redgirlraven
I lost my sweet boy Roary a couple of weeks ago, maybe 3 - I don't even know anymore, its like time has lost its meaning lately.
I can't get over the guilt, the choices I made in the week surrounding his death, the choices I made during some of his life.  I wasn't always present.  I was in a bad marriage had a small child and multiple cats.  I moved cross country with two cats and my child.  I left him behind for over a year (with his two littermates) and my husband - who he didn't like - but who did feed and attend to litterboxes but didn't provide any of the love I did.  when I finally returned to take him (and his brothers) with us he was only here for 1 year before suddenly being unable to breathe - lung cancer (out of nowhere at only 9 years old)!  I thought I had 6 to 8 more years to make abandoning up to him... I feel like such a monster.  I don't know how to forgive myself and move on.  now my daughter and other cats aren't getting the attention they deserve.  I don't know what to do.
AR
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Memories_of_Marmalade

Dear Anne, 

I totally understand your feelings. I have my own feelings of guilt, remorse, regret, sorrow and grief when it comes to recently losing my little boy, a cat named "Marmalade" (as do so many others here on the forum) I suppose it is individualized for each of us. As we all have our own stories. 3 out of 4 marriages go bad. So statistically the odds are most people will suffer from a bad marriage at some point(s) in their lifetime. It is almost unavoidable. So you most likely could not have avoided many of the circumstances you endured. It is just a part of life.

"Having a child" in the mix, only makes life that more complicated. And then "moving cross country"? once again, added to the complications. But you were living your life and trying to cope with the changes. The fact that you DID return for your other cat at some point? speak volumes and demonstrates that they WERE on your mind. 

Please keep in mind that in the wild (strays and ferals prove this) cats only live 2 to 5 years. By adopting a cat, we human caregivers, quite often, automatically double, triple and even quadruple their lifespans. They are not biologically designed to live as long as many do. Living to 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 and as far as 20 years old is a miracle and a blessing for each cat. Just by providing them with regular food & water, shelter (from natural predators), love and the occasional trip to a Vet's and medications, we are lengthening their lifespan exponentially. So it may seem that losing a cat as young as 9 is young, where in fact your cat was one year away from being considered a "senior cat."

In the end your boy saw that you DID return for him, and took him to your new home. And I'll bet that 1 year meant a great deal to him. More that you even know now. The fact that you are STILL thinking of your lost beloved, and sharing his and your story here - PROVES that you are NOT a monster. In fact you are a compassionate, loving, affectionate & gentle soul. Please forgive yourself and spread that gentle love with your children and other cats. 

XO.

Kind regards,
James


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redgirlraven
Thank you for the kind words and support. Frankly I am feeling like nobody else is responding because they also think I am a monster for leaving him.
AR
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Memories_of_Marmalade


No, no sweetheart. They will chime in shortly. I'm sure. Sometimes it takes just a bit for everyone to catch-up. Please hang in there and have a decent evening wherever you are. 
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missingmylittlefriends
I don't think you're a monster. I think you did the best you could for yourself and those under your care in a very difficult set of circumstances. At the end of the day, that's all any of us can do, you know? But I very much understand and share the feelings of guilt, time losing its meaning, etc, from my own recent experience of pet loss. Echoing the previous poster -- please be kind to yourself, so that you can be kind to your daughter and other cats. Maybe you could do some Sunday brunch with your daughter today?
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Jcunnane
Hi Anne,

Please be gentle with yourself. You were doing the best you could and you did come back for Roary. The lung cancer, I’m sure was there for a bit but he didn’t show signs. Remember cats are master of disguises and once they do show symptoms it’s typically very late stage.

I know the guilt you feel. And to be honest my marriage has been in a bit of turmoil the month and half before we had to say goodbye to my sweet Bubby. There was a lot of arguing and my husband was in and out of the house for the month of April and pretty much the month of May. My husband was Bubbys cuddle guy. And last year it was worse. I was pregnant and my husband wasn’t really accepting he was going to be a father so he sort of went off the deep end into a downward spiral. It was ugly. The last month and half of Bubbys life he didn’t have his guy around when he probably needed him the most.

