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Question
Posted by: Heath | 2010/02/03

Death of my ex

Hi, my husband (who we shall now refer to as my ex as we had seperated but not divorced - this was a decision that we both agreed on) was killed in an accident 3 months ago. Since we were not divorced, it has fallen on myself to sort out his affairs. I don' t mind really, I made him promises and I intend to honour them and him, but I am feeling a huge financial strain (the family wanted a state cremation and didn' t even offer to pay anything towards the cremation - they insisted on cremation even though my ex wanted to be buried - the guilt about that is a different topic). Myself and my son were on his medical aid, so now I have to pay that, all the insurances that he paid, going to lose my car (which he was paying and I cannot afford to take it over). He had no life policies, pension etc. On top of this, my current relationship is taking a lot of strain because he sees the attention I put into sorting out all the details and the support I am trying to give to family and friends as some sort of sign that I still love my ex and wish I was with him. I do miss him and wish he was still here but all I need is the support and understanding of my partner. I have nobody to talk to about my feelings - which are confused - and have to be strong for my son who lost his step-dad who he loves very deeply. I really feel like I have lost everything and don' t know what to do. Work isn' t going well as a result of my emotional state. I am on anti-depressants (which is affecting my libido - which my partner takes as another sign that I am pining for my ex). My partner thinks I should be " over"  this by now. Everybody seems to think that I am the " ex"  and have no real place in his life and therefore their grief is somehow more real and I am not entitled to feel grief myself. I am getting to a point where I just cannot cope on a day to day basis anymore and don' t know how to get my partner to understand how I am feeling.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

If the family were too cheap to even pay towards the funeral, why did their preference for cremation dominate ? I thought ( at one stage it was true ) that cremation needed a specific indication from the deceased that this is what they would prefer ( in my family we have each placed it in our wills ), and if as next of kin you said this was NOT what he wanted nor you, it could have been prevented. Anyway.
I hope you can explain to your current partner that in this situation, as the legal next of kin and executor, you have little choice but to sort out the estate, and issues like the car, medical aids, etc., are inescapbly yours - nobody else will sort them out for you.
But at a time like this, family and friends should be supporting you, not expecting support from you.
Antidepressants are useless, frankly, in dealing with a stressful and sad situation - they cant make you ignore realities, and shouldn't COuncelling / therapy, especially of the CBT form, CAN help you work on the ways you handle these situations, realistically and emotionally, and help you deal with them more fruitfully and comfortably.
If other people insist that their grief is more respecable and genuine than theirs - ignore and void them, they are being selfish and unhelpful, and who do you owe them respect for views that ignore your feelings ?


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5
Our users say:
Posted by: Heath | 2010/02/05

Thanks guys! I have put my foot down on the scattering of the ashes - I will scatter them in his favourite place and honour him in that way. And I am no longer feeling guilty about the " stuff"  - most of which I had bought for him as gifts anyway - they are now mine to dispose of as I wish, or keep if I feel that way. Oh No! I really relate to the statement " No one how are you coping, do you need money or can we help with anything?"  I think when you have to deal with all the " admin"  you don' t get time to grieve properly so it delays the whole process, and then people seem shocked that you " aren' t over it yet" . I saw my mom-in-law last night and she can barely walk, the pain is so overwhelming it is physical and debilitating. I feel the same some days so I really do understand. We lost a wonderful person way too young (in a stupid accident that wasn' t his fault). I can' t believe he is gone - I phone him and email him without thinking sometimes. Thanks for the advice and support - going into the weekend much more at peace. I am also going to see his younger brother who is in a state institution (he has schizophrenia) - I promised I would take care of him and that is giving me some purpose.

Reply to Heath
Posted by: Oh no! | 2010/02/04

Family' s true colours come out in times like these. I had a similar situation when my father passed away last year. They were divorced so I had to handle everything. (brother is overseas) My mother did support me in every single way she could, but did not want to seem to be too involved for the sake of the family. I saw them on the day of his death, and on the funeral, oh and two months after, claiming money that he owed them, but to this day I waiting for the proof. Not one how are you coping, do you need money or can we help with anything? I had him cremated, we all want to be cremated, and buried nex to his father. His only brother has not even enquired about the ashes. So now I have made my peace and decided that I do not have to be nice to them anymore, and I am not going to. That is my peace.

Reply to Oh no!
Posted by: Anon | 2010/02/03

Not to be nasty in any way but sounds like your ex was a very good man. Not many men these days continue to support an " ex" . From what you have said, your new guy isnt much of a man as your ex was. He was enjoying the benefits your ex provided (like you having a car etc.) but now that his gone, your ex is just looking for excuse to get out as he wont be able to help you out financially as much as your ex did. Not all men earn the same or are the same but he is being lousy. Ask you family to try help out. Mention to them that there are alot of policies to be cashed in and see them running. Once they sort it out, there be informed theres nothing. but get them thinking theres something.

Reply to Anon
Posted by: jeb | 2010/02/03

i think your partner needs to learn some respect for both the dead and the grieving process...he/she/it sounds pretty selfish.

Reply to jeb
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/02/03

If the family were too cheap to even pay towards the funeral, why did their preference for cremation dominate ? I thought ( at one stage it was true ) that cremation needed a specific indication from the deceased that this is what they would prefer ( in my family we have each placed it in our wills ), and if as next of kin you said this was NOT what he wanted nor you, it could have been prevented. Anyway.
I hope you can explain to your current partner that in this situation, as the legal next of kin and executor, you have little choice but to sort out the estate, and issues like the car, medical aids, etc., are inescapbly yours - nobody else will sort them out for you.
But at a time like this, family and friends should be supporting you, not expecting support from you.
Antidepressants are useless, frankly, in dealing with a stressful and sad situation - they cant make you ignore realities, and shouldn't COuncelling / therapy, especially of the CBT form, CAN help you work on the ways you handle these situations, realistically and emotionally, and help you deal with them more fruitfully and comfortably.
If other people insist that their grief is more respecable and genuine than theirs - ignore and void them, they are being selfish and unhelpful, and who do you owe them respect for views that ignore your feelings ?


Reply to cybershrink

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