Isolation and despair

Hello. I keep reading everyone’s postings - new and old and it helps to not feel so alone yet in another way I am creating isolation as cannot bear to be with certain people who are offering support. Because I have lost my partner, I cannot bear to be with ‘couples’ as I feel so angry, bitter and resentful that they are happy and have each other and I don’t have my partner anymore. It seems to rub salt in my wound so I can’t be with them and have sent texts and emails asking for time alone. I know I have been hurtful to certain people but I can’t help that. I know being angry and bitter is one of the emotions of being bereaved. I don’t have any close family now and I feel isolated and scared and angry and bitter because of that. I feel that life has totally kicked me in the teeth. I do have one friend who is being a tower of strength and phones me every day. I don’t know what I would do without her. Yesterday another friend phoned me but I got the impression she is irritated with me that I don’t seem to be making progress and am so distraught what has happened and am frankly, struggling. I only lost Dave 2 months ago so really that is no time at all. I could tell by the tone of her voice that she doesn’t know what to say and was making excuses why she can’t meet up with me. When I first lost Dave she was supportive but now she has changed. She lost her husband 16 years ago (I didn’t know her then) and was apparently in a bad way but it seems like she has ‘forgotten’ what it was like and how long it takes to cope with all this and move forward. So, I came off the phone thinking she had made me feel worse and then I got angry and upset with her too and I don’t want to speak to her again while I feel like this. The truth of the matter is, the person I really want and who could give me comfort has gone. Being in bereavement really is a traumatic experience to go through and is one of the worst times a person has to endure apart from physical illness. It makes me wonder how we all survive it. Best wishes to you all.

Hi it is very early days for you my husband died 4 years this December and I still can’t get my head around it. People amaze me with their need for you to move on don’t be rushed do everything at your own pace. Its natural to feel angry at couples I did and a friend of mine said to me she thought I would be feeling better by now. I don’t think I’ll ever feel better. I only found this forum a couple of months ago and find it helpful. You feel it is only happening to you but of course it happens to someone ever day. Keep chatting on here as we all understand be kind to yourself, and like me the person who would give you advice and sort you out is not here but he is very deep within your heart. I take care Marilyn

Hello, I am so sorry for your loss, it is three years for me and I still can’t seem to want to move on with my life. Nothing is the same anymore, the future I thought we had together for many more years has gone. I live in the past most of the times remembering when we were young, when we met, and I cannot get my head round the fact that I am now a 74 years old woman living out the rest of her life without the man I have known and loved for most of my life. I live on a day to day basis. I go out with a friend who is also a widow but at the end of the day I go home to an empty house that I once called home, how can it be called a home when the man who made it a home has gone. I am grateful for the fact I was not younger when he died, knowing I would have had to face many, many years without him would have killed me, it is bad enough knowing I still have a few years left to live on my own. Yes people want you to move on but they still have their partners but one day they won’t and then they will realise just what heartache is. There is nothing I can say that will make things any easier for you, it is a life we did not want but have now got and we have to make the best of it. It would have been our Golden wedding next week, he was 18 years old when I met him and it was love at first sight. My life ended the day he died so I take one day at a time.

Hi Marilyn and thanks for responding to my message with your heartfelt care, words of comfort and support. I am so very sorry to hear that you lost your husband 4 years this December. That is a horrible month to lose someone when ‘Christmas’ is so full on. Thanks for your advice and it is good to hear that you felt angry at couples too as I feel so bitter and resentful and angry and know it is not doing me any good and a friend of mine said it will eat me up if I continue as I am isolating myself from anyone who is in a couple. I am basically losing friends as I am distancing myself from them but I can’t help it. Yes, I find this forum helpful. I think it really hits home how many of us are suffering and are bereaved and in hurt, pain and total despair. It is a wonder how we manage to survive, really. It IS early days for me as it is only 2 months so know that is no time at all. Those 2 months have seemed like forever and I just want time to pass quickly to feel better but it sounds like you are still struggling even 4 years down the line. Yes, people are senseless to think we should move on when we have lost someone so important in our lives. It isn’t that easy is it? There is no miracle cure for this but as you say, we have to carry on with the knowledge that they are deep within our hearts. Take care and thanks again. Best wishes from Karen

Hi Karei am nearly 3 months into the loss of my partner and much of what you say i can relate to. I am now getting the look from people who think i should be "feeling better now " and “starting to get back to normal” .what an absolute joke that is and people have no idea at all the pain we all feel on here even after years.
I too despise seeing couples together holding hands, hugging each other I am not a hateful person but I get so angry and feel I am better not going out sometimes.
The loss, sadness and loneliness are beyond words and even when around friends and my family i feel so alone now and hate this life i now have.
My thoughts with everyone on here as I know only you all “get it”
Carol x

