I have a complicated relationship with my grandparents. I love them to the very depths of my heart. COming from a family that never lived near relatives 'family' equalled my parents and sibling... when I had no family near they came to represent 'family' and I continue to see them this way. They could love me in such a silent yet powerful way it still brings tears to my eyes.
When my Grandpa died in December I was crushed. I still am crushed. Added to that I am concerned with my Grandma's mental health. When months after his dealth she suddenly stopped washing her hair and would go back to bed during the day I was worried. it was like she finally gave in to those feelings.
Now she is in an assisted living apartment - which is good for her low mobility - but I still worry. How do I talk to her about it? If a friend seemed to be depressed I like to think I would intervene... but I dont think I can do this for my Grandma. Maybe I am worried about upsetting her because mental illness is very taboo for her generation, maybe im afraid of the potential awkwardness or even anger that could result... but I think I am so hesitant because if I talk to her about it... It becomes real. I cannot deny this health problem. My absolute desperation to keep her safe in my world is threatened by talking about it.
Our relationship is very complicated. I am finding ways to work with what I can do (emotionally) to reach the same goals. Now when I have time at work, I write and send her hand written letters. We live in the same city, but I like to imagine her reading them and its like we are spending that quality time together without all the worries I have, some how they are just not present... they are not invited to the paper party!
Senior depression is a very important topic because of how widespread it is and the high suicide rate. I feel assured that living with others will really help now that grandpa is gone. Plus I have a feeling grandpa is there with her, he wouldnt want to miss out on all the people he could joke around with!