Then once our daughter came, she cried all the time. Not a quiet cry but loud and ALL THE TIME. I felt horrible for the cats. They were used to such a quiet peaceful house and now this. Even with the constant walking, rocking, sound machine our daughter would just scream. I only wonder if this contributed to his declining health that I didn’t see signs of because I was preoccupied with her.

So we all have our guilt in some way. We just need to remember that we did the best we could and we did provide them with great lives and loved us unconditionally. Would I have done things differently...absolutely. But I can’t now and I need to keep trying to think of all the great times rather then the bad. He was the world to me like Roary was you to. Bubby was Roarys age as well when we had to say goodbye. He would have been 10 this month. It doesn’t seem fair but I did have almost 10 wonderful years with him that I will NEVER forget.

Sending you tons of hugs,
Jackie

Bubby's (Milo) Mommy - Always & Forever My Little Man 💜

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Jcunnane
Memories_of_Marmalade wrote:

Dear Anne, 

Please keep in mind that in the wild (strays and ferals prove this) cats only live 2 to 5 years. By adopting a cat, we human caregivers quite often automatically double, triple and often quadruple their lifespans. They are not biologically designed to live as long as many do. Living to 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 and as far as 20 years old is a miracle and a blessing for each cat. Just by providing them with regular food & just water, shelter (from natural predators), love and the occasional trip to a Vet's, we are lengthening their lifespan exponentially. So it may seem that losing a cat as young as 9 is young, where in fact your cat was one year away from being considered a "senior cat."



Thank you, James! I need to keep reminding myself of this all the time. That we domesticate these animals and expand their lifetime. I get upset a lot because Bubby was only here for 10 short years but then I think would he even have lived that in the wild with his condition. My answer keeps coming up as no. So as hard as it is that he just shy of 10, I need to keep remembering what you said about that each year after 5 is a blessing.

Thank you. I needed that!

Hugs!
Jackie

Bubby's (Milo) Mommy - Always & Forever My Little Man 💜

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redgirlraven
Jcunnane,
Thank you for your reply. What you said about the difficulties you were having with your husband rang so true for me with how my marriage was. My husband also struggled with being a father (she is 7 now and he still hasn’t accepted her in the way She and I wish he would). We were older first time parents (I was 37 when I was pregnant) and despite trying for 2 years to have a baby when I finally did become pregnant he just - as you say spiraled - he became a different man. Additionally I had a challenging pregnancy and was put on bed rest. That hurt us financially and I became completely dependent on him (had no family around) and it just destroyed us before she was even born. I swear he resents her to this day. - now of course, I am only speaking of my marriage- I had to get her out of the toxic home she was in. She was turning 4 and could sense and verbalize the fact that her Daddy never spent time with her/us. That her Daddy “worked all of the time” or slept, or was “walking his dog”. He literally wouldn’t eat with us, go on family outings - zoo, park etc. he didn’t know who her doctor or dentists were etc. His temper and behavior were also becoming erratic. anyway that’s why I felt I needed to leave - I didn’t have anywhere to go but my mothers house across the country - back to my tiny childhood room which I shared with my daughter and the first two cats I brought with me - my mother has 3 Dogs and two other cats and told me I couldn’t bring all of my other cats. So I got a job right away and saved until I could get my own place and then until I could afford plane tickets to fly back and forth bringing my cats with me. I too afraid to ship them in cargo - they are all
Former strays or trap/neuter/release cats and very skittish - so I was worried even with sedation they would hyperventilate or have a heart attack in cargo and die before getting here. - Anyway. All poor Roary knows is that I abandoned him. I hate that. The truth is, he was my favorite but I didn’t bring him first because he had his two littermates and I didn’t want to separate them. And initially I could only bring 2.
AR
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BlairS
Nobody here thinks you are a monster RedGirlRaven.  I've only been here a few months, but I have yet to see any monsters at all.  Only people who truly loved their pets, and are truly heartbroken after losing them for all sorts of reasons.  Monsters don't feel heartbroken.  Monsters don't feel guilt.  The only message that I can really take away from all the threads I have read here is that life is often cruelly unfair.  I know that is not any consolation to anyone - including myself -  but that does not make it any less true.

