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Dealing With Dying
# 1 : Thursday 22-1-2015 @ 19:08
My aunt is dying at the moment, she had a seizure the day before Christmas day and it turned out she had terminal brain cancer and doesn't have long left. She has lost many of her motor functions including speech. My family on that side are very close and almost everyone who can has been to visit her. Some are now asking if I am going to go to see her. The thing is I have no intention whatsoever of going to see her, I don't visit people I love dying unless I have absolutely no choice. I don't want to see them like that and in my opinion she would not benefit from another sad face taking pity on her.

How do you approach dying, do you make a point of visiting someone if they are dying or are you like me and avoid that situation?
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# 2 : Thursday 22-1-2015 @ 19:47
I'd have to see her is she was my aunt, I'd have no hesitation in visiting her. It doesn't have to be "another sad face", for me it would be a loving smile.
# 3 : Thursday 22-1-2015 @ 19:54
My Dad died before Christmas, it was a brain anneurysm and then he had several strokes afterwards. He was in intensive care for the last two weeks of his life and he never woke up after the surgery to plug the leak in his brain. I wanted to see him as much as I could in the hospital but the last few days were very distressing. I can understand why people don't like to see dying loved ones because I have found that the image of him lying dead in the bed pops into my mind more often than images of him alive.
# 4 : Thursday 22-1-2015 @ 19:54
Prelim; I'm not a soft touch when it comes to death so I assure there's NO harshness intended in my chosen words.
Ando apologies for the wall of text.

How do you know seeing a sad face won't benefit her? That's for her to be the judge of.

Let me tell you people handle it differently both the dying person and their friends and family, which is fine.
On top of that not every context of dying is the same either.
Is there a correct way approach it?
No I don't think so, but youre now more than likely going to come across self interested folks who might just tell you that showing compassion is what you 'have' to do (which kinda defeats the point if it's contrived)

To answer your question, how do I approach it. Nothing profound, but genuine. My mother only has days left to live, from 3 years of sickness as a consequence of a addiction and bad life choices.
Am I sad she is dying? No.
Will I miss her, No.
Is there a meaninginful significance in my breaking our silence to let her have the experience of death that she wishes to have?
I didn't think so at first, but hey, theres a meaning which has appropriated itself.
Why is that? well because it was Her death. Not mine. I can cross my feelings and inhibitions for this once, will it change the past, no. But that's not the point. I get to pass my longtime limits and she gets to have a passing she desires.
But that's only my agenda, hey it was asked for.

Your Aunt is the one that's dying. This wont change, nor can you control it, but you can control giving her a meaningful goodbye if you choose.
Seeing her sick, yes it's sad naturally enough and you have the right to be sad, but it won't kill you. You will be fine eventually, you get to live.

You just need to sit down with yourself and ask a few more questions.
Are you close with her?
Would you like to or care to see her if you were in her position?

Also remember it's your Mother/father who is also losing a sister.
You don't have to appease people and visit her if you feel guilty or coerced, but remembering how they too will react differently.
# 5 : Thursday 22-1-2015 @ 20:01
Dealing with death is always difficult for us and knowing how best to handle a given situation can be a minefield. I have no doubt that your aunts family are concerned to ensure that anyone who wishes to visit can be facilitated rather than trying to force you into a situation where you do not want to be. If you feel very strongly about it, then I suggest that you tell them that you would rather try and remember her as she was then deal with the memory of having seen her as she now is.
I would suggest that you should consider visiting her, you may be surprised that it may not be as difficult as you might think. In fact, in time and long after she is gone, you may be happy that you did.
We don't like death but we can't deny it and we have to learn to deal with it.
# 6 : Thursday 22-1-2015 @ 20:03
Also, maybe something that will help lift some preconceptions about visiting your aunt.

