how to help from 6 thousand miles?

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how to help from 6 thousand miles?

by milesaway on Wed Sep 26, 2012 08:54 AM

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My mother in law was diagnosed with ovarian cancer back in  2009.  After extensive surgeries and annual rounds of intensive chemo, she is still fighting.  It has been 4 years and she is no longer responding postively to treatment. 

During this entire time, she has been very active and enjoying life. My husband and I live 6 thousand miles away.  We call her every sunday and visit every year to spend time with her. Our last trip was six months ago, however I think my husband needs to go again and I recommended he go alone.  Even though she and I have an excellent relationship, I think he needs to spend quality time with her... without me.  Will she understand this? 

His brother and sister live closer to her and get to see her more often.  My husband feels guilty that he can't (he is active military).  This has been a long illness, and has been hard for both of us.  It may be coming to the end. What can I do to help him get through this?

I am looking for practical advice, no well-meaning prayers or bible quotes...  thanks

RE: how to help from 6 thousand miles?

by MamaB on Wed Sep 26, 2012 05:31 PM

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If indeed you do have an excellent relationship with your mother-in-law, and you do not go with your husband to visit her....Will she understand this??!?

NO, she will not!

I understand your thinking about your husband having some time alone with his mom.  While you are there visiting; you can make yourself, going to a movie, little things like that.

On the other hand, if your husband does not want you to go with him to visit his mother....that is another story.


RE: how to help from 6 thousand miles?

by milesaway on Thu Sep 27, 2012 09:37 AM

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Wow - didn't expect that.

First of all, my Mother in law is not on her death bed.  She is currently vacationing to see family in another state.  I have every intention of being there for her when that unfortunate time happens.  My husband and I are considering moving to her location and renting a house in the area to be with her next year. 

Secondly, to insuate that my husband doesn't want me to go is insulting.  This decision was made after hours of discussion together.  Being a military wife calls for lots of sacrifices... sometimes its just not about you. The visiting daughter or son-in-law always bring a different dynamic to the visit - I want this to be about her and her kids. Not me.

My question is - what else can I do for her if I am not there?  Send cards (which I do), call weekly (which we do)... what else will help support her?


RE: how to help from 6 thousand miles?

by MamaB on Thu Sep 27, 2012 07:33 PM

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Sorry I shocked you!

If your mother-in-law is still able to travel, why not invite her to spend some time with you?  She might enjoy seeing how the military live; and at the same time, it will not take your husband away from his job.

Cards, phone calls and little gifts are special to everyone; but an invitation to somewhere she has probably never been would probably be a delight to her!

I did not mean to be harsh with you.  I am a mother-in-law and have a darling daughter-in-law and son-in-law.

Wishing you and your husband the best.

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