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Sarah
Sarah, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 143
Experience:  Chart'd Psych, 12 yrs exp. English prisons, Clinical Hypnotherapist, EMDR Therapist, BPS, HPC reg'd.
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My husband of 40 years passed away a year ago followed by my

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My husband of 40 years passed away a year ago followed by my Cavalier Spaniel...I have 2 adult sons, one is up north in Virginia and the younger one lives Boca Raton, FL, @ 35 minutes from me. Pretty much all my adult life, and even some segments of my childhood, I remember having "cleaning OCD" and bouts with depression andsuicidal thoughts, much more frequently now. I've seen therapists of all types, psychologists, and have had so many types of SSRI's, etc. All this complicated with a failed spinal fusion that has rendered me handicapped to where standing, (even showering) walking is so very painful, so my pain Dr. has me on IR and ER Morphine. I have no friends here in Florida because everything is painful to do. Since my husband passed away, I've gained +20 lbs., not by eating but being mentally and physically impaired...I am sooo lonely and paralyzed, fearing everything to an irrational point. My psychologist now has me on 40 mg. of Prozac, a 1mg. Clonazepam, and for especially difficult times, a few Propranolol, as needed. I feel like I'm being housebound more and more, and so painfully solitudinal. I feel left alone and of any importance to anyone, and that my existance serves only to tortue me every day I wake up, so I haven't any reason to do so, every moment is full of constant uselessness and hopelessness. Do you have any suggestions?

Dr. L :

Hello,

Dr. L :

I would like to help you with your question.

Dr. L :

Please accept my apologies for the death of your husband and or your cavalier spaniel. I can only imagine the loneliness you feel.

Dr. L :

I can understand that physical limitations have kept you isolated and that it is difficult to be out in society. However, as you already are experiencing, unless you start to get out you are going to remain isolated. While your physical body restricts you...you have an active mind and a desire to be in relationship with people. So..let's look at some things you can do to make those connections with others.

Dr. L :

One of the most wonderful things you can to get out and about and feel worthwhile again is to become a volunteer. Sure you will need a position that allows you to sit and not have to be mobile...but that's easily accomplished as a greeter at a hospital or clinic...as an intake worker at a social service agency...as a tutor at a school...and much,much more. Schools, hospitals, clinics, social service agencies...are all clammering for volunteers to help with a myriad of tasks. You don't say what your past work history has been or what special skills you have...but I strongly encourage you to get on the phone and make some connections with agencies in your community and see what might fit for you.

Dr. L :

Then there are activities like book clubs, cooking classes, knitting classes, and so forth that you can find out about through the local newspapers or by checking community education listings. our public library might be a wealth of knowledge in this regard.

Dr. L :

If you are a person of faith...you are likely to find activities and volunteer offerings that you could partake of.

Dr. L :

At 65 year old you have much to offer. Whether you start taking some evening courses offered by your local schools, volunteer at a crisis pregnancy organization or join a book club...there are ways for you to get engaged again and to make new meaning from your life.

Dr. L :

I also want to say that some of what you may be experience is part of the grieving process. Your husband and beloved pet died only a year ago...you are still very much in the early stages of grieving. I encourage you to do some reading as a way to continue to actively grieve these deaths. Here is a book I would encourage you to get and read:

Dr. L :

Remembering With Love. Messages of Hope for the First Year of Grieving and Beyond.

Dr. L :

This is a best selling book and I assure you that you will find it beneficial.

Dr. L :

I await your response.

Hi Ann McDonough I hope my answer brings you confidence that you can help yourself and a direction in which to begin. I am so sorry to hear of your grief and related problems. I am going to suggest that you have a look on line for a Thought Field Therapist (TFT), who can help you to trawl through the layers of emotions that are surrounding you at the moment, letting them go from within your subconscious mind where much of the hurt will be held. Find a therapist who is used to working with lots of Psychological Reversal (PR) and this will help to shift the negativity from the past. Its a tapping therapy - you can explore it on line before making contact with a therapist. The wonders of the therapy is that you don't need to talk through your discomfort again and again, but the impact upon the physical brain is such that the neurological pathways are re-wired. I know it sounds like a bizarre technique, but bear with it, it would be a great option for you. It can help to lift all of the negative feelings that you describe - helplessness, hopelessness and the huge one, fear. It can also help with pain, although some of that will be linked directly to your spinal fusion. We cannot change the past, but we don't need to carry the hurt and discomfort forever, no matter how much you loved your husband and your dog. You won't lose the good memories from the past - in fact, they should have more clarity once the trauma has been lifted. And that's how I would describe what you are suffering from - the trauma and shock of losing those closest to you.

 

I do hope this brings you a new pathway to try that will bring rapid comfort and eventually, a new joy in your life. Best Wishes, Sarah

Sarah, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 143
Experience: Chart'd Psych, 12 yrs exp. English prisons, Clinical Hypnotherapist, EMDR Therapist, BPS, HPC reg'd.
Sarah and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Hello again,
I am checking back for your response. Are any of the suggestions I have given you to re-engage with others something you are willing to try? And how do you feel about my comments regarding grief and the need for you to continue to grieve for your husband and your cavalier spaniel?

I am here to assist you...

Thank you.

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