All most four years on ,I am still grieving

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Bertie 2017
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All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Bertie 2017 »

Hi I lost my seven year old cat ,Bertie on the 25 November 2017 ,and it has almost destroyed
Me , I have never ever felt so much pain ,I miss him so much ,I feel it’s taking over my life ,
And have suffered depression , and have no interest other than video games and my cat ,
Bertie’s brother Basil ,they are the things ,I only get enjoyment from , I feel I have let
Myself full into bad habits ,like sleeping too much ,and hardly eating ,and not doing the
Housework ,even my neighbours have noticed a huge change in me ,not the fun loving and
Care free ,person I used to be , I have withdrawn from normal life ,I even ,pledged no
More cats, in the future ,because I cannot ever put myself through ,a loss like this again ,
Yes I have had some ,councing but the moment ,I showed signs of improvement ,I
Was told ,the sessions had too stop ,because of long waiting lists ,I feel my grief is just
Like a rollercoaster, I ride I cannot ever get off , I feel I had come so far ,but now I
Am slipping back down ,it doesn’t matter what I tell myself ,the truth is ,I miss my
Bertie so much. He was my whole world my everything ,and he was cruelly taken from me.
Too soon ,what did I do to deserve it ? .I feel I will never ever accept my loss ,because
Of the way ,things have changed ,I just wish too live in the past ,when I was happy ,
tortie adore
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by tortie adore »

Ok, Bertie, I've got an assignment for you. First, tomorrow, instead of playing a video game, call 1 person. The next day, go to the store and get your favorite food and make it. The next day, if you like tv at all, pick a show you might like and watch it. The next day, make yourself go for a walk. Tell us how it goes. P.S. No, I'm not a counselor in any way shape or form but sometimes u just have to get yourself to do just one thing.
Bertie 2017
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Bertie 2017 »

Hi tortie adore thank you so much for your support and advice ,I agree with you ,getting
Outside ,is a good idea ,I am sure you know that lockdown hasn’t helped ,being stuck at home , but still it was for our safety ,I haven’t missed my family at all ,from the day of .
Bertie’s passing , they haven’t supported me at all , in fact ,I often feel they have ,forgotten
About me , or just don’t care , I often have days like the one ,I wrote about ,I often feel .
Overwhelmed ,and cannot keep it in , best thing to do is let it run it’s course ,today hasn’t
Been not so bad , of course Bertie is never ever out of my mind ,if you knew him ,you’d
Understand why it’s so painful at times ,he was a one off ,I have had many cats ,but
Not like him ,and too lose him so young ,just doesn’t seem fair ,if you ask me ,but I feel
In time , I will accept my loss , but that’s the thing , grief has no time limit , so I shouldn’t
Be so hard on myself ,or expect to much ,because it’s like being on a rollercoaster ,
So many ups and downs ,we feel this pain ,because we love them so much, and we let them, go too spare them pain ,that is called the last act of love ,

Take care thanks again x
issiandarchie+68
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by issiandarchie+68 »

Bertie,I think Tortie has given you simp!e but good advice. It's sad that over 4 years your feelings towards your family have not mellowed. I think as part of your 'Tortie therapy ' you should put the mental ability and time used on your online games to better use. Why not extend an olive branch? Invite the most receptive family member for a coffee, ask them about there life,plans for the future,just relax, eat cake and listen. Charity shops,are crying out for help as long-standing older members have not returned after Covid. You don't have to work behind a counter,I don't, lots of background work to be done. The radio is usually on, interesting people chat and laugh (or bicker) as they work,lift your spirits. You only need a couple of hours but you will be out of the house,especially if you do a bit of shopping on the way home. Of course you miss Bertie, I was talking to Cats Protection staff yesterday,mentioned a silver tabby lost to a rta 30yrs ago and had to take a moment, but you can't let it rule your !ife. Life throws things at you and sometimes smelly bits stick,but even with help,ultimately, only you can remove them and move on.
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Mollycat
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Mollycat »

Bertie, of course you are focused on yourself and your grief and need support. But there comes a time when people become stuck for what to say to you, and feel uncomfortable because of it. This isn't just because your Bertie was a cat, it happens when someone loses a parent, a friend, a companion, a sibling, a child - especially a child. You lose some of your support network because you're stuck in your grief and need to talk to get free, while people around you have completely run out of ideas and ways to "help" you when in reality you don't want help (even if you need it) you just want someone to listen to you.

