Hi, I never wanted to be on a site like this but need to see if it is just me or is everyone who has lost a loved one feeling guilty of feeling better at times and feeling helpless when all is bleak and desolate.
I lost my dear wife, Elaine, of almost 50 years , on Christmas Day 2020, to Covid caught when she went to hospital for tests. We were almost paranoid about keeping safe throughout 2020 and were tested Covid free before she went for the tests. I have tried to fill my life with cooking, exercise, shopping and anything else that can fill in my days. The days drag and the weeks fly in and am dreading Christmas Day. I don’t want counselling, just to talk to normal people about my feelings.


Dear Gordon,

You write about your dear Elaine with so much love. It must have been so hard for you to lose her like that, after you had both been so careful not to catch Covid. After so many years together I can totally understand there are times when as you say ’ all is bleak and desolate’. I have seen this first hand when my dad died and my mum was left on her own after they had been together for more than 60 years. I think you are doing very well by trying to fill your days with the activities you mention.

From my own experiences, and from what I have read in many posts on this site, I know that grief is a rollercoater of emeotions and it is quiet normal to go through lots of different feelings, including feeling guilty when their are times where we feel better. When we experiences happy moments, it can seem ike we no longer grief, almost like a betrayal of the person we loved, but I don’t think that is true. It hink the people we loved and lost would be happy for us. I would think that your Elaine would want you to enjoy those better moments.

I can understand that you are dreading Christmas Day. Have you thought about how you would like to spend that day? Do you have children and grandchildren who are likely to invite you and is that what you would like to do? Or would you rather invite them, or be on your own that day? Everyone is different and hopefully others will respect your wishes and do all they can to support you on that day. xx Jo

@nodrog I didn’t want to be on a site like this either… I don’t believe many of us do. Funny thing is, though, you will thank yourself for taking the step, I’m almost certain of that. You’ll be surprised just how helpful people can be. Oh I don’t mean with counselling-y type stuff. You can get a book for that, heaven knows there are enough of those, all saying pretty much the same when it boils down to it. I’ve read my fair share. But what you will get on here - and you ask for it, in fact, so that’s a great start - is talking to normal people about your feelings. Remember they/we/and you if you stick around will probably put your foot in it a few times…yes, even the bereaved who are going through it themselves don’t know what to say sometimes or how to go about saying it either. I’m having a struggle myself right now in fact : I want to tell you you have had one hell of an upheaval, I want to be able to tell you things will sort themselves out and you are doing so many of right things, exercise especially, and not to dread the anniversary because somehow or other you will know what to do as that time comes close. All of which is just a pile of words. The only real thing I am saying is read everything that people say on here. There’s always a nugget of help in there, no matter how badly expressed ( like this ). Nobody can really tell you what to do, in the same way no one can tell you how to feel - there is absolutely NO road map whatsoever. All there is is this bunch of other people who are going through or have been through something roughly similar, and they can sort of point the way. Stick around. It does help. I think. I ducked out for a few months, thought I was doing just fine. Few days ago realized I was just treading water, not living at all…so here I am again.


@Kath23 Yeah, the friends thing is a sticky problem. Actually sometimes they do expect a call or a text or a cry for help. Difficult not to knock them for that, but maybe they find it hard to know what to say or do and so steer clear. It’s not always out of selfishness ( but usually, you’re right, it is ). If they know you don’t like to ask, they maybe don’t want to puncture your pride, or damage what they see as you eventually seeming to cope by dragging things up again.
See what I mean. Tricky, sticky, awkward minefield.
And I know I am boring even my dearest friend when I “go there”…or at least I think I am, and that skews what I say or do, or want to say and do.
That’s the value of here, this site, really. I hope Gordon can latch onto that quick. Use it. Bleat and whine or howl if he wants to, ignore us if he wants to, and by all means get angry at the rubbish we all talk if he wants to. It’s partly the fact that we don’t KNOW each other in some instances actually helps to get out what we ( " the bereaved" ) need to say. What we think we want to say we don’t know how to anyway…well I don’t. So I throw some stuff down, read tons of what other people read, and sometimes feel better for it. Like I said, there’s usually something to be picked out of whatever anyone writes.

