How to live after losing both parents

I lost my Mum unexpectedly in February whilst my Dad was being treated for Myeloma (he was only diagnosed last November). I still lived at home and became his carer. Sadly I also lost my Dad in the middle of September and feel completely lost and empty as to how I am going to be able to continue without either of them. I don’t have a partner or children so have lost my main focus. Has anyone experienced the same/similar and able to offer any advice on how I can start to get through it? Thanks

Hi Delilah1980,

I’m so sorry to hear that you have lost both your parents - that is a lot of grief to deal with in such a short space of time. It sounds as though you are feeling very alone, and I hope that being part of this Online Community can help even a tiny bit. There are lots of supportive people here who understand what it’s like to lose a loved one.

While you wait for more replies to your post, you may also find it helpful to read and reply to some posts from others in similar situations, for example:

If there’s anything I can help with, or you have any questions about the Sue Ryder Online Community, just let me know.

Community Manager

Hi Delilah,

So sorry to hear of your loss, I lost my mum to cancer on the 5th of June 2007, and my dad passed away on the 29th September 2017. I can totally understand your grief, the sense of emptiness, from my own experience, the pain at times is so overwhelming, like you I cared for my father, and now that he’s gone I feel there’s such a void in my life. Not sure if your religious or not, but I’m a Hindu and certainly my faith has helped/guided me in the past, and continues to do so presently. I really believe they are in a better place. Of course the healing process will take time, as you know there will be good days and bad days, for me remaining positive is fundamental, as a writer I’m trying to delve into my work, it isn’t easy as memories continue to resurface, what I would say is this, cherish the incredible lives your parents had, and embrace the love they gave you, in the end you did your duty as a loving daughter. If you are inclined to do so, write your thoughts/feelings down, expression of the soul really does help mend a broken heart. Take Care. Nilesh

Hi, I have lost my mum suddenly on 10/10 and can’t stop feeling as if I’m to blame and the Drs too as this was mums 3rd Stroke and tests between the first two took so long I feel more could have been done. My dad also has terminal cancer and only has about 3mths left, my brothers may be homeless as mum was tenant in council house. I don’t feel I can work and am signed off sick as I can’t sleep properly remembering what happened. Just feeling a bit hopeless right now so any advice welcome.


I can fully imagine how you must be feeling, the initial shock is suddenly overtaken by a pain in the pit of the stomach. But believe me there are so many supportive people out there who can help you in the coming months, rest assured your brothers will get all the support needed from the local authority. All I can say about your dad is give him all the support you can, each moment spent with him in the time he has left will ultimately help you in the future. Staying strong through these difficult weeks/months ahead will take all the resolve you have, but it will get better as time passes, hope this helps.


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Hi. So sorry for your loss. but immediately I must say you are NOT to blame for her death. I felt.exactly the you after my mum died but it is your grief and loss and shock and disappointment at not being able to save her, keep her, that is making you feel like that.

For all of us, there is a time to be born and a time to die. Just like there is a time for spring and summer, autumn and winter. These decisions belong to God. And thank goodness. I would hate to be responsible for these things.

What helped me cope was someone telling me it was ok and natural to feel devastated and cry. That your mum was worth the tears.

Also it is ok to feel overwhelmed. There is a lot going on for you. Try not to get too far ahead of yourself. Grieve for your mum and make the most of the time left with your dad right now.

The stuff with your brothers can be dealt with if and when it happens.

Lots of love meantime

Feeling lost and empty is completely normal. Since you have no one to force you to move on and cope right now, take the time to grieve and love yourself. Pamper yourself. Indulge yourself in things that make you feel better and slowly but surely you will feel better and one day you will find yourself moving on. The pain and loneliness might feel like they will destroy you but they won’t. You will survive.

Like you I am an only child with no partner. When I lost my mother in 2003 and my father in 2005 I felt totally bereft: my main support and all my family had gone forever. I sought help from a CRUSE counseller and medication (anti-depressants) from my GP. Its a cliche I know but time does heal. However I still feel very alone after 12 years especially at Christmas and on my Birthday. I find talking to a professional counseller does help me. I hope this will help you…Best wishes

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