Losing my wife at 53

I’ve been reading the stories/threads on here and we have all the same painful feelings for the loss of our soul mates.
Carolyn walked into the hospital for a normal appointment and never walked out due to cancer complications …that day was the day my life ended too.
We only knew each other for 7 years,married for 3 …hand on heart are the best years I’ve ever had with such a beautiful person inside and out.
3 weeks on and after a beautiful but devastating funeral I miss her every second of the day …the house is now dead too I’ve not moved anything from the day carolyn left that day.
The pain of losing my soul mate is too powerful to put into words.
The nights the days are as we all know are a living hell.
Would I like to watch my wife go through all this this if I had gone first … absolutely not … so it’s a no win situation.
A Sleeping tablet and booze is my nightly routine …I dont mind admitting I’m dissapointed in waking up ( before you say… no I’m not over dosing or intending to…I’m not that brave )
So where do we all go from this zombie like state … do we just go on fighting the deamons of the day each day., what have I or we done to deserve the loss of our greatest friends on earth… I have no answers.
Like a cruise liner on a voyage with a set course , a bomb has gone off in the engine room … now adrift listing in the sea of life.
After the funeral well wishing friends drop away text and calls diminish… its not their fault please dont get me wrong… it’s normal life to them… we can actually say its a case of them and us.
Where am I now … 3 weeks later …I’m not crying as much … the thought of a new life without carolyn is totally alien to me and frightens me so much … the dreams we had now gone.
I have a phone full of photo memories both before and after chemo I cherish them all as that’s all I have of the most wonderful girl I’ve ever met but painful in the same tense …carolyn never moaned once in the two years she was diagnosed…brave girl.
This is my story I’m 50 …I do wonder each day what have we done to deserve such a short time together.

Thank you for reading.

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I am so sorry for your loss. The way that you described the house as now being dead too are the words that I have been looking for when trying to discourage guest from stopping by. My soulmate and best friend passed away unexpectedly about a week ago. I am not sure how I will ever get it together enough to move his things and clean up the mess he had left behind. I wish that I could find words to make things better for you, myself or any of the other people on here who are suffering.


Hi Mark. Your post touched me deeply. It’s how I felt 10 months ago. I am so so sorry and that thought will be echoed throughout this site. I can feel your pain.
Yes, words just don’t do a lot do they. All the people who told me they would keep in touch have fallen away, but I have gained many friends both where I live and on here who understand grief.
Everything around you is falling apart, and it’s too early for me to say anything other than take it easy, well as easy as you can. I won’t talk of recovery either, it’s far to soon. It will take a while to penetrate the pain and find some tiny glimpse of peace.
I suggest not ‘fighting’ demons. Fighting uses so much emotional energy and you have not got a lot of that left have you. You or your partner have done nothing to deserve this, and everyone tries to find out why. There are no immediate answers and we can make things worse by continually asking.
I know what I have said or what anyone says may not help at the moment. But try and take heart in the fact that everyone here knows and you are not alone.
Your analogy about a liner adrift is very apt. But rescue is on it’s way. Many on here will throw you a lifeline.
Bless you and take care.

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Hi mark,
I’m sorry you have to join us on this forum due to the loss of your wife and soulmate.
I lost my husband at the end of June. He was my soulmate and best friend. He had lung cancer for a year that we knew about. He had a silent heart attack which led to them finding it. I always tried to keep him positive which he usually tried to be but he never knew the full extent of his condition. He relied on me to tell him as much as he needed to know. He went into hospital due to a side effect of medication connected to the chemo and never left.
I looked after him throughout and watched his journey through cancer for that year. I have lots of pictures of him around the house and despite certain people telling me to remove all his belongings it has and will be left the same as when he was here. That’s all I have left of him now apart from the love I feel for him and know he felt for me.
We only got about five years together but they were the happiest I’ve ever had alongside the sadness of his illness. I have asked myself ever since he died why we did not get longer together but I think no matter how long we are with somebody it’s never long enough. I don’t think it’s any the less painful no matter how long you are with somebody. I miss him every second of every day and am just coming to terms with the fact he is gone. I’m still in tears daily and everything reminds me of him but that’s good I don’t want to forget him.
I have a small amount of family and friends but they now think that I’m fine and have left me alone. I don’t blame them as they can’t understand the feelings of not wanting to wake up each day without him. They can’t understand how lonely it can be. I tried to explain this to a friend last night and her answer was I will meet someone else in the future. She could not seem to understand I only want Alan. I find the best people who understand are the people on here and a good friend I have made through this forum.
I try to take one day at a time but the future now scares me a little as I don’t know what it holds. All the plans are now gone. I’m forty soon and feel like I’ve got so long before I will be with him again. In that time though I’m determined to take the love and strength he gave me into every day and make him proud of me.
Please do try to take care of yourself at this time. If you ever need to talk.
Emma x

