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my exh tried to commit suicide - Shaney
March 1, 2007
8:23 pm
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Shaney
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Just a little shocked. My friend called me today from my home town and asked me if I had heard about my exh. Apparently he tried to kill himself by cutting his throat of all things. Since I'm so far removed from that town, those people, and that part of my life, I hadn't heard, AND I had no idea who to call to find out. I called my mom... she still lives there and could probably think of someone to call who would know. Well, it was true. It was a couple of days ago, and whoever found him, found him almost dead. I guess he's on his third divorce (I was his first wife), his business is being sued, and he's been going to AA for a couple of months now. His drinking, and the devil he turned into when he was drunk, was the main reason we split 14 years ago. Anyway, my mom thinks I should call him. I haven't talked to him in at least 12 years, and I'm not sure whether my calling would be appropriate or not. "Hi thiis is your first wife from your FIRST failed marriage... how are you?" Seems like I would be salt jumping into his already open wound. I don't know... what do you all think? I just feel so bad right now, and sad, actually. I just can't believe that he felt there was no point in living... plus the God aweful way that he attempted suicide is just hard core if you ask me. I don't know. I just feel really sad right now.

March 1, 2007
8:35 pm
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bevdee
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Shaney,

I hate for you that you are sad. YOu are a very comapssionate person.

As for calling? Now - this is me, but if I hadn't been in contact with him for a while, I would probably leave it alone for a while. But that's me.

I might consider sending a card - or contacting his family to extend your sympathy.

There is so much that is not covered in the etiquette manuals.

(((Shaney)))

March 1, 2007
8:40 pm
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jewel
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I am so sorry to hear this shaney. I wish I could make you feel better, but there is really no words that can be said that will help make you happier. That is such a tragedy and I am sorry that it happened.

Love,

Jewel

March 1, 2007
8:44 pm
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Shaney
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Yeah, bev - that very important chapter of the etiquette manual must have been editted out or something. I couldn't find it and believe me, I tried. I think that my first reaction was WHOA, I don't think I'm going to open that can of worms. Specifically because I HAVEN'T talked to him in a long time, and it really wasn't a good divorce. I know years after the divorce, he was heard making comments that he wanted his wife back. Which is another reason why I don't know if he really needs that (possibly) emotional blast from the past. All of my instincts are saying not to call. But there's this one fiber in my being that feels that I can say something that will matter to him. I don't know. I think I'm going with my first instinct, and not call him. It's just all so weird. I'll think about it some more.

March 1, 2007
8:48 pm
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Shaney
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Hi jewel - what a trip, huh? Other than your situation, I have never been faced with someone wanting to die. It really saddens me. And I feel very uneasy right now... troubled I guess. Anyway, thanks for checking in, jewel.

March 1, 2007
8:49 pm
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jewel
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Maybe it would be best to go with your first instinct. I wish you the best Shaney.

Jewel

March 1, 2007
8:49 pm
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Shaney
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Also, jewel I don't know if you saw it, but I wrote to you on one of your threads a few days ago, about REALLY sticking to all of your appointments... anyway... don't know if you saw it or not. Hugs...

March 1, 2007
8:54 pm
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lollipop3
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(((Shanster)))

Wow! What a shock huh?

I think I'm with Bevdee on this one. I'm not so sure I would call...but would probably send a card.

And to both you and Bevdee....about the etiquette thing....don't make me laugh while reading a thread like this, for crying out loud!

Okay, back to business....I'm here if you want to talk.

Love ya,
Lolli

March 1, 2007
9:00 pm
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Shaney
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Hey lolli - I just got through reading your post about therapy. All I have to say is, "Right on, therapist lady." I have to make dinner right now, but I'll be back.

Yeah, suicide isn't funny, but we can sure be funnier than hell sometimes.... :o)

March 1, 2007
9:03 pm
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lollipop3
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"Right on, therapist lady."

That's what I'm sayin'

And yes, funny is good. Laughter is the best medicine , as the saying goes.

And contrary to what Snow thinks....I like funny. And I like fun. And I have fun....with people that are fun to be with, that is.

March 1, 2007
9:17 pm
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bevdee
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Well - actually I was serious that time!!

March 1, 2007
9:25 pm
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Shaney
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Serious? There really IS and etiquette book? Where can I get one?

March 1, 2007
9:29 pm
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lollipop3
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Shaney....

Have you never heard of "Miss Manners"?

My , where have you been?

However, I think she focuses more on flatware placement and cell phone usage then on the proper protocol of the ex-wife when the ex-husband attempts to take his own life.

Sorry....but like you said...we're funny:) Right?

