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Home » Topics » Loss of a loved one » Loss of a Loved One


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  • #13405

    Welcome to a place to discuss the loss of a partner, family member, close friend or anyone significant in your life.

    Everyone grieves differently. Your grief is as unique as your own fingerprint. However, while often immensely painful, grief is our natural healing process in response to loss.

    Grief comes and goes, it can be intense and then manageable, predictable and then uncontrollable. It might be brought on by a recent loss or a historical one, be triggered by an anniversary or the dread of an approaching milestone.

    This forum is a safe and emotionally supportive space. It is a place to be accepted and understood by others who can empathise with you. You can feel free to remember your loved one and tell us about your grief journey. Together we can learn to understand the changing nature of grief over time while sharing coping tools and ways to practice self-care.

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  • #16305

    Dear @mrgrief85, welcome to the forums. Our hearts are with you on the 10th anniversary of your wife’s passing. Here on the forums, we have spoken about the pain of anniversaries many times – and we know that no matter how many years have passed, the pain can be just as overwhelming as the first year. So, we’re glad that you reached out to us to speak your story and share your feelings.

    You mention feeling ‘lost and alone’ – a common experience for those who have lost a spouse …it’s actually the most prominent cause of ‘emotional loneliness’… And caring for an ill spouse in the lead up to their passing often increases the risk of loneliness even further. Perhaps this was your experience too?

    Understanding the risk factors can help to validate your grief and loneliness experience… and it might also be comforting to know that there are ways to alleviate the loneliness. One of these is connecting with understanding and compassionate people. Griefline has introduced the Care to Call program which connects anyone feeling lonely and isolated to a friendly volunteer who will give you a call once a week to chat about whatever is on your mind. If this sounds of interest you can register for the program here on our website;
    Our team will give you a call to chat about the program in more detail – so you can take it up now or whenever you feel ready.

    Daniel, we’re sorry to hear that your grief is having such a significant impact on your life – only allowing you to be free of it around 10% of the time. We’re wondering what’s happening during that 10% of relative peace…and whether there might be a way to engage more in whatever you’re doing during those times? We would love for you to tell us more about this in your next post. And in the meantime, you might like to take a look at our article ‘Coping With Grief’ if you haven’t already. There may be some tips in there that you haven’t tried out yet.

    We hope you’ll post again Daniel. We’re here for you always. 🌸


    Hi, my name is Daniel and I lost my partner of 10 years to cancer this past Wed (15/09/21).
    It’s been a horrible ordeal, as I feel lost and alone 90% of the time.


    Dear @Ambert143, a warm welcome to the forums. We’re so sorry for the pain you’re experiencing. Losing someone you love at such a young age and so unexpectedly can feel incomprehensible as well as devastating.

    In this confusing time, it can be helpful to understand better what we’re going through. Our “Experiences of Grief” article on our resource hub says “when we have unexpectedly experienced grief or loss, our feelings or thoughts are linked to the unforeseen nature of the loss. It may feel like you are on a roller coaster ride. Shock, feeling numb, overwhelm and not knowing what to do are common and normal responses to a loss that was not anticipated. You may also find yourself very distressed, crying uncontrollably, unable to sleep, sleeping poorly or sleeping more than you would normally. Again, these responses are a very human and normal response to an unexpected grief and loss experience.”

    Does that sound familiar to you?

    The article goes on to talk about the importance of social support during this very difficult time. Talking to someone you trust can help ease the intensity of your emotions. Remember to treat yourself with kindness and compassion too. Ask people to help with practical things and tap into all the resources that are available to you like the Griefline Helpline (ring 1300 845 745).

