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Ok, so am I the only one here who has no desire to "build a new life"?

Discussion in 'Spiritual Growth & Development' started by bluebird, Apr 14, 2013.

  1. bluebird

    bluebird Well-Known Member

    I keep reading threads here and various forums and articles and so forth all over the internet, which have to do with what people do and how they feel after their spouse or significant other has died.

    So much of what I read is about how to feel some happiness in your day, how to cope with the loss, basically how hard and sad it is but what you can do that might help.

    I read all of those things and find myself literally shaking my head "no". I do not want to "build a new life" or "get on with life" or anything like that. And I don't mean just get on with life and forget my husband -- virtually none of the things I'm reading come at it from that angle, they are all about how to incorporate the death into your existence but still get on with your life.

    I have no desire to do so. And I'm not just talking about being suicidal, I mean I truly have no desire to live, no desire to even attempt to find things to make me happy, no desire to move on with life in any way. For me, it's just a matter of managing not to kill myself because I promised my family I wouldn't, and that's all every day is. There is nothing more to life, for me, but waiting to die so that I can be with my husband again. I have no energy or inclination or desire for anything else, since what I really want (for my husband not to have died and for us to be together in the life we deserve and should have had) isn't going to happen.

    It's frustrating to keep reading about people trying to move on with their lives. I don't begrudge them that if that is what then want to do and what makes them happy -- that's fine for them. But I don't want that for myself. Am I seriously the only one who feels this way??
  2. Celera

    Celera Active Member

    My guess is at this moment you are the only one who feels this way.

    But I'm sure you are not the only one who has ever felt this way. I think it is a rather normal phase of many people's grieving process.

    To me, actually, what you describe is consistent with being very depressed. When I was depressed (for years) I didn't want to build a new life or feel happy or make a sandwich when I was hungry because what was the point? Nothing was worth doing. (Sometimes I watch those shows about hoarders, and as horrifying as it is, I totally get how people sink into chaos like that.) Counseling got me to feeling only halfway sad and hopeless. I actually thought that was how most people felt, and they just had more self-discipline than I did. It wasn't until Prozac that I found out most people actually feel sad and hopeless only occasionally, and they find some things are sufficiently enjoyable that they are worth making an effort for.

    For me, depression is partly biology and partly a solid thirty years of constant fear and shame and trauma. That isn't quite the same thing as having a pretty good life that is suddenly blown apart.

    So anyway, as a sort of psychologist (I do have an MS in psychology, but I'm not a counsellor) I would say that the way you feel is a normal stage. It's your choice to see if you can change it, or wait until it changes itself, or just stay this way forever. I think you seem like a good person, and a pretty smart person, and I wish you could be in less pain. But there are a lot of things I wish that I can't make happen, and that seems to be my challenge in life lately.
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2013
  3. ravensgate

    ravensgate Active Member

    I don’t believe people move on with their lives because it “makes them feel happy”, but feeling miserable and pissed off at a god will do absolutely nothing to bring their loved one back, so – really – what is the point?
    The way I see it, there is little that can be done in regards to your situation because you have no desire to continue; it’s as if the wind has been taken off your sails. Basically, you have given up, don’t want to feel better, you just want to die, so no-one – not even your husband – can help you (and I’m sure he’s tried!).

    In a previous post of yours, I read something to the effect that if you end up in the afterlife, no-one could stop you from finding your husband. You’re so angry and full of anguish, you take a very mortal approach to god, the afterlife, and how things may operate over there; do you really think that once you’re in the afterlife, you can just give them all a blast, win the argument with some higher being and join your husband? I highly doubt it, Bluebird.

