Can’t listen to music.

My partner and I loved music - all music. Since he died I am struggling to listen to anything. I made a playlist for Brian - some of our favourite songs, some that just feel right in relation to his leaving me. I have just listened to Jackson Browne’s ‘for a dancer’ and I am in tears. Jackson Browne lost his first wife to suicide in the 1970s - the song is heartbreaking.


Hello Jaydel ,
So sorry for your loss . My mum passed away 7 weeks ago and I am living alone for the first time in 62 years . There are certain things I can’t do yet because of the memories they invoke . In time you will be able to listen to music and get comfort from it , it’s early days for both of us and we have to take care of ourselves and do things when it feels right for us . Take care and thinking of you .
Love Angie x

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I would also like to offer my sincere condolences. I hope you are both able to find the strength to cope with your losses.
I have been away from this site for a while, and when I saw this post, I had to reply.
I lost my wife 10 weeks ago tomorrow (Sunday 1st August). And I,like you, have made my own playlist in tribute to her. I’ve always loved listening to music and ever since her passing, songs have taken on a totally new significance. The song we could both agree on that we loved was from Titanic (My heart will go on). I can’t listen to that song without crying like a baby, but the words personally are ones I TOTALLY relate to. And I made her a vow that I would carry on especially for her and carry her with me in everything I do.

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replying to all of you here. I have just joined, came across this site by accident I think… huh! cant always remember , well I am 85 years old, married 50 years, husband died, just before this pandemic started. I go to local church, and that helps me a lot.. without that, I think I may have... well wont verbalise it, I also have a cat I feel responsible for…
Never lived on my own, ever… so that has taken some concentration. I also went off everything, music, we both loved music, I love reading, and gardening… just blanked out against all of it.
Recently, started reading a bit now, and been able to listen to some music also… the Lockdowns haven`t helped, or have they, now we are coming out of them,I feel more alone, as some church friends came to visit me.

so… it does, get better? easier? improves? well changes, and I am so fed up with changes…

I am not good at sharing, my family keep telling me how well I am doing! if they only knew!

what does help me is to read what you have said here, all of you… I so often feel so alone, now for a short time I feel less alone, less “strange” and now the tears are just rolling down.
so a quick thank you to you here. and yes, I pray a lot.


Hello Jaydel,

I don’t know how long ago your partner died but I hope you can hang in there and that music will come back to you eventually as that is what happened to me.

Like you, my husband and I had a life filled with music, we liked a diverse range of music and a lot of our jokes involved singing lines of songs at each other or other music related jokes. Since an early age music has been super important to me as my Dad loved music too. My identity as a teenager was all around my love of metal/gothic music at the time… i’d never had a day where i hadnt listened or sang music but when my husband died I also couldn’t feel any music anymore. I remember when I had to choose the funeral music (3 songs) it took me a full day and it felt so weird to listen to music again as I hadn’t done until then. I am not sure how long it took but there did come a day some time later where i felt i could try again with music and then it became a very signifiicant thing in helping me claw my way back to the life i am now starting to make for myself after 9 months, At first i listened to songs that made me feel close to my husband, even ones i didnt necessarily like but he did… now i started to listen to my music and also new music… it feels like my music taste also doesnt know what it is doing just like the rest of me but the emotional comfort of music is definitely helping and i am glad i got it back.

Take care of yourself, take it minute by minute and i will be hoping there will come a point where you can listen to music again. I am sorry you are going through this… it is just horrible…

p.s… there is a good thread on this forum called “songs” if you use the search function… whenever you feel up to giving it a try x

I tried to put in a link but not sure if it works for you


Hello Polnan,
I’m so sorry for your loss . It’s good that going to your local church helps you a lot . At the age of 62 this is the first time I have ever lived on my own following my mums passing , it’s tough trying to live alone . I have started reading again and I do the gardening when it needs to be done , I loved gardening before my loss . Take care of yourself.
Love Angie xx


Thanks FleurDeLis,

Have checked it out - looks great. Here’s one for you that I will try and post on the thread.

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My husband died 2 years ago. We used to go to lots of concerts and he loved all types of music. He chose the music himself for his funeral. I still can’t listen to music despite having almost 500 CDs. Not long after he died I had some builders working outside and their radio was playing Steve Wrights love songs. I cried more then than when he died and thinking about it now still makes me cry. I’m better than I was but I would love to listen to some music but I don’t dare.
Having said all that my life has moved along, particularly with the help of the Sue Ryder counsellor. I am eternally grateful to her.


Hi abvinuela. I have similar situation - been married twice - then met Brain and we were together 16 years - felt I was home. and we loved music - shared so much of it together - especially on a Saturday night - including a little dance to harvest moon! Brian only died 3 months ago so I’m not as far on as you and remembering him through music is so hard.

I think I may have said , in my first post here, that I have loved all music, all my life, then when my husband died,not quite 2 years ago, I couldnt listen to music, or read, another lifelong love of mine,, just flat, no desire.. strange,, but gradually, quite recently, I am able to listen to music, and I have started reading again.. I dont know what the answer is, just hope that , well “hope”? it will return…


That’s so strange Polnan. You describe me almost exactly. I used to read a lot and watch TV but now I hardly do either. I think it’s lack of concentration. I just hope my love of reading comes back. And listening to music.

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oh yes, lack of concentration seems to be the answer.I do wonder how much of the Lockdowns and Government , has affected so many of us, and being grieving seems to make it more difficult, I also struggle with everyday things… house cleaning! and paperwork, yet I was always the one to do the paperwork. Now I find I can cope with really immediate stuff, thank goodness I can do that, but planning, and , also I think I must be a reserved,private type person, I so HATE asking for help… Today I have to go put petrol in the car, husband always did that, I drove and paid! but I struggle with the petrol cap, and hose thing! quite stresses me out…
I do find it so helpful to share here though, so pleased I found this, it helps me to realise that I am not a freak, I am not alone even!