    , all relationships go through rocky times, despite this, he was your ‘soulmate’ and as the saying goes ‘Grief is a measure of our love’. So while it’s not going to be easy, hold on to hope and the support of others. You will get through this 💖 Keep in touch with us and let us know how you’re going – you are not alone in this grief journey. We are here for you. 🌸


    My name is Amber I recently lost my ex boyfriend via cardiac arrest I’m having a really hard time dealing with this we was broken up and the time but was trying to work things out he was my soul mate and my true love 29 and his heart gave up 😭 I’m truly broken


    Hi@sar-kat, welcome to the forums and our hearts are with you at this devastating time. What you are going through is a form of grief known as anticipatory grief. As you say it is an incredibly rough process to go through. Calling on you to muster up all your strength to be supportive of your boyfriend and treasure the moments you have together. And yet at the same time being weighed down by feelings of anxiety and dread. Anticipatory grief can bring up all the emotions of post-loss grief as well as the fatigue and stress that comes with caring for a loved one in this situation.

    It’s important for you to look after yourself at this time. Practice self-care and treat yourself with kindness. Social support is a key self-care strategy that’s why we’re so happy you’ve reached out here – talking to others with a shared experience and knowing that you are not alone can be really helpful. We hope that you also have friends and/or family to talk to?

    You might also like to take a look at our self-care tools here on our mindfulness page. In particular, journaling might be therapeutic in your situation… putting down your feelings on paper and tracking your grief response day by day will help to focus on your own journey. Because in situations like this we often get swallowed up by our loved one’s experience and forget that we too are facing something extraordinarily challenging.

    We hope that there are others on the forums who can share their similar experience and perhaps the ways that they’ve managed to get through…

    Let us know how you’re going @sar-kat. We are here for you. 🌸


    I’m currently going through a really rough time. My boyfriend who is 23 was diagnosed with a rare cancer. He went through 3 lines of treatment and is now told there is nothing more they can do for him. I don’t really know how to cope or process this. I feel like I’m mourning someone who hasn’t died yet. I don’t know how much longer he has and I’m trying to treasure every moment I have left. And I know people say take it day by day but that’s really hard when you have planned this future that you’ll never get. I just want to connect with other people who have experienced something similar.


    Thankyou Jan for your reflected wisdom. I am going through an intense time where I am experiencing the resurgence of grief. I lost my soul mate partner of 22 years in 2018. I feel that I’m only now experiencing the permancy of that loss. I have a number of tried and true tools to use when I feel the intense loneliness, and that out of sync with the rest of the world feelings.
    But I feel stale. Heightened by moving interstate and having to start again in so many ways. Retirement also creates so much time!
    I feel I’m in between. Posting helps me process. And reading your post tells me I’m not alone! Thankyou.


    Dear @Nessa, welcome to the forums. Our hearts go out to you – it’s clear that the loss of your beloved husband has been utterly devastating for you. You are in the clutches of active grief right now which can be so debilitating and seemingly insurmountable. Think of yourself in an ocean of grief – the waves crashing over you. They are so huge and coming so fast that you just barely manage to catch a breath before the next one comes. Perhaps you are fighting so hard to swim against it or beyond it that you are exhausting yourself… But when the ocean is this rough sometimes the safest thing to do is just focus on breathing. Be gentle on yourself…give yourself permission to stay in bed if that’s the safest place to be; cry as long and hard and often as you need to; allow yourself a reprieve from having to ‘move on’; and maybe even put down the self-care tools for a moment if all that busyness is leaving you depleted.

    You say you feel as though you are letting your daughters down. Perhaps allow yourself to consider Bettelheim’s ‘good enough parent’ concept… which suggests that good enough parents are the best parents. They know the parent-child relationship goes both ways… It is a relationship between equals in the sense that the two parties are equally important, equally deserving of empathy, comfort, patience and happiness. It’s your turn now – let yourself lean on your girls if their support helps you through the days.

