My difficult child father died recently. He was 79. That has been hard and I'm also noticing some weird things. Then again.....I'm still grieving...kind of...and am sensitive. Each day gets better though... It would be tooooooo difficult, too painful and take tooooo long to go into the details. We were somewhat estranged. Here's the super short version: After my mother died about 25 years ago, I barely heard from Dad. We talked perhaps once a year and saw each other perhaps every two years. He was VERY abusive to me and my mother. He has a personality disorder (or two). AFter she died, he pretended like I abandoned him to get sympathy from people he would meet and he re-created his life in this way. He never knew or care to know his grandchildren. About three months ago, I was told that he was dying and it was so very confusing and complicated. I visited him weekly in the hospital and had to cope with his angry girlfriend, who in the end, to my surprise, totally believed me when I told her that the story he presented to her was total FICTION. Well.....that is only part of my vent!!!!! When I tell people that my father died...it is so interesting the reactions I am getting. 25 years ago, when my mother died, everyone was very sympathetic. Ok, true, the situation was very different. I was very close to my mother. But even strangers, were very nice and appropriate. However.....today's world is different. For example, when I missed certain appointments the week he died and said to some people "My father passed and I need to reschedule," some were appropriate and some NOT AT ALL. These are people who don't know the situation. My son tells me I am old fashioned. Must be true. Seems (to me) the appropriate thing to say is "I'm sorry to hear of your loss. Let's reschedule..." or some such thing. When I cancelled his cable...I accidentally gave the phone operator his cell # instead of the house #. I said that I needed to cancel the service for my father, because he passed away and then gave the wrong number. The guy SCREAMED AT ME...actually raising his voice saying "I can NOT CANCEL THE SERVICE IF YOU ARE GOING TO GIVE ME THE WRONG NUMBER!" Well, I am probably over sensitive at the moment 'cause true to form, my father was a major grouch in the hospital and it is confusing 'cause although he wasn't in pain ( a blessing ) he was very frightened....and no one (including myself) could blame him. However, my mother who died at 49, before she died said nice things to me including complimenting my hair (I just got a lousy hair cut!). My father was unkind to me all the way until the end. This grief is so very different. Kind of like....the hope of having a healthy father is gone and I wish it had been different. My only hope now is that in the afterlife he is healthy. And again, I'm kinda amazed at how weird people are with this topic. Thanks for listening....been a strange couple of weeks...but a great learning experience.