Anger after my dad's death


It will be three months on Wednesday since I lost my dad. My dad was a fit and active 70 year old man and prior to the cancer diagnosis he hadn’t had any health issues.

I am 36 years old and really struggling with feelings of anger at losing my dad. Since dad passed away all I seem to be able to notice is people who have passed away in their mid 80’s and many people I know still have their parents into their 50’s.

I feel angry that doctors told us that dad was cured from the cancer and I feel guilty that dad went through two surgeries and radiotherapy in 2020 and it didn’t help him. The treatment was so tough but he never complained. We attended every check up together and he relied on me. I feel like I let him down by not knowing he was ill.

My dad was the best father and I know in terms of quality time that I couldn’t have spent anymore time with him. I try to focus on this but I still feel like we should have got another ten years or so. I wasn’t ready to lose him and feel so sad that he is missing out on life.

I feel selfish feeling angry and envious as I know people lose children and parents at a younger age but I find it even more isolating not being able to voice how cheated I feel.

I wish I could find a way to let these feelings go but along with the constant sadness and longing I also have this underlying feeling of being cheated out of time. I don’t know how to move past these feelings. I am speaking with a councellor but I still feel the same way. I don’t recognise who I am anymore.


So sorry for your loss. I feel the anger too, and I think thats normal and part of the process of healing. I recommend leaning into the different emotions and not judging yourself too harshly on how you feel. Anger is a healthy emotion.

My Dad was 70 when he passed away two weeks ago and I am 28 years old. He died of prostate cancer, which, if caught early, is treatable and not life threatening. I also found out recently that my grandfather also died of prostate cancer. This discovery made me furious. Why didnt anyone catch it early? This could have been avoidable etc etc. I feel jealous and angry that other people still have their father’s, but i am also learning from others on forums like these, that I am not alone. And others lost their father’s younger than me, which helps me put my loss in perspective.

Know that you arent alone in your suffering and please be kind to yourself xx


Hi Pippa,

Thank you for your reply. I’m very sorry for your loss too.

It’s somehow feels worse when it’s what doctors call a curable or treatable cancer. My dad had throat cancer which is also very treatable so much so that the doctors were convinced it was a new cancer when it came back. I think this has all added to the confusion and torment.

It’s like being thrown into a completley new world and also like I’m a new person at the same time. I’m not normally angry by nature so it’s difficult trying to navigate the loss of dad and all the changes.

Posting on here and communicating with people like yourself is helpful.

Sending lots of love.


Hi Katherine,

I am in a similar situation, let me just start by saying f*** cancer. My mom passed 9 days ago with breast cancer at only 54 years old. Similar to your dead also “cured” in 2020 and then cancer came back and she only survived a month after diagnosis.

I too feel guilty and angry, so angry. I feel angry because I feel like the doctors didn’t do enough, or cared enough. They ignored her and kept brushing her complaints aside. They didn’t start the second round of treatments right away when they could have.

I also feel angry at life and at time so I understand, it’s different from victimising ourselves, it’s actually almost like a sense of fighting for what we want and deserve but there is nothing we can do anymore.

Unfortunately, these feelings are the easiest to hold onto and the ones that will consume us the fastest. What helps me to keep going is thinking that my mom can feel and see everything, so I try my best every day. I talk to her or write and I can almost imagine her answers. Your dad would be very proud of you, I am sure he would tell you he lived a very fulfilling life and that now is your turn.

Don’t feel guilty or compare yourself to others. You have the right to grief and your feelings are more than valid <3

You got this.
Gigi x


Hello Katherine
You have every right to be angry
Loosing someone that you loved so much it’s just not fair
The feelings your having and jealously that other people are still alive is normal
When my husband died he was only 49 I would see other people drinking smoking etc and wonder why he died -Like you said you would never wish death on anyone

I had counselling but that just seemed to make me worse
Then 9 months later my mum walked out to an ambulance and never came back alive
That tipped me over the edge
I hated the world ,seeing people happy laughing enjoying life when I was broken with grieve

I started to write in a journal it helped me release my angry write things that I could never say to anyone , I think it helped me cope with life and get through the dark days and nights

In time you will learn to cope with your grief but at this moment it is too raw for you
Please keep talking and sharing your feeling on this site it might help you cope

