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feelings of guilt

Posted by sheebah (My Page) on
Wed, Jul 19, 06 at 5:04

Hi everyone, I would like to ask you all a question, as some of you know my daughter passed away on may 28 this year, the days are still very hard, I think of her constantly and I have found myself feeling guilty about small things, they didn't seem a big deal when she was alive but now I feel very guilty about it, my husband tells me not to put myself through this, because my daughter wouldn't want me to feel guilty.
Does this happen to everybody who is going to grief??
I question everything about myself, it's almost as if I want to punish myself.
I love my daughter so very much, and I do know I was a good mother, but why do I do this to myself!
I really appreciate your help,
thank you
Martha


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: feelings of guilt

Martha:
you know that my son died on May 31st and I to am going through the grief. I also feel this incredible guilt you are speaking of. Even though there is no definite proof they think that my son committed suicide. This is so hard to get a grip on. Why? and could I have done something? was I a good enough mother and mentor to him? and what about my other sons? If I thought that everything was fine...how am I to know if there is something wrong? am I not the mother I thought I was? I thought I was a good mom but, now I just am not sure? I understand your questions and I think that there will be no answer...it is just hard. I think that we really have to concentrate on the best of times and not the final minutes when for some reason my son felt that there was no other way. I pray every day for an answer, a sign, something...maybe someday there will be an answer and until then I will pray and write in my journal and hope that he is at peace with himself. I will think of and miss him everyday of my life but, because of people like you and the others here at this site I feel a little peace when I realize that I am not the only one and that life is so very precious. I hope that you will keep putting your thoughts down and releasing your pain here. I have found this site incredibly helpful in the mornings when I am at my worse. Sometimes I just read and other times I post. Martha if I could take your pain I surely would just as I am sure I would give this pain away...I will pray for us all and hope that it helps in some small way...


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RE: feelings of guilt

I think guilt is a natural part of grieving, perhaps not in all cases but in a variety of circumstances. The advice that our loved ones would not want us to feel guilty is good. Also, I think we should recognize that certain plans were set in motion by a power far greater than our own. Our ability to influence these plans, no matter how influential we think we might be, is limited to non-existent.

Still, it sometimes takes a while to recognize that "What if...?" questions are just as useless as "Why?" Someday we'll know everything. For now, it helps to focus on the fact that our children have survived in another realm and are still among us.

I hope Lulie will jump in here. I'm sure she has a lot of wisdom on the subject.

By the way, I lost my daughter Gillian on May 28, too...five years ago.

Susan


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RE: feelings of guilt

Here I am, Susan. lol I don't know about the wisdom part, (thanks anyway) but I can certainly speak from my own heart.
Most definitely, guilt is a component of grief. I would think that most people end up finding something to feel guilty about when they lose a loved one.
As parents, we feel that we are their protectors. When we can't protect them we feel that we have failed them. In reality, we just can't control their well being as much as we would like to. We can't control what they do, what they think or what they feel.... only to a certain extent can we influence them. We are human also and we do the best we can as parents and have to remember that, especially after they are gone. I too, think of so many instances in Christin's life where I could have been more compassionate, more understanding, more helpful, but I did what I could at the time and I KNOW that I loved her as much as any parent could love their child. She asked for my help just 10 minutes before her accident and I failed her. I can't go back and redo and I know that she loved me for the mom that I was and I also know that she is not worried about any of the things that we agonize over sometimes. Our children are happier than ever and certainly would want us to continue on as happy as we can be until we see them again.
I hope I helped you. Please come back and talk with us.
Lu


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RE: feelings of guilt

Just want to echo some of the others......my daughter died on May 9th last year.......guilt is definitely a component of grieving right up there with anger and loneliness and all the other emotions........I really like what Lulie and Susan said......you are where you are right now.......you can't change the circumstances.....your child loved you and knew you loved her.....and she wouldn't want you to agonize this way.......that being said, your grief is so raw and recent, don't add to it that you feel that there could be something wrong with you because of your feelings. Also, we and others can tell you of our experiences, but each of our experiences is our own and unique to us and our circumstances. So if what one person says doesn't coincide with how you have felt, don't worry about that either. When you are ready, if you haven't already, please try to find some sort of grief group. My husband and I lead a GriefShare group and believe me it makes a huge difference to be able to share these things with others that truly understand. Our particular curriculum also has a video component which "educates" us in the emotions and stages of grief. I haven't read all the posts so maybe this has already been mentioned....
Blessings,
Angela


