2 b or not 2 b Horatio

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<hugs> Just know that grief comes in waves. Sometimes it comes out of nowhere years later and knocks you on your you know what. I've learned, slowly and painfully, not to fight the waves so hard and just let the feelings happen. It's hard, so hard, to lose your parents, especially after having to care for them and seeing them as ... well, the opposite of parents.

Good for you! Keep walking the dog; it'll help both of you!

Thank you so much for this, you're absolutely right! I'm way too hard on myself at times. Well, okay, always. And because I do have depression, anxiety and PTSD (actually evaluated and diagnosed, not the popular self-diagnosed PTSD people often claim on social media), it's sometimes hard to separate out what are perfectly normal emotional responses to an awful time, or what may be a result of my brain bugs. I'm always working on my recovery/managing my MIs, but quick to assume it's me, my illnesses making me feel awful or breaking down into a sobbing mess, or finding it hard to face sorting through my parents clothing.

But no, it's absolutely normal and natural for anyone to struggle at a time like this. I loved my parents, and miss them terribly - how they were before the parent/child roles reversed, mainly, although I'd continue caring for them in a heartbeat if I could have them back and they weren't in end stage pain and confusion. Of course going through their belongings, and making changes to what I still very much think of as their house, hurts. It would be weird if I never broke down crying!

It keeps hitting me that the two people in the world who absolutely loved me the most, with their whole hearts and without reservation, are now gone. That kills me.
 
The house valuation might not be as high or it could be higher (not sure which is better for probate). You might want the person doing the report to see the mould and old wallpaper/ paint so they lower the value (again, not sure if it's better to have a low value or high value). But mould will reduce the value because it could be a major issue in the wall. Asbestos could also reduce the value and leaking windows, etc, will reduce it. If you want a higher value for probate, don't let them see the mould and other bad things :)

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It sounds like Pixie is in charge of you and has some separation anxiety issues when you go into a shop and leave her outside. You should be careful about this because it can be very stressful to the dog and they can act up in bad ways. She doesn't sound like she is going to attack anyone but she shouldn't whine and carry on if you leave her alone or go into a shop without her.
 
The house valuation might not be as high or it could be higher (not sure which is better for probate). You might want the person doing the report to see the mould and old wallpaper/ paint so they lower the value (again, not sure if it's better to have a low value or high value). But mould will reduce the value because it could be a major issue in the wall. Asbestos could also reduce the value and leaking windows, etc, will reduce it. If you want a higher value for probate, don't let them see the mould and other bad things :)

I asked the very same questions! For the same reasons. House needs extensive and expensive work, and a lower value would help keep the total value of the estate below the inheritance tax threshold. This won't the only valuation advice I seek though, I promise!

It's also apparently accepted that it's an estimate, and since the value of dad's estate (since house and joint bank account was in both their names) and didn't qualify for inheritance tax, that can then roll over and increase the threshold for mum's estate, since she automatically inherited their joint property, and that would keep us well below the raised threshold.

Something like that anyway, I'm still learning as I go. :)


It sounds like Pixie is in charge of you
Oh yes, she very much is, and I adore her for it. She has a working collie brain and the working Springer desire to please and endurance. She's also wonderfully trained in all the most important things I needed to keep her and others safe, because I've worked with her from day one, and she's a smart dog who learns fast.
and has some separation anxiety issues when you go into a shop and leave her outside. You should be careful about this because it can be very stressful to the dog and they can act up in bad ways. She doesn't sound like she is going to attack anyone but she shouldn't whine and carry on if you leave her alone or go into a shop without her.

Oh no, she'd never just attack someone. She'd have to be severely cornered and had all other warnings ignored before she'd dream of escalating to a bite, and she'll hopefully never be in that situation. Not if I can help it. Spaniels are bred to be soft mouthed too.

She is having some separation anxiety. Before like the incident when she was young with my friend and she'd drag him and leap all over me as though I'd been gone for five years, and not five minutes? She was impatient waiting for me, but not distressed, and over the moon when I reappeared, and it wasn't a big deal as it calmed as she got older and more chill, less insanely high energy level combined with smarts.

However, dogs like routine. Her internal clock is always on point (even when the clocks go forward or go back, and I have to tell her she's right, technically it's dinnertime, but it's British summertime now, so it's also not time for dinner for another hour.

the evening when dad felt faint and had a minor fall, but looked pale and his breathing was slightly shallow and that worried me, so I called an ambulance, and they took him to hospital. He was concious and talking, grumbling about having to be carried down the stairs in a chair contraption "I can walk down the stairs!" but finally agreeing, and my telling him not to flirt with the nurses and I'd visit as soon as I could. We thought he'd be fine.

