Weight Loss Support - I Lost My Oldest Son (28) to Obesity.

02-04-2014, 01:14 PM
I didn't know where to post this but it seemed like getting and giving support seemed the most appropriate. If not, feel free to move this.

I lost my Gary on the 18th of January, approximately two weeks ago. It is still so raw and new to me. Every morning I wake up and realize that he is not here anymore and I have to go the rest of my life without him in it. Because of his health problems I had to go to his house everyday for the past couple of years to help take care of him. Now I don't know what to do with myself.

I wrote somewhere on here before about Gary. He was super morbidly obese. He weighed about 800 pounds when he died. He had many fears and phobias that kept him from going to the doctor for medical care until near the end when it was too late. I always tried to get him to have the WLS but he was always afraid he would die on the table. I would tell him he was more likely to die if he didn't have the surgery but his phobia of anything doctor or medical procedures was too great.

The week before he died he started getting worse and I moved in with him to help him day and night. His nurse practioneer (who was nothing short of an angel) would come out to see him since he wouldn't and couldn't get in to see her. He fell out of bed a lot because he only had three used mattresses piled up on top of one another and the top mattress alway slid off the pile throwing him to the floor. His last night at home when he fell, it took him two hours to get himself back in the bed. His NP came and talked him into going to the hospital because she told him he may have broken something. She told me that she was hoping they would see what shape he was in and keep him, and they did.

It was a nightmare what he went through at the hospital, especially the morning he died five days later. He had lethal sleep apnea the doctor told me and there was nothing they could do for him. They gave him morphine his first night there and he started hallucinating through the night from the lack of oxygen to his brain. The next night they gave him more morphine and he hallucinated more and it was worse. A nightmare to me. The next morphine he had crashed twice due to respiratory problems and they moved him to the step down unit next to ICU. I didn't know anything about the lethal sleep apnea at that time. Didn't even see a doctor except for the night he was admitted and when he crashed. I had to demand to see him then. The nurses were just trying to handle it. On the third night we asked for no morphine because we were thinking that must be having something to do with his hallucinating. But no it was worse. On the fourth morning a lung specialist came in and calmly told me Gary was dying from lethal sleep apnea and there was nothing they could do to help him. That all the hallucinating was oxygen not getting to his brain while he was sleeping due to the sleep apnea. The next and last night of his life was the worst thing I, as a mother, had ever had to witness. He struggled and fought all night long. He would call out for me and I would answer him that I was there. There was always about 6 - 10 nurses, etc., around him. A doctor finally came in about 3 in the morning. She wanted me to "go home and get some rest" she said because I was upsetting him. Huh? But I thought surely she wouldn't be sending me home if they thought he might die and I hadn't had any sleep since the night before he went into the hospital so I did. I told him I would be back later that morning. But he died at about 5 am and I was not with him to tell him bye and how much I loved him. :'(

Gary was an angel, and is now my angel in Heaven. He had so many fears and phobias that kept him from getting the help he so desperately needed. If he had had the surgery back when he weighed about 500 pounds he would be alive today. Everybody says that at least he isn't suffering anymore and they are right but despite all his problems I know he wanted to live. He told me so often. He wanted someone to love and to love him. He never even had a girlfriend.

I could talk of some more horrors from when he died but they are horrors I hope to get out of my mind in time. I feel such guilt that I should have done more but I think I did all I could. I was constantly trying to get him help but his fears held him back. He is now in Jesus's arms I pray and can't wait to see him as soon as I can. Thank you for listening to my grief and congrats to all of you for doing everything you can to lose the weight and win the battle against obesity. I still need to lose about 150 pounds myself but am eating non-stop to try to feed my feelings of guilt and grief. But I will get on a diet soon because I know Gary would want me to.

Mrs Snark
02-04-2014, 01:24 PM
Words fail me. I'm so, so sorry for your loss. So sorry. What you have gone through is so horrific. You have my deepest condolences.