Hello Mark
I’m so sorry for your loss I was where you are 12 months ago.
My wife died on 2nd July 2018 only four weeks after cancer diagnosis she was 51 and I am now 53. Like you I didn’t know how I would survive without her but I have and you will too.
Day by day is all you can do even just hour by hour works. I can’t tell you it will get easier and that time is a healer I’m not convinced of that as I believe I will always grieve in some form. I have have great family and friends but even now coming home to a dead home as you say is still really hard.
I get bad days and not so bad days and I can laugh again especially with my little one year old granddaughter But it’s bittersweet as she was born a month after Margaret died.
I try not to think to far forward as you say it’s a bit scary. Please take care of yourself.

Hi Mark
I’m so sorry for your dreadful and unbearable loss. I think we are all searching for answers as to why, but there are none, none that we can understand at this time anyway. I often wonder about chemo treatment which my partner had too and you trust the doctors that they know best. Just know that everybody on this site will support you and can empathise with you. You have helped me in your post when people who have said they would contact, haven’t. As you say life has returned to normal for them and they wouldn’t understand the agony involved, not their fault. Take care…

Hi Mark,
I just want to echo what you have expressed very well about what it is like to loose not only your soulmate, but also the future that once seemed so bright.
My wife has passed away over 6 months after living with cancer for over two years and life hasn’t got any easier yet. I am still taking things day by day.
Her beautiful character always makes me smile when I am doing my daily routines and I wonder what she would say to me. I talk to her all the time too because it is the only way I can keep going. I was so lucky to meet such a wonderful person and I know she wouldn’t want me to feel down. So I will try and help others and with hope things will eventually get better. She is always in my heart.
I see how devastated you feel losing your wonderful partner, Carolyn. We are always here for support. I live alone now and I am in my early 50s too. Let’s see what life has in store.

Take care,


Dear Mark, l am so sorry for your loss. I too lost my dear and gentle husband in May this year, and understand everything you are saying. I too am struggling. I hope the kindness and support that helps me on this forum will somehow give you strength too. Take care, Sandra F

Hi Mark. This is my first post. Everything you say is familiar to me. I lost my wife and soul mate in October to cancer. She was 44 and we were together since we were 21. I now have three kids under 10. I’m eleven months on and my experience is that the fog lifts and wrenching gut eases. I’m not saying it’s easier but rather I’ve learned to cope. I gave up alcohol and I exercise a lot. I swam every day quite hard in the months immediately afterwards. It helped me sleep. I can’t do a hangover with kids. I heard an interview on the radio a couple of months after my wife passed. A man who suffered depression very bravely spoke about his experience. What stuck with me was the attitude he adopted. He did the opposite of what his instinct told him to do. If he felt like just sitting in, he would force himself to go for a walk and see friends. I found pushing myself in this way helped.

My wife was fit and looked after her health. She developed a rare cancer with no known cause. I was quite angry until I realised that there were others like me. I’m sad but I now feel privileged she chose me as her husband. I guess this helps a little.

I don’t want to sound clichéd and I’m sure you are sick of this comment but time will help. I hated people saying this to me until someone with first hand experience said it to me.

I wish you the for the future.


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Thank you all for your heart felt wishes, at least I know I’m not alone in these dark days/future.
As I sit here in my empty house that was recently full of so much love and energy now drowning in grief… I know I’m not alone but seperated by the vastness of each others other’s distances.
Are we the ones that are cursed to live this misery we once called life… sorry for the downer.
Even TV now seems less attractive and is just rubbish and background noise now … my days are now just looking forward to my sleeping tablet and then hope I dont wake up.
My girl I looked forward to spending so many years with has been stolen.sorry life I’m just not a fan of yours right now.


