need some unusual advice

Submitted: Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 09:29
ThreadID: 80627 Views:3743 Replies:12 FollowUps:2
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I need some unusual advice from the caravaning community.

My father of 62 recently passed away. Mum and Dad have always been caravaner's and have been lucky enough to travel Australia before dad passed away. Mum is having a tough time dealing with dad not by her side and what she will do going forward. It is especially hard when friends are rigging their vans up for the sort of upcoming trips where Mum and Dad would normally be the convey leader.

Can anyone offer any advice that i can pass onto mum as to how she can get out and still be involved in trips (the van is now sold) or what else might help her start to cope? Has anyone been through something similar?

Many thanks.
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Reply By: Member - Michelle P (INT) - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 09:42

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 09:42
Hi trav,
Very sorry for your lose. It is a hard situation, that I have heard of a few times now.
One of my friends mum's brought a small Winnebago and joined a group so that she didn't have to be alone while travelling - she is now quite confident to go off on her own.

I don't know if they hire these out - if they do maybe your mum could try one out first.

Hope this helps.

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AnswerID: 426818

Follow Up By: Member - Bruce T (SA) - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:23

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:23
Trav and Michelle,

A small motorhome is what I was thinking of too. A friend of ours who still wants to travel is looking at doing the same thing. That way there is no hooking up and she can still join in on things with everyone.

Di and Bruce
FollowupID: 697443

Reply By: Fred G NSW - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 09:45

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 09:45
Hi Trav.

We have a member on here who recently lost her husband, and was put in the same position as your mother. She is stilll traveling, and I am sure when she reads this thread, she will respond. Stay tuned.

AnswerID: 426819

Reply By: Notso - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:17

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:17
Is she a member of a local caravan club.

We have a Caravan club out here in the lachlan Valley and all up we have 6 single ladies who are in the same boat as your mum.

They love getting out with the club on rallies ranging from weekend trips to 3 weeks roving rallies and Bush trips away from all facilities.

Most clubs do similar sorts of things

List of caravan clubs
AnswerID: 426820

Follow Up By: Fred G NSW - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 12:56

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 12:56
Good suggestion there from Notso, Trav.

It sounds like your Mum and Dad had plenty of experience from their previous trips, so I am sure your Mum would have much to offer a club, or even this Forum on ExplorOz.

No doubt both would would welcome her with open arms and hearts.

FollowupID: 697453

Reply By: petesgq - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:24

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:24
Hi there Trav, I have not dealt with death side but I have seen a few widows on the road in my travels in combi like campers as everything is easy to handle and self contained.
AnswerID: 426821

Reply By: Gone Bush (WA) - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:25

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:25
Some friends of ours went through the same sad thing. Husband passed away. After a while our friend bought a small campervan/motohome and joined a group and she hasn't looked back.

Your Mum has to simplify the process. A motorhome doesn't need hitching, unhitching etc. And she needs to travel with company and friendship.


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AnswerID: 426822

Reply By: Rockape - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:25

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 10:25

I am no doctor but have been through this with both sides of my family, have noticed that it seems to take around 12 months for them to come good.

In the first 12 months they have minor accidents and are forgetful as they go through the mourning of a loved one, then things seem to improve slowly. You may want to allow a bit of greaving time for your mum then you maybe able to bring her round slowly.

A campervan would be ideal and your mum may even consider taking a friend.

Sorry about your Dad.
AnswerID: 426823

Reply By: Keith Berg - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 13:06

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 13:06
Sympathies Trav, to you and your Mum. Sixty two is way too young and must have devastated your mum.
I have lost quite a lot of family and friends over recent years and it seems that grief is a deeply personal thing that everyone deals with in their own different way. For your mum, traveling right now might be the last thing on her mind and might actually upset her.
I guess all you can do is be as optimistic and supportive as you can and wait for the grief to take its course. She may want to immerse herself in family, friends, grandkids and so on and take some time to get over it all. What she probably needs more than anything is a son who is a good listener.
Good wishes to the pair of you.
AnswerID: 426828

Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 14:41

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 14:41
Hi Trav.
My mum went through this in the 70s (at a slightly younger age).
She purchased a VW Kombi camper and her life changed. She would go off on her own or with her similar aged sister for weeks at a time. Some times other members of the family went with her.

The Campervan & Motorhome Club of Australia has a large "Solos" membership. A significant proportion are women. They keep in touch with each other, travel in small groups sometimes and offer mutual support.
There are even quite a few who have sold or rented their homes, live full time 'on the road' and have no wish to change the situation.

Give her suggestions and support, but mostly give her time.

OKA196 Motorhome
AnswerID: 426838

Reply By: Member - Peter H (WA) - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 17:26

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 17:26
I lost my mum last year at 68, 2 weeks after dad retired. As you can imagine that stuffed all their plans. Dad still finds it difficult at times and has been told by a grief councillor that the average is 1mth for every yr together. Some are different but give her time.
I agree with the others get her into a small motor home and join cmca solos or caravan clubs and be with like minded people.

And Trav take care of your mum but also take care of you.


AnswerID: 426854

Reply By: tj007 - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 19:18

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 19:18
I can't thank you all enough for taking time to reply to my post. All your ideas, support and well wishes are greatly appreciated. I am strengthened by your replies and will pass that and all your support onto mum.

It really helps to know that there are people like yourselves out there to help. I am so touched by your replies that when the time is right I will print them out and read them to mum so she knows that she is not alone and life can still be enjoyable.


AnswerID: 426870

Reply By: Houseofkitchens - Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 22:37

Tuesday, Aug 10, 2010 at 22:37
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AnswerID: 426902

Reply By: time waster - Wednesday, Aug 11, 2010 at 06:55

Wednesday, Aug 11, 2010 at 06:55
HI trav,

We are on the road at the moment and as said before a motorhome is a very safe way to travel and also we have seen alot of A vans towed be women on there own and quite often using a forester. There is also an A van club that may be worth looking at.

AnswerID: 426915

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