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soopirV

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Mixed emotions...just want to type them out to clear my head, please don't feel compelled to respond. When I met my wife, she lived with her mom and her step-father, who was over-all a good guy- took care of her, and her three brothers (one biologically related to him, her youngest sib), bit of an idiot (narrow world view, slightly bigoted, mildly xenophobic but not outwardly racist), but the kind of guy who would loan you his coat and his car if it meant helping someone in need.
My mother and (step)father-in-law followed us to Tucson from NY in 2011 when they realized how nice it was out here, but then 3 years later, he filed for divorce after 20 years of marriage. He was an ass about it...neither party was in great physical or mental health, and he told her that he was sure he was going to meet someone better right away. It hit her hard, but we carried her through, and basically parted ways with him to save her. Over time we let him back in (prophecy unfulfilled- she actually had more dates than he did), and invited both of them (along with others) to our house for thanksgiving last month. He was hunched over at the waist, after a spinal fusion operation that went well, but after which he didn't do any of his post-op exercises. He also had a pronounced tardive dyskinesia, most likely from an over-reliance on opioid pain pills. He was always the type, despite having tours of duty in Vietnam, that would rather sit and lament how hard life was, than get up and do something about it. He worked for NY State Highway department for years, until he had an "accident" that put him on disability for the rest of his life (I met him in 1998, and he was on disability then, despite being only 42). He could work, he was fine, he just didn't chose to. I always resented him for that, even though he "took care of his family".

He was found dead tonight. Alone.

I don't have all the timing figured out yet, but his therapist called him after a missed appointment. When she didn't hear, she called his son, who went to check on him, and found him in his EZ-chair. Nearest anyone can tell is 3 days. His legacy is yet to be understood- he was a kind individual, but selfish, even to the point of alienating his own family. We don't know who we have to reach back in NY to advise them of the sad news, because he deliberately shed contact with all his 9 brothers and sisters. His ex-wife said tonight that, "She didn't know what to continue to live for" despite this asshole breaking her heart and leaving her, and the fact that she has 5 total grandkids who adore her. I tried to articulate that, and think I scratched the surface.

He was an individual with potential, but he failed to develop it. He did "enough", but no more. I don't mean to judge the dead, but after 18 years of knowing him, I know that this is a cautionary tale for all men/fathers/grandfathers...love your children, however you know how, regardless of their origin- step, adopted, biological...cherish them and ensure they know you care. Without that, you face a pauper's grave with scattered debris to mark your existence.
 

CzTeacherMan

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An all-too familiar story...
Cherish the ones you love.
 

dhbarr

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Here's to all the flawed humans we know, love, & are.
 

Zeus-cat

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I'm sorry to hear that this man has caused your loved ones so much pain. Since it is that time of year, "It's a Wonderful Life" comes to mind. We can choose to be selfish and possibly very wealthy, or we can choose to be kind and loving. In the end, who really was the "richest" man in that movie, old man Potter, or George Bailey?
 

Bat-mite

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It is nothing but sad to watch people throw away what blessings they have. I think of the King's X song -- "Complain! So much easier...."

Sorry for your loss and the additional stress of trying to figure out what to do. I know it sounds trite, but ... if there's anything I can do.... :(
 

ThirstyBarbarian

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That's a sad story. He sounds like a complicated mix of good and bad traits, like most of us. It's good that you can acknowledge both sides, because it's often tempting to pick one point of view and ignore the larger picture. I hope you and your family can get through this and move forward.
 

Onebadhawk

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RIP..

It is so easy for us to get caught up in the daily goings on of life,,
to forget about the big picture...
Time is the only thing we have,, the only thing that matters,, and the only thing with any type of real value
( ie; can be traded for the only possessions that have true value,, knowledge and experience )...
The only time that will really matter is the end,, when we're reflecting back on our whole life..
The only thing that will matter at this time will be personal relationships...

And yet it is so easy for us to get caught up in our daily chasing of worldly possessions..

Teddy
 

Bat-mite

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RIP..