    You want to communicate so badly with your husband, you yearn for some type of “proof” that he continues to exist, and yet I see/read no evidence indicating that you seriously consider adopting/trying any of the suggestions that could help you do exactly that.
    I think others have made several suggestions, but have you really tried any of them? I don’t believe so. Ultimately, the choice always rests with you. I wish there was more that one could offer; I, for one, am at a loss, and I truly am sorry, Bluebird.
  4. ravensgate

    ravensgate Active Member

    P.S. Bluebird, I am not ticked off at you, but I am frustrated at my inability to reach you. What I wrote may be a crock, but it is how I see it… and you know I tell it the way I see it (and yes, quite possibly I am “full of it”). If I offended you in any way, I apologize.
  5. Celera

    Celera Active Member

    Perhaps I'm not the only one whose current mission in life is to do what must be done and then accept that the results are beyond my control. :) Not just with bluebird, of course. If you want to feel ineffective, try having grown-up kids!
  6. ravensgate

    ravensgate Active Member

    Oh no, grown-up kids, Celera! Yes, yes, yes, talk about feeling ineffective, lol. But there comes a point when, with my kids, I tell myself, “You’ve done all you could. Time to step aside” – bet you know that’s easier said than done, most times.

  7. beadtrader

    beadtrader Member

    Are grown up kids worse than teenagers???
  8. bluebird

    bluebird Well-Known Member

    Thanks to both of you for your comments.

    Celera, i am definitely extremely depressed. but how could i be otherwise, in this circumstance? as for prozac, i have been on it for a couple of years, for ocd & anxiety. it worked well for me for those things. it has done absolutely nothing for the depression. this is absolutely true of me as well: "When I was depressed (for years) I didn't want to build a new life or feel happy or make a sandwich when I was hungry because what was the point?" There is no point to life, for me, without my husband. It's not as though he was the sole focus of my life when alive, either, but he was and is such a huge part of me that i just don't give a damn about anything else anymore. I'm sorry you have had a bad life ("a solid thirty years of constant fear and shame and trauma"). I hope things are better for you now.

    ravensgate, i am miserable and pissed off at god (if there is one) -- not because i think that will bring my husband back, but because i can't be any other way. you're right, that i have no desire to continue, that "the wind has been taken from my sails". actually, seeing/hearing my husband would help, though i honestly don't know how much. but at least that would take care of half of my misery and worry: at least then i would know that he is ok, etc. (the other half, which it wouldn't help, being the fact that he isn't alive and here with me).

    Do i really think that, assuming there is an afterlife, once i am in it i can find my husband? yes, i do. i don't know if i'd have to argue with God or whatever to do it, i only know that i would find him. i would do anything to find him. yes i am angry and anguished, but what does that have to do with finding or not finding my husband in the afterlife once i'm there as well? besides, at that point i would likely be somewhat less angry and anguished, as at least i'd know then that there is an afterlife.

    what do you mean by "you take a very mortal approach to god"? I'm not being snarky or a smart-ass, i'm seriously asking. i'm not sure what you mean.

    you are somewhat right that i haven't yet tried most of the suggestion to help me contact my husband. i do plan to phone the medium i want to see tomorrow, though, to set up an appointment for her next available slot. other things, like meditation and so forth, aren't possible for me right now. i was never good at it before either, as i've never been successful at quieting my mind (partly due to ocd and anxiety, i'm sure), and i'm pretty much absolute crap at it now. actually i'm pretty much crap at everything now. doing anything, even something as simple getting out of bed to use the bathroom or take a shower, takes a huge amount of effort. so i only shower every couple of days and i almost only eat stuff i can microwave or that doesn't need cooking, or if i do cook it's quick and easy stuff. i don't have to drive myself to work since i work where my sister does, so i only have to get myself over to her house about 8 minutes away and then she drives us. when i have to do food shopping or laundry it takes me literally hours to get up enough oomph to do so.

    and you didn't offend me. i appreciate honesty, whether i agree with what is said or not. besides which, i don't doubt that what you're saying comes from wanting to help, not trying to offend, and the intent makes all the difference, i think.
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2013
  9. ravensgate

    ravensgate Active Member

    I will send you a PM later explaining what I meant by "mortal approach to god".:)
  10. bluebird

    bluebird Well-Known Member

    ok, ravensgate. please see the pm i sent you, too (yesterday, i think).
  11. Celera

    Celera Active Member

    In some ways because at least teenagers will eventually grow up!

