Heidi
Yesterday, November 23, 2010 at 5:10 pm, our Miniature Schnauzer, Abbie, went to wait for us at the Rainbow Bridge.  She was just over 12 1/2 years old and had suffered the last 3 months from severe arthritis in her hind quarters which had crippled her right back leg.  Her vet, who had been her doctor all her life, told my husband and me that we were doing the right thing because Abbie was in pain, even when she was on pain medication.  
 
The vet really helped us (or at least me) through the process and I felt at peace with our decision.  My husband and I were there with Abbie at the end and watched her peacefully go to sleep.  The vet allowed my husband to wrap Abbie into her bed afterwards, because he couldn't bear the thought of her being placed in a bag.  Our vet promised us that she would stay in that bed until she was cremated.  I was so glad that my husband was permitted this one small request and had hoped it would give him peace.
 
I am sad and have my moments of crying jags, but on a whole I am doing as well as can be expected.  My husband, on the other hand, is not doing well.  He has been disabled for the past 6 1/2 years and Abbie was a constant companion for him during the day when I was at work.  He is hurting terribly and nothing I do or say is the right thing.  He lashes out at me and I really believe he blames me, even though we made the decision together with the veterinarian.  We are both grieving in our own way.  I very much understand his pain, but he doesn't understand why I am not as depressed/sad/etc as he is. 
 
I do miss Abbie and keep expecting to see her waiting for her supper or hear her barking insanely when the front door is opened.  It has only been about 28 hours since she passed, so I know it isn't unusual to have those thoughts.
 
I know this is more of a vent about my husband than about our loss, but I have to get it out somewhere before I say something to him that I'll regret. 
Heidi
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TxGuy

Heidi: I am so sorry to hear about Abbie. Please know you and your husband are in my prayers and thoughts. Feel free to come here and vent whenever you need to. This site has been a lifesaver for me. Frank

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Heidi

Thanks Frank.

Heidi
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judylinn
So sorry about your loss. its hard for everyone. I think that your husband being disabled, and being home alone all day without his beloved pet...he is deeply suffering. To be at home alone, is unbearable, IO know, thats how it was for me, though I could go out and be with people.
Does he have access to a computer?  It may help him, if he could come to this website, and get some support during the day.  Having the distractions of work or whatever, is a different thing, then being by yourself all day with the emptyness. Not to say that your not suffering too.
Everyone grieves differently, but I think it is especially hard, when you have other issues to deal with as well.
again, I am so sorry for your loss.

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donnalee
Heidi,
I am so very sorry for the loss of Abbie and also for the way your husband is lashing out at you.  It sounds like you are very patient and understand that this is how he is expressing his grief and anger at losing her.   Almost always, when we dig down to the bottom of anger, there is hurt, sadness, & pain.  Even though it is not a good way to do it at all, I guess it is the only way he is capable of expressing it at the moment.  Hopefully, he will quickly realize the effect it is having on you since you are grieving also and this makes it even harder on you.   You say his relationship with Abbie was different than the one you had with her since he is at home all day with Abbie while you work.  So, that makes sense that this is going to be very, very hard on him. 
You say you wanted to vent here before you say something to him you regret.  So, I'm just throwing ideas out there because I know it is hard to even think when you are in the midst of grief and sadness.   Maybe you could plan what to say ahead of time---some kind but honest responses that would let him know how sorry you are that he is hurting so bad and that although you may not be expressing outwardly, you are hurting also and how helpful it would be if you could both support each other during this difficult time.   Possibly the two of you together could do some things to memorial your precious Abbie.  Only you know the best way to reach your husband and what he might be ready for.
I'll say some prayers for both of you as well.  Please let us know how the two of you are doing.   
 
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Heidi
Judylinn & Donnalee,

Thank you so much for your kind words and suggestions. 
Judylinn, I would love for my husband to come to this website and forum, but he is very resistant to participating on any type of forums.  I asked him to Google "loss of pet forums" (that's how I found this one) and he turned around and got into bed and didn't say another word.  Maybe in a few days or so, he may do it.  I don't know.  I also tried to tell him about the Rainbow Bridge...but he didn't want to hear it or read the poem.

Donnalee, I will take your advice and think about a way to express to him I understand how he feels and I really appreciate the suggestion of how to word it.  My husband has a cognitive disability which makes processing conversation somewhat difficult for him, especially when he's upset.  And he is in constant pain (like migraines, but not migraines).  Abbie gave him a lot of comfort, and to have to say goodbye to her was very hard on him.

I miss Abbie a lot tonight.  I always fed her breakfast and supper, made sure she took her pain and arthritis meds, and gave her baths between the times she went to the groomer.  I was thinking about that this evening when I was cleaning up the kitchen.  Earlier I was doing better, but now it's hitting me again.  I thank all of you again, for your kind words and suggestions. I'm glad I found this refuge, for that is what it is, a refuge for those in sorrow and pain.

Heidi
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erica212
Heidi,

I am so sorry for your loss. I am one who can relate to your husband pain. I too was at home all the time with our Thunder and I took it really hard. Not that my husband didn't hurt over losing him, but he had a distraction of going back to work. I had the reminders around me all the time in the house, probably the same way as your husband does. The littlest things would hurt me and still do. When you are in the house all the time with your animal, it does bring those feelings of the loss out more. I am still experiencing it even today. Please be paitent with him.
Again, I am so sorry for your loss and hope you can find some peace in coming here as often as you need to. We all understand
Hugs to you,
Erica
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judylinn

Heidi, It may be just too soon for him to come here. he may need time to just weep and feel the pain. With cognative disabilities, it may even be harder for him to express the pain. I am so sorry for both of you. My prayers and love are with you.

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Polly
Heidi, I'm so very sorry for the loss of your beautiful Abbie. To lose a beloved pet is very hard to deal with and rationalise at the beginning when you are in such pain. My heart goes out to you and your husband, I know how hard it is.

I really hope your husband decides to come here, as talking to others who have experienced the same, as you are doing, will help him tremendously in coping with his grief.

Please know that my thoughts are with you both, and that I wish both of you peace.

Polly
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Heidi
Thanks Erica, Judylinn, and Polly.

Today was better for my husband...but this morning was hard for me.  I am thankful, though, that we had 12 1/2 wonderful years with Abbie.

I guess we will both bounce back and forth with our emotions for a while.

Thanks again.  I'm glad I found this place!
Heidi
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