02-04-2014, 01:29 PM
Your story is so touching, Mary. I am sorry for what you had to go through and still have to endure as a result of this situation. I'm sure Gary knew from all you did to help him how much love you had for him.
I'm looking at your ticker right now and thinking that you must be such a courageous woman to be losing this much weight despite your problems. Please don't give up. Keep yourself fit, do it for yourself and Gary...
Deeply sorry once again. Time will heal your wounds.
All the best to you and your family.:hug::hug::hug:

02-04-2014, 01:31 PM
Thank you so much for your courageous post. I can't imagine what it must have been like to see your child go through that. This post reminds me how even though sometimes I feel like the most unlucky person in the world and it's a constant fight with myself to lose weight and be a good person I am privileged just to be able to get out there and do something about it. *Hugs and love*

Larry H
02-04-2014, 01:36 PM
I am also at a total loss for words. All I have to offer is my prayers for you and for Gary's eternal soul. I have a grandson 26 years old who is approaching 500 lbs. Maybe, just maybe having him read your post might finally wake him up.
I cannot imagine the sorrow you are feeling, but know that you are among friends here who really care. Friends you have never met and sincerely send you our deepest condolences.

02-04-2014, 01:42 PM
Larry, please do encourage your grandson to do something now. It was when he reached 500 pounds that I really started seeing his health slowly declining. But Gary was always too scared to do anything about it.

thirti4thirty - I just looked at my ticker and I don't know what I did to make it say I lost that much weight but unfortunately I haven't. I have lost 20 pounds since my son died but am slowly gaining it back since I started eating again.

Thank you all for your prayers and kind words.

02-04-2014, 01:46 PM
My heart breaks for you as well. The one thing I can offer is this... My dad was in hospice for one day before he died. We were with him that entire day. Everyone left at 9PM and said they would come back the next day. We got a phone call an hour later that he died. I have peace in my heart knowing that he knew I was there for him in the end and your story sounds similar. Maybe he left when you did to spare you. Please do not feel guilt over those hours you were not there. Feel peace in your heart for the time that you were. xo Joy

02-04-2014, 02:14 PM
No words, but I wish I could give you the biggest and most loving hug possible.


02-04-2014, 02:24 PM
im so very, very sorry for your loss :( i can't imagine losing one of my sons like that...please know you did everything you could and have nothing to feel guilty over...(((hugs)))

02-04-2014, 02:46 PM
I'm so sorry about the loss of your son. That is truly heart breaking.

02-04-2014, 03:02 PM
:(I am so sorry for your loss. Please rest as easy as you can, knowing that he is free now, and his body is no longer holding him back. I will send you and your son light and love today, and I personally believe that those who have gone on can still feel our love and prayers.

02-04-2014, 03:13 PM
I'm so sorry. *hugs*

02-04-2014, 04:22 PM
I am so sorry.

02-04-2014, 04:47 PM
I'm so terribly sorry for your loss. There are no words to comfort a mother who has lost a child. I'm just so sorry.

02-04-2014, 04:58 PM
So sorry for your loss. I hope you have the support you need to help you through this dark time.

Thank you for posting.

02-04-2014, 05:08 PM
I am sorry to hear you've lost your son. He was well loved by a mother who gave him her all.

02-04-2014, 05:25 PM
JustMary, reading your post brought tears to my eyes :hug: I'm so sorry for your loss.

Reading from your post, I think you did everything you could for your son. It's always hard looking back because there are things you wish you did, or changed, please don't feel guilty though. I think focusing on your health is something your son would have also want you to do too. I hope you have support to make it through this difficult time, also know you have a community here with people who will support you. :hug:

02-04-2014, 05:57 PM
A tragic story Mary, my condolences. I'm quite sure your post opened a lot of eyes. I wish you luck on your own weight loss journey. Take care.

02-04-2014, 05:57 PM
I'm so sorry for your loss. My condolences and prayers to you and your family.

02-04-2014, 06:32 PM
I am so sorry for your loss. To attempt to console you, I want you to know that I have had several relatives that died in the hospital as soon as family members left. One nurse told us that many patients hang on to life when there are loved ones in the room, but allow themselves to pass on as soon as they are alone. My best friend and her siblings took turns staying at their elderly mother's bedside after she had a stroke. When she left the hospital for ten minutes to meet her cousins in the lobby and bring them to her mother's room, her mother passed. And, the doctor told her that they frequently see that.

