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My Boyfriends Brother is Dying...What Do I Do?

Discussion in 'General' started by pandora, Oct 15, 2007.

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  1. pandora

    pandora I'm a VIP

    Ok...tonight I was at the hospital (trigger now) and i worked there for five years and I pretty much grew up there in more ways than one. UUUUGGGGHHHHH.....I hate that in my mind i feel like....this is not all about me....it is another family going through this terrible loss and i am feeling panicked and it is affecting me. Just so frustrating.

    Anyway...tonight my cousin delifvered a baby at 8;56....I had just left and i missed the delivery. My anxiety was starting to rise...I started to feel nauseated etc and the little pictures are forming in my head of all the things i watched my father go through.

    Then....when i got home my boyfriend of 2 1/2 months called to update me on the status of his brother. He has been in ICU since thursday morning after suffering a major heart attack. He is 45 with 6 children....Oh so very sad and so automatically i am triggered with the family and the loss and how the poor children are going to manage. (I remember being a child and watching my father die at 43....I know the repercussions. Again...I hate that I am thinking about me right now.

    So....my quesstion is that...OK...my anxiety is through the roof. i am shaking now just writing this. i know i need to support him and that I feel I need to try and support him more. i saw him on friday but I have not gone to the hospital with him...not ICU and those flooding memories....that just pop in and out of my head and then i start having flashbacks of the assault too. I don't know whether I am supposed to go to the entire funeral and the burial. Do I remain by his side the entire time and meet his whole family this way....with my anxiety being bad at those particular moments. can i just go to one of the viewings and just make an appearance ? i spoke with a friend of mine and she told me i should just go and make an appearance. i haven't experienced death with my symptoms at an all time high (probably had started a bit but at the time i had no idea what it was or how to help myself. Do i avoid it all together?

    it is hard to make the right choices, especially right now. Of course me neck is on fire and i just feel confused.

    I have all of my paperwork on the living room floor. i am going to organize to help me not have so many flashback "pictures" i know I am getting better....it is not taking over my day this time and I am shaking them off pretty quiclky but last night....i woke up about 6 different times and the bed, my hair, sheets were soaking wet. i was freezing and i was shaking so hard that I literally felt like it would never stop. i did realize in my own head it was going to stop and I was safe and it was 2007 and everything was going to be OK. So...those lasted about 10 minutes each. i took ativan and immovane last night to sleep and it also gives like an amnesia so i don't remember what I dreamt. i just know my Dad was in them and i know it was about violence because i woke up in a panick...like scared to death. Those are the times i wish i had someone there to wrap his arms around me. it has been very comforting and I have never experienced this type of comfort....I don't think ever.

    OK....so now i am rambling. My whole basis for this thread was to find out what others would do? i know I need to practice self care...I also know that I WANT to avoid the funeral all together. The previous PTSD girl would have no second thoughts...I would go for the entire funeral....i am really beginning to care for this man quite a bit and i want to show him i care and I want to be supportive to him in all ways. How do i approach this funeral issue. Do i treat it like exposure therapy...take a friend (my friend Kristy said she would go)..Do that first...see how I feel and attempt the second viewing and then go to the actual funeral and burial?
    UUUUGGGGG i hate that I cannot make a logical choice or decision before i have thought about it over and over and over and over...all the while remembering a past from HELL.

    Sorry everyone...my anxiety is so high and my brain is going so fast i can hardly type fast enough or keep the thoughts to a some what logical level.

    Thank you for taking the time to read this and respond with any advice...i REALLY don't know what dto do. i can't beleive how hard this is hitting me?
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  3. She Cat

    She Cat Policy Enforcement Banned Premium Member Sponsor $100+


    With death being one of my bigger triggers......It's hard to give level headed advice to you.

    It's one of those things that you want to be there for support, but the thought of it makes you sick. You know that you probably should, because HOW would it look if you didn't go? Tough either way....

    I have been dealing with this issue for over 40 yrs, and this is how I deal with it. Not saying this is how you should.

    I really take into consideration how close I was to the person and the family. How much they meant to me, and how much I feel the family needs MY support. I make my decision also on how I feel at the time....If I can't go I send a card, and explain in person if needed.....

    The last time I had to do this was in June, my customers 15 yr old son died of CF....They also waked him at home. I have know Drew for 10 yrs, loved him dearly. It was difficult, but I went with someone I felt safe with. I had flashbacks, anxiety, and hated every minute of being there, but I went because I loved him.....

    I have no real answers, but hope and wish you can make the right choice for you.........(You) Not anyone else....

  4. Damiea

    Damiea Well-Known Member

    Wow what a lot to deal with all at one time! I would say not to make any set plans as that will cause you more stress trying to push yourself to keep those plans and feel bad if you can't do it later... just go on a day to day basis on what you feel you are able to cope with.. take time to be by yourself and remember that no one expects you to do more than you are able! and if you do go to any service.. you don't have to stay for a set amount of time!
  5. John_R

    John_R Member

    I have issues with hospitals too, and it does most definitely invoke unhappy memories for me.

    I have a couple of suggestions based on what I would do that might help.

    If I have to go to a hospital for a happy occasion like a baby being born, I would buy a small gift for the baby, make an appearance and express how happy I am for the parents, and then leave. The whole thing could take 10 minutes and everyone is happy.

    If my girlfriends brother was in ICU I wouldn't be able to see her brother anyway, so, I would do a few things for my girlfriend to help her.

    1. Be supportive.
    2. Ask if there is anything that I can do, like go grocery shopping for her while she is at the hospital.
    3. Contact other family members and let them know that they are in my thoughts and prayers and ask them if there is anything that I can do to help them.

    I can add many other things, but the point is that you can be supportive in their need without jeopardizing your own health. The truth is most families who have a loved one in ICU really don't want to be around a person they don't know very well, but that doesn't mean that they don't want your caring, love and encouragement.

  6. pandora

    pandora I'm a VIP

    Thanx everyone.....

    John you said exactly what i really hafve been doing....makes me feel good that maybe I am not doing the wrong thing after all and I do plan to go the a viewing she cat ( I think) UGH!

    I have asked him to call if he needs anything, I talk to him more than once to get an "update" and help him with some of the medical information. We had to make an appearance on friday night (for a holloween work party) I went out and picked up both costumes and got all of that ready on my own so he would not have to worry about it. i guess i am being supportive in my own way. I also sent a message on facebook (to his sister that I have met two times) sentding my thoughts and prayers. So...I guess I am doing fine and i am just so worried about doing the wrong thing and acting the wrong way. I just need to stop worrting about things and take it one hour at a time.
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