Life and Death

miss lindsey (stillmissesSophie,chase,others)(8a)

This is a question primarily for posters who are maybe 55+.

Including my husband, seven of my closest friends have parents who have died. One woman has lost both her parents. We are all under 40. Only two of those deaths were from cancer and none were vehicle accidents or other traumatic injuries.

My question is, does this seem typical? Is this in line with your experience when you and your peers were in your 30s? I think of my mom who is experiencing the passing of her parents and supporting her friends as they lose theirs (they are in their early 60s), and it feels bizarre that I am experiencing the same thing.

Sorry if it’s not a hot topic, I just got the news of the latest friend losing her mom and it made me ponder.

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chipotle

I lost my dad to emphysema when I was 36. He was only 67.

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miss lindsey (stillmissesSophie,chase,others)(8a)

I’m sorry to hear that chipotle. Thanks for answering.

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elvis

Not my experience at all. I lost my father when I was 16 (he was 60), but lost both my in-law parents and my mother ( they were 92, 95, and 97, respectively) within the past 2 years.

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cattyles

My mom died last year at 82. She survived breast cancer in her 40s and ovarian cancer in her early 70s. My dad is 85. My in-laws are 80 and 82. I’m 54. I didn’t lose my last grandparent until I was 45.


So that doesn’t seem typical to me, Miss Lindsey.

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barncatz

Boy, I agree, cattyles. Many of my friends and acquaintances who are 55+ are facing how to support very old parents. I lost my parents in their 90s.

That must be very difficult to lose a parent when you are entering the mid part of your life. I'm sorry.


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Zalco/bring back Sophie!

My mother was 69 when she died of cancer. I was 47. In my group, my mother died quite young. My grandmother died when she was 89, that seems more typical.

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Zalco/bring back Sophie!

I am terribly sorry your husband and your whole family is faced with losing his parents.

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Chi

I was 25 when my mom died, but I only know one or two people who have lost one of their parents in my peer group (mid 30's).

One thing that is more alarming to me is the amount of friends my age who I have lost recently. I don't have a lot of friends, but have had 3 deaths in the last 12 months. All early to mid-30's.

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graywings123(7)

I lost both parents when I was in my 20s; they were in their late 50s/early 60s. But that was back in the 1970s before the push to stop people from smoking. Both died of lung cancer.

I'm surprised that of the eight (?) Parents who died, only two were from cancer. I'm guessing heart disease for most?

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Zalco/bring back Sophie!

My husband was 24/25 his father died of a stroke at 63. His mother is still alive and well at 71.

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miss lindsey (stillmissesSophie,chase,others)(8a)

Many were rather sudden and unpredictable deaths. Pulmonary embolism, stroke, my MIL had septicaemia and the medication caused organ failure. I actually missed one of the cancer deaths; there have been three. (There are 7 deaths including my MIL.)

Thanks everyone for weighing in. I really appreciate everyone who has shared their personal stories.

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foodonastump

30’s seems young, on average, to be losing parents in any great number.

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leona_2008

It does not seem typical to me either. I was 51 when my mother died and 53 when my father died. They were 74 and 81, respectively. DH was late 50's when his parents died at close to the same ages as my parents were. It is hard losing your parents at any age but it would be harder at a young age.

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cyn427 NoVaZone7

My family seems to be long-lived for the most part. Living into their 80s or 90s is the usual. I was in my late 50s when my parents died. Strokes seem to take out most of us.

I think it is so difficult to generalize though. I have friends who had a parent die when the friend was in his/her 40s, and others whose parent(s) are still alive (we are mostly 68 and up). Off-hand, I can't think of any who died of cancer.

I do think lifestyle, environmental issues (some jobs do deal with hazardous situations and materials), and access to medical care can influence one's longevity.

ETA: It does not seem typical to me and I am sorry that your friends are having to deal with such losses at such a young age. I was pretty lucky and hope you will be, too.

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sheesh(5b)

I do not know how to explain clusters like that, Miss lindsey. I think they are unusial.

My 43 year old son is experiencing a similar cluster of deaths, but his cluster is among his friends. Of the six boys he became life-long best friends with in kindergarten, two have died from cancer in the last four years, and he himself has survived two heart attacks. He is a teacher, and in his school three teacher friends in their mid forties have died recently, none from accidents.

My son is the fourth of my six children. None of the others or their spouses is experiencing anything like it. I am sorry for your losses.


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leona_2008

My sympathies to all who have recently lost loved ones. Chi, that is horrible to lose 3 friends so young and in such a short span of time.

eta: Sheesh, I so hope your son is now doing well.

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miss lindsey (stillmissesSophie,chase,others)(8a)

Oh sheesh and chi that is awful, I’m sorry. As hard as it is to lose a parent/s it is not completely unexpected. It is the natural order of things even if it seems too soon. To lose so many young friends would be devastating.

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

I lost my father to a heart attack when I was 37. He was only 67.

My mother lost her mother to cancer when she was 16. My grandmother was maybe in her early 40s.

My father lost his mother when he was in his late 30s.

My husband lost both his parents when they were in their 50s.


The heart problems responsible for the early deaths in both my family and my husband's are routinely and successfully treated now.

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Chi

I also think this will become more common with trends towards advanced maternal/paternal age. Many are having babies in their 30's and even 40's these days, and losing a parent in your 30's when they are 70+ is very different from 50-ish.

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Lindsey_CA

I was 20 when my mother died at age 53. I was 21 when my father died at age 56. My parents died a month and three days apart; my birthday was in between their deaths. My mother would have turned 54 the day after I turned 21. My father would have turned 57 a month and two days after he died.