At 9am, when the dogs would always be settled down and dozing until mum's 10pm bedtime, the hospital called and said in a grave tone that all of us needed to come to the hospital. As soon as possible. That's when we knew something was really wrong, and we rushed around calling a taxi, grabbing coats and shoes, and rushed out the house all in a panic and state of distress, leaving Pixie alone. Not at all like a normal night for us, or for her.

When I eventually returned, many long hours later, she was soaked in her own drool, panting, and had clearly been distraught and in a total state while we were gone, and when mum and I returned, absolutely devastated that my dad was dying, and I'd had to leave the hospital to take mum home, and unable to mask my grief.

Since that night last year, she's had some separation anxiety, and managed so many changes to her routine as mum got more and more sick, and I couldn't walk her often enough, was often a crying mess holding her for comfort as she snuggled into me, trying to comfort me. She's handled all these different nurses and professionals coming into the house constantly, mealtimes not always being on time, and not enough happy fun times with me.

So yes, while she's always been my shadow, she coped very well with it before when I worked and my folks dogs would dogsit, or when she went to a friend's house to be dogsat during dad's funeral. But I'm working on it, and you can still teach an old dog new tricks!
 
It sounds like Pixie is in charge of you and has some separation anxiety issues when you go into a shop and leave her outside.

Oh! Also just realised you said alone - I've ever left her alone outside, or tied up outside a shop! I know some people do, and the dogs just seem resigned and wait patiently, but I just imagined someone stealing her, or her sitting there all alone and not understanding, or slipping her collar and running into traffic. Quickly decided that risking all of that, just to save yourself ten minutes and grab some milk isn't worth it.

I only go inside somewhere and leave her outside if she's with someone I trust holding her lead. Will is someone she's known her whole life, and adores, and she's at least fond of my brother, who is tall, strong and wouldn't let anything happen to her, and he held her while I nipped into the store. :)

He said she was fine when she could see me, just jumped up when I went into the back room part, and the whining I heard is the same one I hear when she's excited for a walk, but with bit more anxiety in it. Impatient and worried, but not distraught, if that makes sense, and then always delighted to see me again when I fetched her to come in. :)
 
<hugs> Just know that grief comes in waves. Sometimes it comes out of nowhere years later and knocks you on your you know what. I've learned, slowly and painfully, not to fight the waves so hard and just let the feelings happen. It's hard, so hard, to lose your parents, especially after having to care for them and seeing them as ... well, the opposite of parents.

I've been trying to keep this in mind! Of course I'm grieving, and I've got to get better at accepting that I'm allowed to grieve and feel awful, and cry. But I still hate crying and breaking down, and when it does happen unexpectedly and send me into a panic attack or freaked out spinning mess, I worry that I'm going to lose my mind. Again. I suspect that's why I always try to suck it up and supress the emotions and tears.

Kind of wish I could cuss right now to properly express how I'm feeling right now.

Because doc and I agreed we'd taper my dose of diazepam this week, I had less tablets than in previous weeks, the dosage is also less effective because while I'm not physically or mentally addicted to them, your body builds a tolerance to them so they're less effective at calming the nervous system and anxiety and panic attacks, which I needed in order to function and care for mum without breaking. To face things that I've become incredibly afraid and avoidant around because they trigger PTSD or full on panic attacks, and beta blockers weren't effective at calming that mental panic and hurdles.

But I suspect we tapered them too soon, the week after mum's funeral. Because the grief is hitting me harder again, and I'm still facing the legal and financial nightmare, the nightmare house and the pain of sorting through all their belongings and changing their house around. It still feels wrong and disrespectful somehow. As if I'm trying to erase every trace of them, when that's the last thing I want. But the house does need it, and we to make it clean and liveable for us. And deserve to be able to make our home comfortable, and wouldn't be healthy to keep it untouched, like a neglected shrine or Miss Haversham. But it's still physically and emotionally hard work that will take time... and money we don't have...

So I've been without diazepam since yesterday, could have spoken to a different GP when I called them Thursday, but don't want to wind up tagged as a drug seeker or something by a GP who doesn't know me, and was already booked to speak to my GP Tuesday anyway. So I said no, I'd wait til Tuesday and just ride it out, and decided to make Saturday Self Care Day, and Sunday water changes, animal care and chores, and beginning to empty mum's wardrobe ready for collection on the 28th.