Go easy on yourself.  We do the best we can with the cards we are dealt.  The rest is out of our hands.

Blair
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Memories_of_Marmalade


I think my Father always resented getting married to my Mother. He loved her but he had other plans for his life. Their first child was a surprise. My Father got my Mother pregnant by mistake and "did the right thing" and married her. But it wasn't the right thing. He wasn't the marrying kind. He was a loner and an isolationist. He never talked to us children (the 4 of us), he talked at us. And in the end his abuse of my Mother resulted in her immune system being worn down to nothing and her dying at the age of 53.

RedGirlRaven - I am glad you took the steps to get away. You had to make that choice. And as I said, you returned for your cat. Which is actually quite admirable. 

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Jcunnane
redgirlraven wrote:
Jcunnane,
Thank you for your reply. What you said about the difficulties you were having with your husband rang so true for me with how my marriage was. My husband also struggled with being a father (she is 7 now and he still hasn’t accepted her in the way She and I wish he would). We were older first time parents (I was 37 when I was pregnant) and despite trying for 2 years to have a baby when I finally did become pregnant he just - as you say spiraled - he became a different man. Additionally I had a challenging pregnancy and was put on bed rest. That hurt us financially and I became completely dependent on him (had no family around) and it just destroyed us before she was even born. I swear he resents her to this day. - now of course, I am only speaking of my marriage- I had to get her out of the toxic home she was in. She was turning 4 and could sense and verbalize the fact that her Daddy never spent time with her/us. That her Daddy “worked all of the time” or slept, or was “walking his dog”. He literally wouldn’t eat with us, go on family outings - zoo, park etc. he didn’t know who her doctor or dentists were etc. His temper and behavior were also becoming erratic. anyway that’s why I felt I needed to leave - I didn’t have anywhere to go but my mothers house across the country - back to my tiny childhood room which I shared with my daughter and the first two cats I brought with me - my mother has 3 Dogs and two other cats and told me I couldn’t bring all of my other cats. So I got a job right away and saved until I could get my own place and then until I could afford plane tickets to fly back and forth bringing my cats with me. I too afraid to ship them in cargo - they are all
Former strays or trap/neuter/release cats and very skittish - so I was worried even with sedation they would hyperventilate or have a heart attack in cargo and die before getting here. - Anyway. All poor Roary knows is that I abandoned him. I hate that. The truth is, he was my favorite but I didn’t bring him first because he had his two littermates and I didn’t want to separate them. And initially I could only bring 2.


Dear Anne,

You did what you needed to do. Roary was ok! And he had his littermates. And you came back for him. I’m not sure you’re giving yourself enough credit actually way enough credit for what you did. That takes a lot of courage and you pushed through now only for your daughter but for your furbabies. Major kudos to you!

Luckily my husband got his act together although it’s still touch in go. With the loss of Bubby, he hit a bottom but we quickly got him out of it. It’s the way he deals. I don’t agree with it but I try my best to encourage him to deal and handle things in a better manner.

All we can do is take it on step at a time. I think no matter what happened we’ll always feel guilt of some sort. We’re compassionate loving people especially to be here, so of course when one of our furbabies pass away we’ll always look back and want to do a do-over.

You’re a strong mama and don’t you forget that! 💪🏻

Hugs,
Jackie

Bubby's (Milo) Mommy - Always & Forever My Little Man 💜

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