A support team member for me is leaving...

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loving frustrated wife
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 865
   Posted 3/14/2008 12:41 PM (GMT -6)   
OH MY GOSH....I know this is going to sound horrid....I am about to sound like a spoiled brat to many...please know I truly am NOT. But I just found out last night that the nanny/housekeeper who has been living with my family for the last almost 7 years is moving back to her native country (Hungary) in just a couple of weeks - permanently. She has been here legally for 8 years studying at language college on a student visa. She lived with us and worked for us helping with the kids, light housekeeping, and for me....emotional support with what I deal with here as a wife and mother to BP's. We love her to pieces. I just found out last night about all this and learned for her it has been in the works for 2 months but she didn't want to say anything until it was a sure thing. She doesn't want to leave, but she has a sick relative that is not getting well, and feels she needs to go see her and help take care of her before she looses her final chance to be with her. This part of it I truly understand..... The problem is, she has had to make a choice about this, because once she leaves this country, she will not be allowed back as her visa will expire as soon as she leaves, and her passport was due to expire anyway by January. We've tried for years to help her get a green card, but to no avail given 9/11. Plus, her country still has so many communist type practices about these things that even getting a visa for anything is of issue. We can't attempt to try and get an H-1 visa now before she leaves because she doesn't know how long she will need to stay there, or if by the time things conclude if she will have decided not to try and return. Which at this moment she HATES the idea of.

My problem is that given the stereophonic BP I live with, she has been such a tremendous support emotionally for me. She bares witness to what I deal with. I can vent my frustration and she "gets it", because she sees the validity of my feelings and experience. I feel like when she goes, not only will all of the extra work she does land on me (and with my health issues it is a concern), but the support for me in the house will be gone. I am SO sad and upset.

We haven't told the kids, they will be devastated. We are thinking of telling them the reason she is going, and that she will be gone for about 6 months, and we will speak to her via camera-computer, and then in about 2 or 3 months have her share she is not returning when she wanted to, and doesn't know when, or if she will be for a long time - if ever. This way, the kids will have adjusted to her not being here, and they will see they are still able to talk and see her via this system. Do you think this is the right way to handle it? My oldest is 14 1/2, and my twins are 7. My twins have never not had her here, and my daughter thinks of her like her big sister.

Then there is the practical issue of all the work around here, while I am also working on my company - which is my dream to see it take off and I am busy with that and don't want to put on hold...AGAIN...etc. I am feeling so sad and overwhelmed and a bit angry that she has just told us with only a few weeks before she is leaving us. After all we have meant to each other, and how much a part of this family she is, I feel as if she should have spoken with us months ago and given us a heads up what she was looking and thinking of doing. Is that wrong of me? I know she said she didn't know how to tell us, but this feels like I have just been punched in the stomach. I am scared to be here with out this support for me. I am quite stressed now. She has helped keep me sane...what will I do without her???? She's my friend too. I will miss her because of that as well. I have valued what she brought to our family. ...OH this is all so sad. I wish she could just go home, take care of what she must and return because I know this is where she really wants to be.

Thanks for listening. LFW

Post Edited (loving frustrated wife) : 3/14/2008 12:14:10 PM (GMT-6)

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 3715
   Posted 3/14/2008 2:21 PM (GMT -6)   

Allow yourself some raw grieving time because you are essentially losing a family member overseas, and you may not see her again for a very long time. That would be terrible for anyone, even someone less invested in having the emotional support as well as the basic cleaning/caretaking help. It's going to be hard on everyone in your family and I'm so sorry to hear it for you. You can replace someone to help with the cleaning and the kids, the rest is more difficult. I don't blame you for feeling a little angry about the short time frame, but that anger is part of your grief too -- you don't want her to go.

I can't say what is the right way to tell the kids. My first instinct is to be honest with them, but then for the young ones, that would be a lot to understand all at once, so I understand why you'd want to break it up. It's sad. This will be hard for them, I imagine.

I can't remember if you see a private counselor or therapist, but if you don't, now would be a good time to start. You do deserve a personal one-on-one support team who just listens to you and just wants to help you be well. He/She would be able to help sort through all the feelings surrounding events like this, help you stay on track with your business while taking on the new workloads, and still give you a place to vent about the Doublemint Bipolars in your house.

be well (((hugs)))

Co-Moderator, Bipolar Forum
Bipolar II

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 369
   Posted 3/14/2008 5:15 PM (GMT -6)   

I am so sorry...I understand how you say she has become such a support system for you and like part of the family.  One thing to remember is that this is probably hurting her just as much.  To be far from your own family...and then become such an integral part of another family is a big thing.  But you are right...she has a family of her own, and her need to be there outweighs any anguish you are feeling.  I think it is up to you now to replace that person who you could count on with all of those things...with someone else.  For yourself maybe you should start seeing a therapist.