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Hi Kath I too lost my husband suddenly in March 21 & got comfort from you saying you also are in denial as I’ve tried to explain it to friends how I feel but they look at me as if by now I should be getting better but I think I will always not believe it’s happened, gone in a split second mid conversation, where did he go :pensive:

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Hello @Dolly60. Forgive me for barging in on your conversation with Kath, but what you wrote just rang true. I said in my first post back on here after months of not being, that in the early days it can sometimes feel like there was a borderline chance that there’d been some mistake. I was wondering how it was that I was feeling much more c**p now 18 months further on. I too expected to feel better, not worse. I suppose it’s the realization hat it hasn’t all been - (well I compared it to hide and seek, sort of “OK, you can come out now” kind of thing ) - some sort of sick joke. It’s sinking in slowly that it isn’t. That’s what I think explains these feelings of misery anyway. Oh and I am aware that describing death as a joke might seem like I’m diminishing it. No way. Not at all. It’s just a way of trying to describe the insanity of it all. Like you say, there one minute and not the next. Who in their right mind can explain that?

Thanks for offering your kind words & it is like a joke like you say in my head as if it’s a prank like how can he have just been fit & healthy, talking about our retirement to where there’s nothing, but actually a nightmare I cannot wake up from.

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Hi Gordon, I also was married over 50 years and feeling the same emotions as you ,and its so painful and lonely I try to keep busy like you ,but you done the right thing and started to talk to people going through this hell.Finding out that your not the only one suffering.we need to talk but you can’t talk to family or friends but on this website you can just rip with your feeling.Please keep talking to us and it will be good for you.Hopefully we all will be in this together.

Thanks for your chat. I am a different person now that Elaine has passed. I don’t expect people to understand me. I was Elaine’s number one to go to and she was my number one. within my family and relatives, at best I am someones number four and I don’t expect that even with all the love in the world they will understand my position.
Even though the offer is there, like you I will not knock someones door and ask for help or a chat.
Thanks again for this perspective on my new life.

Hi Kath23,
Sorry in my earlier reply I forgot to address your name. Excuse my naievity in responding properly.

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Hi Jo64,
Thanks for your kind words and encouragement. Yes I am taking one day at a time and not expecting too much at any time. I have a son and two grandchildren also a brother and two wonderful sister in laws and a great couple of brother in laws also nephews and neices.
Although I have offers, at this moment I am thinking of spending Christmas Day in my own home with the memories of our times together on this special day. Don’t want to sound morbid or a nutcase but I will set a table for two and grieve that Elaine is not there to share. I would not want to put a down on other people’s day. Does that sound selfish on my part or am I nuts?

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Thanks Wil58,
So far had more replies than I can handle all at one so working my way through thanking people like yourself for their kind thoughts. I will try not to put my foot in it by my track record is littered with those events. I will try and digest all the experiences you guys have had and make something that helps me feel like I may belong in this group rather than a casual visitor looking in to see what it’s like before opening the door to come in.
Thanks again for your thoughts,

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Hi Kath
First time I feel able to understand what I am going through by just reading you guys experiences. I will keep in touch with this site as it is so far the only sense I can find in my crazy world. Sorry if I reply out of sync or intrude in another conversation as I haven’t worked out how the timing works. It’s not like Facebook or messenger where it is a one to one until the conversation is ended. Thanks again for your supporting words.

@nodrog thanks for that. I know I’m useless at the hearts and flowers stuff. That’s not me me it wasn’t us. Please stick around. I know we all sound like nutters one way or another but we’ve all got something that might help. Thanks for responding but don’t think it’s a duty. We’ve all been through the can’t be ******** bothered days. It’s going to work out OK isn’t it. Don’t ask me. Hell if I know. It will. It will. My mother lost my dad in an instant barely sixty. She soldiered on. God knows where she got the strength and the guts from. Stick around Gordon . It’ll help. Not a lot maybe but everybody has an experience that WILL fit with yours and it will be a help. I would put money on it and coming from a stingy git like me that’s the truth.
Thanks for the response. Means a lot.

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That sounds good. Don’t worry about sounding nuts. I’ve done stuff that’s absolutely barking. People say falling in love is like going mad. So what’s so wrong about when someone you love is taken away. I really don’t see a difference.

@Cgregory I only wish we could. Sometimes I feel like effin and jeffin worse than (used to say this in the old days) a docker. Have to rein it in a bit.