Mark - I am so sorry. Your story chimes with mine. I lost my soulmate to cancer two weeks ago today: we only had 5 months from diagnosis. I have two teenage sons, one of whom will be leaving for university at the end of the month and the other will be at school from next week. I am dreading the emptiness of the house…we had such a warm and loving family which was the main source of my happiness…and now it’s disappearing. I am so scared of how it will be when I am coming home after work to a cold, dark empty house. Not that I can even think about when I might get back to work, but I know this is my future and I can’t bear it. I am only 55 and I can’t bear the idea of living alone for the rest of my life. My husband was the most perfect man I have ever met, so how would it be possible to meet someone else? But I just die inside every time I think about the future as a single person living alone in this house which we created together.
We haven’t had the funeral yet but I am dreading it.
Sorry I can’t provide words fo comfort but it means a lot to me to know there are people out there who can understand what I am going through, and I hope you get some comfort from finding this community too.

Hi Mark
Words and platitudes mean jack s**t right now like you (hubby passed away 6months ago) I hated coming back to the house, going to work (we worked together) we were together 24/7. I contemplated suicide because for the first two months I hated life because it and I was so empty. I missed the touch the taste the smell of my hubby I would sit in his wardrobe because I could smell him, then I decided I needed a focus so I did all the jobs he started but didn’t finish, I got a rescue dog ( best thing ever) gave me something to wake up for. I played our songs full blast danced like a maniac, did as much physical work so I didn’t go on the tablets ( tried one knocked me out scared me to death as it made my depression darker). My hubby was my ying to my yang and I never thought I would see a light at the end of the tunnel I do now not so bright but there. You owe it to your wife to live and move forward, the man she loved and the man you are now are not the same but they both are part of you now, what you gave to do us merge them and adapt to your new reality, you are not letting go of your wife, she is in your heart and your memories. Sorry for prattling on. One thing my hubby said to me when he was dying was be grave step forward, didn’t understand what he meant, I do now. X

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Silverlady - what a lovely message. I haven’t yet found something that smells of my husband, partly because my nose isn’t working as I am crying too much, and also because he never left dirty clothes around, and our wardrobe is quite new and makes everything smell of new wood (nice at the time but how I wish it were different now).

Dear All, so sorry for you - such loss is just devastating. I lost my husband to cancer 2 weeks from diagnosis. He was 53 and had only been feeling poorly for a matter of weeks. He died 367 days ago. I’m not really sure how I’ve survived the last year but survived I have and you will too. Lots of factors have helped me - friends, family, dog, talking, eating, drinking , exercising, crying, laughing, remembering, working … I could go on. Time does help - the passing of time and time to find the “new you”. I think it is essential to work out who you are - your values, your hopes, your coping strategies and your personality traits. I’m still working on this. From here you can start on the new path life has woven for you with your head held high. You will walk it with strength and determination; courage and love. This is the legacy your dearest leaves you and they are so deeply within you and beside you they never leave you. You will survive - it does get easier - you will be stronger - you are always loved. Take care everyone. Cx


Dear Cristal, thank you so much for your helpful, positive post. I agree with all that you say and you have put it so eloquently. I had only just read the phrase ’ Grief has a beginning but has no end. ’ Immediately after reading that I then read your post. Both are correct. There is no end to our grief but as you infer, we can cope and we will cope. As you rightly say - my husband is so deeply within me and beside me and I know he will never leave me. Thank you again Cristal for your strong and powerful words. Sending love xx

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Thank you Crazy Kate - it’s so important for us all to know we are not alone. I’m the only middle aged widow I know and it’s incredibly lonely - this site has saved my sanity . Cx

it’s 15 months since my husband passed, all his scents around our home have now faded away, I have started keeping them alive by spraying his deodorant in the bathroom and on one of his favourite T-shirts. it helps me to keep him in the present.

we all do different things to help us travel this enforced path. some days are better than others, some days not so good, some days I just want to hide away.

taking it one day at a time , even one hour at a time, baby steps are easier to manage that whacking great strides.

truly sorry for your loss, you will receive a great deal of support from this site. it has been a godsend for me, and so many others too.

hope today is an improvement on yesterday and tomorrow is an improvement on today


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Hi Mark - it’s now 10 months since I lost my soulmate yet it seems like yesterday - all his clothes & belongings are still in cupboards & wardrobes & around the house - it makes it still feel like home - my hubby would have been 50 this year - I would like to say it gets easier but tbh I don’t think it does - you just get up each day & survive the best you can - I do feel comfort reading posts on here to realise I’m not alone in my sadness & thoughts, & as a friend once said to me we just exist, living a life no of us ever wanted or envisaged but somehow we carry on - take time for yourself it’s still very early days - you’re the priority now - do what you want to do, when you want to do it even if it’s another duvet day xx take care xx