Yup, another negative post. Sorry. Thank you for all who have messaged, called, etc. This IS a hard time for me. A very hard time. I really appreciate your support. I will get through this and yah I’ll be stronger for it…. how do you spell neanderthal? rolls eyes
I am starting to hit the anger stage of grieving. This needs to happen but I’m finding that if I spend more time alone than with others, it’s much better for all of us. Still, on the occasion where I have seen someone and told them what happened I have received some pretty ignorant, cold remarks.
So I thought I would write a few things of WHAT NOT TO SAY when someone has lost someone they love. I’ve added an excerpt on addiction too.
-No sense crying he drank himself to death
-Well he chose to live his life this way and now he is paying for it
-Why haven’t you accepted it yet?
-He left long ago
While a couple of these had good intentions (or I hope they did) they are still very hurtful and cold. I wrote an earlier post on scarring in the heart and that we do NOT know what is in another persons heart.
If you aren’t involved in a 12 step program or alanon you probably won’t GET that we detach with love, we do not hate, we do not stop caring, we do not create crisis, we keep our own side of the road clean and let others clean up their side.
I do not need anyone’s permission to grieve. I do not need anyone’s sarcastic or rude comments. I swear, do people even THINK about what they are saying?
I’ve been told that I’m a sensitive person. Over the years I have learned to “harden” up, I had to, because if I didn’t I would be crushed by the cold reality of many things. This is NOT depression, this is NOT me looking for attention, this IS ABOUT MOURNING AND GRIEVING.
And yes, he was an alcoholic, he DID in fact drink himself to death, do you think I do NOT know that? Do you think his survivors do not know that? Really? Do you have any idea how excruciating it is to watch someone you love self destruct? If you do not, I hope you never do. How would you feel if you had just experienced a tremendous loss (and that is only to be defined by yourself, not anyone else…. JUDGEMENT SUCKS) and someone said something cold and invalidating to you?
The majority of people who have heard and approach me are very kind and understanding. They have been with me thru the split, they remember the happy clean Jim. It is sad, and those that are left behind are left to find acceptance of a senseless death….
I really wanted to belt someone yesterday. I mean BELT them. I lean to being a pacifist, I do not like violence, but yesterday my patience had run short and I am raw, vulnerable. I am doing my best.
If you don’t know what to say to someone, say I’m sorry. Put yourself in the shoes of the person you are talking to, and be aware that you do not know their pain or their loss. In many ways when someone self destructs by disease or mental illness, it is MUCH harder to accept than someone who has died of cancer. Why? Because with cancer the person hopefully has done everything they can to save their life. It is a travesty when someone young dies, PERIOD. When an addict or alcoholic dies (and if you are still of the mindset where the stereotype addict or alcoholic is always a street bum….. start paying attention! There are functional alcoholics, addicts all over, and I’m sure someone you know is one and you may not even know it) their is the ADDED pain of knowing this was a senseless death. Addicts or alcoholics who die of the disease are criticised, judged mercifully… “They threw their life away, it’s their own fault”… etc. And I’m not even talking about my jim here. I’m talking about in general. ALCOHOLISM and ADDICTION IS A DISEASE. A sometimes fatal and deadly disease if left untreated. If you EDUCATE yourself on the disease you will learn that many times the person doesn’t even know they need help because the disease itself convinces them they don’t… that there is nothing wrong. Not every addict/alcoholic will survive. In fact, if they do not seek help, they will die. It is NOT about their lack of willpower or poor character. They are sick. Very sick. And they will leave behind a very hurt and painful past that their survivors will have to walk thru.
That is not saying that you should allow manipulation, lies, and much more shit from the addict/alcoholic. Perhaps if they bottom they will get help. Enabling is not a good thing and most enabling is done out of love or sympathy. Just because someone lays down a border and tells the alcoholic, do not cross this line doesn’t mean that they have shut off their emotions, feelings, or HOPE.
What is life without hope? And I have learned that hope changes.
There is NOTHING you can say or do that will take anothers pain away when they are grieving. But there IS things you can say that will make it worse.
And now I’m going to jump off my soap box and get ready for class. Again, my love and thanks to those of you who have so kindly “understood” and offered your support. Thank you so much.
I pray that his parents and brother are surrounded with kind, loving and understanding people. The last thing they need is to deal with another persons ignorance or lack of compassion.