After the first year...

Late December, around Christmas, marked the one year anniversary of my father’s death.
I knew December might be quite tough, but a real fog came down and I really had to be gentle with myself in that time.
January felt like a cliff edge yet I just wanted to be there already, and out of the fog.
Luckily, it did lift, and I’ve spent the first part of this year, with lots of positive things happening and celebrations, I feel incredibly fortunate.
Until last Sunday, where unexpectedly, it feels like the fog has returned. I feel lethargic, have low motivation, wanting to isolate myself.
I’ve put it down to a few things…
I had good news of Friday of a job interview I did well in, it was a goal of mine since I was young to get there and a big topic of conversation for me and my dad when he was alive and so maybe not being able to share the news that I finally did it is hurting me.
I began grief counselling on Monday, although it feels little overdue and I’m finding it hard to dig back, now that I’ve moved forward.
And I guess, feeling happy again, high up even, I’m scared of the fall, and going back to the darker place I was in mid last year. I have a support network who I know will always listen, but I almost don’t want to speak about it, as times moved on now, for everyone and in some ways don’t want to seem as if I’m attention or sympathy seeking.
Any understanding of or advice on this would be so greatly appreciated.


Sounds a bit familiar, we just passed 2yr anniv of my dad passing. I feel numb, so many of my goals relied on sharing them with dad. So now I can’t be bothered with much :frowning: take time to think about the past and the future. Great that you will be able to talk with a Councillor.

I so understand the almost ‘not wanting to bother’ attitude and I’m no where near a year. It’ll be 16 weeks on Sunday since I lost my Dad. We were extremely close, literally the worst person I could’ve lost. I’m stuck in the grief, signed off work and really confused with what to do. I feel like isolating myself a lot too but when my boyfriend comes home from work I am glad there’s someone else around. My Dad was only 64, I’m only 27. I feel robbed of everything we will miss together. I’ve had to withdraw from my Counselling course at Uni for the time being. How did you cope? When did you go back to work? It’s so different for everyone but my anxiety is still so high.

I’ve been to a private Counsellor which was kind of good but she kept saying ‘aw you miss your Dad’ (is usually be in tears)… no fucking shit Sherlock! I’ve taken a break from it as I don’t feel in this situation there’s any ‘closure’. The outcome remains the same, I can’t change it. It’s the hardest.
I just don’t feel like me. A part of me died with Dad, and I think I’m struggling to adjust to this ‘new life’. I hate it.

It’s hard. My situation was different as I have two young kids so had to just carry on. They distract me well. I find I get ‘waves of grief’ but day to day I’m able to function. Good luck.

Hi there

Just wanted to say it’s really early days for such a loss and please give yourself time and kindness/compassion. Glad you’re getting counselling - if you feel like your counsellor is not saying the right things or supporting you enough you could always try someone else. I found the first few months very hard - did some work but motivation is still not amazing even after 9 months, although it has improved a lot since the early months.

Read books, watch ted talks on grief. Don’t back off from reading about it - it will help reassure you that your emotions - though powerful and difficult to bear sometimes - are normal and part of a process of separation.

Time is a great healer. It’s a cliché for a reason.

Take care x

Hey there

I’m not quite at that one year stage, but I’ve read you should expect certain anniversaries to be trigger times for the first few years certainly. With my mum I consciously tried to forget the date she died and I try to remember her on her birthday instead (she died a long time ago after a long illness). With dad I don’t think it will be quite the same but I will try to find a way to honour him on his birthday too if I can.

I know what you mean about the fog and not wanting to trigger a depression, but I have found counselling very therapeutic and crying has been easy (even for my mum years later) and I’ve usually felt lighter afterwards. Some things do trigger a different feeling but I think it’s good to process those thoughts about regret etc and your counsellor should be able to help you with that.

Best wishes,

V x

Hi there, thanks for your reply.

I know it’s still early days, but it’s hard to keep in mind when everyone else is just getting on with their life. I don’t have children. I have my partner, flatmate and best friend, that’s it. They’re all working so I’m alone a lot of the time. I’m still not sure when to dip my foot back into work. How long did you take?
What kind of counselling did you have?

I’ve ordered a few books and to be honest, they’re just sat on my book shelf. I might start one tomorrow actually, thank you.

Take care x


I found Overcoming Grief by Sue Morris very reassuring. I must say, even though grief changes you, they say, I think it also makes you a more real and empathetic person ultimately. My work is project based and sometimes it’s the odd day, sometimes longer term. I’d say why not try to phase it in gradually. Try a morning, then maybe a few mornings, and take it from there. You’ll probably feel more tired than usual so just take it easy. Lots of people take time off work when a parent dies. It’s very normal. I don’t get paid when I don’t work so it’s a bit different but sometimes you have to listen to your feelings and give in to them. It’s not weakness or feeling sorry for yourself. It’s sadness and it’s natural. You will feel better but it sometimes takes longer than you think it should.