    @Ness please keep reaching out to us here. Expressing yourself in this way can help to make sense of it all. Know that there are others here on the forums who also feel alone and isolated in their grief. We’re here for you. 🌸


    Thank you for your message but I am so lost nothing seems to help. I feel like I am in such a dark place and I can’t see it getting any better. I miss my husband so much. Today I feel like I can’t breathe. I can’t eat. I can’t do anything. When does it get any easier because it’s not. I cannot seem to come to terms with him not coming home. I still expect him to walk in the door. I feel wretched and feel like I am letting my daughters down as well as my husband. He would not want me to be this sad. But we were so close. He was my world. I feel like I cannot function without him. How do I get out of bed each day cause I don’t even want to wake up. How do I keep doing this day after day after day?


    Hi Chellie,
    I am so sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to you and hear and feel you. Please reach out to talk if you feel you need someone to talk to.
    The absolute shock of losing your husband the way you have must be so difficult for you to deal with. You really show such great inner strength and are trying so very hard to cope the best ways you can on a day to day basis.
    I lost my partner suddenly some years ago. He died in a motorcycle accident and when I received that call it felt like my world had ended. The first few days and weeks I had a great deal of inner circle support but slowly I felt like I was oversharing and pushing away those close to me with my sadness.
    I delved into work and tried to occupy my time and all of sudden fell in a heap and could not function.
    I reached out for external support from a psychologist and although it took some time began to deal with my grief. I no longer set my watch on other peoples time lines. If I needed to cry, I cried. If I needed to just sit with my grief I did. I remember days when I just did not move and stayed in bed for the day and just watched tv. I had endless showers where an infinite torrent of tears were shed. I really began looking at me and how I needed to deal with my grief and less about what others think or believed I should do. After all this was my grief and my grief alone and none else was could really understand the depth of how I was feeling.
    Just in regards to you moving right now, take your time to make such huge decisions. These decisions eventually will be made when you are ready to make them and please follow your gut instinct.
    You are an amazing woman and I have to take my hat off to you. Please know that you are supported.


    I lost my husband towards the end of last year. It was extremely sudden. One day he went to work, had a massive stroke and never came home.
    I remain devastated. We were extremely close. We were together for approximately thirty years. We raised two children together and now was supposed to be our time.
    The last two weeks have seen me at my absolute lowest. So low that I don’t want to see if there is any lower. I feel lost and alone. I am overwhelmed with sadness for both myself and my husband. I still expect to see or hear him walk through the door.
    I rely heavily on my young adult children but also thought I could rely on friends. But nobody seems to get it. The ones that I thought would are the ones that think I should be just keeping busy, going back to work, moving on. My biggest accomplishment at the moment is getting up each morning. How do I ‘move on’ when I feel so empty and lost, when I can’t get through a day with out breaking down in sobs.
    Friends tell me that I will have to leave the small town in which I met my husband, we married, bought a house, raised our children and lived happily for the time that we have been together. So then, not only will I still be feeling lost and alone but I will also not feel like I belong and I will not have so many lovely (and not so lovely) memories all around me. Everything that we worked so hard for is here in front of me. I feel I have already lost so much, my future, a relationship that I felt could survive anything and also my career (as I have been unable to head back to work as yet). If I were to move away from our home for the last three decades truly leaves me with very little to grasp onto other than the precious memories.
    I try everything to help me through this difficult time. I keep myself extremely busy. So busy I can’t sit still. I have learnt to meditate, practise mindfulness, journal, walk, listen to music (loudly), garden, honour my husband in ways that many wouldn’t understand, see a psychologist regularly but still the grief overwhelms me. My husband was my hero, he was my sounding board, he was my best friend. I am frightened of how much his loss has truly effected me and how I continue to live a life without him. At the moment I cannot see any happiness without him here to share it with.


    Dear @Trish, welcome to the Forums ❤️ Our hearts go out to you for the loss of your dear husband and the struggle you’re going through in your grief journey.

    You mention that you have been inwardly struggling and it makes us wonder if you have allowed yourself to outwardly show the extent of your anguish. Many of us keep our grief shut away or tempered, forcing us to shoulder the burden alone, even though there are people around us who would gladly take on some of the load if there was a way to do so.