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RE: feelings of guilt

Thank you very much for your replies, I know that my grief is still very raw, and I am still going through all these diffrent stages of grief, I seem to be stuck in the one stage forever though, the guilt, I have to find a way to get past that, I even feel guilty about anything I do and my daughter would love, I feel guilty she cannot do those things anymore, just the thought of Christmas is making me sick, I had already bought things for her, I always shop early for christmas, they now sit in the cupboard, I think I will give them to her boyfriend.
We are going to see a griefcouncelor for the 2nd time tomorrow, I know I need to see someone, I don't go out the house unless I really need to, I read lots of books about the afterlife etc, can anyone recommend a good book to read please??
Thanks again, I really appreciate all of your help,
Martha


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RE: feelings of guilt

I've found that the anticipation of the holidays and other dates of significance is often worse than the actual days. Try to avoid worrying about days like Christmas now (I know, easier said than done). When you get closer to the holidays, start thinking about what you would like to do on those days....you don't have to do what you've always done, you can do things quite differently....it's totally up to you! We did things quite differently last year for our first year without Alissa and it was a relief to have it figured out ahead of time. We still celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas (we went to see Narnia on Christmas Day).
I've posted a link to a favorite book of mine.......it was written in 1898 by a woman who had a near death experience....I've read it twice and pick it up and read a little whenever I'm especially missing Alissa.
I hope I've helped!
Angela

Here is a link that might be useful: My Dream of Heaven


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RE: feelings of guilt

Thank you Angela, I have tried to find it here in Australia, so far no luck, I keep trying!!
Martha


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RE: feelings of guilt

Martha, it's available on eBay, if that helps. Many eBay sellers will ship worldwide. I ordered a copy for myself. It has a stronger Christian slant than I usually relate to, but I was seduced by those reviews. It sounds like a special book. Thanks, Angela!

Susan


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RE: feelings of guilt

Guilt is very normal with grief...I felt guilty for a long time after Bryce died..I felt that if I was there he would have been ok. I would beat myself up about it constantly..All the "what if's" run through our heads...It is normal & I'm sure it will subside with time...We can only think about the good things we did for our loved one..No one is perfect.


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amazon.uk to order books

Martha,
I searched for Australian sites to order books hoping for something comparable to amazon.com that we have in the U.S.
I found this one, and if you go to the bottom left of the page, there is a link for amazon.uk.....I followed the link myself and found the My Dream of Heaven book......I don't know how much shipping would be but it's worth a shot to look into it. Susan, I don't know if you read all of the book reviews, but I wrote one of them! I don't do that often but that's how much this book helped me!
Angela

Here is a link that might be useful: Link to amazon.uk


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RE: feelings of guilt

Angela, I did read all the reviews. And after you told me one was yours, I went back and found it. Looking forward to reading the book.


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RE: feelings of guilt

Thanks everyone, I have found a American bookstore here in Brisbane where I live, I have been in contact with them and I hope to hear from them soon, I guess I might have a really good chance to get that book from there, if they haven't got it in stock they may be able to order it in for me.
I will let you know what's happening.
Thanks a lot!!
Martha


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getting the book

Martha,
I hope you are able to get it soon......I've read lots of other grief books and those are good for making you realize you are "normal", but this one I recommend to help you feel better and comforted.......
Angela
PS Susan, I'll be interested to hear what you think after you get yours and read it!


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RE: feelings of guilt

Thanks Angela, my friend who works near the bookstore has gone in this morning and ordered the book for me, and payed the $20.00 dollars deposit, they will give her a call when it arrives and she will pick it up for me, it should take about 4 weeks, I cannot wait to read it, I maybe comforted by reading this book that our children are fine, I think that's what we all want I think.
Martha
ps, I will let you know when it arrives.


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RE: feelings of guilt

if it is any consolation to you when my son died i felt ther was something more i could have done same with my mom and dad and my husband with my son now years later i realize it wasnt natural to outlive your child god bless you time will help you all did nothing wrong i have a little ritual every friday afternoon or evening i light a tealight candle in a little cross container and say alittle prayer for their immortal souls as the years go by there are many more loved ones and good friends young and old i worked as 911 in the pd locally for over 21 years many cops and kids passed on i name some each week in that little ritual prayer along with my dear ones somehow it helps bless you all


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