how do I fake happiness when I’m struggling to even breate

I lost my beautiful 18 year old daughter on the 9th of October, she was pulled out of a pond , she drowned and the cpr that brought her back after 20 minutes of working on her , made her bleed to death , she drowned twice once in the water then again in my arms on her own blood , we think two girls threw her bag in the water and she went in to retrieve it . It’s left me and my children at rock bottom, there will be a huge inquest and criminal investigation now ; I wish I didn’t have to do Christmas but my youngest who is only 12 wants to do it , my other children 15 and 17 don’t want to celebrate a day that we have always said is about family , but my family is in ashes with my daughter, we are so sad , we can’t be greatful for what we have , when we lost one of our own , it’s so hard and the news just keeps getting harder and harder to listen to , im broken and i the light at the end of the tunnel is nothing but a match that’s yet to be lit , we miss her so much , how do I stop myself from crying and breaking down any more , how do I sit and watch them cry , it pains me to know they see and hear me crying all the time , I’ve asked family not to give me any presents only the kids , and not to forget my daughter that just passed , I can’t bare to not see her name under the tree , has any one ever got through Christmas only months after you’ve watched your daughter die , or a few weeks before the postmortem came back and it was worse than you imagined, please any tips would be greatly appreciated


I’m so sorry you have lost your beautiful daughter and in such a horrible way. This is also my first Christmas without my son, he passed in January. Like you I wish I didn’t have to do Christmas but I will have both my other sons visiting me so I just told everyone there’ll be no decorations and we set a place for Thomas at the table. It’ll be totally different to last year as Thomas asked me to spend Christmas with his family in California last year as he was going in for his open heart surgery on Boxing Day. We were all having fun and now 10 months later………my heart is truly broken. I have no advice on how to handle it but I do think it’s healthy to cry in front of people, they will cry with you. You’re going through the most unimaginable pain, it’s so raw and it hurts so bad. Only us parents that have lost a child know the depth of the pain you feel. You loved your daughter so very much so you grieve her as much and more. I certainly don’t think I’ll ever get through this but I’m told you do.


My heart goes out to you. Such a traumatic loss and so sad for you and your children.
I lost my son unexpected just before his 16th birthday in 2020. So this will be the 4th Xmas in my broken upside down world.
We are all different and our grief is experienced in our own way.
I dont know how I got through the first one. I dont know how ill get through the 4th. I tell myself it is just another day.
I know it sharpens the pain. The pain as you said Xmas and how its about family. It cuts inside a little more because the family is not the same. Your much loved daughter wont be there and this stabs inside.
I was shaking in the morning, we had covid lockdown so it was household only. I went to his grave first in the morning afterwards I wanted to go to bed and curl up and cry and then my son said mum you have to do this and you can do this.
I didnt think that I could. Candles were lit, I have a candle holder with him printed on it, his face smiling on the front… so this was on his placemat. The dinner was made and we had a quiet Xmas meal. It was okay. There were tears in the bathroom and inside it felt so sad. In reality it was just another day. I got through it. We were okay.

You have your youngest who is 12, as a mother you will do this. You will want to make it bearable for your children. It is okay to have presents to smile and to laugh and also to cry. Allow yourself to cry and allow yourself to go into auto pilot and try your best to make the effort, no matter how draining. It will be okay. You can be mother for all of your children. They will help you as you them. Breathing excercises helped me as well.
You mentioned an inquest which is another painful thing to endure. Try not to think of this, its difficult but it may not help to think of this.
The pain you feel is because of the love you have for your daughter, you love your children all of them :heart: you can do this.
Sending a warm encompassing hug of love to wrap around your family. And peace, sending peace too
Take care mother of 4
From mother of 2 xxxx