I am a trained and qualified grief counsellor, a long time ago and I have never practiced professionally, and I know people have to get stuck before we can help them become unstuck. I also know it can take a very long time to become fully functioning again. I've been feeling for some time that there is something important behind your ongoing grief for Bertie, that it's more than Bertie and may have triggered some much deeper unresolved, perhaps even long forgotten, issues. In my hours volunteering, I helped clients unearth some quite amazing things completely unrelated to the loss that they were stuck in. Most commonly it tapped into feeling controlled, too much responsibility, being deprived, always being the carer or the funny guy to others around them and therefore their own needs and wishes being quashed their whole life, or not being allowed to grieve properly for past losses. There is always a reason we get stuck.

Taking action as Issi and Tortie suggest can help you get to one level of functional again and into a stronger position to start dealing with whatever trauma losing Bertie has triggered for you and got you so stuck, together with not having been allowed to work through your grief for Bertie properly.
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by tortie adore »

Thank you Bertie, Molly Cat and Issi for replies to my sugg! Made me feel great that someone's out there reading! Just rec'd 2nd vaccination shot (Moderna) yest. and still have headache, weakness, kind of dizzy. Bertie, hope you are on the mend. I also find this forum helpful because of the compassion shown here.
Bertie 2017
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Bertie 2017 »

Hi thank you so much everyone who has been kind enough ,too help and support me ,it
Means a lot ,I have been taking what you said into account ,sadly my thoughts over
My family haven’t changed ,they are selfish people ,who only rings me when they what .
Something ,I used too do volunteer work ,worked for Pdsa and cats protection and Oxfam,
Charity shops , since I was fifteen years old ,but sadly due too my arthritis ,I was finding it
Painful, too continued it ,this was before I lost my Bertie ,no I believe it’s a mixed bag
Of events, that have lead me ,down this road , and lockdown hasn’t helped ,being at home
24/7 leaves plenty of time ,for your thoughts ,plenty of time ,too dwell on the past ,
All though the happy memories and times are a great comfort to me ,I am always laughing
At Bertie’s. Antics , life was never dull ,and the dreams of Bertie ,are the only time,
I feel I am with him ,and dreams are real ,I suppose that’s why I sleep so much ,too
Be with him ,and it’s the only time ,I feel at peace , before I awake too the nightmare
Called reality hits ,I am sure people on this website understand perfectly ,what I am saying ,
Today I feel ok , I feel letting Bertie go was the right decision ,because he must have been
In pain , sadly my pain isn’t so easy to take away ,but I must let time heal me xx
issiandarchie+68
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by issiandarchie+68 »

I read your last post Bertie,with a sense of despair and a little exasperation. I find it incredibly sad that after 4yrs of support and advice from the forum, your GP, Blue Cross and an NHS counsellor, you still put up barriers to recovery, seem to have chosen to live at the bottom of your well of boredom and despair. It isn't a competition but both a relative and a close friend suffered soul destroying, painful cancer yet continued to work tirelessly for Cancer Research until the desease killed them last year. An 80yr friend has long had cancer and emphysema but turns up for work at the PDSA twice a week. Even if you are confined to your home,you could use your computer to expand your mind, reading,music, friendly chat, other than solitary gaming. You once claimed 'everyone else is happy and carefree'. Bertie, no they (we)are not, it's a case of being thankful for the continued gift of life, reaching out to those far less fortunate. It's part of the human condition that we love, lose, grieve, despair but if we allow ourselves, we grow, love even stronger, reach out to others while carrying a faded sadness and grief for lost loved ones,animal and human in our hearts. I'm closing my CatChat account for a while, using that time to help others, through Ancestry, build family trees but if I return in a few months, I hope and pray you have caught the rope of opportunity thrown down to you and climbed out of that soul destroying hole. Stop sleeping,start living.
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Kay
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Kay »

Issie, your post reminded me of a work colleague whose son was killed by a train when he was only 21

her grief became so much a part of her that she had no wish to move on, because to her it meant she was abandoning him - focusing on anything which made her forget her loss for a few hours just led to guilt - she was a bereaved mother and had no right to even a moment's happiness

two hours every week for 4 years of counselling was not helpful, as it gave her the opportunity to wallow in her grief when friends and family had run out of any way to help her move on

what helped in the end was anti-depression medication and without any medical knowledge I do wonder if this is the ony way Bertie is going to emerge from her black hole
issiandarchie+68
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by issiandarchie+68 »

Dearest Kay, I was just about to 'shut down' my C C account when I noticed your insightful post. I'm so glad I did. When I lost my daughter and some years later, my sister her teenage granddaughter,we were both offered counselling. Being forthright Yorkshire lasses, we initially declined, but were eventually persuaded. A disaster. We found that 'digging deep' talking about our grief over and over kept us stuck,stopped us from moving on. The guilt thing never leaves, the feeling we shouldn't be happy but it's a modern myth that we can 'cure' every disturbing emotion. A mild anti depressant does help enormously but we still have to embrace the gift of life. Sadly, I cannot lie, I think there is more to Berties story than we are led to believe. (Sorry Bertie,only you can answer that.) Over 4yrs the same plea for help posted, lots of support and advice freely gjven, a total blank, or sketchy response, then a few weeks later ..... ad infinitum. I hasten to add this is a very personal viewpoint but in many years of Psychiatric nursing, my gut instinct has rarely been wrong, although in this case, I'd hoping it is.. I'm closing now for a very happy reason. We are off to collect 2 cats. One 19 the other 12 . In a pen for months because of their age but we had such joy in our few months with oldie,Christopher Brodie and we are going to do our utmost to bring happiness to these 2 darlings. I'm ridiculously excited.

