My husband would punish me and make me feel like a failure but I still can't get over his death

DEAR DEIDRE: MY husband died six years ago but I still feel so guilty and get attacks of crying.

I am 86 and how I am now is the result of years of trauma. My husband was a top executive so I did everything at home, but he used to make me feel such a failure.

He punished me with terrible rows and three-month silences, which he enjoyed but I found dreadful. I now believe he had a mental condition, but in those days there was no support.

My son, who is in his fifties, blames me for his terrible home life so the guilt goes on. He wouldn’t even stay with me the night his father died.

I’ve outlived my time now. It was a relief to write to you but I’ve not sent my address as nothing can be altered.

DEIDRE SAYS: What a heart-breaking letter. None of us can alter the past but we can get help to see it differently and release us from unjust emotional burdens.

You have nothing to feel guilty about but every right to mourn.

Please send me your address so I can write to you personally.

Meanwhile, you can find support through Cruse bereavement (cruse.org.uk, 0808 808 1677).

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