And not that it will be that easy to replace someone you considered part of the family...but there are always others in her same shoes...from foreign countries and needed living arrangements to come to the US for college.  If you have a college near by, maybe check there if they have listings for people looking for living arrangements in exchange of the services you are needing......And who knows, maybe you all will be blessed again?

"Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending" ~ Maria Robinson

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1432
   Posted 3/16/2008 11:14 AM (GMT -6)   
Holy Toledo LFW!
I can't believe what is happening all around you! I'm totally gasped for words! First I want to give you a tight hug! I know you are going to have to hold tight on this one. I can only imagine all the thoughts that are spinning in your head right now!
How is your husband dealing with this news? Is he able to offer you any kind of consolation? Any?
Okay, your nanny didn't do right by giving you such short notice, especially since it will affect not only you but your children as well. But the fact is, that she has told you and she is doing what she needs to do right now.
I can only suggest what other's have already suggested to you. #1 Please get some therapy for YOURSELF! You need this separately from your spouse. You need help with direction on how to move positively forward in this situation and how to deal with your relationship regarding your two BP's in the house and how to be there for your daughters as well as how to stay healthy for yourself, emotionally & physically. Please don't deny that for yourself!
I know you are a very smart woman. I understand that this is such a huge shock to you. You need to breathe and get your head together and figure out a way to move forward in this situation.
I've never dealt with any of this type of stuff so I really can't offer you any good advise as to where to start! Well,  I always had my therapist in most of my tough times as she was always able to keep me focused and led me into healthy options for myself and what was in the best interest of my family. That is why I mention that suggestion to you.
Is there anyone that you can talk to ASAP to help you get your thoughts in order?
I certainly wish you the best. I don't want you falling apart over this but I know how huge this is for you. I would feel that a part of me is being taken away and that somebody slipped the rug from under my feet as well.
Please keep us posted on how things are coming along for you and how you are doing. I am really concerned for you.
You will be in my thoughts, no doubt!
Sincerely, Sukay

Diagnosed Bipolar - August 2004
     Crohns disease - 1995 
Arthritis & Fibromyalgia 
Leo Buscaglia

loving frustrated wife
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 865
   Posted 3/17/2008 6:07 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you everyone for your kind words of support. I appreciate all your input. Please know I am okay, just still dealing with the fallout of it all and still wrapping my head around it. I know in the end I will be alright, as will my family, but we ARE in for some definite adjustments in our household. After this length of time with our live-in, who has played a special role for each of us in one way or another for so many years, it is not an easy thing to contemplate replacing, or starting over with, someone new. The idea alone is quite overwhelming. I don't know that we ever will again other than a housekeeper once a week.

I do understand your suggestion that perhaps it is time to start some private therapy for myself again, to gain that added support in dealing with the challenges and frustrations of being a wife and mother to BP's. I agree. My only concern is that I have done SO much therapy, for SO long in my life, that there isn't much I feel they can do for me except be a good rational sounding board to sort out my thoughts, gain a little encouragement when needed, and an understanding place that is all my own to vent and gain perspective in this challenging life we lead dealing with it all. But I suppose you are all correct that those things alone add the value that makes it worth it for me. Thank you.

I'll keep you posted how things are going. I am still quite sad. I suppose I will be up until the time she finally leaves, and for a decent bit of time after. So, I will have to take my sadness, put it in perspective, tuck it under my arm to hold it and.....GET ON WITH IT...as they say. I have always told my kids that if you take your two hands and hold them out and put all the good things in one, and all the sad or bad in the other, you can see that both are real, but neither invalidates the reality of the other. They both can exist and be true at the same time - and both need to be honored. That will simply be my life for a bit....I am in mourning for the pending loss of my friend, our caregiver, my kids nanny...our family member who is leaving us to go on the next phase of her life. And it doesn't get to include us. But I will love her and wish her well...and remind her she always has a home with us whether she is working for us or not....she is our family now.

Thanks again guys. It helps so much having you to turn to! LFW

Post Edited (loving frustrated wife) : 3/17/2008 5:11:05 PM (GMT-6)

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