Self care Saturday was going pretty well. Mentally shut out paperwork and lists of things to do to try to take some care of myself, because I've destroyed any looks I had through self neglect, and was trying to make steps to take some care of myself and my appearance again to be able to face the outside world again with some more confidence.

But had two automated calls to the landline, first one I missed but used 1471 and found it was BT - the company that we get the internet and landline phone through. Shrugged off the first one after mentioning it to brother, and was enjoying a pottering about, relaxed day for a change. But got another call from BT an hour ago, robot saying that the bill hasn't been paid and threatening cuts to service and late charges, and had no options to talk to a human.

So if I vanish, it may just mean my internet access is gone.

Called bro down to tell him, asked if he knew where the bill was, it was in his neckbeard nest room, when I've specifically asked him several times to please organise utility bills into one of the many types of file I've put in the living room where we can both access them and keep track of finances. Of course, he's not once tried to organise or tidy any of it. I asked why it was in his room, he said because he was going to pay it tomorrow (on a Sunday?) and it's just shy of £100 for this month alone.

Oh, and the bill is still in my father's name and has apparently been paid automatically from his accounts, but he passed a year ago now, and I have no idea how that's going to F with the probate situation, whose name which utilities should be moved to. I've also been emphasising to him that paperwork needs at least to be kept together and expenses kept track of and recorded, since we need to split essential outgoings 50/50 and might be a good idea to set up a joint account that bills come out of, where we both put in our halves with an evenly split safety cushion in there for emergencies. That we're both going to inherit 50/50, I want things to be fair to both of us!

But the workload and stressful things, getting things organised, planning, contacting organisations for info, reaching out for help - it's ALL on my shoulders, and nothing I say or do can get him to step up at all.


Have been swinging between sadness, grief, determination... and anger. Yes, anger is a natural emotion and a part of grieving, but I can't and don't want to take it out on others, or display it and worry my dog, so usually wind up directing it inwards for all the things I failed to do that have landed us in this mess. The time wasted, the broken brain, my inability to just figure things out and having some confidence in my abilities to cope and manage things.

But there's anger at him too. I've asked, begged, given helpful tips, acted like a support worker, and accepted that I have to be the one in charge, or nothing would be done, and he doesn't want to have any input or take any of it off my shoulders.

I was and probably still am proud of him for finally seeing a doctor for the first time in years, and working to get his diabetes and health under control. That's a huge step, and I spent a lot of time encouraging him, recommending specific doctors that were kind, would listen and not dismiss him, the pros and cons of meds and therapy for depression, and how a combo of both are statistically shown to be the most effective method of treatment. That it's his choice, but that he deserved the help, and would find it a lot less scary to begin treating his diabetes, than just letting it rage uncontrolled and his conviction that itwas too late to turn things around and he'd be dead within the next five years or so is just a negative self talk thought very common in depression, not an absolute truth. That he's not a doctor, and that even if it's too late to avoid having type 3 diabetes, that it's very treatable and manageable - if he'll go to a doctor and begin taking care of himself.

When angry and fed up with him not helping then casually calling me to tell me he'd had a diabetic episode of some kind and passed out while in the supermarket. Scaring the heck out of me while also infuriating me that he was so casual about it "just letting you know why I'll be a bit late back", when I never keep track of how long he's gone for?! After that I told him it was choice whether to address his health issues. He's a grown man, but if he thinks he can hide away and ignore it and expects me to take care of him as well as all the house, financial and legal stuff too, he's dead wrong. That I'm burned out, have spent most of my life being a caregiver, either professionally or now with mum and dad, and there is no way in the universe I'm now going to abandon any hope of a life of my own again and sign up to be his caregiver, support worker, and replacement mother figure. That he chose never to leave the nest, but he was going to have to get used to stretching his wings, because I'm not going to take care of him and push him around in a wheelchair when he loses a leg because he's too stubborn to visit a doctor and take care of himself. That he'd find himself shoved from the nest as we'd have to sell the house to split whatever is left and I'd be gone. He finally went to the doctor.

I've warned him since dad passed about how their accounts cannot be touched after the date of death (bro used to do the shopping for mum and dad, online or going out to the shops, while I did personal/medical care, pets and house stuff. That we're both on benefits so have very little income, and he's not used to having to pay utility bills, that there are other costs involved we're going to have to pay, and to be cautious with money.

