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Maryl08

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Joined
Jan 16, 2016
Messages
45
Reason
Lost a loved one
Diagnosis
12/2015
Country
US
State
WA
City
Seattle
Hi everyone, it's been a while since I've been on here. I stopped coming because it would make so sad every time. It's been about 6 months since my mom passed and I feel like all of a sudden the sadness is hitting me hard now. I feel irritable and a general sense of unhappiness some days. I lash out at my boyfriend for small things that he's done and am not able to control my reactions. I'm not sure how to work through the grief process and when I should start seeking professional help. I'm afraid I will fall into depression if I don't do something about it. Or maybe it has already started to creep in.
 

lgelb

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Nov 5, 2009
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10,094
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Mary,

If you're asking about it, why not try the professional help route? It may not need to be an ongoing thing as much as a reality check/reminding yourself of ways to deal.

For sure, if coming here makes you sad, don't! Of course, you are welcome any time but the grief and adjustment does wax and wane. In nicer weather such as we've been having, I think of my husband and how he liked going out in sunshine. But I can play that off against the number of times we did.

The more you own your feelings and actions, the sooner you can address what you don't like.

Best,
Laurie
 

Maryl08

Active member
Joined
Jan 16, 2016
Messages
45
Reason
Lost a loved one
Diagnosis
12/2015
Country
US
State
WA
City
Seattle
Thanks for your constant support Laurie. I think I will try to find a grief support counselor. I'm afraid to get my hopes up too high because it may not make any difference and I'd have no idea where to go from there. I often wonder if I should be taking a antidepressant. Grief is a very lonely process.
 

Vincent

Senior member
Joined
Dec 30, 2013
Messages
992
Reason
PALS
Diagnosis
08/2014
Country
CA
State
ON
City
Barrie
If it is of any consolation, you are right on schedule. With grieving the process is very hard work. At first you are numb. Then you have the strength to continue living. By 6 months you are worn down, all the firsts, readjusting to the new normal, has worn you to a nub. As Laurie said, now would be a good time to look for help in getting through. There's no getting around it, you have to go through it. I wish you peace.
Vincent
 

Jlynn

Distinguished member
Joined
Mar 16, 2016
Messages
408
Reason
Lost a loved one
Diagnosis
12/2015
Country
US
State
NH
City
Wolfeboro
Mary....you need to get it out. I wish I could send you my daughter as she is just graduating with a degree in psychology and is already very good at her job. You need someone that you can just let it all out too. You deserve that. I am going through the ALS journey with my baby brother (47) and it's a roller coaster ride. I really need to take my own advice and go talk with someone and I will but there really hasn't been time. I get the getting easily annoyed and snapping as I've been feeling that way for about a month now and have been keeping to myself so as not to snap at those I love. I think it will help your relationship. Just give it a try. Good luck to you and sending you a big hug.
 

Maryl08

Active member
Joined
Jan 16, 2016
Messages
45
Reason
Lost a loved one
Diagnosis
12/2015
Country
US
State
WA
City
Seattle
Vincent - Thank you for the wise insight. I really appreciate it. I feel terrible that I am complaining about grieving here when others are going through a tough time.

Jlynn - Thank you, I'm sure your daughter would have been a great person to talk to about this. I wish I had gotten help during the whole journey as well but like you said, there was hardly time to eat or sleep already. I hope you're able to find the time to speak with someone. Big hugs to you too.
 

Staying strong

Active member
Joined
Nov 20, 2014
Messages
78
Reason
Lost a loved one
Diagnosis
5/2011
Country
US
State
ct
City
danbury
Mary.. Sadly it's all part of the process.. good days and bad days... I told my kids from the start after Liz passed just cry if you need to..Be mad if you need to.. The ALS journey is like no other in my opinion.. We are all running on empty during the process so when it's over it is difficult to know how to feel.. just roll with it.. and getting some therapy really does help.. Hang in there😊
 

KatBee

Member
Joined
Dec 4, 2015
Messages
19
Reason
Lost a loved one
Diagnosis
10/2013
Country
CA
State
Ontario
City
Ottawa
Hi Mary,

I'm about your age I think (I'm 27) and I was also the caregiver for my mom (she passed away almost exactly a year ago).

I've seen a couple of counsellors (mostly because I have moved cities twice since caregiving) and I think it has been helpful on the whole. At minimum the counselling appointment has been a dedicated time during the week when I know I will have the time and space to cry and spend some time processing. It has helped me feel a little less alone with what I call "the stuff" -- the multitude of the things I have seen and felt as a caregiver that no one else seems to have time or energy to listen to.

I have had to switch counsellors because of circumstances, but in some ways it has been positive to be pushed to try consulting a different person. It's disruptive to start explaining again from the beginning, but having spoken to a few people has given me a better sense of different approaches and what might work better for me. Just adding that thought in case you speak to one person and aren't sure it's working for you -- they all do different things.

I've also started to realize that this miserable illness impacted me in more than one way, and those different impacts need different supports in order to heal. For one, moving away from my husband to care for my mom (and not feeling supported by him) really damaged my marriage, and I'm currently considering seeking some couples counselling. A big thing for me was that I got really isolated as a caregiver, and so I'm trying to build a bit of a support network from new acquaintances. I recently had a sort of memorial for my mom with mostly new friends, as a way to build a group of people who know something about my mom and have some idea about what happened... So that was something I did to help me heal, but didn't involve paying anyone (but it's only recently that there have been people I could do this with). Like you, I've also been concerned about my own mental health and I'm meeting a doc this week to discuss possibilities... This all may sound like a lot... I know it does to me... For the record I've never had time to see a counsellor every week -- maybe every second week or once a month, and I think I'll be stopping the individual counselling in favour of couples counselling. So I guess I'm saying that your needs may evolve, and there are lots of options out there...

Over this past year I have definitely been through waves of bad times and less bad times. Sometimes it's just overwhelming, and then I'll have a few weeks when I'm a lot more functional, and then suddenly I'm back to struggling to get out of bed, and it continues cycling like that. (On the other hand, at least there are those reprieve periods?)

At around the six-month mark I started tracking my mood via a couple of simple phone aps, because I was having similar concerns to you. I use Daylio, which asks me my mood that day and what activities I've been doing (you just select from a list of graphics for both, so it literally takes 10 seconds) and then it shows you trends over time. The other is called Bliss and I just use the section that asks me to list three good things about the day. I use that one because I felt I was getting entrenched in really negative thinking patterns and I was sick of the inside of my head... It also helps me focus on what's going on in my life now instead of the past few years.

I wish you strength, and also luck, because I think we all could use some.

Kathryn
 

scaredwifetx

Very helpful member
Forum Supporter
Joined
Jul 25, 2015
Messages
1,573
Reason
CALS
Diagnosis
07/2015
Country
US
State
tx
City
Dallas
Hi Mary, I assure can't advise about counseling because I should have went after my mother died. It's been a year but dealing with the everyday losses with Steve, have left me to shallow to deal with a counselor. The loss will always be there but if you talk with someone it will help you to process.

I still think of my mom especially now that it's spring. I am starting to think of the good times more than the sad.

Hang in there and hopefully find someone to talk to. Reading the posts here is very sad at times. I take time away for that very reason. I can tell you that we all understand your grief and are here to help when you need it
 

Snowman78

Distinguished member
Joined
Dec 3, 2013
Messages
158
Reason
CALS
Diagnosis
12/2013
Country
US
State
SC
City
Sumter
Prayers and hugs. I posted something simolar just a few minutes ago. I lost dad about 2 yrs ago and while I am somewhat better it still hits me at the most expected times. Hope it gets easier for you.
 
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