Take care


I so feel your pain. I lost my dad nearly a year ago now. He was 75 and i absolutely adored him. He had prostate cancer ( terminal) but his cancer was fully at bay and he was doing great. But one Tuesday morning he developed a kidney infection. Cutting a long story short he developed sepsis due to inadequate care. It could have fully been avoided.
I also believe i played a part in his not being dealt with as quickly as he should have been and I’ve have beaten myself up everyday since. Not a day goes by that i don’t cry and feel so sad and angry that i didn’t do more to help him that day.
He still had time left, I’m sure at least another 3 to 4 years were stolen from him.
Everyone tells me to stop beating myself up over what happened but it’s always there and it’s so very painful to deal with.
I loved my dad with all my heart and he was always there for me all through my life when i needed him, always.
But i do know one thing if he could still talk to me he’d be telling me off and telling me i did try and that i have to stop feeling sad, because that was my dad, he’d want me to live everyday as if it was my last and just accept that he’s gone and that he’s never coming back.
Thinking of what he would be telling me helps.
Maybe you could try the same and imagine what your dad would be saying to you now about the anger and hurt you feel. I’m sure he wouldn’t want you to feel this way, and that’s because he loves you :kissing_heart: xx


Hi Gigi,

I’m so sorry for the loss of your mum.

Cancer is such a cruel disease, taking our loved ones so quickly and we can’t do anything to stop it. You are right about feelings of anger and guilt consuming us. I think these feelings are still partially stopping me from accessing all of the happy memories and turning me into a very jaded person.

Trying your best and thinking of your mum watching over you is very wise. I will try the same and also try to accept that this is just how I’m feeling right now.

Thank you so much for your reply.



Hi Scottie,

I’m very sorry for your losses.

I have never lost anyone this close to me before and have no knowledge on what is normal or not. It’s comforting to hear you say that these feelings of anger and jealousy are normal. I have so far found grief to be very isolating as no one has the same experience and no one in my life seems to mention it now but on the inside I feel like screaming sometimes.

I may try the journaling, I haven’t felt in the right headspace for it up until now but I would like to find an outlet for these feelings.

Thank you for your reply.
Sending love.

Hi Louise,

I’m sorry for your loss. :broken_heart:

I can tell how much you love your father from your words.

It’s terrible to lose someone unexpectedly, even if we know they are ill to lose them sooner than expected or to think more could have been done is very difficult to live with. It makes us second guess everything that happened even though we are holding onto events that can’t be changed.

When I have said that I feel guilty or upset that I couldn’t fix dad’s illness people have told me that I took great care of dad and he knew I loved him unreservedly. Deep down I know that dad felt safe because he knew I would look after him. It doesn’t stop me feeling this way though, I think maybe I just feel so hurt that I am looking to punish myself sometimes.

My dad would hate me to be sad. When he found out he was ill he said I must go forwards and not allow myself to be sad all the time. I hope in time I’m able to do this as feeling this way also makes me feel like I’m letting him down! He would give me a good talking to that’s for sure.

We are fortunate to have had people who love us so much.

Thanks for your reply. Every reply has given me something to think about about which is helpful.

Sending love.

Hi Kathrine,
Thanks for your reply. We have no choice but to carry on with our life’s without our wonderful dad’s now.
We’ll miss them and never forget what they meant to us.
My dad was enjoying his new great grandson who is adorable, but sadly he died when he was 14 months old.

I will make sure he knows everything about him and what a remarkable man he was.
You take care xx

Hi Katherine

It is incredibly incredibly unfair. I lost my Dad in October - one horrible night I had a phone call from my Mum to inform me he’d had a heart attack which was fatal. He was literally there one minute, gone the next. I was 28, he was 61. I have a 4 year old son. Yes I feel very much like I’ve been robbed of - as you say 10, 20 years. I couldn’t walk around a supermarket without looking at all older people and thinking why is my Dad not here. But as much as he was young at 61, (and is too younger than your Dad) as others have said on here, people pass in there 40s 50s and even younger. We can cherish the time that we had with them and of course we should have had more, but simply it wasn’t meant to be. And I say that 50% at peace but 50% reluctantly, as there were too so many memories that should have been made.

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Oh and to add to my pain, likewise with you comparing ages as I did, NONE of my friends/colleagues/relatives/family around my age have lost a parent. Everyone has two parents. It is horrific. And prior to my Dads’ heart attack, he was a healthy man!! It just doesnt make sense…

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I too, walk around the supermarket looking at the oldies and feel jealous they are here and my poor mum isn’t. She didn’t ask for much in life, but loved a stroll around Morrisons before vascular dementia took control 🥹
Mum passed on NYE, I’m heartbroken and bitter x

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I remember a particularly hard trip to Smyths prior to Xmas and all I could see around me was grandparents with their children which made me incredibly sad.