We both got a one-off caregivers grant of a few hundred. Because once mum was diagnosed early November, we'd been signed up and assessed for caregivers allowance, which is ongoing as long as the caring does. Mum passed away before anything had been finalised and let them know, they said we could still qualify for a one off grant due to the caregiving we'd already done. I guess they decided I was the main caregiver given I was doing all personal care and liaising with agencies and medical staff, so my grant was £900, Sam's £750.

The terms and conditions do say that it's to be spent on things for yourself, not related to caring, but as a respite/personal welfare self care, a thank you from the government for not dumping your relative into government care and doing all this unpaid work, at least that's how she described it. Since caregivers often wind up self neglecting and burning out. Said she needed a list of things that would improve your own quality of life, what you'd spend the money on, and it could be anything, like hobbies, a short break, anything that you enjoy or need, that would improve your life.

My list had mobile phone as the first, immediate response. Followed by new glasses as I couldn't paint, draw or cross stitch anymore as my glasses are ten years old and I desperately need a new prescription, a proper haircut, home improvements, a weekend doggy holiday with my closest friend and our dogs. The list you give is on the official thing when they approve the grant, and they say to keep receipts to show what you spent it on, since it can be checked at any time.

I don't know what my brother's list was. But I warned him again to be careful with money. That probate settlement is likely at least a year away, we have expensive bills to pay, and will own a house that needs significant repairs and money put into it just to make it comfortable to live in, and that we're pretty much stuck living here until it's all sorted anyway. He agreed, said of course.

Payments came in just before the funeral, and I took advantage of my friend being here with his car, stocked up on only the essential animal care stuff like food, then we went food shopping and I spent around £100. A black jumper for the funeral and £20 for plants, seeds and bulbs were my treats for myself, the rest was to stock the pretty bare fridge, freezer and cupboards, while I was with a friend who gives me confidence so I could face going through a huge supermarket, understood and immediately took me to a quiet area when we first walked in and I said I was feeling panic rising, and helped me calm as we looked for something black that was nicer, and warmer, than the old black top I had.

I got food to cook for all of us, the basic essentials we both use etc, and thinking about the fact that Will was staying for a few days as well, people coming to the house before and after the funeral, cooking meals for all three of us when he visits etc. Oh, and each time I've done that - asked for and paid for the ingredients to make a meal for all three of us, it always comes out of my account. Never his. Then I find myself also washing up afterwards since it's there the next morning when I get up at 6am, and he sleeps to midday before maybe going to the local shop a five minute walk up the road to get whatever I've written on a shopping list.

So that was my first hundred gone, but in a useful way, and felt a bit guilty blowing £20 on plants, but they're two mother in laws tongue plants, and mum always had those, so I couldn't resist, and because I couldn't plant any tulips or other bulbs last autumn, I wanted some nice flowers in pots and grabbed some cosmos, spider lilies, and a mixed box with freesias, dahlia, cornflower seeds etc. Gardening is therapeutic, I enjoy it, and both gardens have been sorely neglected over recent years, and I wanted the promise of spring and new life, and motivation to get out into mum's front garden and tame it again. She loved plants and gardening too.

Brother went out and blew his entire grant immediately on the newest playstation console, a 'new' reconditioned phone that he showed off while the £300 price sticker was still on it, and was very pleased with himself. At least he gave me his still working old handset, I guess. But the topic only came up as he showed off the phone to all of us that evening after mum's funeral and I reminded him I still don't have a phone. He apparently replaced it because the battery life isn't as long anymore, but otherwise it's fine. But we all know he just wanted a new gadget to play with. And now he'll need to spend more money on the latest games for his console, and stay in his room playing games all night and sleeping most of the day unless I wake him up and give him specific jobs to do.

I'm worrying about how to pay for and buy a double urn I chose online to house both mum and dad's ashes. Buying, writing and sending thank you cards to everyone who attended, who sent flowers, neighbours who gave support, help and condolences. Buying file folders and organisers to sort the paperwork nightmare, masking tape to paint, parcel tape to pack things up, and paying for our guests (and my brother and myself!) meals at the wake, just as I did with dads.

I'm so stressed out, and do not want to be quibbling over money, holding resentment, or to lose my ever loving manure and blow up at him or damage our relationship. My more logical and empathetic side reminds me that he has his own issues, my mental illnesses and actions are my own to deal with, and it's not okay to take it out on others. That turning it inwards has hurt me my entire life, and I'm sick of it. That it isn't his fault our parents died, that he is making efforts, and has a good heart and willingness to do things "to help" when given direct requests, but I also resent having to boss him about and break down tasks specifically and carefully. I can't just say "can you begin clearing mum's wardrobe" and have him understand and do it, the way I could with a coworker or friend.

So it becomes an additional mental burden, and feels as though I'm asking him to help me do jobs I should just be doing myself? When we both live here! The chores and mess is equally ours. So why do I have to ask him or order him to wash up or wake him up like a teenager after he's been up all night playing games, I've been up all night listening to music and crying, or on here venting, and he's complaining he's tired because he didn't sleep well, does the specific jobs I asked, then returns to his den.

Someone mentioned I put myself down a lot on various threads in the forum. Try to help someone, but always add a disclaimer that I'm a nobody hobbyist and not an expert, which is true, but is a pretty negative way to put it. That while I'm putting myself down to others, I'm reinforcing those messages to myself too. Who will respect me if I don't respect myself? Has given me something to consider, and now that I'm more consciously aware of it, I want to attempt to stop doing it. But it's tough, because deep down, on an emotional, not logical level, I believe those put downs about myself.
 
Why are you on beta Blockers for?
They reduce the maximum heart rate and amount of oxygen your heart needs in the event of a heart attack.

If the internet/ phone bills have been getting automatically paid from your Dad's account over the last year, has anyone been paying them on top of that?
If yes, you probably have a huge credit with that company.
 
Why are you on beta Blockers for?
They reduce the maximum heart rate and amount of oxygen your heart needs in the event of a heart attack.

Oh, sorry, I didn't explain that well. I'm not on them usually as an every day thing. Beta blockers are used usually for as you say, reducing heart attack risk. But because they affect the nervous system and slow heart rate and breathing, they can also help to prevent panic attacks, so I was prescribed them ages ago to try to help reduce the symptoms of panic attacks when trying to get over the agoraphobia. Panic attacks make your heart race, hyperventilate, and feel as though you're going to die, you really do. There are both physical and mental symptoms going on there.

So as a first line step to try to help someone dealing with agoraphobia and related panic attacks, taking a beta blocker half an hour before leaving the house can help prevent the racing heart or palpatations, calm the whole nervous system. Without that physical side of a panic attack and the adrenaline dump, "flight or fight I'm gonna die" physical feelings, and ideally counselling/therapy/CBT methods to help with the mental fears, it can help people reduce the physical feelings and affects of a panic attack, and reduce having them as they can then work on the mental fears and triggers that bring on a panic attack.

I never used to have panic attacks or agoraphobia. Those were "fun" new additions post breakdown, post hospital, post traumatic personal experiences while in a supported living house as the only female sharing a house with three men who had both mental health issues and active substance abuse issues. I only had the mental health issues, and went through a lot of traumatic experiences that I can't or shouldn't share here, both because of family friendly forum rules, and the personal pain and trauma... but adults with life experience can imagine the kind of experiences a single woman recovering from a breakdown and attempting to rebuild her life might experience while having to share a house with an alcoholic and three substance abusers.

Why she might eventually resort to having to hide away in her room if one was off his head and screaming at her because she doesn't want to hang out with him/teach him how to cook/sleep with him or become his girlfriend. Then is acting super nice the next day, leaving random junk he'd found or stolen as gifts outside my door, or pushing long notes apologising but also demanding I spend time with him or why I'm being a stuck up B who doesn't want to use drugs with them. Seeing two different men overdose at the two different houses I stayed at - one was on the toilet and basically dead at that point, but at least the drug addict friend he was with at the time called an ambulance and they were able to revive him with Narcan. The other was a nice man, not a thief or sexual harasser/assaulter, just a nice Portugese man who had had a hard life, and sunk into drug addiction, but was attempting to fight it. Once he moved in he began using again with the guy who would stalk and scream at me, overdosed and was taken by air ambulance, but died.