My mother died from metastatic breast cancer. She had survived 6 years past her mastectomy, when surviving 5 years was considered the "magic marker" for survival. Unbeknownst to everyone at the time, her cancer had metastasized... Her only sibling, her older sister, lost one breast to cancer before my mom did, and after my mom's cancer, my aunt lost her other breast to cancer and subsequently died from it. My aunt was 69 when she died. (She was 61 when my mom died - she was 9 years older than my mom.)

My father's heart stopped in his sleep. He'd had rheumatic fever when he was a child, and it left him with a heart murmur. My father was in the Army for 20 years, and retired as a Lt. Col., with 60% disability because of his heart. His doctor said Daddy probably wouldn't have lived much more than 3 to 6 months longer than he did, but Mama's death brought his death on sooner.

My husband's mother died when she was 45, from non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma. My husband was 18. My husband's father died at the age of 61, when my husband was 29. I met my husband a few months after his father had died.

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wildchild2x2

Husband's father died when husband was 11 years old. His father had rheumatic fever as a child and his death was listed as rheumatic heart disease.

My mom died from a post surgical embollism. She was 75, I was 40.

Both my husband and I had many peers who died in their 40s. Most from cancers.

Both my parents were life long heavysmokers. My mother quit in her late sixties. Both had circulatory problems and had bypass surgeries. My father continued to chain smoke and eat a rich diet until he chose to die at age 88, a month before his 89th birthday. I say chose because he told me he was going to stop eating because he was tired and done. He missed his wife and although physically sound he wasn't social and was probably quite lonely. His general health was good at the time and he could have gone ten more years probably. He ended up being taken by pneumonia. Begged me and the doctors to let him go without treatment. I honored his wishes.

My grandparents were long lived for their time also. Lived into their late eighties.

I am in my late sixties and in the last year lost two friends who were several years younger than me. One had a silent heart attack and the other went in her sleep. Another friend lost her husband who was several years younger than her last year to a stroke. None smoker, no health issues at all. Unlike her also never smoked who battles weight, cholesterol and high blood pressure despite aiming for a healthy diet and lifestyle.

I do see that my kid's (they are 41 and 43) peers have health issues among them that my generation didn't seem to have,at least not among my friends. Lupus, MS, diabetes, arthritis, kidney disease etc.

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jlhug

My Mother died in a car accident when I was five; my Father of heart failure when I was 35.

My best friend's Father died yesterday. He was in his early 60's. Her Mother died about five years ago. My friend is in her mid-40s.

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Annie Deighnaugh

Random events can occur in clusters that seemingly create a pattern where there is none.

I was 46 when my Dad died and 53 when my Mom passed. She however was in her 70s when her parents passed in their 90s, and she had an aunt and an uncle who both outlived her ... they passed at 99. DH's father died at age 81 and he predeceased his mother who died at 106.



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lionheart_gw (USDA Zone 5A, Eastern NY)

I'm sorry that your young friends are dealing with such loss at a younger-than-usual age, Miss Lindsey.

My father died of congestive heart failure when I was 32. He was 72. I was adopted by older parents. I miss him dearly and think of him often.

My mother died when I was 57. She was 92. She had cancer of an unspecified nature. They think that, even though she had a complete hysterectomy when she was young, a bit of ovarian tissue was left behind and that may be where the cancer started.

Since the trend has been for people to delay reproduction until they are older, I expect more people will experience parental death when they are younger.

Except for one of my neighbors, I can't think of any other peers who experienced parental death prior to their 40s. She was a surprise child; her brothers were teenagers when she was born.

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Uptown Gal

My Mom died at 90...had survived cancer surgery at 85. A sister died at

63....diagnosed with cancer just 5 months previously. A brother died at

60...car accident...perfectly strong and healthy. My oldest brother still

going strong and healthy at 82. Oldest sister needs knee surgery, but still

healthy otherwise. I'm the baby of 5...not sure what that

means.

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ohiomom

My dad died at age 80, I was in my later 40's. Mom died at age 89 and I was in my late 50's.

Paternal grandparents died in their 50' s, dad was a teenager. Maternal grandfather died at 69. Maternal grandmother died at 74.

My oldest sister died at age 34 from leukemia, then my baby (and only) brother died from leukemia at age 46. Sis had chronic leukemia and he had acute leukemia.



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vgkg (Va Z-7)

I was in my mid 30's when my Dad died at 70 from an aortic aneurysm. I was around 45 when my Mom died at 84 basically of old age.

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nickel_kg(6)

Thinking back 30 years to my own 30's, only a few of my friends had lost one parent (heart, age, cancer, accident); most of us still had both parents living. I'm not aware of anyone who had lost both parents when we were that age.

I'm sorry for all who have lost a loved parent "too" early. And most especially sorry for those who have experienced bereavement only recently -- hang in there.

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Stan Areted

Anyone who has both parents past the age of 25 is fortunate.

We never know and family longevity history doesn't always come in to play.

Lindsey __CA--you drew a short straw I am sorry you lost both parents at such a young age and within months, way too young.

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Embothrium(Sunset Climate Zone 5, USDA Hardiness Zone 8)

Average life expectancy at birth went up about 20 years between 1930 and 2010.

https://www.infoplease.com/life-expectancy-birth-race-and-sex-1930-2010

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Lindsey_CA

"Lindsey __CA--you drew a short straw I am sorry you lost both parents at such a young age and within months, way too young."

Thank you, Stan. At the time it was horrible. However, it didn't take long to realize that it was better that they died so close together. Daddy was miserable after Mama died. He wouldn't sleep in their bed - he slept on the sofa in the family room. That's where he died in his sleep.

And when my older sister (by one year) and I were making all of the funeral arrangements for our father, everyone thought we were checking up on details for our mother's funeral that had been a month before.

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