I’m sorry you lost your son , I hate that I can’t be the mom I once was , I was funny kind caring , and always smiled , I was a brilliant mom and now I can’t sleep so I’m so tired the washing is pulling up , I haven’t got dressed all week , or even cleaned my teeth , I miss her so much and I call her all the time and text her , I carried on seeing her for a month before her funeral , and I watched as her beautiful face disappear, the last time I seen her face it was gone , I know I shouldn’t of done it to myself but I couldn’t help it , I had to be with her , I had to watch over her no matter what she looked like or smelt like , she is my baby , she was so bad , I washed and dressed her too , I kept saying “I gave Chloe her first bath I want to give her the last one “ and I did but as you can imagine she had a post-mortem, i was so strong as I washed and dressed her telling the staff member all about Chloe and how much fun we had over the years , I did , then she was picked up and that broke me I had to close my eyes for the first time I couldn’t look , as they lifted her tiny body like you would a dead body , the moment I was in the chapel of rest I broke down , just like the last time I seen her face I remember saying to the staff member who was amazing “she’s definitely gone isn’t she is never going to get her back am I , I really thought she would wake up my brain kept seeing her breathing” and she just held me as I cried , I have two hand casts of her little hand , the worst part of her body was seeing “Harry property “ craved into her legs , some horrible guy had caved her up after she took some drugs , it was so bad , he will face justice , but these girls how could they do it to a small girl like my daughter she looks about 14 , she still had her braces on . She had them on for 5 years and she was going to have them removed the following week , im so so very sad , I forgot to wash my son’s trousers for school and he’s so cross with me , I just ended up walking off and crying , my family won’t help out with them , they need more than me , they all promised to be around for us but I knew they wouldn’t , I have to stop calling family as they could be having a good day and I destroy it , it’s only been 9 weeks I can’t recover that fast , I just had the postmortem back three days ago ; how do they expect me to go back to being this prefect mom they thought I was , I’m such a bad mom right now , is it so wrong of me to ask my 15 and 17 year old to just help me out a bit , or do I just leave them to it , I don’t mean loads , how can I cook a Christmas lunch , when I struggle to just stand , my panic attacks are getting worser , I see her , I see her drying I feel her chest on my hand I lay on the bed with her as she died , it’s like I can feel her ice cold hands in mine her face on mine , I hope she heard me , I’m glad she never woke up because she would of known again , the thought of her drowning and knowing she was drowning the pain she would of been in , it’s hearts me so much , if I didn’t have the three kids I would of killed myself by now , and I know that upsets family but it’s not them that’s keeping me here , it’s my three children , it’s just so painful , I’m scared will the kids be taken from me if I don’t recover , they need a better mom than me right now ,


You need to be your own best friend. I get that you havent washed wanted to do anything. I was the same, i had a waterfall of ‘shit’, unwashed clothes hanging on the banister. I had no motivation. This will pass, things are raw and all encompassing your pain is not just emotional but physical.
For now take slow deep breaths when you need to, hear your own voice… make it so that it will reasure you. Hear your voice telling you that you will be okay. That you are valuable and that you are a good and loving mum who has been heartbroken.
Your children will understand. Try to make it easy for yourself buy in roast potatoes buy in the dinner and gravy and whatever you are planning for Christmas. Or ask someone, family to help you.
Order online if need be.

Maybe also see if the doctor if can help. There is nothing wrong with a bit of support. You are living your worst nightmare.
May be your son doesnt know how to behave. He is very young. maybe he is cross that he has lost his sister. Cross with the situation. Maybe he is scared. Tell him you love him and youre sorry that this is happening to your family. Tell him to ask for things he needs so that you can help him. Tell him you will be okay he will be okay and so too your other children. You all will grieve in different ways but being honest means that you wont bottle it up.
Hear your kind voice. Hold onto something of comfort when you feel overwhelmed.

