Internet instant grief counselor

Help at the speed of light — or close to it

Just a quick personal note here.

Many of my posts are about the loved ones I have lost over the years. I try to write about their deaths objectively, with as little self-pity as possible, which is probably not possible. They are all gone. I am the sole survivor.

The hardest of all was the death last Christmas of my wife. She helped me through the other losses, especially the death of my son. And now she is gone. 

Some people might say, Why the hell do you put all that private stuff out there? Aren’t you embarrassed? A little bit, yeah.

But here’s the other side of that. When readers from Alaska to New Zealand respond with genuine compassion and advice, that’s a good thing, certainly for me and perhaps for them.

Many people who have suffered potentially-suicidal losses join bereavement groups that meet, say, twice a month. I joined one myself and it helped, somewhat, and slowly. But the World Wide Web is an instant help. The hopes and prayers and advice of caring people from across the planet can get to you in a matter of seconds.

As my fellow blogger in Alaska noted, the Internet can be either, or both, a diabolical instrument or an almost god-like miracle. To me it’s a miracle.

Good night, and thank you, from New York.

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25 thoughts on “Help at the speed of light — or close to it

  1. This is a wonderful post, dear Sir. You don’t need anyone’s permission to express thyself the way you want, or to write for the things or for the wonderful people you have in your mind and in your heart. This is your home, actually. And we -the rest of us- are the visitors. And that’s it.

    Ps : I use to write a lot for the people i have in mind and in my heart. Not only because i miss a few of them -since a few of them are gone- but because they were wonderful. In many ways. I owe them. Take care, dear Sir.

  2. And from New Zealand, I hope you sleep well. I’m glad you go to the support group, and I’m glad you share your stories here. Connections between people can take many forms, and you’re right, the platforms like these make oceans shrink. Take care Bill.

  3. The “Support Group” is inside your-self, my friend, you have to decide whether or not,YOU want to carry on, think about what your Dear,Departed Wife, would want YOU to do? Would She want YOU to give up^ on living, just because she left you?,,,My Departed Lady, is yet still here with me, She is still my Best Friend, ever….Because we lived such an intimate life together, she is still looking over my shoulder, saying: “Do the “Right Things” my dear old man…..! We shared a good life together, and I do not regret a moment of it! I know almost every moment of My Lady”s lifetime, because we sat for long hours and just talked with one another, we did not watch a T.V., because we threw it in the garbage, many years all, so all we had for entertainment, was each other!……That, to me, is what Love is all about, those precious moments,when we share with each other, what we are all about…..

  4. “As my fellow blogger in Alaska noted, the Internet can be either, or both, a diabolical instrument or an almost god-like miracle. To me it’s a miracle. ” 🙂 that’s great. Amitiés. from France.

  5. Alert and awareness, two of the Key aspects of Life here on this Earth, YOU paid attention, my friend, and that caught my attention, perhaps we could get to know one another in Ether-Space?

  6. Alaskaman: In earlier post — you live on $300 a month? Man I could buy a ticket to that. I might find me a cabin… somewhere.

  7. Mich, first one has to find a lonely woman, who raises goats, then one has to learn all one can about raising, milking, butchering, those goats,then one has to learn how to live with that woman, I spent 30 years doing everything for that goat woman, and in the end, it was not enough, yet She invited me in, to share her cabin with Her, and I was a Happy Dude!, What did I care? I have a Life Sentence Here! I will only disappear when My Heart stops beating for me! Any-way that is how I See it now!

  8. You know what Brother? The fetters are off now, you can do whatever your heart desires!…. My Lady was a real GOOD WOMAN, yet when I tried to learn how to play a Guitar, it was driving her nuts, I guess, so I took that Guitar and smashed it into pieces and threw it into the Fire; that is how much I loved that woman! Now, Now, Now, I have two Drums, an eight tongued, and a twelve tongued wood Drum, made by Master Craft-Men, and I Hope they will out-live Me!, I play on them when I Want to, it does not bother Any-One!, So, I Loved that Woman into Infinity, but at least now I can play on my Drums, any time I want to!

