Losing my dad

My dad died on the 1st May this year after a short illness but meant he was in hospital for about the last month of his life . He was 89 and had lived a good life and him becoming so unwell so quickly was a shock . Fir the last 2 weeks of his life he drifted away from being my strong funny amazing dad to this fragile unable to speak not even sure if he knew me . I was lucky if that us the right word to use to be with him stroking his head, telling him I loved him and promised to look after mum when he passed. I miss him so much and am filled with this ache of sadness but somehow I can’t let it out … I haven’t been able to cry and this just makes me feel that I am hard and that I didn’t love him. I know this is ridiculous but I can’t find any other reason why . Thank you fir listening it had taken some courage to be open how I feel like I have let some else see this heartless person I have become
I’m not even sure what I gave written is relevant ?


Hi 11-68,

Thank you for your very honest post. That must have taken a lot of courage. First of all let me say how I sorry I am that you lost your dad after only a shoprt illness. It must have been particularly hard for you to see waht the illness did to his body and mind. I found that one of the most difficult things to witness when my dad (who like yours had been fit and healthy most of his life) was at the end of his life. It sounds like you and your dad were very close and it was good that you could be with him when he passed. Each of us reacts differently to the loss of a loved one. Maybe because many people do cry, that is what we expect everyone should do, but I know from my own experiences and from posts I have read on here that not everyone cries. I don’t think that tears are somehow the proof that we really loved someone and are grieving their loss. My mum for example wanted to cry so much and got really upset that she could not, but everyone could see how sad she was. The most important thing is that you did love your dad and you are missing him. There are other ways to express how you feel than with tears. Some people write about their feelings in a diary, some write poetry, some join support groups or talk with a counselor. Try and find something thay helps you to express how you feel, You may find that one day, when you are watching a film or a memory comes up, the tears will suddenly come, unexpectedly. xx Jo


Hello. I’m so sorry for your loss. I also lost my dear Dad. He died on 28 April, aged 80, and very similarly to your experience, my Dad died after being diagnosed with a terminal illness, which we were told was untreatable, and he died 3 months after his prognosis. It was also a terrible shock to me too, especially seeing my Dad decline from a strong, healthy man full of life, so quickly to nothing. I also cherish those moments that I have of helping to look after him, whilst Mum got some respite, sitting on the bed next to him, also stroking his hair, and I too made those same promises to him about my Mum, in his dying days.

However, I’ve not been able to turn the waterworks off! The grief hits me unexpectedly and I often have no control over my crying, or when it happens, even though I try to control my emotions. The aching sadness is there all the time though.

But I think you are being hard on yourself about not crying and I totally echo jo60plus, who wisely shares that we are all different and react to grief differently. There is no ‘wrong or right’ way to grieve. I’ve just had my first counselling session with Sue Ryder, so I do hope you’re able to receive that support, and sign up to speak to a counsellor to make sense of what you’re going through, and have a safe space to say what you feel.

What is abundantly clear is how much you loved your Dad and how much he meant to you. And just by sharing your feelings through writing has demonstrated that. You’ve been very brave to make that first step and share your feelings here. This is the first time I’ve written a post too and I can totally relate to your experience, so felt I wanted to respond. So thank you for sharing. Please do continue to share when you feel ready to, and I’ll definitely respond back.

Take care of yourself.

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