It sounds touching that you bathed your daughter. I did that to my son too. I also saw the blood drain from his face in the last hearbeats of his life. We were there at the beginning and the ending. It is so so sad. There are no words.
Hope you dont mind me saying this. I know we react differently and you know how to comfort your children the most.
Please feel free to message back
Take care xx
Lots of love Lynne

I cant imagine your situation I can only share my experience my daughter died of cancer on December 9th 2 years ago and we had her service on 22nd
and having to watch her struggle to die. Her organs failed and it took her a day to give up and stop breathing (she struggled all day on one lung) she was 39yrs old. The trauma is inconsolable even now I remember we got together that Christmas and tried our best to get through the day cried from the 26th for a week hated new year what is there to celebrate another year without her. it doesn’t get better I am just hanging on it’s all you can do. Christmas doesn’t have to be happy for you because it’s not, Just go with what you feel I try not to regard Christmas as an important time. Reduce its importance just try and be kind to each other for now. I hope you have support to deal with the investigation as I cant imagine the effect that will have on you all. I feel your pain and when you have good times remember your lovely daughter is with you now and always. Take care


@Motherof4 please don’t think of yourself as a bad mum, you’re a grieving mum and that means you can only do so much at the moment. You are a great mum and you will get back to coping better but it’s a long process. We’re all just taking one step at a time, don’t rush things. It’s nice you bathed your daughter, I couldn’t bring myself to look at Thomas after his autopsy, his body was gruesome when he died and I just couldn’t face seeing him carved up even more. I thought like you that I was on my own when he came into the world so I was the last one to leave him in the hospital. I constantly remember how he’d send me silly messages and how he loved dressing up and in America they have loads of opportunities for that! My doctor suggested some antidepressants, just to help me as I was crying constantly and they have helped a bit. I was worried I’d be spaced out but I’m not, I’m just able to face the day a bit better. I still cry a lot and I had thoughts of joining my boy but I couldn’t do that to my other boys. My eldest son came out when Thomas started getting really ill so he knows how bad it got. I need to stay around to make sure he’s not suffering any mental health issues. I don’t do as much as I used to but I’m happy to just get through the day. Be kind to yourself, it’s early in the grieving process for you.

I just want to give up I’m so tired my body hurt medicine just makes me feel sick , I know there is no pill for grief , I miss her so much and some days I think it’s all a lie and Chloe is alive and she’s still here , my mind will stop calling her and texting her shouting her name “Chloe please come here” and she never comes , I don’t know how to function, my children are who I am , I do ever thing with them , and now one’s gone , im so sad , I can’t believe she drowned , I can’t believe she felt the pain of drowning being so frightened , fighting to stay a float for a what , a stupid joke by two girls that had followed her down the dark path , they didn’t even call for help until she was under the water and gone , it makes no sense to me , I’m angry , I’m so sorry for every one’s loss , I don’t know why I thought some one would tell me they no longer feel the pain of burden , that they went back to being the person they were before your loss , im never going to feel any thing other than pain , how could I , I love Chloe I love all of my children , I don’t want to do the normal mom stuff right now I want to grieve and cry in my bed with my dogs and her cat , I just need some time out for all of it before I have to go in and face the music face those girls , do you all still dream of your lost one ? I started dreaming again and all I do is search for Chloe in my dreams , I can remember every dream I ever had , so I wake up crying as I tell myself she’s not missing she’s dead , my dreams of our future of trips in places we had never been or grandchildren , I only got 18 years it’s not fair , I’m so sad I just think that death would be my relief, but I can’t because of my children , but it doesn’t change the way I feel , it would be easier to die the pain would end , but my children have no one else , nor do my pets my crazy jack russels and cats and Chloe’s cat who’s about to have kittens , she would be so happy , when Chloe first past my mind was trying to think of ways to get her back , like have another child with Chloe’s dad , and it will be my Chloe again , and the other part of my mind told me how stupid that was , I even went as far as beg the devil to swop places but nothing , she’s gone and I just don’t understand why , thank you for all your kind words I do listen ,

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@Motherof4 you are still a great Mum, you need to give yourself a break. You’re grieving your daughter and there’s no guide on how to grieve, no rules to follow. Have you been offered counselling or bereavement groups you could attend?

I just aim to get one thing done a day and if I get two done that’s a bonus. I’m nearly 11 months in and it’s still very raw.