Hi Carol and thanks for responding to my message. People are SO INSENSITIVE aren’t they? Every few days my cousin keeps texting me ‘is the pain any easier now?’ It is as if I have a stomach or headache and it will pass in a few days. This is NOT going to last a few days. Oh, if only it would. I long to be able to take a pain killer tablet (as we would if we had a headache) and it would go away, at least for a few hours so I could have some respite from my torture and distress. I have to wait a while before responding to her text message because if I did it straight away I would lose my temper with her and say something I might regret. I can identify when you say that even when you are around friends and family you feel so alone. (The saying ‘you can be alone in a crowd’ is so true). Me too. I feel so envious, angry, bitter and resentful when I am with couples and when they are holding hands or hugging or kissing it is even worse. I even get agitated when I see it on a television programme or film and I look away. Dave and I were always so affectionate with each other and I loved that. I loved feeling his hand in mine and cuddling up with him. Now I just feel so unloved and miss the affection and tender moments we used to share. I feel as if my heart has been ripped out. It is almost better to be alone than be with couples. I am much better when I am with one other person that is on their own (single or widowed). As you said, the loss, sadness and loneliness are beyond words. I too hate my life. I don’t know how old you are? I am 57. I actually envy OLDER people who have lost their partners as they won’t have as many years to live as I do. A lady on this site said she is GLAD she is 74 as to be younger when her husband died would kill her having to know she has so many lonely, empty years without her man. Anyway, it helps to have typed all this to get it off my chest and just share it with you and people who know. Hang in there, Carol, and best wishes to you. XX

Hi Karen
I am 52 and my partner julie was 51 on 1st june before she passed away on 30 th june.
I have read many posts on here and a lot are from people on their 60’s and 70’s and i cant imagine what it must be like to lose someone after being together so long and then contemplate the remaining years alone. We were together for 9 years and they were the best of my life and we were so happy together. I really cant imagine my life now alone but cant imagine another 20/30 years all alone either. Just feel like my world has collapsed and have been robbed of the years we should have spent together.
Sometimes wish people could see the inside of me and then they would not need to ask me how i am they would just see deep dark hole and sadness beyond belief.
How i wish i could just go back to when she was well and free from her suffering God life is so cruel
Take care
Carol x

Oh my goodness, Carol, you and Julie are/were both so young. Yes, you are right, is it worse to have more years together and then lose, or be like us and be younger and have less time together and then lose the person you love? Both are bad but I feel so CHEATED that some people have a lifetime together yet the time I had with Dave was so short. Dave and I were together for 5 years and they were the happiest of my life. I went for a walk today but missed Dave so bad and felt so lonely and had to come home. I thought a walk in the sunshine might help but whatever you do or wherever you go, you can’t get rid of the thoughts and pain and hurt inside you can you? I spoke to a friend tonight and she said I am a lost soul and all over the place with my emotions. She has got that right. Yes, life is so cruel and a struggle when you lose the person you love. Take care. Best wishes from Karen XX

Hi Karen
Yes I can empathise with you on the memories, I took took the dogs for a walk today and just ended up remembering the walks we took together and began to cry. I then had to close her mobile phone account - they sent me a bill for 5p! I then looked at photos and just began to cry and felt like I am going backwards today so guess just a bad day.
I have been signed off for another month from work so it will be 4 months before I return to work - I am lucky my boss is very understanding so at least I don’t have to worry about work for another month and I get paid so no financial worries.
I have found some old pairs of her slippers and they are falling to bits but I can’t part with them. I have her old work clothes in the garage and coats still hung up by the door. I know she is not coming back but I can’t bear to move these yet. Have you started to sort through Dave’s things yet? I still have shampoo, hair brushes etc Just what are you supposed to do with these everyday items but so personal and knowing she touched these. I just can’t bear to throw anything away so keeping everything at the moment.
I sleep with her dressing gown and have started to wear some of her clothes - a hoody she loved and some of her warm socks - as weather getting colder.
Does anyone else wear their partners clothes? - I am not sure if they bring comfort sometimes I cry but still do this.
Are you getting any help? I attend a bereavement group each fortnight and find this helps me so much and have made ‘friends’ through the group. As on here not a group I want to be in but at least I don’t feel so alone.
Oh well my rant over for today - just nice to offload on here and know you wont be judged.
Take care
Carol x

