How do you cope?

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
How do you cope?
12
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 10:54am
We have had some recent posts talking about coping with crisis-crying in public, thinking about others worse off or fighting with family.

So, how do you cope with crisis? Do you try to handle it without talking to others? Do you try to shield your children from family crisis or try to include them? Do you find circles of support or try to be an island? Do you get very detailed and try to find forms to fill out or an insurance company to fight? Any other ways of coping?

"I do not want to be a princess! I want to be myself"

Mallory (age 3)

      &nbs

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:02am
I know this is shocking but I am a talker. I tell people about it when they ask. I also try to cry away from my family-that is usually in the car or at church. I just don't want them to see me in so much pain. It scares my DH and it scares my children.

DH copes by being an island. He prefers not to talk about it and he is rather embarrassed that our whole church knows. In other words, my way of coping has bumped against his way of coping.

I also get very detailed oriented. I want to know what will happen with this scenario or what will happen with another scenario. I fell asleep forming a list of people to call about various things last night.

I can't say I think about others worse off because it is too depressing. I know there are others worse off and everyone has their own pain. It isn't that I don't care-I just don't actively seek out stories about people that have it worse than me.

My MIL and FIL are going with the denial method. I wish I could go this method but it has not worked so far.

Kristi

"I do not want to be a princess! I want to be myself"

Mallory (age 3)

      &nbs

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-12-2002
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:05am
Well, I'm typically the "doer" when a crisis happens. For instance, with DH or in my grandparents medical crisis, or for my friends. I call whomever needs to be called, take care of the food needed, arrange flights and hotels or spare beds for someone to sleep in. And as long as I'm kept busy, I'm fine. But, after all the work is done, I need a quiet place to break down....alone.

The only time I can think of when that wasn't the case was the death of my mom. Mom and I weren't what you would call "close". We loved each other dearly, but it wasn't like my relationship with my grandparents. My sister and her were much closer, and the role I have with my grandparents, my sister had with mom. So, when mom was in the hospital, I didn't have the "work" to do, as it was my sisters "job". Therefore, I had a HUGE emotional breakdown when mom died. I just didn't have my normal routine. There was nothing I could "do", so I felt lost, and the emotions just came out in front of God and everyone. Go figure.

Okmrsmommy-36, CPmom to DD-16 and DS-14

Avatar for virgogirl914
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:22am
I've already 'admitted' to crying a little in public (not a tear fest, but a few tears) and to realizing that others do have things worse than me. . .


I'm a talker. .

I am honest with my children about what's happening and my feelings, without 'losing it' in front of them.

I have circles of support.

I doo think about details.

And I'll admit that I have sought out counselling as the need arose.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-22-2000
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:35am
I hold it in, take care of whatever I have to, and when it's over I totally melt down. After said meltdown, everyone I know spends about a week yelling at me for not asking for help....but I can't handle people helping me. Helpers generally get in the way. I have to handle it my way, by myself.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:40am
God bless my church-they have offered babysitting, driving, a healing service and a fundraiser. We don't need a fundraiser-we have perfectly good insurance and owe about 55.00 right now. Excellent considering. I told my father they will be offering organs next. I turned the phone off and the answering machine down Sunday just to get some rest.

Kristi

"I do not want to be a princess! I want to be myself"

Mallory (age 3)

      &nbs

Avatar for cyndiluwho
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:41am
I explain things to my kids. They might not understand it all but some explanation is better than none. Hiding things from them is the worst thing you can do. You can imagine all sorts of things when you don't know what's going and others are hiding it from you.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-29-2003
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:43am
I talk and do, I guess. My natural impulse is to be an island when in crisis, but my intellect (and my shrink, and my family, and my friends) tells me it's a bad idea, so I sort of force myself to let people help me. I also try to acquire knowledge about the crisis, so that if something comes up, I'll understand exactly what it means and what the options are. So my first stop is the library or the Internet.

I absolutely shield my children from crisis. They're so young. When DH was in the hospital for 3 weeks in March, though, I got a funny feeling that DS1 thought he was dead. He'd talked to him on the phone, but something he said (actually it was the fact that he refused to talk about his father) made me feel that he didn't really believe his dad was alive. So I immediately packed both boys into the car adn drove them to the hospital (I had to get special permission to let them visit him). I got my very first speeding ticket on the way there. I was right -- DS1 said, as we drove away from the hospital, "Daddy IS alive, isn't he?"

So I guess shielding kids isn't always the best option. A friend of mine has breast cancer, and she tells her kids that when her hair falls out, it means she's getting better. So her older daughter gets very excited whenever she finds a new bald spot.

Congratulations! I'm so happy to hear it. I just heard the good news and popped back over, just in case you were still checking in.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:46am
Huge believer of counseling here-counseling for me and also for the kids. Sometimes, you just need a neutral party to listen to you.

I also believe you can not protect your children 100 percent. They will hear talking and, in your case, see snippets of the news. I just try to put it in the simplest terms possible and ask if they have questions. So far, so good with our eldest. He is hurting and processing the information. I am bracing for the questions. DH won't talk to him about it-DH thinks that since he doesn't know what treatment option he is going for that there is nothing to talk about. I decided to drop it.

I did belong to a support group but I could not handle it. We had three people with spouses that had terminal cancer. It is so scary and so painful. I sat through one of them dying and I could not handle hearing about the other two. I guess it is selfish but I can't go there yet.

Kristi

"I do not want to be a princess! I want to be myself"

Mallory (age 3)

      &nbs

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-22-2000
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 12:17pm
That is so true! I remember my former next-door neighbor (the SAHM I always complained about) telling me after September 11 that she and her dh watched CNN 24/7 but since the kids hadn't asked any questions, they hadn't mentioned it to them, even though they were in the room when the coverage was on. I asked her, what if they're so AFRAID that they're also afraid to ask about it? Isn't it possible that if it's happening right in front of them and their parents are being hush-hush about it, they might think it's something they can't ask about? She never did discuss it with them, though. She thought she was sheltering them from it by not telling them herself, even though they were watching it.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 08-18-2003 - 11:15pm
in a word.....prozac. sorry, but it waaaay helps me. im calmer than ever before, and dont worry nearly as much as i used to. i have a "what will be, will be" attitude. i do cry in front of my family and try to avoid it in work, although it has happened, and i have to say, my team im on is sooooo supportive of each other. and very understanding.

i am a big talker.....shock, i know. LOL. i want other perspectives. it helps me to figure out how to handle things, and whether im over-reacting or not. my dh is very supportive, and is used to my big mouth. actually, he loves my in spite of it.

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