Thoughts and prayers to you.

Arctic Mama
02-04-2014, 06:48 PM
I'm so sorry for your loss. Please accept my sincere condolences, and thank you for sharing this with us. Maybe your story and his can save someone else's life :(

02-04-2014, 07:48 PM
Oh Mary I am so very sorry. Your son knew you loved him. I lost my son in August. Feel free to send me a personal message if you ever need someone to listen. We are all hugging you. I hope you can feel it.

02-04-2014, 08:53 PM
Mary and Scarlet, I am so very sorry for the loss of both your sons.

02-04-2014, 09:01 PM
Words cannot adequately express how truly sorry I am for the loss of your son. Your post brought me to tears and I think you are incredibly brave and strong for sharing this with us. Thank you. You are in my prayers.

02-04-2014, 09:16 PM
My deepest condolences on the loss of your beloved son. His soul is free now from the pain of this physical world. Your love propels his soul ever upward. May G-d grant you comfort. Stay strong. We are here.

02-04-2014, 10:59 PM
Mary, how awful :( What a heartbreaking story. Poor Gary! I hope you can heal from this (as much as a parent can heal from the death of their child) and will be thinking of you.

02-04-2014, 11:32 PM
So sorry to hear this, thinking of you.

We almost lost our son at Christmas, its only something you can only imagine til it happens.

02-04-2014, 11:44 PM
I can't even fathom losing a child. I went through something similar and I never dealt with it properly. Please go to grief counseling. :hug: Be patient and kind to yourself. I'm so sorry.

02-04-2014, 11:51 PM
So sorry for your loss.

buddha belly
02-05-2014, 12:33 AM
I am so sorry for your loss. I understand how you get used to being a caretaker, and then when your job is over, what do you do? Please take care of yourself.

02-05-2014, 12:39 AM
I am so, so sorry for your loss. Your son knows just how much you love him. You showed him just how much every day that you took care of him. Please take care of yourself.

02-05-2014, 12:42 AM
Its a very sad and painful story. But now you have to look to you. Of course January has only just past and grief takes a bit of time. If you find yourself having trouble letting go and moving on, then you should see a grief counsellor. I saw one once and i hadn't even lost someone to death but just a heartbreak. I was impressed how they worked to help me heal. Even just one session was useful for me.

If it is longer than two months, then you should get professional help. Of course you will be always sad when you think about your son but if you find you can't focus on anything else, never feel positive or look to the future and still find yourself eating to console yourself, then you need help.

I hope you can recover fairly soon and start trying to focus on your own health needs.

It may not be too early to see a dietician or nutritionist for help.

02-05-2014, 07:48 AM
I am so sorry for your loss.

You are a very determined woman to have already lost 20 lbs on your weight loss journey. I applaud your strength. I don't know how long it would be after such a tragedy before I could do what I needed to do for me. You are an inspiration, and hopefully sharing your son's story may help others avoid the same.


02-05-2014, 08:01 AM
I am very truly for your loss. and the story..No mother should ever have to go through that.
But those people are right.. He now is in a better place. with No weight issues and moving freely..
and just remember now he watches over you. He can give you the strength to stay healthy.. and get healthier..
May God Bless you... in this dark time..We are all here if you need a friend!


02-05-2014, 10:08 AM
I am so sorry for your loss. You honor his life by sharing his story with us. Life can be so cruel, I can't imagine what he went through and how lucky he was to have you by his side.

02-05-2014, 11:42 AM
I cannot imagine how difficult all this is for you and your family. I admire your courage to come here and tell us your story. Please keep us updated on how you are doing. Thank you for sharing.

02-05-2014, 12:34 PM
I am so very sorry for the loss of your beloved son Mary :( You did your best! it must have been hard to write and relive all that for us but it might help someone. I hope you will keep in touch and we are thinking and praying for some peace for you :hug:

Scarlet, so very sorry to hear of your loss also :(

02-05-2014, 01:47 PM
I am so so sorry for your loss.

