Losing my mum

I’ve recently lost my mum after she lost her fight to pancreatic cancer. My family turn to me for support,but secretly I’m dieing inside. I feel so alone! My husbands outlook on death if very different to mine in the way he thinks is that i need to get a grip and move on. My dad is struggling so much and im supporting him but i haven’t told him how im feeling. Ive recently started to phase back to work, but the problem is im a hairdresser and salon owner, so I have everyone who enters asking questions and if im ok? I want to scream and shout and say am i hell, but i can’t. Life hasn’t always been kind to me so my coping mechanisms is to automatically shut off and shut people out, i find it just easier this way! I feel like im just a rubbish mum to my kids at the moment and none of this feels real! Im holding on with my finger tips!


I lost my Mum in October 2023 very suddenly, within 7 days of being in hospital she was dead, she was only 56 (I was 27)
Absolute shock, my dad physically couldn’t cope with having to ‘do’ all the legal stuff and organise the funeral etc, so all my family naturally agreed for me to take the reins, which I wouldn’t have any other way, my Mum deserved the best.

So, for around 4-6 weeks I had many people ask about Mum and funeral plans, the future etc which I could answer easily… but now, nearly 5 months later, no funeral to plan, no more paperwork, nothing keeping me occupied, just continuing and redirecting life without my Mum if anyone says to me ‘you okay?’ I could scream. It’s like I haven’t had the chance to grieve yet, I was so focused on making sure everything going smoothly and everyone else was okay and had the correct support.

I have now finally put myself first, my workplace have put me through for counselling, they haven’t pushed me but they know and recognise that I need help and support. I will openly talk about my Mum and what happened which I find has helped me a lot, I want to talk about how amazing she is and how her warm kind aura is always there. So what I’m trying to say is, find a comfort place to chill for 5 minutes, see if you can have someone to fall back on if you do need to take a moment, don’t hold back what you want to say, write down how you’re feeling (I type in my phone notes how I’m doing) I pretend I have a little blog, no one can read it but I’ve managed to let out what I want to Say. I know telling my dad how I’ve felt recently would break his heart.

I constantly have to apologise to my 7 year old daughter for snapping if I’m having a bad day, but she is so understanding and caring. She is also having counselling through her school, which is making a huge difference because you can tell she’s not afraid to speak about how she’s feeling. She just didn’t like telling me as she said she didn’t want to upset me.

It’s so much easier said than done, but you need to talk to someone and know you have someone or something to talk to, my sister bottled everything up for months but now opens up to me, she can talk about mum and look at pictures and memories, knowing she’s not a lone in the way she feels.

You need to put yourself first before it’s too late and see if you can have any adjustments to your job to make it somewhat easier to face people. Because in a few weeks or months you might pop and unfortunately have a mental breakdown, which is not what you want and then you may need to be off work, etc.


@CRodbourne I’m so sorry for your loss and the pain that grief has brought to you. @jessicamariepalph has given some great advice in her response. You must find a way to express your feelings, whether it’s counselling (there’s usually quite a waiting list), writing in a journal or being honest to a trusted friend. Grief is a tangle of emotions and there’s no right way to manage it, we all do it in our own way and in our own time. I wonder if you expect more of yourself than you can give? Keeping things ‘normal’ and trying to support everyone else is a very typical response but it doesn’t give you chance to show your own needs. Everything you have described is very normal in the grieving process, give yourself time to adapt to what has happened. My Mum died over a year ago and I am still trying to adjust, but I know that I have survived all the firsts, however hard it felt. I’m now able to remember the memories with love because I know the only way is forwards. Sending best wishes, take care xx