Young Widow Forum

Time Frame => Newly Widowed (1 day to 6 months) => Topic started by: bromans on April 10, 2017, 10:49:39 AM

Title: How do you sleep?
Post by: bromans on April 10, 2017, 10:49:39 AM
Hi, I'm 24 years old and lost my wife of 3 years unexpectedly 6 weeks ago. I don't have any kids, and I grew up with this girl. I've never done anything important without her. I'm sleeping on a couch because I can't bear the thought of being on a bed without her, but I still can't sleep. Bed time was so unique with her. Sometimes we would just laugh and play until 3am, sometimes we would talk about our future, sometimes we would watch youtube, but we would never just go right to sleep. My question is, what are some things that have helped you at night when you were trying to sleep? I feel like I can't rest, like my mind is always going, always reminding me that something's not right. In the middle of the night, I reach for her and panic when she isn't there. I'm so tired. It's unbearable. 
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Mizpah on April 10, 2017, 10:58:30 AM
I'm so sorry.  The beginning is so brutally hard, so hard I actually don't recall the first few months, mercifully.  I do know what I did to cope though in terms of sleep: I tried to get lots of sunshine during the day and be outside as much as possible (the sun during daytime hours, especially 12-4, is something they tell you to do with newborns to get their internal clocks lined up with day/night cycles).  I also tried to get a lot of physical activity - running and working out, or taking long walks - to make my body need sleep, and my body overrode my mind much of the time.  And I never slept in, always forced myself to get up and get the day going, knowing if I didn't, I could pay the price at night and it would be torture.  For me, it worked.  (I also tried to let myself get my thoughts out during the day - whether it be in writing, or with other widows here, or with friends, or in therapy.  My mind of course didn't stop because it was nighttime, but at least I didn't have a traffic jam/clogup from the day?) (I also bought new sheets.)  Thinking of you and wishing you solace.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: MR on April 10, 2017, 10:58:50 AM
Hi Bromans,
So sorry for you loss. Can't welcome you to club but it is reality. I had similar issues and was sleeping on couch for almost 2 months but kept trying to sleep on bed in between. I started gym, spending more time on work related stuff, may be a drink or 2 might help if you drink. Crying helps too. If you are sleeping few hours at night for now it is fine and it will get better with passage of time and body need to relax. Also sometimes sleeping few hours at night and may be a nap in evening helps to relax body. I spoke to my doctor and he prescribed anxiety medicine which I decided not to take.

Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Mrs.johnson on April 10, 2017, 11:13:57 AM
I'm so sorry for your lost...i'm 34 years old and I lost my husband of 8 months unexpectedly as well...he died 3 weeks ago...we didn't have any kids together but he has a 16 year old whom he had full custody of which makes him my step son and we have a yorkie that he got me for Valentine's day 2016...we dated for a year and 5 months before he proposed and a year later we got married...just like you I've never done anything important without him...i always looked to him...he was soooooo smart and took such good care of me!!! He was and still is an awesome husband!!! I moved into my parents home and it didn't feel quite like home until I moved our bed in...being  in our bed gives me a since of closeness to him and he hated when I slept on the couch or in our sons bed when he would be gone working 3rd shift...he would say "I bought you this big beautiful bed and you don't even sleep in it...i would hate to sleep in the bed without him but I know he preferred me to be in this bed that he spent so much money on...what do you think she would say about you sleeping on the couch and not in the bed?? My sadness and pain causes me to be sleepy throughout the day so I can sleep at the drop of a ever think about taking something to help you sleep that's not habit forming like melatonin or Tylenol pm...those might mother-in-law takes melatonin and it helps her...
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Wheelerswife on April 10, 2017, 11:24:25 AM
I also had panic and anxiety in trying to go to bed after unexpectedly losing my husband.  I had to pursue medical advice for the anxiety.  My dog has been a saving grace as well. 

I'm so sorry you had to join this club.


Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: bromans on April 10, 2017, 11:29:24 AM
Hi, Mrs.johnson. Thank you. I'm gald that you are able to feel closer to your husband in bed, and hear his words. Honestly, I'm not sure what she would say, but I know that she would have just the perfect thing to say, if that makes sense. She was the most compassionate person I knew. She always put me and my needs before herself, and she just had such a way with words that made me feel like I could do anything or overcome anything. So, in that way, I think she would encourage me to sleep wherever I wanted, or whatever I could physically do. But without her I no longer have that strength. We had no connection to the bed itself, and sometimes when we had an over-sized couch we would just just both sleep on it. As far as medication, I don't really like it but I have taken benadryl twice when I was having a panic attack and it calmed me a bit.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Mrskro on April 10, 2017, 11:41:04 AM
I stayed on my couch for about 6 months.  My husband passed away suddenly in our on suite bathroom while getting ready for work.   I didn't go back into our room until it was renovated.   

I had nightmares, re-living giving him CPR and passing away, it was like a bad movie replaying over and over again.  My doctor tried melatonine but it made the nightmares techno coloured and worse.  I finally had to get sleeping pills as I couldn't function.   
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Mrs.johnson on April 10, 2017, 01:23:03 PM

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Bedtime was unique for us as well...he would have to have the tv on watching family guy, American dad or meet the clevelands...i would always wait for him to call asleep so that I could turn the television off. He also snored so loud which is something I miss...his snoring helped get me to sleep lol!!! Crazy huh!!!! And instead of him spooning me I always spooned him lol!!!! Before bed we would talk all night just like you guys!!!! I'm a teacher and I would have to be up early in the morning but I would let him talk on and on for hours...he was a personal trainer so his schedule was flexible unlike mine...just like you all we would watch YouTube in bed too lol...right now what helps me is actually being in our bed where I lay on his pillow and on his side of the bed snuggled up with our dog...i also have a couple of shirts that I didn't wash that still have his you still have any of her clothes that still have her scent??
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: bromans on April 10, 2017, 01:52:22 PM

his snoring helped get me to sleep lol!!! Crazy huh!!!! And instead of him spooning me I always spooned him lol!!!!