02-05-2014, 02:15 PM
I am so sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to you and your family. May his memory always be for a blessing.

02-05-2014, 02:25 PM
I am so sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you.

02-05-2014, 04:29 PM
Thank you all for your prayers and kind words.

I couldn't wait for 2013 to be over. I called it my worst year ever and was counting down the days till 2014 for a brand new start. My father died in January 2013, my brother just two years older than me died at the end of 2012 and then my son started getting worse in 2013, and we were both in a bad financial way. So I eagerly awaited a brand new start in 2014 only to lose my son in the first month.

I miss him soooo much!!! And I feel so alone and so scared. It doesn't feel like it will ever be better but people say it will get better in time. I don't see it. There is absolutely no joy in my life anymore. I just want to be with Gary...when the Lord is ready.

02-05-2014, 05:38 PM
It does get easier over time but losing a hold is not something that ever goes away entirely so don't try to focus on that. Take all the time you need to grieve, and be strong for those who are left. I meant to ask before, how is everyone else in your family dealin with all this? I hope you can all e a source of strength and healing for eachother.

02-05-2014, 05:56 PM
My younger son (26) grieved at first, but he is married and he and his brother were never as close as I always wished they were. He and his wife have moved on. And he is a very good son and I love him with all my heart but he is not Gary. Gary and I were super close and together everyday of the week, every week of the year.

My ex, too, grieved but has moved on too. He also has a new girlfriend that helps him through it.

My elderly mom grieves but is happy he is not suffering anymore.

My next youngest sister grieves for Gary but is more worried about me and has been staying most every night with me since he died. I keep trying to make it on my own and sending her home every now and then but I always break back down and have to call her back. I can't stand being alone.

My youngest sister lives in another state and feels bad for me and grieves for Gary. She has a demanding job, a family of her own and health problems of her own right now so I don't hear from her that often. But I know I am in her prayers.

Thank you for asking after my family and how they are doing.

02-05-2014, 06:33 PM
My heart broke to read your post, I'm so sorry for your loss. My parents were never the same after my sister passed away tragically, no human being should ever have to experience that heartbreak. :hug:

02-05-2014, 06:49 PM
Words seem so inadequate when something like this happens. :( I'm so sorry for your loss, justmary. I can't imagine what you must be going through. I hope you are able to find comfort in your faith and strength from the support of your loved ones as you grieve. :hug: Please take care of yourself and let us know how you're doing.

02-05-2014, 06:56 PM
I'm so sorry for your loss, not one I could ever imagine.

02-05-2014, 10:17 PM
Reading your son's story is heartbreaking, I am so sorry for your loss. I just want to agree with what several others have posted; it is very common that someone passes away when loved ones leave. It is almost as though they are hanging on for us and can let go when we leave. It was good to read that you do have other family members and are not totally alone.

02-05-2014, 11:59 PM
My heart goes out to you.


02-06-2014, 12:04 AM
If it is longer than two months, then you should get professional help. I hope you can recover fairly soon and start trying to focus on your own health needs.

I am sorry but I profoundly disagree. There is no timetable for recovering from the loss of a child. Two months seems egregiously short. On the other hand, I agree that seeking help can ease the burden and would encourage the OP to do that.


02-06-2014, 01:07 AM
I am sorry but I profoundly disagree. There is no timetable for recovering from the loss of a child. Two months seems egregiously short. On the other hand, I agree that seeking help can ease the burden and would encourage the OP to do that.


I am seeing someone right now. Doesn't really feel like it's helping but nothing feels like it's helping right now. I'm also looking into a grief support/recovery group.

Thank you all.

02-09-2014, 09:30 AM
Losing a child is a very hard challenge, no matter what the circumstances. You are very brave to come to a public forum and express your grief.

May your son rest in peace.

