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Old 06-04-2018, 02:42 PM   #1
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Unhappy Need advice, and it's not about cooking.

My father was diagnosed with cancer. Sadly it is very advanced. Doctor gave him 6 month. I need to tell my kids. I told older ones. The 32 and 23 year old. But I have 17, 16 and 14, that i have not told yet. Not sure how to talk to them about that. Especially the 16 year old one. She is so sensitive to things like this. She will be devastated. Do we have ashrin here by any chance?


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Old 06-04-2018, 03:05 PM   #2
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Charlie, I'm so sorry to hear about your father's illness My grandfather was diagnosed with emphysema and lung cancer when I was 12. There's no good way to give people bad news like this. I would bring your family together and tell them together. Just be straight about it and answer any questions they have. Then give them time to adjust.

My parents thought it was best that we kids not see my grandfather in the nursing home because he was so sick and then he was cremated. Maybe they were right, but after he died, it took a long time for me to really understand that he was dead. I wish I had been able to see him before he passed.

I'm sorry, I don't know what you mean by ashrin.

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Old 06-04-2018, 03:21 PM   #3
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Charlie, I too am sorry to hear about your Dad's illness. I would just have a family discussion and be gentle and honest.
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Old 06-04-2018, 03:31 PM   #4
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Sorry to hear that Charlie. It's always such a difficult thing to have to accept.

When Craig's brother was diagnosed, I stayed with him for a while, then he made the decision to move up to Maryland for his final days. His son came down to help pack up the house and take care of some legal stuff, went home for a couple weeks, then came back to drive a truck home with furniture and boxes. He also decided to bring his wife and children, who weren't even teenagers yet. They talked to the kids and told them their GF was very, very ill and was going to die, and that he looked very, very sick. It turned out to be a good decision to bring the kids because he passed within a couple of days of them getting to Florida. Unfortunately, it happened with nearly all of the family in attendance so we had to get the kids out of the house because he was in severe distress at the end. But, at least he got to see the kids and they got to see him before he passed.

I personally think it is better to be honest and to give people as much time to process before they are confronted with the actual event.
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Old 06-04-2018, 04:53 PM   #5
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I'm so sorry about your father Charlie. It sounds like you have some good kids and when you tell them, they are likely to be thinking of you loosing your father. That's a sobering thought for a kid, loosing a father. I'm betting they will be as concerned for you as you are for them. Love is such a powerful thing.
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Old 06-04-2018, 07:34 PM   #6
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I agree, you should tell them together, they need you and each other for support. They each need to decide how they want to spend what time they have left with their Grandfather.

I am so sorry, my heartfelt sympathies for you, Charlie!
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” - Albert Einstein
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Old 06-04-2018, 07:53 PM   #7
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I'm sorry to hear of your sad news, Charlie. Praying for your family.

Our children were days away from their fifth birthday when their first grandparent died - Himself's Mom. We were already in FL at the time for the Christmas holiday; Mom was waked on Christmas Day. We explained as best we could about how they would never see Grandma again when we visited, and they did go into the room with Mom's open coffin and said prayers. They did not appear to be stressed by that situation.

Move forward to when they were almost 11 and my Dad was dying. They knew that he was very sick, yet we still went over Mom and Dad's often to visit and help out. We had to make a run to their home just days before Dad died, and they stayed with Grandma and Grandpa to visit when I had to make a run to the drug store for meds for Dad. They were glad that they had that time with him.

They were first year college students when my Mom died. Our daughter and her best friend were at the nursing home during my Mom's last days to spend time with Mom when I couldn't be there. Loverly was there when Mom died - except that the nurse had her and her friend step out of Mom's room before Mom actually passed...and Loverly has been mad about it ever since. Our son was glad that he had been home at the holidays to spend time with Grandma, and was in the middle of semester tests when Mom died the end of February. He could not leave immediately, and insisted that we have the funeral director do all he could to delay Mom's funeral. Needless to say, we agreed it was important. Goober is eternally grateful for being able to be back home for Grandma's wake and funeral.

I guess what I'm trying to emphasis is that it is important that your kids, no matter how young you think they are, will find it was a blessing to know about their grandfather's illness and impending death. They will be able to appreciate the final months they had with him. And I bet your sensitive 16 year old will appreciate it the most. Good luck.
“You shouldn’t wait to be senile before you become eccentric.”— Helene Truter

"Remember, all that matters in the end is getting the meal on the table." ~ Julia Child
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:16 PM   #8
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Charlie, I'm so sorry to hear of your father's illness.

I agree with the others' suggestions on how to break the news.
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:32 PM   #9
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I was a young adult when my first grandfather died. I was told to do this or that, go here, go there and then everything would be done. So I did what I was told to do, but no one addressed how I felt about my relationship with him, or how I felt about him dying, or that I as an adult could make choices about what I wanted to do about seeing him before he died, or if I wanted to attend the funeral or how that fit into my plans/work/marriage etc. I don't think that was entirely healthy to have me fit into the woodwork of anyone else's plans for me.

So when my dad died, I called my young adult boys over and asked them to talk. We talked about all the things, how they might feel, how they wanted to handle how they felt, if they wanted to visit him before he died, if they wanted to attend the funeral. What was most important was not that they told me all this, it was that whatever decisions they were going to make, that they made choices that were best for themselves. That they each felt different and made different decisions on how they'd each handle him dying and then the funeral attendance. I told them I had confidence they'd each handle it well and appropriately for the grieving that comes with death of a relative.

There were 3 boys and myself, we each made different decisions on whether to see him before he died, then we also made different decisions on whether to attend the funeral. Then in the aftermath of sadness and all the other emotions we each came across, especially myself, we had a bonfire bbq in his honor, for me to say a short prayer over the bonfire, to share a meal and some memories we each had about my dad. It was very healing.

I think we handled it well and then when their other grandfather died just earlier this year, we had abbreviated discussions about the exact same things, and how they wanted to handle each part. Young adults need to be able to plan around work/friends/marriages to decide what is best for themselves. I'm feeling pretty confident they all had a good primer in knowing about the approaching a death of someone they loved, in knowing what things they probably should consider to get through it.

Death is usually a surprise but it is kind of a blessing to have some fore warning about it, as we did with both grandfathers.

I'm sorry about your impending loss and that of your family. Blessings.
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Old 06-04-2018, 09:12 PM   #10
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Chuck, I can't give advice on stuff I don't know, but all I can say is my heart goes out to you, and I'm sure you'll handle it well being the good dad you are.
The past is gone it's all been said.
So here's to what the future brings,
I know tomorrow you'll find better things
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Old 06-04-2018, 10:44 PM   #11
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I'm so very sorry to hear about your father's condition, Charlie. This is a tough one to deal with.

You know your children better than anyone. Just set the younger ones down, and calmly tell them about their grandfather's illness and what to expect. The sooner they know the better, especially since the older ones already know.

I could write paragraphs about how I first learned about my beloved grandfather's imminent death from cancer, but I'll just say I was 15, my brother was 14, and we were protected from the truth. When it got bad sooner than expected, we were blindsided and had no time to prepare.

(((hugs, Charlie)))

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