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open casket -having trouble dealing

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I saw my DH grandmother , and now I am having nightmares and keep seeing the image in my head. I'm not sure how to get it out, or stop thinking about it. I mean it just happened yesterday, but in all honesty I am pretty shook up and not sure what to do about it. To top it all off I froze when I got upo there and wasn't able to say goodbye. I willed myslef to move and walked away. Didn't get to stay in the service as toddler was talking loudly.

Courtney
post #2 of 8
sorry mama.

It is very normal to keep having viaions of our loved one in their final resting place. Time is usually what helps best with those flash backs. You can help it along by trying to immediately follow your flashback with a wrom beautiful memory of his Grandmother. Saying goodbye is the hardest part.
post #3 of 8
I am so sorry! I have chosen in the past to remain in the back during open casket funerals where I thought it would be difficult. Could you get out some photo albums or home videos and try to bring up a few more visual memories? Use char's suggestion, but maybe refreshing your good visual memories would help you when the bad ones come.
post #4 of 8

Same Feeling

I am so sorry for your loss also. I feel so much the same! My grandma just died last month from Lou Gehrig's disease, so she had wasted away into a shell of the woman she was. I keep having nightmares of seeing her (as well as my remaining grandparents) in the casket, not looking at all like herself. And I have nightmares of my dad, her son, dying for various reasons. These dreams really bother me! I know how you feel. I think the advice of following this memory with a good memory sounds good, I'm going to try that. I also made a counselling apt. for the first time in my life to see if my grief is normal. Do you have many supportive people at home? Have you lost anyone else close to you before? I hadn't in my 26 years. I wonder if this is why we're having this reaction.
I will keep you in my prayers! If you need someone to talk to, Pm me anytime!
post #5 of 8


I'm so sorry for your loss.
post #6 of 8
I am so sorry.

I have attended many open-casket wakes where I am expected to kneel and pray at the open casket. It's very upsetting. I try to look at the casket as little as possible. I wish more people would have closed caskets and just show a photo of the person. Some people "need" to see the dead person, that's the explanation I've been given.
post #7 of 8
So sorry for your loss. Some people do like to view the body and some can't.

I think it's ok to let the image of your grandmother in her casket roll around in your head for a while. Don't try to push it away. Accept the visions and let them work themselves through. Maybe keep pictures of her near you. You've suffered some trauma you weren't prepared for. Let it wash over you for a bit and see if it helps. The more you push it away, the more unresolved it will become.

I have seen many dead bodies of loved ones. I held the body of a newborn cousin, I brushed my FILs hair as he lay dead in his bed, and kissed his hands and head in his coffin, I held the hands of my grandfather and cried into his chest before the hospital sent the body to be cremated. Sometimes we don't know what we need--death is so abstract in our culture-- so it makes it doubly hard to say goodbye.

Your grandmother's earthly body is what remains. Sometimes people want to touch and stroke a body, and others do not. It's good to know which you are so you can take care of yourself next time. Or maybe your needs will change. Death of loved ones is trauma. Be good to yourself.
post #8 of 8
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