    Here is an excerpt from the ‘Coping with Grief’ article on our Resource Hub…perhaps there is something in this that you find helpful;

    “Often, when consumed by grief, we turn away from the one thing that might help us most…other people. We might feel that no one understands us, we have to do this on our own, or that we’re a burden to others…. [but] the benefits of sharing our pain with others almost always override the drawbacks.
    Here are some tips to seek comfort and help from others;
    • Reach out to family, friends…. but permit yourself to retreat when you need to be alone.
    • Take the initiative to reach out to new people who have experienced a similar loss – they might be from social groups, sporting clubs, church groups, in the workplace or internet forums…
    • Force yourself to be around people and do things – even when it feels too hard. Try to have at least one thing in your calendar every day, along with a back-up.
    • Allow yourself to grieve in public – it’s perfectly ok to have a cry.
    • Share your story of loss. Go ahead and tell anyone who will listen about your loved one and your relationship even if they don’t have the words to respond.
    You can read the rest of the article here

    You might also find some peace during the very challenging times in the middle of the night by turning to meditation…here is a link to an audio recording on our Resource Hub. It was chosen especially by Psychologists at Smiling Minds.
    This page also includes tips on breathing which may be helpful.

    by posting on the forum you’ve shown great courage in the face of such adversity. We hope that you continue to post and that we can support you in your grief journey 🌸


    My beautiful husband lost his battle with lung cancer in March this year & I have been inwardly struggling ever since.
    I am surrounded by family & have many friends that care yet I feel alone in my grief.
    Night time is the worst time & sleep evades me, my mind is a whirlpool of thoughts & I can see how easy it would be to turn to drink or tablets
    to stop the thoughts & sleep.


    Hi, I’m Vince. I lost my wife 3 years ago. I’m trying to connect with other people who can understand my grief.


    Dear @tammy87, welcome to the Griefline forums. Our hearts go out to you for your loss and the devastation you have experienced on the sudden passing of your husband.

    Firstly, we want to acknowledge your courage in showing up by posting here on the forums. We believe it’s only a glimpse into the courage and strength you must have mustered to get through the past 6 months with your 3 children. We also acknowledge that even though you feel like you’re not ‘not coping at all’, by posting here you applied one of the most important coping skills available to you – reaching out to others for support. We’re so glad you have done so because your grief and loss must be witnessed. As David Kessler says – “we weren’t meant to be an island of grief”. So please feel free to tell us more about your experience of loss – we are here to hold you in your grief.

    For more coping strategies please go to the article ‘coping with grief‘ on the Resource Hub. While some of the strategies might be too early for you to access at this stage, others are simple yet effective, like;
    – “Adapt your old routines to the changes in your life. Establish new daily routines that ensure you have a healthy diet, good hygiene, adequate sleep, and are attending to your medical care.
    – Strengthen your body by reconnecting to it through exercise and movement. This can be low intensity such as a gentle walk, yoga or tai chi or more vigorous such as returning to the gym, running, even dance…there are many ways to move your body.
    – Create a safe and comforting space for yourself. This can be in real life or your imagination (try this Positive Experiences mindfulness exercise

    , you showed so much bravery in the face of an intensely traumatic situation…being first on the scene and trying to revive your husband is profound. Our Resource Hub also has some information about trauma which you might like to take a look at here. In particular it mentions “Some people find that they are able to work through their traumatic experience with a trusted friend/s or family members who understand or have lived experience. Others may find formal psychological support such as a Counsellor or Psychologist useful in working through what has occurred.” We are wondering whether you feel well supported by professional counselling? If you need assistance with this, please reach out to the Online Community Coordinator and we will do our best to help.

    For today, try to show yourself love and kindness by asking yourself, “In what ways can I show myself greater compassion and love today?”. You deserve all of that and more.

