’m sorry for your loss. Take care of yourself.