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Loss of a Loved One

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  • #13405
    onlinecommunity
    Keymaster

    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.

Viewing 10 replies - 11 through 20 (of 79 total)
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  • #14478
    JanSB
    Participant

    Hi Pip. It hurts when your mum dies and nobody knows how much except yourself. My mum died a year and a half ago. I miss her every day. You are the only person who knows how you feel and think, and you don’t have to explain or justify that to anyone. You may find that the feelings that you are having will fluctuate and that you don’t know when the intense times will happen and when the easier moments will be. The grief line counsellors have been a great help to me, when it is hard too hard to cope and when other people find what I am feeling a bit too much to manage. If this helps, love your dad and treasure your time with him. He is experiencing intense loss too. I heard a song on the radio yesterday, which helped me. The lyrics said that when someone you love dies that they have gone ahead and are waiting for you. I am holding on to that idea. Your feelings are unique. Take care.

    #14479
    JanSB
    Participant

    Thank you for your reply. I have found that I was managing well, using tools from the This Way Up online course about worry. It is exhausting to do this work, the thought challenging and the written notes. However, it is a valuable resource and reinforces that behaviour change requires effort and a conscious commitment to sustain it. Last weekend I slipped back into a dark place, of intense grief. It was when I was going through this agonising mental pain that I started to realise that now that my husband is gone, that it is permanent. It clicked for me that it is a permanent loss of him from every aspect of my daily life, all the routines which have developed over more than 22 years, and that all of the plans and hopes that we had together would now not include him. It became clear out of all of the anguish that I really was grieving deeply as though he was dead or as if he had died. I started to analyse it a bit more rationally and I realised that my loss and pain were the same as if he had died. That helped me to cope. If I think of the death of our relationship and the irreversibility of that fact, I can cope with it more easily than when I was feeling earlier on that he had “gone” and when I had some element of hope or unrealistic thinking that he might come back. I am not saying that I don’t miss him and our life together. I am saying that my resolve to care for myself and my future has been assisted by the conscious thinking that he is gone permanently and our relationship as it was is now dead. I have rationalised to myself that I may slip back again into deep grief as the time comes near for him to take his things from our home and for the details of our separation to be formalised and enacted. Other things might also trip those sort of intense feelings again. The difference when it happens again is that I am not going to wallow in it and feel that I am unempowered. I feel this loss because I love my husband and had expected to live the rest of my life with him. You can only lose someone deeply if you love them deeply. So, my integrity is intact and I am reminding myself that I was honourable in my relationship and that I tried as hard as I could and was not the person to end it without notice. Somehow I am growing stronger in a new way and I am consciously not beating myself up like I was when he announced that he was going, weeks ago now. Thank you to the Grief Line counsellors who have assisted me greatly when I have called and when the pain was at the worst I experienced. You are an amazing team and a very helpful service.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by JanSB. Reason: Typing errors
    #14481
    Pip
    Participant

    GL friend and Jan SB it is so good to hear your wisdom and experience. I think not having anyone I know who I can relate to about my mum has been hard, so hearing what you have experienced and also the self talk and actions you’ve taken to help yourselves is so reassuring.

    Today I went for a decent walk with the dog, and I spent some time with my dad. I baked with my son yesterday. I think I’ll try to focus on having some positive connections and doing some self care.

    But I think what you say about better and worse days is a real thing, and it does seem to be quite unpredictable so far.

    I e noticed I feel better for a bit after being with friends or family, but it also exhausts me. Like the effort of trying to be normal and not just talk about Mum because that’s what’s foremost in my mind is just huge!

    I think I probably do have to have some other places to turn to when my emotions are too much for others. I don’t think it’s fair to burden them, it’s just so hard to carry that burden myself. If that makes sense ?

    Thank you again for your reflections, I will keep reading and trying to learn from them.

    #14489
    gflintham
    Participant

    Hi lost my wife to depression/she took her life on23/10/2019 7days short of our 9th wedding anivercry.
    I want to move forward but get stopped by the grief.
    I have rebuild my life, because wife has gone she was there all time for me.
    Life is just not the same. I Married her because she ticked all the boxes I wanted.
    I just want some type of normal to come back
    To be contented somewhat happy
    I basically know what to do.
    But its hard making new friends
    and helping hand goes a long way
    Greg 143

    #14490
    GL friend
    Participant

    hi @gflintham
    im sorry to hear about your loss. it must have been horrible to lose your wife just 9 days short of your anniversary.

    i think its hard to make friends when we are grieving. i struggle with making friends too. There are many “people that i know” but i dont feel close to them. i think because i was close to my loved one who died also.

    maybe i need to put myself out there more, be more vulnerable with others. i tend to put on a strong front most of the time. hmm… you have given me a lot to think about and reflect on for myself, so thank you.

    you said you want some type of normal back. i wonder what would normal look like for you at this time?

    #14500
    onlinecommunity
    Keymaster

    Hi @gflintham, welcome to the Griefline forums. Our hearts hurt for you as you navigate your grief after the loss of your wife. Losing a loved one to suicide is so very traumatic and devastating, and all too often it is caused by depression.

    It sounds like she was everything you ever wanted and a constant companion who was there for you all the time. Some people say our grief is a measure of the love we had for the person we lost. It seems the love you shared was very special and something you can treasure always.