    And please keep posting…we are here for you. 🌸

    GL friend

    Hi @tammy87
    Thats horrible! I am so sorry for your loss. I wonder how you have coped over the last 6 months? I remember when mum died, my sleep patterns were a mess and I had no appetite. The first 6 months were awful. I hope you can recognise that grief takes time and ebbs and flows. I hope that you find comfort and ways of selfcare during this time. Sometimes journalling, cleaning, creating memory collage or other form od artwork help. Sending you lots of strength.


    Hi all,nearly 6mths ago now,I lost my husband in a tragic car accident,he was the passenger in his mates car.he was 28yrs old,we have 3 kids.
    I was first on scene and tried reviving him,im notcoping at all


    Dear @Shellbell, welcome to the Griefline forums. Our hearts go out to you for the multiple sudden and traumatic losses you have experienced; the passing of your beloved mum, the changes in your traumatised Dad and the life you had with your parents and boys before the accident happened. It is such an awful lot to have to deal with, it’s no wonder you feel like you’re ‘going insane’ and struggling to breathe most days. These thoughts and feelings are synonymous with such intense grief and loss – and though the shortness of breath might feel frightening and even unbearable, it can be reassuring to know that the grief felt in our body is a way of helping us identify our emotions.

    Part of grief work is naming these feelings in the body, linking them with the emotion that it accompanies, and identifying when and why they are triggered. You can also take it a step further by staying with the feelings even if only for a brief time as this can give you a sense of mastery over them. While it might seem impossible right now, it also helps to know that your emotions and reactions will soften and become much more bearable over time.

    Having an escape from these feelings and thoughts would also be very beneficial so you might like to try some of the audio recordings here on our Resource Hub. In particular the Mindfulness track and the Reflecting on Positive Experiences track could be quite soothing for you.

    We are also wondering what support structures you have around you to help with the boys and your Dad…do you have family or friends who can take some of the load off you? While it’s clear you have amazing inner strength (shown by your ability to express yourself so clearly on the forums), you are essentially in need of emotional intensive care of your own. Now is your time to call on those around you for help and support. Is this something you think you are able to do?

    , we hope you will keep posting and let us know how you are going and what other ways you need support. We are here for you as you navigate this very difficult journey. 🌸


    I received a phone call on the 28th of March to say my parents had been involved in a car accident, a car had crossed from the wrong side of the road and hit them. 4 weeks ago today we turned off my mums life support as she sustained horrific injuries. My dad is alive but with broken bones and wounds. I have seen enough evidence to know my mum is gone but it’s like my brain can’t comprehend it and I feel like I am going insane. I live on the same street and have two small boy who adored their grandparents, my parents were apart of our everyday lives and I feel completely broken. I have no idea how to get through this or to even feel a sense of real ness instead I spend my time pleading to wake up and have her walk through our gate to see my boys and have a cuppa. I miss her so much and I feel like I lost both parents that day because my dad is grieving the traumatic loss of his wife of 50 years. I’m trying to parent my two boys but I feel like I can barely breath most days.


    Hi Sam Thanks for your kindness and support.

    I feel sorry for your loss and totally understand the feeling when there is not a lot of support in Australia.

    My whole family is also overseas and I only have a couple of family members in Australia.

    I also understand the fact that emotions come back and go away sometimes for no reason.

    It is also unpredictable, I guess it is just built in our brain to switch on and off before it would explode and break our immune system.

    It is OK to cry and move on with life carrying the sorrow for your loved ones.

    They never die if you remember the time you spent with them.

    I would like to think about my dad whenever I want even it kills me when I think about him.

    I also believe when my time comes, he will pick me up from heaven.


    Thanks @onlinecommunity for your kindness and support.

    I have been seeing Psychologist for the past few months.

    I think I am getting better with some improvements on both my mental and physical health.

    I have now moved to a stage where I wake up with missing my dad so badly but I can control the time I think about him.

    However, sometimes I just feel sad and down because I know he is not around and I wish to go back to the past so badly.

    Processing the fact of losing him is unbelievably hard and killing me.

