Author Topic: Auto-Pilot for Life?  (Read 1164 times)


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Auto-Pilot for Life?
« on: June 06, 2016, 08:47:33 PM »
 feel like I'm going to be on Auto-Pilot the rest of my life. My love ALWAYS asked me, "Are you happy?" and always made sure if I wasn't (and if I was unhappy, it wasn't ever because of him), that he could fix it. He only wanted me to be happy. I find it so hard to want to move away from Auto-Pilot and eventually be happy, I don't want to be happy without him. Does the Auto-Pilot stage ever end? Is it bad that I kind of feel like Auto-Pilot is where I should spend the rest of my days? I just want him back, to make me happy again 


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Re: Auto-Pilot for Life?
« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2016, 09:10:51 PM »
So many thoughts go through our heads in the early weeks and months after the death of our spouses.  It really isn't possible that we can survive, is it?  Well, yes, it is possible, but our minds can't wrap their heads around it, so to speak.  And our hearts...they don't want to even imagine that we can live without the one who was the light of our lives.  But we are all proof that we survive this, and it is truly possible to even thrive eventually.  I did that once...lost my first husband, went through a period of grief, met a wonderful man and remarried.  I was incredibly happy.  And then he died, too.  Even though I had survived being widowed once, it was and sometimes still is difficult for me to grasp that I will survive again. 

I want my husband back, too.  You aren't the only one.


Life is short.  Love with all you've got. 

Barry 11/29/55-9/22/09       John  1/16/57-1/11/14

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Re: Auto-Pilot for Life?
« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2016, 09:56:21 PM »

The auto-pilot stage is a defense mechanism which allows us to carry on doing those things that we have to do: paying bills, eating, working, caring for those who are dependent upon us... As much as we would like for it to do so, the world-at-large hasn't stopped turning even though it often feels like our world has ended.

This stage will end, and you won't always feel so numb, or that everything is trivial except life and death. Keep this in mind, hold on, and ride it out.

Marsha 1975-2014

"Love is the province of the brave"


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Re: Auto-Pilot for Life?
« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2016, 10:35:10 PM »
I have not made it to auto pilot yet. I am still having issues getting out of bed and the thought of paying the bills seems like such a difficult task that I can't make it upstairs to do so. I might sound crazy but I'm looking forward to outopilot... Maybe at least I'll kind of function. I hope that things get better for you, I don't know what else to say. I know all the things that I want to say I've heard over the last week and they do no help. All I know is that I've been told multiple times that things will get easier. I truly wish you the best.


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Re: Auto-Pilot for Life?
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2016, 06:57:03 AM »
Auto pilot is a necessary phase to move from crippling grief to functioning in the world.  We are all very different in our timeline of when we move from just surviving to thriving but it is possible.  For me, at more than 2 1/2 years, I bounce between auto pilot and happiness or contentment with less frequent waves of intense grief.  I see this as hopeful and not something I could have even imagined in the first 6 months.

For now, if you are functioning and getting through 75% of the necessary parts of your day (showering, eating, paying bills, work) then you are ok.  The first time you feel genuine happiness in a moment it may stop you in your tracks because it will feel foreign and maybe a little wrong.  But soon you will have more moments and eventually those moments will turn into hours and the hours can turn into days.  Be patient until it starts to change and do not feel guilty when it does.
You will forever be my always.


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Re: Auto-Pilot for Life?
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2016, 08:14:09 AM »
Ahhhh, auto-pilot.  A day will come when you will not want to be on auto-pilot anymore.  It is good news that you realize you are on auto-pilot.  VERY good news!  I stayed there until I realized it was untenable and I was unhappy and something needed to change, but at the time, I needed to live like that to keep my daughter and myself afloat, to pay the bills and keep going to work.  You hit the nail there, it is definitely one of the stages no one ever mentions.  Sending you lots of support - you are going to get through this! 


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Re: Auto-Pilot for Life?
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2016, 09:33:57 AM »
Thank you all so much. I'm not sure if I'm on Auto-Pilot yet, if not, I might be on the verge. All of this is just so unimaginable. I think I'm fluttering between shock, realization and dabbling in Auto-Pilot. I just wish this wasn't my life. Thank you all for the support. I'm glad I have you all.