My mam is bed ridden, incontinent a husk of the previous woman she was and looks like a zombie.
She knows how sick she is and useless she feels at times. at first she was concerned who saw her being sick (Paranoia is a pervasive trait with her) but now she doesn't care because anytime she sees some family she forgets her defenses and just savours the moment with seeing people, the effort they made to see her and to be seen by them (in a way that's deeper than visual perception).
# 7 : Thursday 22-1-2015 @ 20:40
My mum wants to die, she's had enough after a few minor strokes and more procedures on her heart than you can shake a stick at. She can get around as good as any 84 year old but cant do what she wants to do and that is what is killing her. She recently signed the papers (after talking to her doctor and family) instructing that she should not be resuscitated should anything happen to her. Sadly I can understand that and how my mum feels.
She's currently running around the sales buying clothes and laughing that she might not live long enough to wear them women!!
# 8 : Friday 23-1-2015 @ 00:13
Mam isn't quite at deaths door yet but she is very frail and since two of her close friends died has aged rapidly. When I visit her she can't hear me without a hearing aid unless I repeat myself 5 or 6 times or write what I'm saying. She has an appointment for a hearing aid. A few days ago her car hit the wall of her gateway on way out onto road and it cost her a lot to fix it. It sort of makes me worried that she might not be lucky next time because she is so frail. She is 73 and walks with a crouched back and spends most of her time in bed. I also suspect she is depressed because she sometimes misses doctors appointments. I have doubts she will continue to be able to live independently long-term.
# 9 : Friday 23-1-2015 @ 00:31
Difficult time regardless of your relationship,if you have known them since birth then the only option is to be with them to comfort them and ease their fears of the journey ahead,regardless of whether they are seemingly conscious or not,it would be the only option for me,briefly sad but joyous for their life.
# 10 : Friday 23-1-2015 @ 00:32
So sorry to hear that, had a similar situation with my dad. It is tough to see them struggle to breathe at the end and there are elements of the process which are harrowing. I used those last final moments to justify why my dad had to pass on. Maybe that may bring you comfort knowing that you can let go because their pain will be over.
As far as seeing someone in those moments if you are not a very close connection, I would debate what benefit it is to them. Families have different customs and sometimes it is expected that all the relatives should say their farewells. We kept our dad's illness private and that suited us better. If the person that is dying is the one requesting your presence, I'd say yes be there and offer them some comfort and love to help them on their journey. Otherwise best to let the immediate family have there time to accept the situation as it unfolds.

There really isn't a right or wrong choice, just what is best for the person that is reaching the end of their life journey.
# 11 : Friday 23-1-2015 @ 19:00
Someone said :

You just need to sit down with yourself and ask a few more questions.
Are you close with her?
Would you like to or care to see her if you were in her position?

To answer those two questions, yes I was very close to her and no I would not like to see her, or anyone else that I cared for if I was in the same boat (I don't ever want visitors when I am in hospital no matter how sick I am)

This aunt has no family of her own, she only has her siblings and us her nephews & nieces and she was very close to all of us, she was "that aunt" who remembered every birthday and was at every event. She had taken care of my grandmother for 15 years until she died last year. This aunt finally got her life back and it was taken away.
# 12 : Friday 23-1-2015 @ 22:58
I know where you are coming from Ery.
My siblings and I took turns sitting by my mothers bedside at the hospice the last ten days of her life.
If I had to do it all over again, I would not fly back until she had passed.
The memory of her on her death bed is still as vivid today as if I were there, and it has become the first memory the mind goes to when I think of her, not the countless happy memories.
I wish it were different.
# 13 : Saturday 24-1-2015 @ 00:52
But maybe it's not meant to be a happy ending Kevsamo, it's not for yourself that you sat at her bed but to keep her company in her last days and hours.
# 14 : Saturday 24-1-2015 @ 00:58
They should get to choose, when to go and be able to pop that pill and not put everyone through the trauma. There's no need to put people through suffering, just because a few loonies have a moral compass with no dial. If I was ill, in a hospice or hospital and had visitors calling to comfort me. I'd say nothing, while I was not too bad and take the pill to put me in a permanent peace. No-one suffers then!
# 15 : Saturday 24-1-2015 @ 10:20
To be honest, if you're really close to someone, I don't know how you can stay away. I was really upset that I missed my Dad's last minutes, I thought it was incredibly unfair. When he was in a coma, he was probably only aware of us in the beginning, but it is like they are a baby, you sort of yearn for their presence. But then some of his sisters were useless, they couldn't be in the room at all.

Granted, I've visited people who were dying who looked far worse and I would have struggled with that.
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