I'm looking for advice on how to help my mother-in-law cope when my father-in-law passes. He is in the final stages of his cancer and is slipping away a little more everyday. We are losing more of her (emotionally) with him. My husband is handling it pretty well since he and his step-father have never really had a typical father-son relationship. He will miss him, and grieve for his loss, but his main focus of concern is his mother. They married over 20 years ago and my father-in-law has always taken care of everything and has run the house to the point that my mother-in-law wouldn't know how to take her car in for an oil change by herself. He has also been very demanding of her time as well causing her not to have many friends. Now, watching him slip away, she is battling with the fear of how to get along without him and at the same time guilt for thinking about the possibilities life will have when he's gone. She's hating herself for these feelings and we don't know what to do for her. She is not near us, so the best we can do right now is call her often and send cards of encouragement. We've suggested she reach out to her church friends, but because she's never really been "allowed" to have friends, she doesn't know how to approach them. Can anyone give us some suggestions to help her or some resources we can suggest to her. She is also dealing with exhaustion because she is taking care of her husband alone. She's getting very little sleep and starting to ignore her own health. I'm sure some of you are or have been where she is, what can we do for her or suggest to her? Are there organizations we can contact to give her the assistance we are unable to provide?
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