March 1, 2007
9:31 pm
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mj
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Hi Shaney,

I can understand the pain of an ex husband getting hurt even at his own hands. I don't think that expressing compassion for another human being ever goes out of style. If you strongly feel it will give him the wrong message, by all means, take care of yourself first. My heart goes out to you and all involved.

March 1, 2007
9:35 pm
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bevdee
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I love Miss Manners, hers came out in the 80s, and deals with modern situations and blended families and such.

My understanding is that formal etiquette is covered by Amy Vanderbilt. I'm sure there are more, but those are the two I read, somebody gave them to me when I got my first apartment.

March 1, 2007
9:58 pm
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Anonymous
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Well, Shaney, your IS going out to him and you can express it without having to get involved.

At least I liked it when my xh emailed me on my woes with my last suicide attempt. Just donĀ“t give him any hopes that you can get any more involved with him than a phone call.

I can tell you what xh said that was nice, namely that he felt so sorry (btw, the more sorry you feel the more you mean you want to stay detached), that I had a lot of options, that I was (nice, funny, whatever...), that ohter people also have nice comments about me...

Oh, then write Ms Manners about it and ask for a check :))

March 1, 2007
10:00 pm
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Anonymous
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where missing, insert "heart"

March 1, 2007
10:12 pm
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Shaney
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Sini - I was hoping you would wrtie. I just talked to my dad about it, and his first reaction was exactly like mine... then he said (which is exactly what I felt immediated after the reaction) maybe there's something that you could say to give him some sort of comfort. Then be back-peddled (just like me) and said, that maybe it was best if I just left it alone and prayed for him. I still remained in contact with his dad after our divorce.... I rented a condo from him. He always loved me, and I still use him (although many years later) as a reference. He's a good man. Maybe I can contact HIM and let him know that my thoughts and prayers are always with him. I used to send him cookies and a card periodically.... Is that overboard? I don't even know. What would Miss Manners say? Where's Miss Manners when you need her? I've never heard of her by the way.

March 1, 2007
10:13 pm
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Shaney
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Miss Manners? Woohooo?

March 1, 2007
10:21 pm
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Anonymous
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(((Shaney))) Would regret not calling? If so, do it. The world needs these good vibes going around. Just dont commit to anything. XXOO
Sininho / Tinkerbell

March 1, 2007
10:31 pm
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Shaney
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Yep - I know what you mean, sini. If I decide to call, I definitely WON'T commit to anything, because I CAN'T.

If I can ask you... what was it that mattered most to you after your suicide attempt? If you don't feel comfortable answering that, don't. I completely understand.

March 2, 2007
12:32 am
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eurogurl
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wow he tried to take his own life, and you are suggesting sending a card? That would be worse than nothing, how cold some people are.
I would definitely call him, and extend some kind and supportive words, u did love him at one time, and he is a human being in great pain.
God, i cant believe you wouldnt do that right away, so sad:(

March 2, 2007
12:47 am
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turnabout
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Sorry to hear about that, Shaney. That's .... drastic, eh?

About contacting him ... first of all, no one can get too much love. You're instinctually drawn to showing him you care b/c you know this, and you know a time like this is when a person needs to have the fact they're love reinforced.

second, reaching out to let someone know they're loved cannot cause any harm. It can only help, as long as it is extended without expectations ... as long as your investment is only in expressing that love and concern and not with any desire to change them or for them to reach back. That's the purest expression of love. It's also the truest to yourself.

And speaking of truth, if you care, but haven't expressed it and the person you care for has no way of knowing it, isn't it dishonest to withhold it?

Live truthfully. As truthfully as possible. Always live truthfully.

So that's my .02 cents. It probably explains why the card idea sits easier on the mind than calling. If you called, he would have to respond ... have to give you some reaction. There's an implied pressure there. A card, a note, a gesture of some sort like this is an expression of how you care with absolutely NO expectation. And, because of that, it's a very humble way to show you care.

March 2, 2007
12:48 am
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Hi Shaney

Reminders of mortality always bring us up short.... and yes, any articles I've read about etiquette have missed specific instructions in a case like this.

Since you have maintained a good relationship with his father, why not call the dad and have a talk with him. You might get a better sense from that as to what might be appropriate for you to do.

An act of caring would not be wasted, I don't think.

love, kroiks

March 2, 2007
12:54 am
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sdesigns
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Wow, Shaney, thats a tough one.

i like kroika's idea of calling his Dad.

That way he could tell your ex, if he felt it appropriate, so that he would know you had called and showed concern. Not knowing his reasons why, hearing directly from you may not be something he needs right now. If he was perhaps looking back at his life and included your failed marriage as one of his failures it may not be helpful to him at this time.

((((Shaney))))

SD

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