    Sometimes it helps to allow yourself time and space in your day or week to remember the happy times you had together perhaps by looking at photos, holding a memento in your hand or reminiscing about her with other people. It’s a form of ‘continuing bonds’ that can be very healing. There is more information on continuing bonds and other coping strategies here on the Griefline resource hub.

    At the same time, you can allow time and space in your days to dedicate to rebuilding your life and ‘moving forward’. It’s good to give yourself permission to do both. You deserve some ‘normality’ and happiness in your life again and its really positive that you are seeking this. You’ve identified finding friends as something which will help you to adapt to your new life. This is a challenge many bereaved people face but there are many ways to open yourself up to new people. The fact that you have reached out on the forums is a fantastic start and you are a welcome new member of our community.

    You might also like to try this exercise to meet like-minded friends;
    Create a table with 3 columns –
    1. MY INTERESTS (eg. walking)
    2. WHY I AM PASSIONATE ABOUT THIS eg. walking allows me to stay fit and see others in my community
    3. HOW I CAN ENGAGE IN THIS INTEREST WITH OTHERS eg. the local council has a walking club.

    Fill out as many interests as you can and then start engaging in them. You can always add more as they come to mind. Hopefully, this is helpful. Do others in our community have more suggestions for making new friends after losing a loved one?

    We hope that you’ll stay connected with us and let us know how you’re going. We are here for you. 🌸

    #14509
    SamWalks
    Participant

    Hello @janetge
    I feel so much sadness for you and am in a similar position. One thing I have accepted is that grief is something that is completely different from any other emotion – sadness, anger, confusion. It stands alone as its’ own experience and can overwhelm you just when you might have had a ‘good’ day or two. I read somewhere that grief when coupled with trauma can result in ‘complicated grief’. COVID-19 was traumatic for everyone, let alone those of us who had our loved ones dying and we were unable to be with them. I hope in time we can both accept that life can be OK without those we have lost. Try to stay optimistic – I know I find it very hard to do that, but I also know my sister would want me to be OK so I try for her.
    Take Care
    Sam

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 6 months ago by SamWalks.
    #14512
    SamWalks
    Participant

    Good afternoon
    I have turned to this forum to try to find a way through the sadness and loss of interest in life that I am feeling since my sister D died on 12 October 2020. She was in England, where I am from, and died of breast cancer having been through awful treatment since January 2019. I went over twice in that time, and had booked to be in England for months in 2020 to be with her, and my mum who is 93 next week and alone in aged care. Then in March 2020, COVID hit, and my sister called to say the cancer was in her liver. I knew what that meant. I packed a bag as borders were closing, but it was too late. I couldn’t travel there without getting locked out of Australia (I would still be there now). D had to shield for months as she was having chemo, going to hospital on her own, with no visitors, no comfort. In July 2020 we had a conversation, that her life, was not a life anymore. The side effects of treatment were so terrible. She said she wanted to stop treatment, and I said I totally agreed. When she died, I couldn’t get to the funeral but watched via Zoom. It was beautiful and seeing the wicker coffin made it real. I broke at that moment. However it is still so surreal to me that she isn’t there – that I won’t see her again when I can eventually get over there. Our mum doesn’t know that D has died: it would be too traumatic for her and she has dementia so would most likely not remember, but suffer all the same. It is such a sad, sad situation and I am desperate to feel OK. Some day/s are OK and then suddenly I find myself crying in a shop, or just so, so tired. I think it will help to express how I feel as I don’t have a lot of support here in Australia.

    #14513
    GL friend
    Participant

    hi @SamWalks

    i am sorry for your loss. i relate to you when you say you feel you dont have a lot of support in Australia. i moved here several years ago and felt quite alone after the loss of my mum. she was overseas when she passed and my circumstances at the time did not enable me to travel to her. i traveled afterwards and it didnt help me feel any better. she was still gone.

    to me, you are so lucky that you got to watch the funeral on zoom and be present in that way.

    there are times i still break down at random moments but i like to think thats what my body needs and i allow it to happen.

    i hope my words have helped in some way. my heart goes out to you

    #14514
    Pip
    Participant

    Reading your experience SamWalks I can relate in part. While I’m lucky some of my family came together after my mum died, the funeral was during the circuit breaker lock down, and so family overseas and interstate (where most of our family is) couldn’t travel to Victoria and only a small number of people could be present. It was awful that so many people who love mum couldn’t be there – to say goodbye or support each other.

    I also relate to the surreal feeling. At the funeral I kept looking at the coffin and I couldn’t believe that my mum was inside. The thought was almost appalling.

    I’m also experiencing those overwhelming sad days and I had one today. I thought maybe I was doing better because I’d had a couple of days of feeling half alive, but then bam! Today I struggled to find the value in doing anything. Everything feels an effort and I’m just so tired. In a cruel twist, I also can’t fall asleep!

    I’m so sorry for your loss which is exacerbated by distance and COVID. I hope you find this discussion helpful. I have found it helpful in relating to the experiences of others and also learning from them. I think it’s comforting to know you’re not alone in your experience of grief, even if the people on here are‘virtual’.

Viewing 10 replies - 11 through 20 (of 79 total)
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