Ha! That doesn't sound crazy at all. She spooned me as well!!! She loved to joke around about that and tell people. I didn't have much foresight, and just by sheer luck I have one shirt that has her scent. Also, our bed literally hasn't been touched, except for me holding her pillow some, which still has her scent. She always wore the same perfume, and when were dating (long distance part of the time), she used to put it on a sweater that she left at my house. I still have half a bottle of the perfume, and just a few days ago, I took the lid off and smelled it... my knees gave out on me. ha. That smell is like a drug. Its so painful but so sweet to smell it.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Mrs.johnson on April 10, 2017, 05:30:54 PM
I use to get a kick out of telling people I spooned him too lol!!! He was not only a personal trainer but a body builder as well so he was my big baby!!! I got lucky when I came across his dirty clothes!!! I'm an avid washer lol...i washed clothes happy I skipped laundry the day before he passed!!! I know this might sound gross but my hunny drooled in his sleep lol!!! And there are still drool spots on his side of the bed on the sheets and pillow...instead of washing them when it's time to wash the bedding I'm just going to buy a new set lol!!! My husband has a variety of colognes...i still have them out on the dresser along with mine...the other day I was going through his shoes and I came across the shoes we got married in and he had them on when I threw him a surprise birthday party...who would have known that something as insignificant as a shoe could be so significant later in life...
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Kater on April 10, 2017, 11:43:56 PM
Your comment about smelling her perfume making your knees give out reminded me that I had the exact same experience.  My husband was rather well known for his great smelling cologne.  I often squirted a bit on my hand so I could smell it throughout the day. 

I used to write him a letter every day before bed.  Sometimes it was at 1 or 2 in the morning.  I'd get really tired writing then could easily fall asleep.  It felt like I got to tell him about my day, and was a little bit like that end of the day conversation.

I am sorry for your loss.  It all just sucks.

Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Julester3 on April 11, 2017, 08:59:20 PM
I slept on his side of the bed for the first few months so my arm wouldn't reach out looking for him and jerk me awake to a panic attack. I would really tire myself out but I'd work up earlier to it so I'd get a decent amount of time of sleep. So if I wanted to sleep at 10, I'd be in bed by 9 and I would read, watch mindless TV, or crochet to get me wound down and into a relaxed state. I'd switch activities around if I'm resisting 30 minutes in. Now it's a way of life so I can get my 7 hours of sleep because I had to change my bed routine without my husband. When I have trouble sleeping or just feeling troubled, I have an electronic journal that I write in to "talk" to my husband. It always seems to help alleviate me when I am struggling.

Sleep with a person for 22 years and it's hard to re-teach yourself a new method of falling asleep. I had to develop this method years ago. My husband was a computer consultant and traveled so I had to learn to sleep without him. I would get him back on weekends but I'd be a single parent all week without him. He had that gig for 4 years. So I think it's another reason why I am succeeding this survival thing to a point like basic functioning and trying to get some sleep.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Mac_Encheeze on June 09, 2017, 01:14:09 PM
Bromans, I sleep on the floor because the idea of sleeping in a bed is self indulgent. I lost my wife last week. May 31st.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Sweetpea83 on June 09, 2017, 05:12:40 PM
My hubby used to fall asleep on the couch and then crawl into bed next to me in the middle of the night.  I still sleep on my side of the bed, I still put a pillow on his side, and I fall asleep with the radio on so that I have noise in the house.  It is too quiet without someone else around.  The house is so big and empty alone.  The first few weeks after he passed I wore one of his t-shirts each day and slept in his spot on the couch with the tv on.  I still wait for him to snuggle up at night.

This site is so clever.  It's comforting to know that there are so many people in the same boat.  I have found so many helpful stories on here.  Hang in there everybody!  :)
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: bromans on June 09, 2017, 07:15:45 PM
Mac, I lost my wife on Feb. 24 and I still sleep on the couch. The idea of laying in a bed trying to sleep without her is terrifying to me. So, I do what works. For me that means the couch, but you do whatever works for you.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Mac_Encheeze on June 10, 2017, 03:06:25 AM
For me, sleeping on the floor is also comforting. Back when I was growing up, I would sleep on the floor of my sisters bedroom because they were too old to let their annoying little brother sleep in the bed with them. So they would make me sleep on the floor. So, it's comforting.

But I also found my wife in the bed, so I can't. I just can't. Once both of our dogs hop on the bed and refuse to get off, then I'll sleep in one. Until then, it's on the floor I go.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Adley on June 10, 2017, 10:17:51 AM
Still on the floor, maybe a fifth of the time on the couch. But I have no problem sleeping on a hotel bed.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Bereft on June 11, 2017, 10:01:11 PM
I find sleeping in our bed, in our room, is too much.  I just sleep in his recliner downstairs. 

I am at 12 weeks today and this is like a perpetual bad dream.
Title: Re: How do you sleep?
Post by: Christopher on August 19, 2017, 03:31:44 PM
I sleep on the couch. I can't do beds. Too empty. She's not there and her head isn't on my shoulder. I can't hold a conversation with her until we pass out. I can't randomly molest her in the middle of the night (or vice versa). I can't do beds anymore, not even small ones.

It just has to not be a bed.

I don't sleep well.

It's been 7 years. Things are not changing. I want them to but the world is being stubborn.