    My kids are great people, but for a long time the younger one seemed just at loose ends in life. Then he got his act together and now it's his brother who is drifting. And there is not much you can do but hope and pray and worry.

    They have both said, at times, "Just because I'm unhappy doesn't mean you have to be unhappy." I've tried to explain that it isn't a choice -- parents are hardwired to feel bad when our kids are struggling. It's not optional.
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2013
  12. ravensgate

    ravensgate Active Member

    Will do :)
  13. Celera

    Celera Active Member

    Things are much better for me now, and have been for a while. Although a few months ago I accidentally went off my meds (long story) and found that I still got very depressed, which proved to me that it is partly a permanent biochemical problem.

    Feeling depressed is a perfectly normal part of the grieving process, and it may last for a while, particularly in a case like this. It's not just the sadness of missing your spouse, it's the disruption to your plans and expectations for life. I got very depressed when I was first divorced (an event that on the whole was a huge relief) because I had to reconfigure so many things about my life. It's just daunting, even in small ways, to suddenly be on your own when you have for years been part of a couple. There is a structure to being part of a couple that is suddenly gone when you are single.

    And what has it been, half a year? From what I've read, this may take another six months to a year before you start to feel normal-ish.

    Prozac is not the only option -- I sometimes refer to Prozac when I mean modern anti-depressants in general. I think Paxil is more often used these days for anxiety and OCD symptoms along with depression. Prozac gave me nightmares, Paxil made me sleepy, Effexor gave me heart palpitations -- it takes a while sometimes to find the right thing.

    I was just saying this last week at work -- 90% of interpersonal problems at work (and maybe elsewhere) are not because of what happens, but because of the motives we attribute to what happens. If we assume the best about other people, we are often right. When we are wrong, we often still inspire others to rise to our expectations.

    It is clear that there is a lot of kindness and thoughtfulness in you, bluebird. This is why I think you will eventually be ok. There will always be a hole in your heart but one day it will not be debilitating. If you aren't getting there fast enough to suit us, that's not really your problem. :)
  14. bluebird

    bluebird Well-Known Member

    Celera, i'm glad you are feeling better now.

    My husband died just over 6 months ago. I know that part of why this sucks so much is that he died literally one week after our wedding. so now we will never get to celebrate our first anniversary or any anniversary together, and i will never be able to celebrate our wedding because he died so soon afterwards and because he isn't here with me. and also because we only had 13 years together -- had he died 20 years from now, or even 10 years from now, that would still have sucked and would still be unfair, but come on, one week after our wedding?!?!?? that's bullshit. (my anger is directed at god or the universe or whatever, not at you). so yes, my life has been destroyed. my soulmate is gone, our future is gone, so there is no point to my life.

    i know prozac isn't the only option, but it was working fine for me for the ocd/anxiety, so i know it is an effective drug for me. but the sadness and depression caused by my husband's death are much too extensive for any medication to touch.

    "It is clear that there is a lot of kindness and thoughtfulness in you, bluebird. This is why I think you will eventually be ok. There will always be a hole in your heart but one day it will not be debilitating. If you aren't getting there fast enough to suit us, that's not really your problem."

    thank you. i was a kind and thoughtful person, i think, but i really don't feel that way anymore. i feel like i have no energy or inclination to care about anyone else. all i can focus on is this unending sadness i feel all the time. i am much more selfish now, and much more annoying/frustrating, i'm sure, to my family. it's not that there is a hole in my heart, it's that my heart has been torn out of me with the death of my husband -- that is really how i feel, and i know it is how i will always feel. it would be a kindness if god, if there is one, would just kill me now.
  15. Bluebird, you are experiencing grief, your feelings are normal for those who are grieving. It's OK to feel like you do. Many of us on the forum wish to 'fix' you, by encouraging therapy and/or medication. That is also normal for caring people to do. But you continue to share with us. I am hopeful that the many wonderful people on this forum will at least take solace in that. We give you space to share and we listen with empathy, hopeful that time will help to alleviate your grieving.

    With Lovingkindness (metta),
  16. bluebird

    bluebird Well-Known Member

    thank you, vic.

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