    I have positive thoughts about moving on with life but it is just becoming so hard to be truly happy from the bottom of my heart.

    The pain never goes away but it feels like tsunami that keeps coming back and goes away after taking down my emotions.

    I guess it is not the fact that losing him is unacceptable but losing him in such an early time when I still want to spend time with him.

    I don’t understand why he would leave us so early and god did this to him.


    Thankyou SamWalks totally agree this forum does feel a safe place to share . Your Nieces’ comment does make sense. I know my partner would want me to find a happy path in my life that is all we ever wanted in life together. I do want that but I guess I have to be patient with myself . It’s so hard to think it’s possible right now. At my partner’s wake I would say to family & Friends ” Our Love will get me through ” I guess once the heavy weight of Grief slowly lifts this will happen . I can be a strong person & find things to occupy my time…positivity has always helped in the past with life’s challenges… it is still within me…just gets scary doing it alone. I will continue to light the candles & draw strength from our love xx
    I wish you love & strength in your journey SamWalks xx


    Hi tiki2072016 – I totally relate to how you feel. The new reality of living without the one you so loved means living with the yearning to be with that person, and, I guess, re-wiring your brain to experience the present as a new normal. I’m not sure when that new normal ‘kicks in’ but I would imagine it would take a long time and one will never not miss the person who has gone from your life. My niece said something so true to me the other day (it was her mum who died): that my sister would want us to create our own new memories to make us happy when we reflect. It is so hard to know how one is going to feel ‘on the day’ when you organise to meet up with people, but I think it is important to try to plan things with other people to get your mind from the ‘inside’ and distracted by social life. Be kind to yourself and this forum is a great place to be safe and share.


    Love & Strength to All xx I’m at a “lost” feeling time . What is my life all about now that you’re not here . We only ever had Furbabies & Tiki is helping me xx I have ventured out to a few social events which can be good but everything is so different without you ?
    How do I move through this “lost” feeing time ?


    Pip, you can tell yourself positive messages. These can help to reframe events and situations. I tell myself that I am strong, that I am a survivor, that I can do it, that the sun will come up again tomorrow, whatever it takes to get me through that rough patch or bad day. It is too easy to beat yourself up, something that I catch myself out doing. So, being conscious of the negative thoughts and defeating them with positive replacements, which I say aloud and over again if needed, really helps me. I like to think that my mum is able to see or know what is happening and I find that both comforting and strengthening. I talk to her and my dad to acknowledge them and tell them that I miss them both. Though you have lost someone physically from your life, their love and connection with you remain, so hold on to that and treasure it. Hang in there and be true to yourself. There is no easy way to grieve.


    Hi its GFlintham thanks for the replies


    Hi its GFlintham thanks for the replies
    I just wish I could help more people because I’ve lived the depression.
    But I did not help my wife because she hid it so well.
    She is angel in sky looking down on us now.
    My aim is to stop others having to go threw what I did


    It will be 2mths tomorrow that my loved one of 41yrs passed away. I’ve had a sad day today … try & think of what might trigger it but I don’t think it’s a trigger Grief just changes all the time. I had a few busy days doing maintenance around the house but today I rested but I actually woke up sad ??? I think I can be better if I have things arranged to do but with feeling so changeable it’s confusing .
    Sending Love & Strength to All here xx


    Hello @Pip I so understand the ebbs and flow of feelings. It astounds me at how much it affects the body so much as well as the mind. There are many things I have yet to do since my sister died like look at photos, drawers that I know have things she gave me, songs that remind me of many things. Today I’m having a ‘good day’ strangely as yesterday was horrible with such deep sadness I just wanted to crawl into bed. I think accepting that constant change in mood is helpful although it is hard for those around you as they don’t know which version they are going to get every day.


    Thank you @GL Friend – I agree that even though it feels strange and awkward to cry and allow emotion to flow, it has to happen at some point so probably better to let it out when needed, like a valve.

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