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Hi Galaxygirl,

I’m sorry for the loss of your dad.

It isn’t fair that you don’t have your father anymore. I think it is unfortunately human nature to compare what we have lost with others and when someone has been taken abruptly the hurt and anger can feel all consuming.

My brother has said that I would never be accepting of losing my father and it would always be this painful. I think when looking for answers I have some misplaced idea that I would somehow be more able to accept the loss if dad had been much older or if we had got more time with him.

My dad lived a full life and although he didn’t want to leave us I know that he never felt short changed.

It’s very confusing trying to navigate all these thoughts and feelings.


Hi Shhilly,

I’m very sorry for your loss.

It’s so difficult to lose a parent.

Always here if you want to chat.

Thank you so much. This forum, and a dementia one has been a great comfort. We ‘grievers’ at times feel like the only one in such a situation, but this reiterates we unfortunately are one of many in the same boat :broken_heart:xx

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Hi again @Katherine86

As usual i can relate to what you write, i feel you articulate the confusing feelings of loss well in your posts.
Your love for your dad really shines through.

I dont think its selfish to feel envious of others getting more time with their fathers or to feel cheated of time.
I personally am hoping the rawness of the feeling reduces with time or new perspectives.
It is isolating finding it hard to talk about this with folk who havent experienced it - though i am very glad that they havent and i hope they dont for a long time! It is good to have this forum as a place to share and good that you are speaking with your counsellor too.

I feel angry about the “covid years” reducing from usual the time i got to spend in person with my Dad, but then on the other hand grateful he didnt get ill until late 2022 as if it had happened during covid we wouldnt have been able to be with him at the hospital.

Take care.

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Hi Forestcat,

Thanks for your message.

Some of the posts on here have been really useful and there is lots of advice. I think feeling anger or envious is a normal reaction and I’m not sure what would have been enough time with my dad. My brother told me that thinking more time would help is still ‘barganing’ but he is not as emotional as me and much more clinical.

I hope the rawness of the feeling eases too. I feel somewhat like this is manageable sometimes (between the sadness) but then it feels like it’s back to when it first happened.

I have been struggling to sleep lately despite feeling tired. Last night I couldn’t stop thinking of dad in the hospice and I felt ike it was dawning on me again that I’ll never see him again. It sounds stupid but dad used to always tell me day or night he was at the other end of the phone and I just wanted to speak to him last night more than anything.

I really want to try and get sleeping my pattern back on track without going to GP as I know for some people it’s necessary but I don’t feel like medication is personally a solution for this, for me, and I’m wary of grief hitting me again further down the line.

I can see why you would feel angry about COVID depriving you of in person time with your dad. I am maybe fortunate in that situation as I was able to see my parents due to living alone and after the first year I was able to work from home. I’m so grateful that I got to work from home full time and then partially as my job allowed me to see my dad a couple of times each day (he would call in and take my dog for a walk for me during work).

I really hope we both can start to heal from this at some point and it’s not so raw and painful.


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Everyone has something “they do” to help…as if this were the hiccups

I’ll speak very differently to this as nothing will help sometimes for some people.
Complex Prolonged Bereavement Disorder can be a problem and chances are that if you’ve made it to this disorder, you going to not get rid of it so easily.

The situation was so unacceptable to you, that it instills anger …
To stop being angered will never work, your wired for it,
To reduce the frequency and strength of your anger and to get out of angered states quickly is possible, but besides the point, you should be angry for a period, but trauma has probably sunk its teeth in you in this event and is likely the real issue, your reliving the event over and over, that has to stop if it the case.

Anger was made for protection and survival in a kill or be killed environment, we evolved and now anger now confused and miss placed, tangled in complexity by the creation of languages and overdriven in use and consumption by us.
Anger is more useless to us than any point in our timeline as a species, it’s used in freeways and bars now, and a family death has a right to engine anger, it’s it’s old prime directive and the event caused trauma, which means your feel the emotions of that event agin and agin when you think of the event … so your re living the event Hundreds of times a year

put your focus on trauma because you will never accept the situation without anger, but you can stop reviewing or emotionally auditing this event