Guilt

A little while ago the grief ,anger, and guilt hit me all of a sudden and I couldn’t stop sobbing.
I went over the whole nightmare experience of my partners sudden death.
First of all guilt that I didn’t call the emergency services quickly enough, hatred for the neighbour who didn’t stay in the road as asked waiting to direct the ambulance. This meant I had to leave my dying partners side to run down a track to the road, precious minutes lost.
I just had to type this to rid myself of this anger and self loathing.
Are all these usual reactions to this horrendous situation?
I feel guilty for what I didn’t do and feeling such hatred, I’m so ashamed of my reactions.

When loosing somebody I believe it doesn’t matter what emotions you feel because they are all normal for the situation you are in and your mind and body’s way of reacting. I get very very angry too some times and feel guilt. When on the phone to the ambulance I was in the middle of doing CPR and they told me to leave my partner and run down stairs and open the door for when the paramedics came. I look back and feel terrible for leaving him even for a few seconds. We will all if and but, because we have and are experiencing something so terrible. Just remember at the time you would of done your best you possibly could xxxx

Thank you Chloe, deep down I know I’m being unreasonable and trying to blame everyone for this sudden loss whereas there was probably nothing that could have saved him by that time. The grief is overwhelming.
X

All the emotions you are feeling is totally normal. I also feel sad, angry when you see any couples and guilt when i gave my partner CPR that I wasn’t doing it properly. We are in shock especially when it’s so sudden.

I think guilt is one of the many emotions that the bereaved go through; I’m struggling to cope with all of them but it helps to read that others are going through the same emotions. Multiple guilt for me - why didn’t we push for more treatment/alternative therapies, why didn’t I realise he was deteriorating, not just having a bad day; should I have stayed with him 24/7; did I comfort him enough at the end? Things I’ll never know the answer to, but on bad days it tortures your mind.

Your right it is torture when you think should have, could have , and it replays in the mind over and over.
Although it’s almost a relief to know your not the only one going through the same emotions at the same time I wish no one felt this way.

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Guilt has played such a hard part of my grief. Looking at the last photo I have of my wife I think how did I not see she was losing so much weight. Why did I not question her lack of appetititewhy did I not take the start of her stay in hospital seriously. So many things run through my mind. I punished my self by not eating, losing two stone I 10 weeks was my way of hurting myself. I’m still after 12 weeks only eating minimal. I cry when I eat I don’t want to eat, but I have to. What’s going on xx

Stevie my heart goes out to you.
With me it’s all why didn’t I do this and what if’s, with hindsight I feel there was so much more I could have done but would my amazing partner have wanted me to dwell on what if’s…I don’t think so.
Grieving is such a new and terrible experience but something that has helped me is just posting my feelings on line and being understood by others.
Xx

A sense of guilt and of self-loathing have been a driving force with me throughout much of my adult life. Inevitably it is all
So much worse since Eileen died, and my guilt feelings now don’t just revolve around the events and circumstances surrounding her death - whoops, crying now - but I get rotten flashbacks to incidents and behaviour over more than fifty years where I failed her, or simply failed to appreciate her.
She was far too good for the likes of me

I think we all look back and wonder what ifs. Trying in someway to blame ourselves for what happened to our loved ones. In reality could I have changed anything, I don’t think so. But it’s this guilt that blocks the good memories coming through. As you say hind sight is a curse in a way. Xxxx

Hi to you all
How you have all helped me to come to terms with the loss of my husband two months ago and the terrible guilt I have been feeling. My husband was diagnosed ten years ago with supposedly only a few months to live but I refused to give up and at times was driving him mad as I learned all I could and worked hard on diet and lifestyle. My lovely husband remained fit and well for over eight years, keeping him well took over my life before the dreaded C started to weaken him. Now I have so much guilt in me. Could I have done better? Should I have found more ways to keep him well? I nursed him when things became bad, did everything single handed. Refused help. Local Doctor and hospice made sure we had everything we wanted but respected our wishes. The last day of his life was awful. I couldn’t move him, wash him properly etc. I had to ask for help but non came for four hours and my poor husband was in pain. I lay with him and talked about all the walks we did (we are keen ramblers) and a few hours later he passed quietly with me holding his hand. Now the guilt. If I had let him go to the hospice would he have been more comfortable in his last hours. And now, how can I go walking again when he isn’t with me to enjoy it. What right have I to be able to do these things when he can’t.
The guilt of just being alive is so painful. If only I could ask him if he forgives me for that last day.

Hi Pattidot
Your experience sounds a bit like mine in that when my wife was diagnosed with brain cancer I gave up all my interests and concentrated on looking after her. The median life expectancy was 14 months and I’d like to think that my efforts made a difference. Each day I juiced beetroot carrot and apple and I drank half of it to show willing. I ordered various supplements, bought books on diets to fight cancer, made sugarless cakes and any other straw I could clutch at. She lived over four years from diagnosis but in the last 3 months went down hill rapidly. Over the years she had 2 brain operations, chemo and radiotherapy. She had reached a point where she kicked back against my efforts and I had to accept she’d had enough. I would have done anything for her but she wouldn’t have it.
She lost her mobility and ended up in hospital for almost 6 weeks. She couldn’t come home as there were no carers available, even when I offered to pay.
Eventually she escaped to a Sue Ryder hospice and they were great. She came home after 2 weeks there and lived for nearly three weeks with carers, district nurses and doctors all visiting. I will never know how much I helped or whether I could have done more but trying to get her out of hospital was heartbreaking difficult. As they hadn’t time or enough staff to get her out of bed and moving around she developed a pulmonary embolism which then made things even worse. I don’t think anyone deliberately let her down. She became a bedblocker like many others who can’t get out apparently.
We were keen walkers and I now go back to many walks we did together and immerse myself in memories of happy days.

