Is this normal in Bereavement

Please I am looking for help/guidance.
My wife died back in May and like many others on this site I have suffered with many of the feelings or symptoms.
This is what I ve notices in the last month which appears to be slowly getting no better.
Generally I am confused, forgetful, lost etc
When chatting to friends etc I know what I am going to say, but when it comes to a name of somebody I just stop and mostly however I try to remember it does not come.
Now we all sometimes walk in a room and forget what we came for, but in my case its worse as say in the kitchen I go to get a plate out and get confused what I am doing. I look around feeling lost.
I say someone’s name in conversation but two minutes later when want to repeat it - its gone.
I cannot remember when people ask me what I did last week.
I am having to write all things down then to be crossed of after doing them.
I even wonder the other day if I should see doctor or is this just that my brain cannot cope with the bereavement?
I dearly thank any guidance on what is happening (PS I was I believe normal’ish before bereavement)
Many thanks Gordon


Hi there,

I am so sorry for your loss. It is very raw for you so your body is going through such a physical and emotional rollercoaster at the moment. Grief is such a powerful thing to go through.

I think that what you’re experiencing right now is your body’s way of signalling stress but also it’s a coping mechanism for survival too. If it is worrying you, perhaps have a chat with your Gp and they may offer some help.

When my mother was dying, I didn’t feel like eating or sleeping. But when I was talking on her bedside with a social worker, I felt hungry but didn’t want to eat. I then felt guilty and thought ‘Why am I feeling hungry on a time like this? I wanted my mother to eat, not me! But it was a way of my body telling me to that I need to keep surviving and living…

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Hello and many thanks for your thoughts it all helps me working out and understanding what is happening.
I think I will keep notes of all that is happening, frequency etc and if after 1 month things are no better I will see my Doctor.
Most of my feelings etc are in common with other peoples of this community but this appears different.
Anyway I thank you for replying to me and I wish you well for the coming months & years,
Best wishes Gordon

Hi Gordon,
I think that how you are feeling since your wife died is quite normal and you are only 5 months into the grieving process.
I remember after Pete passed away I seemed to get through the aftermath of the funeral and endless paperwork and felt relatively sane!! Then it gradually crept over me of the huge hole that I was left with and I became very forgetful for a while. I remember standing in the kitchen trying to figure out how to make a cuo of tea,… Did the water go in the kettle or the teapot first? Where were the keys for the car and so many other everyday chores that took me a while to sort out in my mind. The other puzzle was what to buy in the super market, all the packs looked to big for one person and I wasn’t really hungry but thought that I needed to eat something. It was like there were two of me, one of us holding the basket and the other one on another planet… It was as if I was walking beside myself, so no I would put the forgetfullness down to your mind being a little overloaded at the moment.
It did pass for me although I am really bad at remembering peoples name but oddly I can remember thier hair styles.
As Klester has said you can always have a chat with your G.P if you need to.
It is a bit of a roller coaster in the early days and I wish you well.
Peaceful thoughts to you,

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I too am the same, I write down things I need to do and cross them off when I’ve done them, I also struggle with finding the words during conversations, they call it brain fog due to the grief, it has improved lately, check that you are not vitamin B12 deficient, I was once put on a stomach acid reduction tablet that prevented me getting B12 from my food.

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Thanks for taking time to explain your situation compared to my concern.
It has certainly reassured me that I am not going mad or something.
Your comment about being two of you is something that I believe I have felt.
I feel better after hearing your and Bootsie stories/advice it is great that this Chat is available to people like ourselves.
I would just like to add that generally I am lucky to have friends, interests etc to occupy some of my time but of course when they are not available then its very hard after 57 years of our life together.
Thanking you both, best wishes Gordon

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Hi Gordon, I think this is your body and mind coping. I was exact he same a few months ago when my son passed away. I had to write everything down and found if I was trying to have a conversation I would forget what I was saying. I would forget to do things, start things and then forget what I was doing, give it time and it will get slightly easier to function. I found writing a journal each day helps, someone gave me this idea in this site, take care xx

Hello and it is reassuring to hear that you and others have gone through the same feelings.
I have never been one to keep any form of journal but I will try to keep one now.
Its strange that after 75 years of life and losing family that now loosing a loved one after 57 years of closeness was not expected. Never realised what bereavement was.
Best wishes to you, Gordon.

I do exactly the same as you.
I start out with a thought that i will do X then by the time i have walked to where X is i dont know why i am there.

I often start making a cup of tea then wander off to do something else, then realise much later on ive not had a drink all day…

I call people then ive forgotten why i called tjem when they answer…

Our minds are racing searching for things to calm us down or thoughts of grief, loss, pain, anger, upset, regrets, fear, worry, just to name a few.
My brain just hasnt got space for it all so it just dumps stuff it thinks unnecessary like peoples names, am i making a cup of tea etc…

I hope in time it will get better for us all.

Take care.

Hello Chris as you say we can only hope that those suffering like us find a more stable life not tò far in time.
Its so comforting to at least understand that its not you alone are suffering these effects.
Hoping that things become better for all of us.
Many best wishes Gordon.


Hi Gordon,

I struggled and still do struggle with this nearly 6 months on. Apparently its called brain fog and can be caused by grief. Every day at least twice, ill walk in to a room and forget why im there, its the smallest things i forget, and i end up standing there staring into space for a few minutes which feels like hours. The latest issue im having is forgetting if ive taken my insulin or not (Im diabetic), so ive had to put up a tiny camera by my medicine cupboard so that I can check if ive already taken it or not. I also cant concentrate on anything for longer than a few minutes, programes, reading, working, it takes me hours to do something that should take minutes. I spoke to my GP about this considering im only 23, i shouldnt really be having issues with my memory this young, and straight away the GP confirmed that this is normal. He said it could be one of two things, that because my brain is trying to cope with trauma, it cant hold much else so its taking me longer to process everyday things because of already processing so much. Or he said it could be ‘complicated grief’, which he said is like a heightened state of grief, that you arent moving forward with healing from. That you forget everything, but you can remember every vivid detail from the day they died, their funeral and cant focus on happy memories etc.

I think the only healer in this case is time, god knows how much time but hopefully it gets easier for you Gordon. Hang in there

I can only thank you for explaining how it has affected you. Its reassuring to know others are the same.
I can only wish you well and hope that the many of us who are suffering in this way gradually learn to cope.
Good wishes Gordon.

I too have been affected by brain fog. I worked technically in IT for 35 years and yet after my husbands death e mail became a mystery. Kept sending blank e mails. Took me 6 attempts to pay in a cheque on the banking app. I forget how to use the phone some days. I had a good day today. My financial advisor sent me quite a complicated cash flow document that I read, understood and pointed out something missing. Tomorrow I could be foggy again. It is a very recognised occurrence in grief.


Its been very comforting to hear what is happening to me is a very common feeling that effects many bereaved people. A bit frightening at first but reading the posts has certainly lessened a major feeling.
I wish you all the very best and hope that some form of normality returns in the coming months and years.

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