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Supporting someone who is dying

Old 06-18-2014, 12:06 PM
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Supporting someone who is dying

Hello all

My brother is slowly accepting the fact that he is dying and is starting to talk and write about it.
The writings are heartbreaking.
He acknowledges his part in all this and understands he is the one who got himself here.

Any suggestions on how I can support him and help him cope with the reality of his situation? He isn't much of a reader nor is he spiritual......
Any suggestions?

I am bringing him to my home for a week to be with family.

That was the very best thing I could think of....
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:08 PM
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Listen. Love him. You are very brave and strong.
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:08 PM
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Thanks Sparkle

I sure don't feel brave or strong
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:10 PM
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Favorite music? Sometimes that's as close to spiritual as I can get.
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by littlesister1 View Post
Thanks Sparkle

I sure don't feel brave or strong
You don't have to feel it to be it. Trust your instincts and you'll do the right thing by your brother.
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:19 PM
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There are online sites and help groups for those who are dying. A very good friend of mine died from cancer and he and his wife were very supported by hospice groups. They were both ready emotionally by the time he died. Of course not all the hurt can be wiped away, nor all the fear, but these types of groups are very helpful. I'm sure some of those groups don't care what the reason is for the dying as they are not all going to be about cancer--just helping move through the phases to acceptance. You could search the internet for such sites. They surely would have some good pointers on how you can help him and your family.
There are grieving forums too, if you feel they could help you after he has passed.

Favorite music like Florence said, and how about favorite anything! Favorite foods, tv shows, whatever reasonable things he wants.
Do you have photo albums or videos? Perhaps going back having long talks about the days of your lives together. Kids too although growing up in the same house remember some things exactly the same, and yet other things with a completely different perspective. You could really enjoy getting closer to your brother and will have those memories of those talks forever. Could include a lot of laughs, tears, smiles, and hugs.
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Florence View Post
Favorite music? Sometimes that's as close to spiritual as I can get.
Florence, are you reading my mind?

He loves George Harrison and "All Things Must Pass" is his all time fave.

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Old 06-18-2014, 12:27 PM
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Originally Posted by BlueSkies1 View Post
There are online sites and help groups for those who are dying. A very good friend of mine died from cancer and he and his wife were very supported by hospice groups. They were both ready emotionally by the time he died. Of course not all the hurt can be wiped away, nor all the fear, but these types of groups are very helpful. I'm sure some of those groups don't care what the reason is for the dying as they are not all going to be about cancer--just helping move through the phases to acceptance. You could search the internet for such sites. They surely would have some good pointers on how you can help him and your family.
There are grieving forums too, if you feel they could help you after he has passed.

Favorite music like Florence said, and how about favorite anything! Favorite foods, tv shows, whatever reasonable things he wants.
Do you have photo albums or videos? Perhaps going back having long talks about the days of your lives together. Kids too although growing up in the same house remember some things exactly the same, and yet other things with a completely different perspective. You could really enjoy getting closer to your brother and will have those memories of those talks forever. Could include a lot of laughs, tears, smiles, and hugs.

Thank you

I will contact hospice
And your advice is spot on

Thank you!
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:29 PM
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I think just listening to him. Remembering good memories with him. Maybe looking at old pictures and things like that. Show him love and try to enjoy each other's company.

We are here for you. I am hoping hospice is involved? Those people are true saints.

XXX
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:33 PM
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Thank you all, I need to stock up on kleenex
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:35 PM
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I agree with the previous posters. Listen. Love him. Let him know that beyond all that's been in the past, you're there and you love him. I think giving him the gift of your time and your love is the most important thing you can do for him.

And take him to the ocean.
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Old 06-18-2014, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by littlesister1 View Post
Thank you all, I need to stock up on kleenex

Me too! You are so strong and loving. Maybe ask him if there are some particular places he'd like to go when he's with you. Wishing you much strength and healing. xoxo
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Old 06-18-2014, 01:17 PM
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Hi Littlesister,

You are a wonderful person trying to help him through this. I had a friend who died of cancer last year, and I was the main person he reached out to in his last couple months; I also spent the last few days with him in the hospital. Other story: one of my friends is a mental health professional and one of his main specialties is providing therapy to terminally ill patients. He's doing an amazing job with it.

Is he mentally intact?
One of the approaches this therapist friend of mine taught me was that sometimes what works best is not to focus on them excessively, but talk to them about our own life, thoughts, feelings, etc. Make it an interactive and mutual exchange rather than one-way, so that they can relate to our stories and we can jump all over the map of birth and death and everything in between, together, in an intimate way. So they don't feel alone in the experience that much. Don't be excessive and overwhelming with conversations, though. When my friend was dying, I also spent a lot of time just being there in silence with him. You can be quietly affectionate.

Kudos to you for being there for him.
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Old 06-18-2014, 01:36 PM
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Originally Posted by haennie View Post
Hi Littlesister,

You are a wonderful person trying to help him through this. I had a friend who died of cancer last year, and I was the main person he reached out to in his last couple months; I also spent the last few days with him in the hospital. Other story: one of my friends is a mental health professional and one of his main specialties is providing therapy to terminally ill patients. He's doing an amazing job with it.

Is he mentally intact?
One of the approaches this therapist friend of mine taught me was that sometimes what works best is not to focus on them excessively, but talk to them about our own life, thoughts, feelings, etc. Make it an interactive and mutual exchange rather than one-way, so that they can relate to our stories and we can jump all over the map of birth and death and everything in between, together, in an intimate way. So they don't feel alone in the experience that much. Don't be excessive and overwhelming with conversations, though. When my friend was dying, I also spent a lot of time just being there in silence with him. You can be quietly affectionate.

Kudos to you for being there for him.
Wow, thank you so much! Yes he is mentally intact when the drugs don't have him down for the count.

Thank you all, you are such an awesome group!
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Old 06-18-2014, 08:39 PM
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2.5 years ago my sister and I learned, after forcing her to the doctor, that our mother was in late stage lung cancer that had metastasized all over -- all related to her smoking habit, something that didn't have to be. As a family we used the time we had left, 4 months, to spend quality time with her. I don't know what your brothers needs are, but ask him what he would like. My mother became fearful of being by herself so my sister, brother, and I took turns spending days and nights with her. We also put all of her favorite calming music on a mini ipod so she could listen privately and meditate. It was some of the best quality time we had had with her in years, sad to say, but I wouldn't trade those heart wrenching days for anything in the world. A lot of healing took place during those short months and I'm very grateful for it. I hope for you and your brother that this time will be a time to say what needs to be said, hugs will be given and received as needed, etc. It will be hard and precious all at once. Im praying for your strength and that of your family's. Big hugs..
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Old 06-19-2014, 09:17 AM
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Thanks Katchie

My wonderful wonderful husband stepped up last night and told me that if my brother has nowhere to go of course he is welcome in our home
When I said "You know he may die here" hubby said he was well aware of that.

Such a burden has been lifted, just knowing my brother has a safe HOME to come to.

Tears of gratitude and such a full heart

Thank you god
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