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Lost my husband suddenly

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Home Forums Loss of a loved one Lost my husband suddenly

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  • #14584

    My husband of over 40 years died suddenly on Monday night from a heart attack. The paramedics came and worked on him for half an hour but they could not revive him. Up to that point he had been fine with no symptoms that day of anything being wrong. He did have a heart arythmia but that had seemed under control. Otherwise he was a well relatively fit man of 72. We were starting to make plans to travel again after COVID.
    I feel like my life is over and while I know these feelings are not unusual don’t want to go on without him. We have two daughters who are trying to be supportive but they are also coping with their own grief.
    I am acting a bit like a robot and going through the motions of arranging everything but I keep wondering why this had to happen. Could I have done more to save him? The Dr tells me no but of course I don’t believe that. I keep playing the whole scene over in my mind and coming up with what if’s.
    Life now seems pointless and has no meaning and all the plans we were making irrelevant. I am aware that it is supposed to get easier with time and know this to be true after losing both parents but this seems different. I don’t relish living a life on my own and am not a big social person. Generally we just did things together.

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  • #14598

    Hi Robyn, I am sorry for the loss of your dear husband of 40 years. You must be going through a very emotional period right now. Without knowing the specifics of your husbands condition it seems to me that you could not have done anything to prevent this and your doctor has validated this. I do know that it is normal for people to ruminate over every small detail leading up to the persons passing and beyond.
    It is normal too, to feel numb. Are you looking after yourself? There are lots of resources on the website that explain the importance of self care and tips to cope with grief
    Please don’t feel like you have to go through this alone. If you are unable to talk with your daughters, talk with supportive friends or ring someone on the Griefline Helpline. We are here to listen and assist where we can. All the very best to you.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 2 months ago by willow. Reason: Change if wording

    Hello @Robyn, welcome to the Griefline forums. We acknowledge your courage to reach out to the community and are here to give you support and a place to feel heard and held.

    Our hearts go out to you for the sudden loss of your husband and the life you had planned together. Right now you are experiencing your own unique version of grief which will be different from anything else you’ve gone through before. It’s a new path for you to navigate that might seem almost insurmountable right now… Try to take it easy and care for yourself like you would someone else – with tenderness and compassion. Making sure you’re eating well, sleeping as close to usual as possible, and getting a little fresh air and gentle exercise where you can.

    Most of all now is your time to reach out for as much support as you need. Grief can feel like you’re drowning in an ocean of sorrow – but you can find ways to take a breath here and there until the water subsides a little. The support of friends and family can be the best way to come up for air… perhaps reminiscing about your husband’s best qualities and the happy memories of your good times together, pulling out favourite photos or watching videos with others who loved him too. Do you feel up to this?

    Even though you’re feeling like life is pointless and without meaning, we see a lot of strength in you to get through this – you’ve posted here and that shows real fortitude. You also mentioned consulting your GP which is a vital self-care strategy… and your consideration of your daughter’s grief even though you are in so much pain, shows real compassion.

    It seems that many of us who have lost a loved one struggle so hard with feelings of grief. You might like to take a look at @Tmc’s link in our Helping Hand forum topic ‘Guilt and grief: coping with the shoulda woulda coulda’. Also our ‘Coping with Grief’ article on the Resource Hub has some good coping strategies to tap into.

    And please, if you would like to, feel free to share with us your favourite memories of your husband or the things you miss most. We would love to hear about him.