It is so easy for us to get caught up in the daily goings on of life,,
to forget about the big picture...
Time is the only thing we have,, the only thing that matters,, and the only thing with any type of real value
( ie; can be traded for the only possessions that have true value,, knowledge and experience )...
The only time that will really matter is the end,, when we're reflecting back on our whole life..
The only thing that will matter at this time will be personal relationships...

And yet it is so easy for us to get caught up in our daily chasing of worldly possessions..

Teddy
I had a guy I worked with many years ago. He was upwardly mobile, but he confided to me that his family was really missing him because he was spending so much time at work, and he didn't know what to do.

I said, "Let me ask you this: when you are on your deathbed, which will be more likely--that you'll say, 'I wish I had spent more time on the job,' or that you'll say, 'I wish I had spent more time with my wife and kids?' "

The next day at a meeting, he announced that he was taking some time off. They were right in the middle of a big assignment, and as a result, he was removed from the program.

I freaked out, thinking, "Oh, no! What did I do?"

But on his way out the door the next day, he smiled at me and said thanks. (And not a sarcastic thanks, like "Thanks, you A-ho!") I heard later from a coworker that he ended up on another project with a more flexible schedule. Good for him!
 

ChrisAttebery

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I have had to deal with a lot of family issues throughout my life. It's gotten so bad that we have pulled away from multiple family members. I don't envy anyone who has had to deal with it.

Hang in there. Try to help if you can but don't let anyone drag you down. Suggest therapy to anyone that you can't help directly.
 

patelldp

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I have had to deal with a lot of family issues throughout my life. It's gotten so bad that we have pulled away from multiple family members. I don't envy anyone who has had to deal with it.

Hang in there. Try to help if you can but don't let anyone drag you down. Suggest therapy to anyone that you can't help directly.
Great insight. I even suggest therapy for yourself if you think that it may help. I'm not the most emotionally aware person but speaking through your thoughts with a neutral party can be very beneficial. Be truthful with that resource and be as critical of your involvement as possible, it's the only way to improve the situation.

I'm in the same boat from the standpoint that I had a pretty worry-free childhood until I graduated college and my siblings elected to go nuts and start acting like selfish idiots. My sister started scamming my parents out of money and aggressively alienating my wife, my brother started committing incredibly stupid crimes likely in connection to addiction, resentment of authority, and perceived intellectual superiority. Couple that with enabling behavior by other family members and the result is a very strenuous situation and being told "you don't understand" a lot.
 

Bat-mite

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Great insight. I even suggest therapy for yourself if you think that it may help. I'm not the most emotionally aware person but speaking through your thoughts with a neutral party can be very beneficial. Be truthful with that resource and be as critical of your involvement as possible, it's the only way to improve the situation.

I'm in the same boat from the standpoint that I had a pretty worry-free childhood until I graduated college and my siblings elected to go nuts and start acting like selfish idiots. My sister started scamming my parents out of money and aggressively alienating my wife, my brother started committing incredibly stupid crimes likely in connection to addiction, resentment of authority, and perceived intellectual superiority. Couple that with enabling behavior by other family members and the result is a very strenuous situation and being told "you don't understand" a lot.
It is strange, isn't it? You grow up together as kids, and then one day, you realize your lives are completely divergent. I had a cousin I was very close to when I was young. And then I went to college, and he didn't. And then I got a career started, and he didn't. And then I went to church, and he went to jail. And so on.
 

soopirV

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Thanks everyone- it was therapeutic to put all that out there, and the kind words and shared experiences from you all helps me a lot. Another fine example of this group of people who come from all walks of life, but all share a common interest, and from that build a family. Love to all.
 

Onebadhawk

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Thanks everyone- it was therapeutic to put all that out there, and the kind words and shared experiences from you all helps me a lot. Another fine example of this group of people who come from all walks of life, but all share a common interest, and from that build a family. Love to all.
+ 1.........
Well said...
Couldn't agree more....
Nice man...

Teddy
 

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