G: Guilt.. The big one. The topic most people struggle with. (And another long one) As I briefly mentioned in the last topic, the 5 stages of grief, guilt comes up as part of bargaining. The ‘What if’s and if only’s’, or the ‘could haves, would haves or should haves’. If you look at the dictionary definition of Guilt: the fact of having committed a specified or implied offence or crime. The intent to cause harm to another. I’m sorry, but in that case, most of us are guilty of loving our pets too much. 🙋♀️🙋🏼♂️🙋♀️🙋🏼♂️ Our pets are as dependent on us, if not more so, than children. And I’m sure you would not do anything to INTEND TO CAUSE THEM HARM. Did we do something wrong? ⚖️ I know many do feel guilty having to make the decision to end a life. It’s a huge responsibility, to sign that consent form. It’s not a decision you have taken lightly. It’s likely you have weighed up the pros and cons of keeping this little soul alive. Speak to your vet staff, I’m 100% sure they will back your decision, as hard as it is. Mistakes happen. Cats, Dogs, rabbits and birds can get spooked, run away, or escape. Not knowing what has happened is excruciating. If they are found, injured, we often point the finger. It was my fault! Bluey the budgie was outside in his cage, I was watering the garden with the hose, as I pulled the hose, it got caught on the cage and his cage fell over... it wasn’t my intention for this to happen. I ‘should have’ been more careful. ‘If only’ I had put him inside before getting the hose out. (See a pattern here?) We are already in pain over loosing them, why do we have to add to that pain by feeling worse with guilt? Unfortunately sometimes, cost does come into feelings of guilt. I realise, not everyone has a spare $2000 sitting in an emergency account... I certainly don’t!! There are some wonderful organisations out there, like Vetpay who, in an emergency situation may be able to assist in the financial aspect of veterinary treatment. I’m a realist. I would do Anything to save my pets, but my husband wouldn’t let me mortgage our home! Vet treatment does cost money, pet insurance doesn’t always pay up front on a claim. In this situation you have to: do what is right for you and your family. If you can make sacrifices with the shopping and the social expenses, awesome. But if you are struggling to feed yourself, and you can’t beg, borrow or steal the money needed, then I have seen that scenario too. It sucks. And this is another rock you carry around. Guilt is nasty and it eats you away. Please allow yourself to Forgive. Forgiveness can mean accepting that we may have done something we regret, but finding new attitude and perspective toward ourselves in relation to that action. It doesn’t mean we forget, but means we find a way to move forward.
Guilt is such a massive topic.. if I’ve made a hint of sense in my ramblings, feel free to share your comments below. 💕