Hi Carol my hubby died on 18 December 2013 and I only managed to give his clothes to charity a few months ago. Disposing of his tooth brush, razor and wallet had me crying for hours I still have his watch and wedding ring and Monday gone I had a Brett day where I wore his joggers and his fleece all day, I didn’t go out of the house just reminisced. I still have his dressing gown on the back of the door which I spray with his aftershave now and again - it gives me comfort. That’s what you must do find comfort in anything and don’t worry what people might think. It is early days I still have bad days nearly 4 years on. Take care Marilyn x

Hi Karen just read your reply. Yes Christmas has no meaning it was exactly a week before on the 18th. A friend invited me for Christmas dinner but I declined. I don’t have any children and friends have amazed me so I’m best on my own. I suppose our friends want the old us back but that’s never going to happen our lives have changed and we are doing the best we can. Grieve at your own pace and true friends will understand and they will give you the space you need. My niece has been my saviour I don’t know what I would have done without her. Take care Big hugs Marilyn

Hi Carol and thanks for responding to my message. I couldn’t believe you got sent a bill for 5p! How grabbing is that? It is a joke! Closing Julie’s mobile phone account would obviously make you very sad as doing all these things does. It rubs salt into our wounds and reinforces the fact that they are gone and won’t be coming back. No, I haven’t started to sort Dave’s things out yet. I just can’t. I am not ready and you have to be ready to do those things. You cannot force it. When I lost my mum 9 years ago, I couldn’t do her clothes for 5 years. I wanted them to be there and just couldn’t face getting rid of her things. Some people pushed me and suggested I should do it but I couldn’t and a counselor I was seeing at the time advised me NOT to do it until I felt ready. She said I would know when I was ready and she was right. Then Dave came into my life and things changed. He helped me so much and healed me and then he helped me to do mum’s things but didn’t push me. I remember filling suitcases and then we took them to a charity collection point. Then Dave moved in with me so his clothes filled the empty wardrobe but I still kept mum’s dressing gown and a fleece and joggers she used to wear. Now I am back to square one again. I shan’t do Dave’s clothes until I am ready. I cuddle his dressing gown and his much worn cardigan. l also wrap myself in our ‘snuggle blanket’ which we would cuddle up in together on the settee when we watched television. I agree, it is also the little personal items that are painful - his brush and comb, his aftershave, his shaving stuff and other toiletries. I have just left them where they are. I also went into the garage the other day and saw his gardening gloves and that set me off crying and I had to leave them where they were. It is all so hard. If wearing Julie’s clothes helps and comforts you that is the right thing to do and keep doing it. We have to get through this awful ordeal in the best way we can and find ways of comfort and to ease the pain. No, I am not seeing any counselors or going to support groups. Perhaps it would help me but I can’t seem to get motivated. The nearest support group is not that near to me and it is in a town where Dave and I used to go to a lot and I just can’t face going there. It is good that you are making friends though. That alone is something beneficial that is coming out of attending a support group. I had a Cruse counselor when I lost mum but I don’t know if it helped much or not. You are lucky that you have an understanding boss which must be a great comfort and as you said, you haven’t the financial worry. If your boss is understanding, you might be able to go back a few hours at a time to ease back into it. Dave and I had given up work in January to have some quality time together. We wanted to do some longer holidays and just enjoy our life. In a way I wish I was still at work as it would give me some focus and purpose, then again would I cope with it at the moment? I had a terrible night and felt so troubled and panicky so this morning I am glad I am NOT at work. I have just posted that on this site, plus responded to a couple of postings. I do find this site so helpful and it passes the time and all on here understand. Take care, Carol and speak soon. Thinking of you. Karen XX

Hi marilyn
Thank you for your reply i was thinking i was going crazy by wearing her clothes. I have been punishing myself that i have to get rid of her things so i can move on and it will help (someone told me it would help me to move on ) i have now just left things and they can be there forever now and i am going to stop beating myself up over trying to get ‘things sorted’
I also spray deodorants etc to remember smells and spray on her clothes.
Bless you for replying your words really helped me
Carol x

Hi Carol I don’t know what it is with people wanting a grieving person to move on like my niece said in the olden days they wore black for a year and all social activities were declined. Do this at your own pace. I found a website that makes bereavement bears out of a loved ones clothes I sent some of Brett’s shirts to them and have a lovely bear complete with tie and glasses I also had a cushion done with his shirts and his name embroidered on it. Four years on I still go into a drawer and see a pen or calculator he used and heart lurches I don’t think that will go away if you love someone deeply they are in your heart forever. Chat anytime we are all travelling this horrible road together all at different stages but all still hurting. Big hugs Marilyn x