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Polnan - we could be twins! I also just can’t motivate myself to do everyday things. Cleaning the house only happens when someone is coming. And I had a pile of ironing which had been hidden in the spare bedroom for months. Then the Sue Ryder counsellor suggested I pay someone to do the ironing and cleaning. Fortunately I’m in a position to do that. So the end result is good but I still hate myself for paying for something which everyone else just gets on with.

sorry Abvinuela… but I have a strange sense of human, and try to , so often find the funny side of things… many people don`t get it… but you made me smile!
Ironing! ugh! I try to do a small wash and therefore small ironing, if I leave ironing I have been known to put it back in the washing machine, rather than iron it…
I could NOT deal with a huge pile… so little and often there.
housework, well , my windows … look a bit like they have lace curtains up there, (I jest of course! not really that bad, but nah! )
well I would have said that I live in a small house, end terrace, 2 beds, sitting room, kitchen, extension dining , well mess area! but suddenly , today, it seems toooooo large… I have thought of a cleaner… but, well I am reserved and quite a private person, so I manage to ut the vacuum round occasionally, like you, when someone is coming! today, I have two OCD friends coming to take a small tree down for me! I am really having to speak to myself…
small garden, but well … wild! wildish… I do a bit and a bit, and then leave it… dil (daughterinlaw) comes and does hedge, occasionally.
I think I am not going to put petrol in car today, I just cannot deal with it…
Lovely to talk to you Abv
ps… I just could NOT talk to a counsellor.

Glad I made you smile. I didn’t speak to a counsellor until 6 months ago. Believe me it has helped me enormously. We don’t only talk about my husband but my past, how I feel and occasionally politics! I have gradually opened up more to her.
Although I have always loved gardening, I also pay a gardener once a month so at least I can look out of my (fairly dirty) windows and see something nice.
I’m in a bungalow so it’s easily managed for a normal person. And don’t forget every cloud has a silver lining - I lost 3 stones when my husband died, and have never put it back on. Take care. Things do improve. I still have days when I sob my heart out, but I never know whether it’s because of the loss of David or just feeling sorry for myself. Please reach out to others. People love to be able to help you. You just have to ask. A lot of people don’t know the best way to approach you, so hard as it is, make the first move. X

Hello Jaydel. I just listened to your song,. I could not listen through Spotify so I got it on Google, i’d not heard it before and now I have so thank you :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

Here is one for you and if you use YouTube the way we share on the Songs thread is by using YouTube and then once the video is playing (after ads) we go to the bottom right and press “share”, this brings up a link you can press the “copy” button to paste in the thread and link the video directly. If you don’t have access to that though then just post in the thread the song and I or someone else will get the link for you.

Take care and here is one I listened to after yours (Let it Be by The Beatles, remastered version. I’ve had a rough 24 hours but feeling a bit more cheerful again now , I hope the rest of y ou can find some solace in music one day

Thanks for the info FleurDeLis and for the lovely Beetles track. I have started to get back into listening to music largely by listening to music I wouldn’t have listened to before so that’s really good. Take care and hope you are having a good day.

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Dear @Jaydel
I know exactly what you mean. Music meant so so much to us both. I had our list on Spotify & used to play full volume in our open top car. If it got to a song he didn’t like he would shout “sh*te” & I would just laugh & roll on to next one.
It’s the words in those songs that just break my heart. My husband really took in the words whilst I happily just appreciated the music.
It seems every song is about loss or leaving & hard to listen to now.
7 months & still counting. Life just stopped when covid took him.


Jaydel. I totally understand where you are coming from. Like you my late wife and loved music, she had a broder spectrum, but we both loved Rock and music on the heavier side. We loved going to concerts she was my rock chick. There is so much music that can really stir up so many emotions and after she died which is coming up 4 years playing any song was so,so hard. I wouldn’t say it’s any easier and I always end up in tears especially if it was a “special” song. One such one was Kate Bush/Peter Gabriel song called “Don’t give up” That was our song. I had it at her funeral service and will have it at mine. Now that was hard to keep it together but managed. I have kind of forced myself to listen to music we loved as I know she would be so angry with me for turning my back on music. Can hear her voice having a go at me about it. A time I really struggled was going to concerts. How was I going to make it without my Concert Buddy. There were two bands playing in Glasgow that June and I loved and I didn’t know if I could go, it was just over a year after she had passed. I knew I had to really try and go as could still hearher voice saying I NEEDED to go just as she would be with me. Thought worse case secenario is go and if it got too much I could leave, well went and got through them even with a few tears in my eyes for certain songs. When I got home the floodgates did open but felt she was there with me saying well done you did it. I still go to concerts but miss her being there and to be honest don’t see that ever changing as we were so intwinned by music. What you may find if you can listen to music again is that certain songs will take on a whole new meaning and they then can help. Hope this helps a little bit. There is no rule book on how to deal with grief and everybody is different we all take different paths to get through the grief though I still have tough days and that’s nearly 4 years. Ken


thank you Jaydel, I love The Beatles and this track is one i sing to myself to self-comfort many times before and after my husband’s death.

I’m having an okay day today, yesterday was not so good but overall I am so much better now (almost 10 months) than I ever would have believed I could be at 7 or 8 months…
The Songs thread has had some more activity in recent days in case you are interested. I hope you are doing okay… take care everyone x