  9. My Northern Brother, the drums are a good outlet. I need an outlet for my grief. There’s a gun range a mile from the house, but it’s very expensive by the hour and a mile-long waiting list to join the club. As for my heart, it desires nothing now, it lived inside the big heart of my wife and soulmate of 34 years and when she died, so did my heart; O something inside me is still pumping blood and keeping me alive in the sense that I’m breathing and eating sparsely (like yourself) and drinking heavily (you too?) and reading my books (Auden to Saroyan) but that’s it. The fire is out.
    It’s good to have a friend out there, playing his drums, still lighting the fire.

  10. What a lovely post, Bill. I too feel that way about all the amazing people I’ve met on here. People who take the time to write are pretty awesome individuals. You’re not the only one who shares a lot of personal stuff—so so I.

  11. Thanks, Larisa, yes, the humanity out there is amazing. As Shakespeare wrote: “The quality of mercy is not strained. It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven…”

  12. Mich, I am the alcoholic of all times, I am on my second case of 1.5 liter Vodka, + Schnapps 100 proof, and various other poison, I am kind of a functional alcoholic, today I gave away our last living Goat to nice people, now I am free of that chore, my Good Neighbor helped me do it. He kind of keeps an eye on me…..We once had a herd of 30 + Goats, and 15 Sheep, I never had to own a lawn mower, until age and neighbors made us get rid of them, I just had to buy a DR brush mower for our 2 1/2 acres. If you want to see something funny you should watch a 74 year old guy tottering along behind that giant machine!, I just got in the Winter wood, 10 chords, $3,200. I have to haul in in and feed the fire every couple of hours. I just spent two weeks completely rebuilding our 50 year old Rite-Way stove, I had some welders make a bunch of pieces for me,at least 5-6 hundred bucks worth of work, and when I picked it up they said “No Charge Brother, just pass it on” And pass it on I did,I just sent out checks for $40,000.00 to Doctors without Borders, my local food pantry, Salvation Army, and others. It was money I had saved up^ for my lady to live on as I fully expected Her to out-live me! I do not want to die with .10 cents in the bank…..If I can do just a little Good in this World,money will help me do it! Stay cool Brother, This World needs People like You and I!!!!

  13. The Trapeze to the Universe in enabled by constructing the “House of Mankind” here on Earth! When all men, treat all men as Equals, we will have Peace and Harmony, and then, maybe a portion of this Universe will open it’s self to Man Kind emphasis on “Kind”

  14. Ahh good ol’ Shakespeare. I seriously love him. One of my favorite quotes that is attributed to him is, “I would challenge you to a battle of wits, but I see you are unarmed!” Although that quote actually cannot be found in any of his plays..

  15. Hello Mich, Hope all is WELL with you! A Quote from “The River Why?” By David James Duncan….Chapter 5; “When she left me and I quit my job, and wept for a year and…..All my poems were born dead, I decided I would only fish and drink…..In the river was a trout and I was on the bank, my heart in my chest, clouds above, she was in New York forever, and I, fishing and drinking.” Jim Harrison…Procure a copy of this book and read it my Friend, You will find me on the “Last Page”…..Best book I have ever had the Pleasure to read, and I have read 10 thousand books! George

  16. Yo, George, now I know your name. I will get that book, and I’ll be reading the last page first! And as for Jim Harrison, one of my favorite writers, have his books, sorry when he died not too long ago — six months after losing his wife Linda.

  17. Great quote! Attributed to several writers, inc. Shakespeare, Twain, Oscar Wilde, et alia, but actual source unknown. But, like you, I’ll go with Will.

  18. Sharing our pain helps others to know its okay to do it. There is no time frame as far as grieving is concerned. But support for self expression as well as compassionate holding is so essential to our healing. As your other posts highlight without this we sink and sadly, often drown.