Please be kind to yourself, if it was a friend of yours I’m sure you’d say the same to them xx

Oh darling, how heartbreaking for you. Try and do a minimal Christmas for your children, they are young and so so sad. Try and get through the day being kind to yourself. Remember what an amazing mum you are. I pray you find strength from somewhere. Please stay in touch on this site xxxx

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Hello Mother of four - I lost my daughter tragically 2 years ago this January. One of the thoughts that gives me a tiny bit of comfort is that she’s still my daughter, I’m still her mum. That doesn’t change ever and my love for her goes on. That is not changed by her death. When people ask if I have kids, I say I have a daughter but she died. It’s the truth, losing a child is the very hardest grief of all. It should have been me that died, I’ve had a life. We don’t get to choose tho and things are how they are. Fate played its nastiest trick on parents like us. I don’t expect or even want to ‘get over it’. I’m slowly, slowly learning to ‘live with it’. There’s no timeline and it’s lonely but sharing on here shows we aren’t alone. Others are on this excruciating path and we can be sure they understand because they’ve lost their child too. For myself I don’t feel as bad as I did in the awful first months. I can sleep and eat and function. There’s that thread of still unbelievable pain and loss and it feels like it’s in my mind 24/7. I think I’m learning to multitask with the grief. I can laugh and feel pleasure but it’s always there in my mind. I also think that losing a child causes real clinical trauma which is not easy to manage and makes it harder to get through any day. So everyone who comes on here and says how they really feel is helping others too. We are ‘normal’ to feel so lost and broken and anyone who’s not experienced such a huge loss doesn’t really understand. I find the hardest thing is to be kind to myself. I feel I can’t deserve kindness cos I didn’t somehow stop her dying. We don’t have that power over life an death. No parent does. Sometimes, tho it as hard as can be, we just have to keep on keeping on. We are actively doing that day by day. I send you love and kindness. You deserve it. Xxxxx


I have lost my 18 year old daughter, 4 weeks ago. She was at her dads at the time, after being a typical teenager and deciding to move in with him a year ago. He didn’t even speak to me first about it to discuss it. She had type 1 diabetes, something I managed for 13 years, as hard as that was. My ex husband failed to register her at a hospital for a year, despite my desperate attempts to explain how dangerous that was, then she had sepsis and he didn’t even accompany her to the doctors to my absolute horror. Her cause of death is still unknown but neither my ex husband or his family are now speaking to me as I wanted her funeral in her home town. Before this happened I was already in quite a dark place after losing my cousin and then my mum. Then I split up from my partner of 7 years due to the emotional toll in took on our relationship. My ex wife then decided to hack all my social media, blackmail me, send my private messages to various people and threaten me. I was in such a bad way that I barely dared to leave the house. Which has added further grief to me over the fact that I didn’t see my daughter as much as I usually would. I didn’t want her to see me in that state. I’ve developed acrophobia, severe OCD, body dysmorphia, become withdrawn, socially anxious and quite frankly most days I’m suicidal. I actually thought I’d hit rock bottom BEFORE my daughter died but how wrong I was. There’s much more that’s happened but it’s so complicated. It’s too much for one person to deal with. Grief is a terrible thing but when people can’t be understanding and empathetic towards you it just makes you worse. I have no parents, grandparents, siblings, partner and have just lost one child and the other is in pieces and doesn’t answer the phone to me. Broken is an understatement so I can relate to everything you said.

@Howlingbell I am so sorry for the loss of your daughter. You have had to deal with a lot. Type 1 diabetes is hard too, my son Thomas, who passed in Jan, had it and so does his younger brother.

Grief is hard, especially when you don’t have a support system in place. I finally got to a local bereavement group this week and I found it very helpful and will keep going. I won’t lie I had to force myself to go, I’ve been staying in since my son passed and I nearly cancelled but I’m glad I went. Also I have a brilliant GP who is seeing me regularly to keep updated on how I feel as I get incredibly low. Just take things slowly, there is no set way to get through it.