Sorry, I said I wouldn't go into detail, but there are much more personal and painful experiences I went through in those two houses I had to stay in for 2-3 yrs while on the waiting list for a council flat. Single women without kids aren't high on the list, and the waiting list for council housing is always long. By the time I finally got my lovely little safe space of a flat, I'd been thoroughly retraumatised repeatedly, and developed agoraphobia and panic attacks from having to hide away in my room with a mini fridge and kettle, living on sandwiches and instant noodles because nothing could be left outside your room without being stolen. And cooking in the kitchen - even when my BF at the time was with me - meant the harrasser guy would come into the kitchen and talk at us, knowing he wasn't welcome, but that since it's a common area, I can't kick him out of the kitchen while we were using it. If I was alone, he'd do the same too. So naturally I eventually avoided the kitchen as much as possible and stayed holed up in my room, and began having panic attacks when faced with having to go out and do stuff, since my room had become the only place I was safe (kinda). Couldn't go out much since you don't exactly have a lot of spare cash when you're living on benefits, so not much reason to go out a lot of the time. You can only go on so many walks when you're skint and trying to avoid the chaos and abuse of the other people in the house. Of course I developed agoraphobia and panic attacks.

I worked on it as much as I could, and it did improve for a while once I was in my own flat and could feel safe again in my own space that I could make nice, and keep it nice! I loved it. But the panic attacks and agoraphobia didn't just vanish once I'd left supported living, I now had to fight against those, and the PTSD post hospital & supported living events, on top of me previous anxiety and depression then breakdown. So sometimes it would improve and wouldn't be as bad - other times it was more extreme and I'd rarely leave the house, and find even nipping out to grab essentials hard. Using beta blockers before facing a trip to the supermarket or the doctor so the physical symptoms don't trigger a panic attack helped me then, because I was safer and working on it mentally, CBT style, and determined to get better and reclaim my life.

But since having to give up the flat and move back in with folks to help shield them from covid and increasingly helping care for them as they needed more and more help, I was often housebound anyway, and agoraphobia was worse at times, better at others. Usually worse when my level of anxiety and stress was high, of course.


After dad passed, I wasn't in a good way. We all spent months in a fog of grief and depression. Doing just enough to get by day to day, and to look after mum and the pets, but otherwise, it was like fighting through treacle to get anything else done. I was always close with my dad. Much as we could butt heads and he could frustrate me at times (and I'm sure vice versa!) I was still a daddy's girl at heart, and my hero, and the world didn't make sense to me without him in it. Mum was devasted too - her husband of 57 years and life long partner in business and life had gone, and we grieved together a lot. I had to pull myself together enough to plan the funeral, but Sam was supposed to be dealing with the financial stuff, and mum was still fairly physically capable then, able to manage her personal care and dress herself, collect the post and open it, but tuck it away somewhere, leave some out to ask my bro about and he'd whisk it away and say he'd take care of it, tell her and I not to worry about it. I didn't even know how much might be in their various accounts, hadn't pried and Sam was the one doing the shopping- I also trusted him with my card and PIN for my own account to pick up things for me when he shopped, and he never abused that trust, and I don't think he'd abuse theirs either.

But he also didn't handle it. I'd occasional remind him to get all dad's paperwork and the utility bills etc together, that I was going to need to be involved in the finances too, to settle dad's estate even though it should automatically pass to mum, but that we'd need to still do the steps to notify the bank and everyone, death certificates etc, and we needed all paperwork like death certificates, utility bills, paperwork related to mum's healthcare, anything for the house like council tax and TV licence - all of it organised and filed, so we could deal with it all, and I gathered dad's stack of messy, unorganised paperwork into a box file and put that in the living room to be properly organised. Sam did go to the registry office both times to register mum and dad's death, and when I had to arrange the funeral, assured me that there was enough in dad's accounts and their joint account to cover the funeral costs, and he and mum paid the downpayment for dad's funeral out of their joint account, since that automatically went to her and she could still use that one. Most of the bills went out of their joint account, but apparently, still at least the BT one from dad's. But I didn't know about the BT one coming from dad's until now, after I'd talked to the bank and they were officially closing his accounts and sorting out the final total for probate.

So I don't know yet, and am dreading, finding out how much it will have F-ed with that, if we'll owe a backlog of money to BT, if BT has to repay the "overpayments" since dad's death, or what. But I'm sure it'll be me that has to work out what to do and try to un F it. I arranged the funeral alone, grieved with mum, mostly, had asked bro to finish paying for dad's funeral with mum, from the joint account, but not to touch any money in dad's personal accounts, that we could be in legal trouble if that happened, but the joint account was still mum's, and he'd shown the total for that and dad's accounts, so I knew there was enough in there to cover both his and eventually mum's funeral costs, and left it in his hands to continue sorting bills. But mum was still opening mail and trying to organise the way she always used to. She'd always been super organised and on top of things like that. The smallest bedroom, my childhood bedroom, became her study, with a desk, computer, filling cabinet she kept locked, and folders full of lists, things she wanted to do/had to do, cleaning tips, all sorts of stuff. She'd been a secretary before. But stopped using the study years ago, but was still capable of sorting her own mail/joint stuff with dad for years. They'd go 50/50 on agreed extra expenses, each had their own accounts, and a joint account. Worked for them for years, since both worked.