02-09-2014, 11:33 AM
So sorry for your loss. I think it's wonderful that you received such an abundant response to your post. It shows that this forum is a very compassionate and caring place to come when you need support of any kind. I believe that a grief support group would be very helpful. You will connect with others who have gone through the same thing. May Gary rest in peace, knowing that you loved him.

02-09-2014, 11:10 PM
Thank you both! It is still so very hard. Just getting by minute to minute. I know I will have made some progress when I am able to let my sister get back home. I've tried sending her back home two or three times but I always have to call her back. I just can't stand being alone right now. And she lets me talk and talk and talk again about Gary, his death, and everything. And doesn't complain but I know it is hard on her because I've seen her cry. She's been a Godsend to me.

02-10-2014, 01:11 AM
I am very sorry for your loss. And very compassionate to what you are going through.

Parents are not supposed to bury their children. My grandparents buried 2. My father and my uncle. My dad a bad accident, my uncle heart defib. It's no fun.

But, and I don't want you to think that I don't feel your pain, because I do. however, I do think I see a bit of an unhealthy co-dependent relation ship here.

It does not make it bad or wrong, lots of us have been in those places, myself included.

I would find some good grief counseling, and along with that explore the co-dependency issues in your relationships.

These things take time. :hug:

In the meantime, be kind to yourself, but also give yourself permission to continue to live! :hug:

In the act of sharing your story here, you are on the road to recovery! :carrot:

It takes a lot of courage to put your story out there for the whole world to see.

I sincerely hope you can find peace and happiness, and that your story will help others, who are or were in your situation.:hug:

02-12-2014, 06:50 PM
:hug: I am thinking of you.

02-13-2014, 10:02 AM
You've been in my thoughts, justmary. Hope you're doing alright this week. :hug:

02-26-2014, 07:17 PM
I am so, so sorry for your loss.

Never put a time table on grief. Each person experiences it differently, and there is no "right" response to such a significant loss. Getting help is always good.

I hope that you will find the strength to pay tribute to this young man by doing the one thing he couldn't: getting healthy. Do it in his honor.

Be patient with yourself.

I also want to thank you for being brave enough to post this.

You will likely never know how many people may be saved by hearing his story.

You will be in my prayers.

02-26-2014, 07:29 PM
Thank you for posting. My heart hurts for you. No parent should have to bury their children, for whatever reason. Please know that I will pray for you and Gary's soul. You are here among friends. May God grant you the peace that only He can give.

02-27-2014, 01:26 AM
Thank you. I've been thinking about looking into gastric bypass surgery to see if I qualify.

It's been hard dealing with the grief of losing my Gary. I live alone and can not stand the quiet of my place one bit. Feel like I'm going to lose my mind. But I am getting counseling once a week. I had a "friend" tell me the other day, when I was trying to talk about Gary, that I should just "get over it" "it happened" "time for you to move on"!!! That hurt really bad. "It" was the death of my son. How insensitive can some people be. I will never get over that loss.

02-27-2014, 09:57 PM
I'm so sorry, Mary. That is definitely not a "friend", I understand s/he may have been trying to help but that is NOT the way to go about it! I'm glad you have counseling. I'd stay far away from that "friend." :hug:

02-28-2014, 10:46 PM
I had a "friend" tell me the other day, when I was trying to talk about Gary, that I should just "get over it" "it happened" "time for you to move on"!!! That hurt really bad. "It" was the death of my son. How insensitive can some people be. I will never get over that loss.

How painful to hear from a friend. :( I think, in general, our society is very uncomfortable with death and grief. People often don't know what to say or how to react. It's hard for them to watch someone they care about in so much pain and they're at a loss for how to deal with it themselves. If this is a good friend who is normally a kind and sensitive person, maybe they were just trying to express their desire to see you eventually move forward with your life and it came out wrong. I hope it was just a miscommunication that you two can sort out.

It's been hard dealing with the grief of losing my Gary. I live alone and can not stand the quiet of my place one bit. Feel like I'm going to lose my mind.

I'm sorry, that sounds really tough. I hope you have opportunities during the week to get out of the house and give yourself a break from that environment. :hug: