14February

Ask Dr. Christina: I’m Old & Lonely and I Feel Worthless

QUESTION:

I am 88 years old and I feel there is no longer a reason for me to be here on this earth. My husband died this past year and I have no family. I ask God daily to please take me. I am so lonely and I feel so worthless. Can you give me one reason why I’m here?

ANSWER:

Dear Liz,

I am so honored that you wrote me. I too can understand getting older physically and mentally can be tiring, but I feel the older I get, the wiser I become. There is so much you can teach us, for those 88 years of yours are priceless.

Sometimes it’s hard to see how beautiful you are when you have experienced the death of someone you loved so deeply like your husband. It’s hard to see any purpose for living and going on without him. We all go through a grieving process when this happens. I know, it’s easy to say but harder to live with each day. It is so hard to be left behind, especially when all other family members are no longer here with you either. I feel that those who are left behind have it the hardest.

The fact that you have written to me shows me that you have some question about purpose – your life purpose. Oftentimes, many of us struggle with that question at any age, but we lack the wisdom and benefits of the aging process. So, Liz, you have one up on us.

If you can think of something from your past that made you happy–grandchildren, animals, sewing, crafting, storytelling or something else, then we can try taking baby steps to see if anything can lighten your heart. For some, it is church; for others, it is nature. For still others, it is finding friends or helping at a local hospital as a volunteer for the nursery and holding babies.

You ask daily for God to take you; however, there must be a reason why God has allowed you to stay here. Perhaps it is to teach us and enlighten us with your company. There is a reason, Liz, and we—the members of the human race—need you.

Write out a daily journal and include the things that make you laugh, the things you enjoy doing whether it’s cooking, sewing, walking, cleaning, driving, or just being. Sometimes it’s worth going outside into nature if you’re able to so you can breathe some fresh air and experience the beauty of nature (God’s gift to us).

There are many of us who would love to listen to your stories.

I, like you, no longer have a family. I no longer have a grandmother, and I would do anything to be able to hear her words and to listen to her tell her stories.

You are not alone, Liz. Perhaps you can share your feelings with a friend, clergyperson or even find a support group in your area or a counselor to help you with this grieving process.

There is that old saying that, “Time helps us to heal.”

I know when I feel lonely, I turn to a Chihuahua and two other little dogs I have who give me unconditional love. I’m not sure if a pet is something that you would want to take care of now, but it is something to consider.

You have lived 88 years and I am grateful that I had the pleasure of at least writing to you and to share this time thinking about you.

Please write again. I hope this helped.

With Love and Respect,

Dr. Christina

  • Posted By: Dr. Christina
  • Tags: animals Chihuahua Christina Christina Charbonneau Christina Goldstein-Charbonneau coach crafting death death of husband death of spouse doctor dog dog lover dogs Dr. Christina Dr. Christina Goldstein-Charbonneau dying elderly geriatric grandchildren grief healing journal journaling knitting left behind life coach life coaching lonely pet pet lover quilting sewing sorrow storytelling
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