As I said, mum's health declined rapidly after losing dad, so besides sorting the funeral and occasionally reminding Sam about sorting the paperwork out and deal with bills, with mum, as she still opened post, and had gotten into the habit of tucking things away in her bag to deal with later, while leaving some stuff out to ask bro or I to handle. Her short term memory and spells of confusion had been getting gradually worse for years, dad had talked about it with me before even. I'd arranged for an assessment for dementia, but she aced that test with flying colours since her long term memory was intact, and she was both on a good day, and always liked to put on a good face for visitors, so would say she's fine, forgetting the times she wasn't, right up to the end.

Mum would get confused and upset if faced with something complex to deal with, understandably, and even before dad passed, both of them had given permission for their medical teams to share info with me. It wasn't so crucial with dad since his mind was as sharp until the end, but he needed dragged by his ear to the doctors if something was wrong, so he was happy for them to talk to me/let me call the GP surgery and do the hold/press 1 for this, press 2 for this stuff! Then I'd bring the phone to him to talk to them, and talk to them myself afterwards about any other concerns for his health, or do it together, whatever. I'd nag him to put his feet up to help his leg ulcers heal, not to push himself too hard as he worked on rehab after he broke his hip, while I hovered anxiously in case he fell again.

As I've mentioned before, my background includes years of nursing home experience, and years as a support worker for adults with learning difficulties, which also meant getting them to all their health appointments and keeping those updated in their care plans, along with personal care for those who needed it, support with day to day activities etc. So liaising with medical professionals, administering medications and keeping careful records were all things I had a lot of experience in, and not to brag, but I was dammed good at it. I truly cared, worked my butt off, and learned as much as I could. So it was natural for me to care for them, and worry about their decline/broken hip, since I've seen and know the statistics about how quickly an elderly patient can go downhill once mobility is lost.



But all of that was before my own mental breakdown, and how it destroyed my own identity and everything about my previous life. I had to accept going from being an excellent support worker who had done a 2yr Access course part time while still working so I could apply to go to uni as a mature student and study psychology. Ha. What a joke in hindsight!
If the internet/ phone bills have been getting automatically paid from your Dad's account over the last year, has anyone been paying them on top of that?
If yes, you probably have a huge credit with that company.

ETA hit post befor finished, but ths is long and personal and probaby stupiid to post on open forum anyway....
 
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Was it only Monday when I made this thread? Only yesterday that I was still trying to hold it together and laughing and joking?


All I can do is cry. Play angry music and scream inside my own head.
I can't do anything ad the pain is so strong
and I'm so weak
and I dont think I can do this anymore.
I don't know if I want to
 
Pets were my escape when I separated from my son's mother. I was aimless and unsure of what to do. In a few months lost over 20 lbs and looked like a crackhead due to the rapid weight loss, the lack of sleep and the rage inside. They gave me something to focus on because they're 100% dependent on me, so I'm grateful for them. I always had pets thru my entire life. And yes, there were times when I neglected them, but thankfully they're all OK. Glad to see you are moving ahead too, keep taking care of yourself and your critters, they need you.
 
What does this mean?

:(😢
Don't you go wigging out on us. Just take it one day at a time and don't do anything silly. Who will look after Pixie if you do something to yourself.

Trying. I really am.

I'm just so tired of fighting through it. Also ran out of diazepam Fri, since doc and I agreed to taper the dose this week, but too soon since the week was rough... so going cold turkey on benzos since Fri.

The animals were a serious consideration today. Stumbled around and snapped at brother that he'd better go do the shopping soon, because someone needed to be here for Pixie if I wind up in hospital again. I've told him before that if anything happens to me, call Will to take Pixie. He'd take good care of her, and she adores him too. But cuddling her close, a lot, I don't want to leave her, don't trust my bro to look after her properly. And what would happen the parrots and fish?

Bro is angry at me too, but F him. He knows he isn't pulling his weight and is leaving it all to me to sort out on both our behalves, and I'm cracking under the pressure. Just doesn't seem to care enough to help.

Grief is getting all tangled in MI and I don't know whch is which anymore. I'm just tired.

