Thursday, August 4, 2011


I'm dealing with a lot of grief in my life.  I'm not dealing with my own grief.  I'm dealing with the grief of my husband and his family.  It's hard.  I'm tired of it.  I know I sound unkind, but I'm sick of their grief.

Grief can be accompanied by many other emotions.  So far I've witnessed grief coupled with depression.  I've seen my husband look so tired.  And sad. And I'm listening to him begin to criticize himself for ANY tiny error or mistake.  He is working on his dissertation, still.  It's going very slowly.  There are a lot of rewrites.  There is a lot of frustration.  He's dealing with his grief about the death of his mother.  He's making decisions about her stuff.  He's dealing with his siblings.  He's dealing with me.  He's dealing with his job.  And, he's not sleeping.  He's not sleeping nearly enough.  Things about his work, home, school, that used to come easily.  Don't anymore.  There are a lot of struggles.  And, I think he is depressed.  I'm not a doctor, but I think many men exhibit their depression through anger.  Or, at least a loss of patience with themselves and others.  This is just my opinion.

Grief can be accompanied by anger.  This anger may or may not be coupled with depression.  It may just be ANGER.  The desire to have things your way.  No matter HOW anyone else feels about it.  My sister-in-law seems to be going through this.  She wants EVERYTHING her way and she can DO IT ALL.  I have backed off helping out with the memorial service.  She wants to do everything.  She's making all the food.  She's communicating (I'm using this word VERY loosely) with everyone herself.  She's making all the decisions.  And, it's been made clear to me that I am not family.  She and my husband have had loud, uncomfortable disagreements earlier this week.  It was awful.  Thank goodness we have now moved into the comfortable (quiet) freeze-out of cold, hard anger.  She doesn't want anything to do with us.

I've heard grief and anger can make satisfying, if unhealthy, companions because the anger allows a great quantity of emotion to be expelled in one or two giant outbursts.  Ok, I get this.  But, let me tell you, it is no fun being on the receiving end of those outbursts.  I'm trying hard to understand the idea of doing everything herself and pushing help away with both hands.  Maybe by doing it all she can exhaust herself and get the sleep my husband is sorely missing?  I don't know.  I have not experienced this kind of grief.

I don't know how long grief is supposed to last.  I don't know if there is anything I can do to alleviate my husband's grief.  I don't think there is.  I just try to "be there" for him.  I'm on his side.  I'll keep away from his sister.  She's very scary now and we have never been close.  I let her son fb friend me.  I'm sure it wasn't his idea, but if she wants to stalk me, it's ok with me. 

We leave for Indiana next week.  It's going to be a tougher trip than I first imagined it would be.  I know we will all live through it.  But, I can't wait until it is over.  Good grief.  So far, I can't see anything good about it.


  1. Dear Heavenly Father: I come before You to ask You to fill my friend with peace during this time. It's so hard when those close to us (and especially our significant others) are so full of negative emotions that they spill out and onto us.  It's hard not to take it personally, Lord, when they speak in anger...when they're persistently sad...when they're restless, sleepless, and just unhappy, in general. Please help my friend in helping her husband, sister-in-law, and others in the family with just the right words (or lack of words), in all the right ways. Give her confidence in helping.  I pray that her husband will look back and really praise and thank her for her patience and presence during this time, when he is in the pit. I pray for my friend's husband, that he will recover from his grief, also for the others who loved his mother and are suffering, during this time. Thank You for your goodness and love. Thank You for using these hard times to make us better and more like You. In Your name I pray, Amen. 

  2. Brandee. Thank you so much for praying for me and my family. I am touched deeply and encouraged by the love of Christ you have poured out on me. :)

  3. grieving, mourning, it is exhausting, emotionally and physically. Unfortunately the only way through through it. Going around it, avoiding it= not gonna be good. You can take breaks from it or absorb it in small doses.
    I am sad your hubby and family are having such conflicts. that certainly increases the pain.  You are being just who you need to be for him  it seems....being there. Not easy, I know.
    I am agreeing to the prayer  below, and trusting God for peace for all of you.

  4. whew...tough topic..and grief can be different for each person...sorry you are having to walk through this but it looks like flower gave you the goods...walk him...and listen but also be real on your own feelings...

  5. Praying for ya girlie!!  I've dealt with family members who refuse to leave the Anger stage of grief for over 4 years now and I'm over it!!  I know how you feel.  I pray it will be swift and life will move on happily!  :)

  6. I think you are doing the best thing by just backing off.   You are not alone, my friend.  I feel your pain (having gone through something similar with the death of my father). 

  7. Praying for you my friend! I feel like I've been in your shoes, we as women can handle so much -men can't. Mine just started taking xanax for his anxiety, and worries and he's been so much better. I don't think prescrips are the end all to be all but they sure do help you "snap" out of it. I am not always a 100% compassionate when it comes with dealing with those who are hurt -because i've never been there-and if I had had been there-I wouldn't want someone always asking how I'm doing!

  8. nothing to add here that hasn't already been said, but praying. . .

  9. I do think that anger and depression are related.  I think that you are wise to detach from the drama and turmoil.  Hope all goes well.


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