I feel very silly writing this but I am still grieving deeply for my hubby who passed away in May’20. I am completely on my own, we had no children but loved our life together.
We were married for 46 years. I married at only 19. This is the first time ever I have lived on my own.
Generally, I am coping. I dealt with everything on my own. I go out every day and walk my dogs, I do the garden, I walk to our village post office etc. BUT it’s sounds ridiculous but I’m feeling very scared and apprehensive about going into the town, which is 7 miles. I don’t drive.
My brother, who contacted me just after hubby died (we had not spoken for years) offered me help. He took me for my 2 jabs in the the neighbouring town, for which I was very grateful. But I don’t think he ever really liked my hubby and the feeling was mutual. He never showed any empathy but I was so thankful to have some support as otherwise I don’t think I would have managed it. However, even though he seemed to want us to be ‘friends’ again and we had planned to take our dogs out for walks together, I rang him back in November for a chat and he was very abrupt with me and couldn’t wait to get off the phone. After talking to my mum it appears he wants to cut me off again! Without going into much detail I think his wife is behind it.
I now find myself alone and without support, accept for chatting to my mum who lives a long way away. I have to go and get my eyes tested soon as I am already overdue and just the thought of getting a taxi into town, which has all the memories of times spent with my hubby sends my anxiety levels sky high! I am not used to getting taxi’s as hubby would drive everywhere. I miss us going out together to do simple things and I am finding I just don’t want to go out anywhere. I know the opticians do home visits and I’m sure I wouldn’t qualify for that! I know that if I managed it just once I might get my confidence back or it could go the other way and I could panic and also make an idiot of myself in the opticians. I do feel silly as I know others have a lot more difficulties than me. I am lucky I am in good health but just feel so down, especially when I get up in the mornings and if I had to go out don’t think I can face it on my own.
Sorry for such a long post but have no one to turn to, Neighbours have been kind but not sure whether to bother them or ask for their help.
Thank you for taking the time to read this,
Dear Country Girl
I lost my husband last June after 51 years of marriage and I confess I am struggling. I too live in the country, the nearest town being 8 miles away.
However I have the great advantage that I have is that I am an experienced driver.
My advice to you is to take some driving lessons and when you feel you can cope buy or lease a car for your own use. Living in the country as I do where there is no bus service and the nearest station is 8 miles away, driving is essential. I recommend that you try to find a middle aged female instructor who should be more sympathetic than a young man. Alternatively an older man might be your best bet.
I am assuming that you are sufficiently computer literate to look for someone online. Try to be brave, it won’t be easy but it will be worth it in the long run.
I wish you all the very best
Hi Sue, thank you for the advice I do appreciate what you are saying but I am much to much of an anxious person to have driving lessons - I am just about coping with everything involved in taking care of the house, finances etc. I did have a couple of lessons when I was only 16 and the instructor just got so impatient with me I gave up. I am not sure I could afford to run a car anyway.
There are buses but the times have changed and now there are not so many plus it takes ages on the bus as they have changed the routes.
Thank you anyway.
What you are saying all sounds normal to me, we lose our confidence which means an everyday thing like going into town now feels massive, in respect if your brother try and thinks his loss & let it go, there isn’t anything you can do about that situation.
What I have done is when I’m scared of something I’ve had to do it, not easy but sometimes there isn’t an alternative & boy do you feel good when you manage it & you can give yourself a pat on your back for being so brave.
Treat yourself to a taxi to the opticians & go for it! You can do it!
Thanks for your reply and for understanding as I feel like I am the only one feeling like this as other people who have lost their partners seem to manage going out and about with no problems.
As for my brother, I certainly won’t be contacting him again. Such a shame as we were getting on okay, but he doesn’t seem to have any feelings, he is very cold, they both are. One day he may find himself on his own and wish he had kept in contact.
I know you are right and I must face it, but I just keep putting it off and get on with things that need doing around the house. It takes my mind off things. I will have to be brave and I do have some valium from the doctor but don’t want to take it but know I will probably have to!
I had a similar situation where I lost my confidence on a particular nightmare roundabout, I suddenly felt I couldn’t do it, I felt such an idiot and couldn’t face telling my family as it sounded so bizarre, my husband would have known what to say to me and wouldn’t have judged me, in the end I got up one day and thought enough if this so I went there and did it, I drove home feeling like a million dollars, no one told me losing confidence is a byproduct of grieving & im 3 years down the line, I know you can do it & it will give you such a lift!
It is so awful when our liv d ones die.
Jack died 3 years s ago - and I miss him all the time
We all loose our confidence, I certainly felt (still feel) vulnerable and I know that is very much up to me to make sure I am ok , Jack is not here to support me
We have 4 kids- adults , and very loving , supportive, etc but at the same time I am lonely , and I miss Jack’s company , the touch of his hands, his voice …… All I am trying to say is that having kids or not we feel lonely
Someone suggested learning to drive - is it something you would consider doing?
Even feeling uncomfortable do go to town - while there sit down and have a cuppa.
The best advice I received was from a friend that said to me “ do not isolate yourself “
Look after yourself
Thank you Sadie for your reply. I am not lonely, I don’t mind my own company, but I have never been a very outgoing person, bit shy really I suppose.
I couldn’t learn to drive as I am so anxious and not sure I could afford to run a car anyway.
I am working myself up into an anxiety state over this and I feel so annoyed with myself. I feel going into town the feelings of grief will hit me as I see the places we would go. Even when he poorly he still managed to go get his hair cut, struggling along with his stick. Then I would go get mine done. I cut it myself now. I am scared of having a panic attack and being on my own and having no support. I have suffered panic attacks in the past and know how debilitating and frightening they are.
I may see one of my neighbours. One lady also lost her hubby relatively recently and I have chats to her and another neighbour has offered me a lift if ever I need it. I think I just need someone to talk to on the journey in who will be understanding.
I am so busy at home at the moment so I will probably put it off again!