Issi
Last edited by issiandarchie+68 on Thu Jun 24, 2021 9:56 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Mollycat
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Mollycat »

Why would you shut down your Cat Chat account because you have cats again? That makes no sense at all to me.

I have to say, as a qualified person-centred counsellor, if any of you guys were allowed to go rambling on getting more and more stuck, then your counsellors were not doing their job and should have been reported to their governing bodies. Talking therapies have a structured process and a defined agreed aim, and if the client is pissing about wasting everyone's time, a counsellor who fails to challenge this situation is taking advantage of a vulnerable person, colluding with the client's defence mechanisms, and is essentially running a scam operation. Reading this experience from more than one of you really makes me angry. I did my hours for a specialist bereavement care charity and the one person I was assigned who messed around was dealt with. It's not a "nice cup of tea and a chat" it is bloody hard emotionally intense work to do properly and many people struggle to see it through.

I always cringe when I hear of counselling being "offered" - it should be sought not thrust upon people who aren't stuck enough to benefit from it.

The way mental health services are now, the appalling cuts and reliance on charities to pick up the pieces, suicide rates now such that a man takes his own life in the UK every minute and a woman every 4 minutes, I don't think your judgements are very helpful on an open forum that anyone in the world can access freely without even joining the forum as a member. Never mind Covid, we are years into a devastating mental health pandemic. We all have our private views but I think we ought to be a little more sensitive. Clearly one of our members is struggling, we are not all the stiff upper lip senior generation and people cope differently. I agree Bertie likely needs to make a choice to rejoin society and give her beloved cat a permanent place in her heart and start to live and love again, but telling people to pull themselves together because there are people worse off who don't make such a fuss isn't likely to help her do that. There are ways to say and do things.

Actually, you know what? This reminds me of someone who was a dear friend of mine for a quarter of a century who, after I made repeated requests to see him after my 25 year old brother was killed in a car crash abroad, said "I didn't think it would affect you because you didn't know him very well". Shocked? That's what you sound like addressing Bertie on this thread.
issiandarchie+68
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by issiandarchie+68 »

Calm down Mollycat. The world can also view your anger and judgement of us. We can only relate through our own experiences, good and bad. Now I really am off. This is too intense.
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Kay
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Kay »

me too, I'm sad to say

I have a lot of respect for Mollycat, but I don't need at my age to be preached at on a cat forum
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Mollycat
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Mollycat »

*Edited by Moderator*

Remove my posts if you wish but you're not editing them to remove the key point.

The comment was about "preaching" and a valid point.
Last edited by Mollycat on Wed Jun 23, 2021 4:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Angie-J »

Hello

It is our wish that the forum be a friendly arena for anyone to seek help and advice, and we would be grateful if you would keep the replies polite, not doing so will result in the thread being closed.

Thank you
Bertie 2017
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Re: All most four years on ,I am still grieving

Post by Bertie 2017 »

Hi everyone thanks for your help and support ,I understand why people have different opinions ,on the matters of losing a beloved pet ,thank you molly cat ,for your support ,
I can only imagine ,how hard it is losing a child ,and finding the strength to keep going ,
And my heart goes out to anyone who has lost a child ,but too me Bertie was my child ,
Due too a disability I have since birth , I have never been blessed with human children ,
I have a godson who I raised since birth , who I see as a son ,apart from that my fur babies
Are all I have ever known , it’s true animals do love you unconditionally ,and bring so much
Joy and happiness into your life ,it’s a shame some people are thinking of stopping cat chat ,
Some people ,can have harsh opinions ,but I know ,they mean well deep down ,and are
Only trying to help , but as for my grief journey only I can ,take it , I wouldn’t be human,
If I didn’t have these feelings ,and if you knew ,the bond Bertie and I shared ,you’d
Understand why I miss him so much ,and trust me I am not after sympathy ,I just
Need support and understanding ,too help me heal ,that time will come ,but I just
Have too ride my grief rollercoaster ,I cannot turn off my feelings ,trust me I wish I could,
But as I have said ,I wouldn’t be human ,if I could , thanks again everyone x
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