I guess crying out for help means some part of me doesn't want to do it. I emailed doc too. Then cried myself to sleep. Just woke up.
 
Pets were my escape when I separated from my son's mother. I was aimless and unsure of what to do. In a few months lost over 20 lbs and looked like a crackhead due to the rapid weight loss, the lack of sleep and the rage inside. They gave me something to focus on because they're 100% dependent on me, so I'm grateful for them. I always had pets thru my entire life. And yes, there were times when I neglected them, but thankfully they're all OK. Glad to see you are moving ahead too, keep taking care of yourself and your critters, they need you.

I hope you, your son, and your pets are happy and doing well now!

May I ask what other pets you had/have, please? :)
 
I hope you, your son, and your pets are happy and doing well now!

May I ask what other pets you had/have, please? :)
We're doing OK, thank you!!

his mother doesn't miss a chance to try to make my life more stressful than it is, but I know God is on my side. I have nothing to hide, and never have lied or made up stuff, unlike her.

Anyway... on to the animals.

Growing up near farmland and with the family in the meat business, I was always close to farm animals. At home we had, at any given time, chickens and rabbits. My neighbors had cows, pigs, even horses and donkeys at times.

at home the animals were always treated well and appreciated both as living beings and as trade stock.
I had a rooster and a male hare as pets at some point, memories are fuzzy now.

Once we nursed an eaglw back to health after it was shot down by a chicken farmer. That was amazing. My dad would always be trying snd helping strays and any hurt animals, I think he liked animals more than most people although he was very gregarious and extrovert, unlike me (unless I'm on some liquor, that social lubricant works wonders for me)

Always, ALWAYS we had at least 2 dogs and 2 cats at home, at some point I recall actually having 4 dogs and around 6 cats (we were always giving kittens away to friends, family and neighbors) Dogs were both pets and home security, and cats were firstly on rodent patrol, and always well treated as pets too. I recall many times having my dogs and kittens sleep with me on my bed.

Currently I have 20 fish all in all, in 2 tanks, and a pet rabbit. There's a third tank waiting to be setup, but I wont do that until I move out of this apartment, either to a larger one, or when I buy a house and settle there properly.

I would love to have more fish and a cat and a dog too, but space is limited, and I've come to appreciate the fact that I can leave the rabbit for extended period of time - if and when we take vacations or for any other reason - and I don't have to worry about a pet sitter, "pet hotels" or anything like that, which would be a necessity if I had a dog or a cat. The rabbit has an automated feeder, and if I spread hay around, leave plenty of water and clean his bathroom area right before traveling, I've been away for up to 3 weeks without any issues. That kind of freedom would not be possible, or cheap; with dogs or cats.
When I go away, I do a large water change and set up automatic feeders for the 2 tanks, and each also has programmable lights on them.

My current apartment and general living arrangements are not permanent, that's for sure. My dream is to get a house with garden, a garden large enough to allow me to plant some food, (either trees, or plants, or both) and to keep the rabbit outside, with all care taken of course for his safety and comfort, and to have a cat and dog too. And of course, more space for the tanks!.

I think when that happens, I'll settle on two 50 gallons ones, and I'll keep the 29 gallon as a planter/hospital/fry tank.

Long post, but hey, you asked 😉
 
Great. Just great.
I've trusted my brother with my bank and PIN card because he did the house shopping for all of us, and he used to be good about bringing back receipts, change etc. I can also check my account online, and it always balanced out right, so I relaxed, and trusted him.

Just went to check my statement, and when bro and I both went to local shops last Thursday, I left him to get the shopping while I took Pixie for a walk. Some things I'd asked him to get meant withdrawing £40 and giving me change - he'd withdrawn £80.


Without telling me. Or giving it to me. That was recent enough I could challenge him on it.

Just went to ask him WTH, and he said it was purely an accident, he had the cash there safe, and I could have it now, or he'd use it next time he shopped for me. I asked why he didn't tell me if it was an accident, he said because I'd wanted a peaceful weekend?? I didn't say that until Saturday. And letting me know he'd accidentally withdrawn 80, here's the other £40 wouldn't have stressed me out. But finding out this way certainly did! He didn't tell me on Thursday or Friday, Sat... Sun... only told me when confronted.

Would he have told me if I hadn't noticed? Has he done it before and I haven't noticed? I don't check my bank balance constantly, I trusted him.

Is my own brother stealing from me? At a time like this??
 

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