How would you react?

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How would you react?

Postby i'll rise » Fri Feb 17, 2017 12:11 pm

I had gone no contact with most of my FOO a number of years ago because of alcoholism and abuse in the family. But the only FOO member I remained in contact with and tried to maintain a positive relationship with was my Aunt.

I hadn't seen her for a big portion of my childhood because my dad was estranged from her, but in my teens I reached out to her and we ended up having what seemed to be a positive reunion. Her son, however, continued to hold an immature grudge for the last 25 years. As a result, he pretended I didn't exist and even resorted to completely ignoring me and my DH and kids when we would visit my Aunt.

My Aunt treated my kids well, which was the main thing, and would say to me over the years that she considered me like a daughter. And my Uncle treated us okay too (he would say that we meant the world to my Aunt and that they were both there for us if we ever needed it).

A few months ago, my Aunt told me that she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. We travelled down to her town to visit her one last time, particularly so she could see my kids one last time.

Recently, I ended up having a strange gut feeling to Google her one night (to check for her obituary), and when I did so....there it was... just published that day. And it stated in the obituary that she had died over a week previously.

I'm sickened that no one directly contacted me to tell me she had died.... and I had to learn about the news from stumbling on her obituary on the internet.

I've got so many mixed, confused feelings about all of this... it also drags up the pain of my FOO and the issues. I don't know what to think or how to react. Even when my father was estranged from his FOO when I was a child, someone still contacted him to tell him his mother died.
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Re: How would you react?

Postby PutMILinherplace » Fri Feb 17, 2017 1:05 pm

I am so sorry. I know this hurts but I am going to have to be blunt. While your Aunt loved you, the rest really did not...NOT because of you but because they don't know what love is . It sounds like they did this just to hurt you. I am sorry. It sucks big time but this is the way it is. Don't contact anyone. They want to know it hurt you. Don't give them the satisfaction.

Be thankful for the relationship you did have with her. Concentrate on that. Be thankful you, and your kids, got to say goodbye. Your life was made better with her in it. Remember the good memories you did have. Focus on the good and be thankful for it . Don't think about what could or should have been.

Focus on your kids so they will never have to go through what you did. When you feel yourself going back to the bad memories, focus on your kids. Don't waste energy and emotions on something that will never change. Focus all of it on your marriage & kids. That is where your energy belongs.
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Re: How would you react?

Postby Hiddenjem » Fri Feb 17, 2017 5:19 pm

I am sorry I"ll rise. ((((Hugs))))) it is hurtful that you weren't contacted.

Remember, you made the trip to say goodbye. It meant a lot to her.


I was in your place years ago. It still bothers me the last time that I saw my loved one.

It was a regular visit. We talked. I learned that she had a heart surgery coming up and she was nervous about making it through the procedure. We talked about death and what she feared about missing if she didn't make it. However, she was widowed and missed her husband. After, I left, she wrote a letter that was to be read to her loved ones after her death.

She didn't ever leave the hospital.

She loved me as much as if I were a relative.

She arranged prior to the surgery for me to read the letter if she didn't make it.

It read,

If you are reading this, I didn't make it.

I realize though that my husband has been waiting for me and it is time to be with him. I miss him.

Do not feel sad for me for leaving. I want you to live your life and carry on with the love and experiences that lay in front of you. You are loved and that hasn't changed. I will be watching over you.



I thought maybe the letter would bring comfort to you and your children as well.

I know that you and the children were loved by her.

Remember, you made a big difference in her life and she knew how you felt about her.

It was wrong for her relatives not to contact you.

"I have learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel." Maya Angelou
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Re: How would you react?

Postby i'll rise » Sat Feb 18, 2017 10:48 am

You are both incredible people, and I greatly appreciate your responses.

I can't thank you enough for your very helpful words and kindness. What you said really helped me a lot -- this has been a very difficult time for me, and it's so easy to get mired in the hurt of what was done. You've helped me refocus on the positive.

Hiddenjem, thank you so much for sharing the letter that your loved one had given you when she went into the hospital. That was so incredibly touching -- and those words helped me greatly. Thank you!! What a beautiful thing for your loved one to do -- a wonderful legacy to leave behind to those who cared about her.

You've both helped reaffirm my faith in humanity during a dark time. Thank you both!
Last edited by i'll rise on Sat Feb 18, 2017 11:14 am, edited 1 time in total.
i'll rise
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Re: How would you react?

Postby Hiddenjem » Sat Feb 18, 2017 10:51 am

You are very welcome. (((((Hugs))))). I care.

We both know that we loved well and were loved.

"It is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all." I don't regret having my "adopted relative" in my life.

Time helps. It has been ten years and I think of her fondly daily. I was blessed to know her. On challanging days, I do my best to live in a way that would of made her proud.

I will be thinking of you.

Please feel free to share memories of your loved one. I would feel honored to learn more about her.
"I have learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel." Maya Angelou
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Joined: Sat Nov 19, 2011 8:06 am

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