Could have should have would have

I lost my dad 2 weeks ago tomorrow and I am a total over thinker always have been. But the decline in my dads health still had me in denial that it was going to happen. Did anyone suffer the awful regrets of so many things and how did you move forward and leave the toxic thoughts behind? Thank you

1 Like

Hi Penny7

The regrets and guilt come thick and fast in the early days. I dont know if they ever go but I can reassure you that they lessen as time goes on.
My mum had a mini stroke on the 2nd June 2019. I knew there was something wrong but she shouted at me to go to work and stop treating her like a child. Said she just needed some rest.
Later that night my partner forced her to go to a and e where they confirmed a TIA
11 days later my mum had a massive brain hemorrhage and died. I felt such guilt that I must have seen signs and could have got her to the doctors and saved her.
I also look at photos of her last year. She had aged terribly going from being quite muscly and strong to becoming thin and tired. Why didnt I get her to check it out? I knew she was using heartburn medicine alot. Her post mortem showed a historic heart attack we knew nothing about.
The list goes on. 17 months on I still feel guilt but I also accept that my mum was 74, of very sound mind and failed to take responsibility for her health. Or perhaps she didnt want to?
What you’re feeling is normal and natural and will gradually subside but it’s awful I know.

Hi Penny7

Just like C1971 says, such early days. It will almost certainly feel less raw with time. Try not to hide from the bad feelings, the rage, the anger, all of them. That’s part of the process. It takes as long as it takes. I replied to you in particular because I too “overthink”…in fact this morning I was re-thinking the death of a parent 20 years ago, and what you say chimes so much. I left the hospital on the night they died feeling two completely different things. No more than that, knowing two completely opposite things. They were somehow both true. I knew they would not live long, I knew they were going to bounce back. I still to this day cannot work out how I could have “known” two completely different things. I suppose that is what you call “in denial”. It had not happened to me before, nor since. Just try to remember that guilt anger frustration regret all of them are absolutely normal feelings, crying or not crying, getting ratty, all of them. Best advice I can give you for moving forward…feel it all, don’t push it away, give it time. Time isn’t the healer, YOU are. Some people get to feel like they can function again fast, others don’t. It’s maddeningly vague. It sounds like no advice at all. But for me, that’s the best I can do. I’m sorry for the hell you are going through.

Hi penny , I’m also an over thinker and I too struggle a lot with the regrets , every day my over thinking mind seems to hit me with something else that I should have done to either ease my girlfriends pain or help more before she died . First thing in the morning is the worst for me personally with the thinking side of things .
Your definitely not alone in having regrets.