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Hi All, I am constantly reflecting on the last few weeks of George’s life and reading about Pulmonary Embolisms, Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma etc. Why when we first went to A&E and it was obvious that they had seen something did I not push it. Why did it take a routine echocardiogram to find his cancer. Why did I not get him moving around more. Why did I not kick up such a fuss that the doctor’s had no choice but to change his blood thinning medication. Why did I not go into the ward the morning he died and be there with him, even though I did not know it was going to happen, why did I not go in the ambulance with him and went with my daughter in the car??? All these things and more go constantly round in my head. It is nearly 6 weeks since he died, I am missing him more each day. I don’t want to eat and I am lonely. I have gone from a happy little family of 4 in September to just 2 of us at home because my daughter left home just before her dad became ill. I know I am lucky to have my son, but he is at university locally and is always out. I bring George’s ashes down in the living room with me just to feel him physically near me and to try to feel less distressed and on my own. How did all this happen, and how do I live this life going forward? I am 52 and have no purpose now, it is all so sad.

I’ve got my wife’s ashes on the sideboard surrounded by photos of each grandchild. Her guard of honour.
I’d like to be able to tell you it gets easier and in a flash of blinding light your future will be revealed to you. The truth is very slowly, in its own time, things will get a little easier. I wouldn’t worry to much about the future. Hopefully there will be a tomorrow and you will get through it but you can’t plan it exactly.
In time you will hopefully work through the guilt questions and find some peace with that. Maybe there aren’t any answers just questions.
I lost nearly 2 stones in about 10 weeks but it’s going back on now. You will become hungry. You will become tired enough to sleep. Worrying about it a pointless waste of energy. It’s worth looking for opportunities to meet and talk to people. I’m best with people who don’t know my back story. It’s too early to worry about that and you need to regain some strength as it involves effort.

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The one thing we all have in common is hindsight. We couldn’t know how this was going to pan out. How could we we all did our best. We all had our loved ones best interests at heart. We beat ourselves up about what we could or shouldn’t have done. It’s hard but the end outcome was always going to be the same. Perhaps we should stop blaming ourselves for what happened we did our best xxxx

Thank you YorkshireLad1950, I think I am feeling particularly sorry for myself tonight because everyone seems to have gone back to their usual daily activities after the Christmas break and it is the first week I have really been alone since George died, and it is only Tuesday. I do work and have been back for the last 2 mornings. However, I had a couple of meltdowns today over some emails George sent me when we first started to go out. Sadly they have been deleted off the system and I cannot get them back. It just seems another thing I have lost. I just miss him so much, and yearn for him and our previous happy life which all ended so abruptly. He was not only my husband but my best friend and I feel a big part of me has died as well. Everything I go to watch on TV I find hard because we used to watch them together. I went to the supermarket earlier, it is a job to know what to buy to eat, and if I see anything that I would usually have got for him, I just get upset again. I loved cooking for George and looking after him. I even miss doing his ironing. I am thinking about doing some voluntary work at our local hospital, but that is where George died so I am not sure I am ready for that either. Sorry I am rambling, it has just been a difficult day today. Thank you for listening.

Hi Debra everything you are experiencing is the same as I am experiencing exactly and like Yorkshire lad the weight fell off me 2 stone in ten weeks. Eating is a big problem xxx

Hi Stevie, I know I told George I needed to lose some weight, but even by his standards this is a bit of a drastic way to do it!! The weight is falling off me and even though I am cooking for my son and my daughter when she is at home, I have no inclination to eat much at all myself. It is so different cooking for a family, or even a nice meal for 2 like I used to do on a Saturday night with a bottle of wine, I don’t think I will ever enjoy food again. They say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach and that certainly was the case with George. George was a widower, and I was looking after his daughter for him one day as our children were similar ages. He phoned and said he would be late home from work so I took Victoria home to put her to bed and whilst I was waiting I cooked him a dinner for when he got home and that is where our relationship began. My whole life for the last 14 years has been bringing up the children and looking after George. I have a good career but my focus has always been my family and our marriage was quite traditional in that I did most of the housework, cooking etc, which I was happy to do. As the children have grown up, George and I have just been so happy in each others company and now all that has ended, and I don’t know what I am meant to do any more?

Hi, this is my first post so hope I’m doing it right
Guilt for me is such a big part of my grief, I seem to think of a different thing to feel guilty about every day.
My husband died 10 weeks ago today, only three and a half weeks after being diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia. He had been feeling ill for about four weeks before that and the last 10 days before he collapsed and got taken to hospital were a nightmare. As were the next weeks. I had tried and tried to get him to see a doctor before he did but the one he liked was away and he just refused.
He had never really ever been ill in his life and when we were told very quickly after admission what he had and that there was no hope, he was in such a state of shock and anger. He had always been such a strong man and when he died he looked nothing like himself. I go over and over those weeks and the pain and mental torment he went through. People say how quickly he went but it didn’t feel it watching him and I so wish it had been quick no matter how shocking that sounds.
Thank you for listening

We all feel this guilt. It’s awful, all I see is my wife in hospital. Could I have stopped it from happening possibly but hindsight is a cruel thing. We couldn’t stop what happened. This grief is the most cruel feeling ever x

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