    We are here for you 🌸


    Thanks for your replies. I guess I feel desperate at the moment as I don’t know how I am going to get through this terrible tragedy for me. I truly feel like I have lost my other half as we were so dependent on each other for everything ie company, help and love. I know he had my back as I did his and cannot understand how life can be so cruel as to separate us in our later years. We were both active, relatively fit and apparently healthy and enjoyed lots of activities including walking our dog and gardening. We were looking forward to travelling again even if only in Australia for the time being. My husband loved life and wanted to go sailing again and was committed to reducing our carbon footprint ie we are fully solar powered and have an electric car.
    I feel like my life is over even though I know that it is possible I could live for many more years. I don’t see any happiness in the future as it will not be shared with him. I am aware that my children and grandchildren do not share this thought but after a lifetime of absolute closeness do not see how I can ever feel this way again.I guess the things I miss most are just that – a glass of wine and a chat in the afternoon, ringing from the shops to see if he wants something extra, a cuddle in the morning and a cup of tea over the news. Being able to say whatever you feel without feeling judged and having some discussions re our future plans feature as well. We did not always agree but always knew that did not really matter – we would work it out. Our relationship could be fiery but underlying we knew there was a deep commitment and love. I cannot quantify how much I miss him and believe I will continue to do so only more after people go back to their usual lives as they must.
    I know I am not unique and that life is not necessarily fair but keep asking why? There is no answer and I don’t expect one but it does seem so cruel. Can I be happy again? I doubt it at this point, and I fear I might be right. It’s not like I am young and possibly find someone else. I don’t even want to. I found my soulmate and he is gone.

    GL friend

    hi @robyn

    thank you for sharing this significant part of your story. i am sorry for your loss. grief can make ​us feel so sad and hopeless.

    your words remind me of when my dad lost my mum . he shared some of the same sentiments. he repeatedly asked why did she go, where did she go. he expressed so much guilt and anger at himself.

    i don’t know if it gets better or if we learn to live a different kind of life but i know that we are all survivors. I’m sending you so much love and courage, @robyn i hope you practice lots of selfcare as you so deserve.


    Hi @Robyn, thank you for sharing such heartfelt memories of the wonderful life and the loving relationship you shared with your husband. It seems that together you forged a bond that we would all aspire to. Your husband sounds like a truly lovely man who lived life to the full. He cared for others, for the future of the planet and perhaps knew better than most of us how precious the simple things in life are – like your cuddles and cups of tea. Though it seems impossible now, in time we hope you will find joy when you reminisce about these moments in your life.

    For now, we acknowledge that it’s difficult for you to see an end to your overpowering grief or even a possibility of finding happiness again. And you have every right to feel like this and respond in this way to such a great loss in your life.

    Perhaps these words by David Kessler from the book “On Grief and Grieving” might help you to feel validated in your experience and even see a glimmer of hope;

    “Grief is the intense emotional response to the pain of a loss. It is the reflection of a connection that has been broken.

    Most important, grief is an emotional, spiritual, and psychological journey to healing.

    There is wonder in the power of grief.

    We don’t appreciate its healing powers, yet they are extraordinary and wondrous.

    It is just as amazing as the physical healing that occurs after a car accident or major surgery.

    Grief transforms the broken, wounded soul, a soul that no longer wants to get up in the morning, a soul that can find no reason for living, a soul that has suffered an unbelievable loss.

    Grief alone has the power to heal.”

    (Kubler-Ross & Kessler, 2014, p. 227)

    Perhaps others in our community have books, passages or poems they’d like to share with @Robyn??

    Please keep posting @Robyn. We are here for you. 🌸


    Don’t know if this is a common experience or not. I had to go to the shops this morning with my daughter to get a few groceries as we were running out of things. They were shops my husband and myself had been to literally hundreds of times and it all felt so normal, but not. It was almost like an out of body experience and I almost expected to see my husband appear. It is hard to see other people getting on with their lives and happy couples etc doing things like having coffee together – why not me? No answers to that of course.


    Hello @Robyn my partner of 41yrs passed away in January this year & that is one of the first things I feared… going shopping. Similar to you there was phone calls from the shops to see if anything was needed…I would look at stuff on the shelves in a totally different way… the interest wasn’t there cause I wasn’t buying for my partner…now I think I’ve been able to turn my thoughts around to loving memory of my partner sad but loving…please take care of yourself… sending love & Strength xx

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