Bereavement stomach anxiety

I lost my lovely happy husband on NY eve and I have found life so difficult trying to take one day at a time I cry a lot at any time and I have panic attacks However the last two weeks I have had stomach anxiety (similar to taking an important exam and it keeps turning over) I want to know is this normal ? I can just about cope with the crying but this is debilitating at times and wakes me up Wish I could feel slightly normal - on the outside I look ok and people feel I am coping well under the circumstances- if they only knew the amount of crying and stomach problems I have. Is this normal anyone?

This is entirely normal, it’s early days, it’s strange how people think that you can be fine after a few weeks, they have obviously no experience of what you are going through, it does gradually get easier, in as much that you learn to live with it, have you spoken to your GP, they might be able to give you something to help, be kind to yourself and take a day at a time, sending love, Jude xx


Thank you - I am antidepressants which helps. I know I’m only starting my journey but I have only just started getting stomach anxiety. It’s good to talk to other people who really know the feelings you can’t explain. Good luck to you. Jan

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I have this stomach anxiety too, and I don’t know if it will work for you but I find calomile tea helps to ease it, I like the camomile and honey, but the a few flavours you might like to try. Hope it helps xx


Thank you I will try the tea. Mornings when I wake up are the worse. I wish you well and I hope yr sons give you comfort All I know it’s like living a nightmare that goes on and on.

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Grief has two faces, the public face you show to others and the private one you wear when you are alone, the tears, pain, sickness etc.

Are you having any counselling?

Be kind to yourself, take care xx

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apparently it’s the stress hormone cortisol that causes this stomach hijinx. I have it too, in fact I pooed my pants for the first time as an adult in recent months due to this (sorry if that’s TMI).

When stressed you’re producing adrenaline and cortisol in order to allow you to fight or flee the danger. Cortisol pumps blood into your arm and leg muscles. It also increases your heart rate and oxygen intake to help with this but shuts down your digestive and other processes not needed for such a response.

So you can try some relaxation techniques like yoga or breathing exercises daily to reduce your body’s time spent producing cortisol but in the depths of despair like many of us are there is only so much you can do before the panic/stress feeling starts again. The one consolation is that it means your body is working correctly (though that sucks i know!). Take care!


I am suffering with these cramps after my 47 Yr old daughtetr passed away. I become frozen with fear

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I wonder if this could be treated by my doctor.

Hey, really sorry to hear about your husband. I lost my Dad last year and what I find really difficult to deal with is the anxiety my grief brings. I get overwhelming feelings of panic, like I can’t cope. Thankfully one hasn’t resulted in a full blown panic attack (been clear since 2017) but the thought of one is scary enough. I’ve been particularly bad this weekend, brought me to my knees pretty much. When I feel like that, I’d much rather have the tears and missing Dad as opposed to the ‘can’t cope with life anymore’. In terms of stomach anxiety, I can remember feeling like I had a knot in my stomach. I think the ‘impending doom’ has definitely lessoned over time. God bless us haha. Wishing you well xx

Dear PamByrd

I am so sorry that you have lost your daughter. Grief causes so many different emotions giving us additional concerns as we try to deal with our loss. Please do speak with your GP not only about the stomach cramps but also any other concerns you are having. I know in another post you mention the feeling of isolation and lack of understanding. Sue Ryder volunteers may be able to direct you to support services and you should perhaps also discuss this with your GP.

Take care of yourself. Try and rest whenever possible.


I am sure your doctor can help you. Do go and get help. Writing on here helps too, as there is always someone who will sympathise and hopefully give you tips on how to cope. I find that being on here helps me feel less isolated. My family is wonderful but due to Covid rules, I can only see some of them and I so miss the others.
I can’t think of a worse time to lose anyone. Lockdown has made it so much more difficult. When we get through this, we will deserve a medal!

Is there anywhere I can get more information on this? I know about the effects of stress on the body but can’t find anything specific to grief. I have a lot of physical symptoms and apparently it is grief but I don’t know how to deal with it. I need some ideas and you’ve written more clearly here than I’ve found elsewhere! Thanks.

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Welcome to the community @TerryLady. You’ve taken a positive step posting here. I wanted to link you to a few articles which you might find helpful reading through:

How can I cope with bereavement -

Physical effects of grief and bereavement -

I hope these are helpful. Keep posting here whenever you need to :slight_smile:

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Thank you Aife :blush: that’s a great help.


It’s five months since my partner died of covid and it is only in the last couple of weeks I have felt better. I have had loads of stomach problems. Nausea, cramps, terrible trapped wind, changes in bowel habits (sorry) Lost a stone and a half in weight. The doctor said it was the grief, but I was beginning to think it was more serious, so relieved that it is now returning to normal.
I did find out though, due to blood test that I was b12 deficient so now have a lifetime of injection s for it. Xxx
Take care Jacky

I’m sorry you’ve suffered such a big loss. {{hugs}} Yes, “driving test day” type stomach sufferer here! For me it genuinely is caused by mental stress which in turn creates physical body stress. As I have never reacted well to antidepressants so I opt for herbal supplements, such as Kalms, Twinnings Sleep tea bags (currently on special in Asda for £1.50 a box) or camomile tea. I have also found lots of stress reducing videos on YouTube. I highly recommend Michael Sealey’s range of self hypnosis videos which come in a huge range of topics. He is so calming and I can’t believe it’s a free resource! As others have mentioned, it’s always best to get a GP check up to be sure, but I hope some of these help. X

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Hi all,

I agree with you Gib79, my gp prescribed zopiclone, they made me sleep but the next day I felt like zombie and really on edge, I only took two because I couldn’t cope with the side effects. So I went down the herbal route too, Nytol are quite effective, take them half an hour before bed, and a while ago I started with tinnitus which the doc said I’d stress related, so I’ve found it less bothersome if I leave some music on very low, there are loads of apps with sleep music on, I use Spotify. Hope you can find something that works for you xx

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