Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,111
Registered: ‎05-11-2013

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

DH had an uncle that lived to 101 and his wife lived to just shy of 105.  His aunt told his brother, "sometimes you can live too long."


They lived in an assisted living complex.  His uncle was active, his mind was sharp and he didn't look 101.  He missed a step walking outside and hit his head when he fell and died as a result. He was mowing lawns in his 90s prior to the assisted living place.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,131
Registered: ‎08-05-2011

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

My former MIL passed about 2 years ago at 94. Her mind was sharp and she had lots of friends in her independent living facility.

I'd call her a social butterfly.

I was married to her son, an only child, for only 2 1/2 yrs when he died. Our baby died shortly after bitrth 4 months befor him.

Her husband had Alzheimer’s and had passed 12 years before.

They had grown up together and rarely far apart from each other.

She would tell me she didn’t know why she was still here and was ready to go.

Her nephew and his wife who lived close by and did so much for her would try to talk her out of talking that way. 

When she and I would talk and she’d say those things to me I would just say I understood and she seemed to appreciate that.

She got pancreatic cancer and went pretty quickly and didn’t appear to suffer too much.

At the end we would talk about her son a lot and I told her I was happy that she would finally see and be with them all again. That’s all she wanted for so long.

Sometimes I think trying to reason them out of feeling that way is a bit disrespectful. I think she just wanted her feelings validated.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,440
Registered: ‎07-25-2010

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

@Hedge  I just wanted to say that your post touched me very much.  ❤️


Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,956
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

If we are lucky enough to still have our parents with us when they’re in their 80’s/90’s, it seems we do become the parents and they need us more and more. 


@kalli I’m in the same situation as you, but it’s my mom who is the survivor.  My dad passed away in February, and she’s quite lost without him. 

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,798
Registered: ‎04-27-2015

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

@homedecor1 wrote:




Sad isn't it.  I have a very dear older friend and she says the same (she's 87).


Not only is she widowed for 21 years most of her friends are gone or dying.  She is the only one left in her family (SIL, BIL, cousins, etc)


Her children have their lives in other states.  They come home to visit a few days once a year☹️ & never during holidays.  She is able to live alone, she only drives short distances (which she shouldn't 🙄) but she says if she didn't drive her life would be lonelier.   In fact, I go home a lot and make sure I spend a few days with her.  We both enjoy the company.


I guess when one gets older it's harder.  You are a good daughter to be there for him🙂.



@homedecor1 I do not want to be the last one left. So  sad when your peer group is gone. 

Valued Contributor
Posts: 622
Registered: ‎03-13-2010

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”


I hope you don't mind my commenting on this subject.


I've often made "jokes" about my 97 year old dad who felt he could still drive and would not give up his car keys.


At 8p on May 4, dad died.  He had fallen at home that Tuesday - I had left him in his chair with his drinks while I ran to do some food shopping.  My sister stopped by after work and dad was on the floor.  We learned he had pneumonia.  10 days prior, his doctor told him he could live to be 100.  My younger nephew lived with him and I lived upstairs in one of our 2 family homes.  Dad used to say he wanted to live "forever".  Yes, that's nice when you are 40, at 97 with health issues - not really.


Dad was tired too.  Mom died 10 years earlier.  Only 2 of our aunts survive, both on mom's side.  One is 94 w/dementia.  Aunt M is 92 and fairly good.  Everyone else gone.


In the time between April 13 and May 4, 3 members of our family died.  Our cousin, 76, in his sleep.  I almost didn't want to tell dad, I knew how much it would hurt him.  Two days later, his last surviving sibling, Dad's sister, died in Italy.  And then dad.


In the past few months, dad would say he was ready to go, he was tired.  About 2 weeks before he died, Dad told me he was afraid to die.  I said "what are you afraid of?  You will be healthy again and with everyone sitting around the table playing poker and drinking expresso."


The night before we brought dad to the ER, mom came to his room to say "good bye".  I slept with a baby monitor hooked up to his room and he asked if I heard her.  I said uh, no ... She also had been ringing the doorbell alot lately and he wouldn't open the door.  (A whole other subject.)


When dad was in the hospital, before hospice came in, he asked me several times who was "the little Italian boy".  He would point to where this boy was standing.  I think it was his little brother who died quite young.  I knew dad wouldn't be here much longer.


I really understand what your dad is dealing with.  And I know just what you are going thru as his caregiver.  


Your dad and you are in my prayers.



Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,956
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

@roe1005   I don’t mind you commenting.  My dad also talked about being tired.  He had worked so hard, all through  his life.  I think his mind wanted to go on...for my mom and his children, but he had no physical energy left.  


It’s still a bit raw for me now...just want to be there for my mom.    She needs all the support we can give her.  

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,020
Registered: ‎03-14-2010

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

What a blessing to have both of your parents still with you! They are both here because God is not finished with them yet; am sure their eyes light up when they see each other....such a sweet scenario. I experienced something similar a few years ago when my DM was in a nursing home.....I was the only one to care for her...I will pray for you and your dear parents.
Valued Contributor
Posts: 808
Registered: ‎03-12-2010

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

I remember my mother saying, "I wish I could just slip away."  It was heartbreaking at the time.  She just didn't feel "right" and died a few days later of an aneurysm.  My suggestion is to just be a good listener, don't dismiss it, but just let him know he is loved.  There really don't need to be answers to those kinds of questions.  

Respected Contributor
Posts: 3,140
Registered: ‎05-22-2014

Re: “I just don’t understand why I’m still here.”

@roe1005, My sincere sympathy for the loss of your father.  No matter how old he was, he was your Dad, and you will miss him.

My best wishes to you,