Loss of husband after 51 years married

Hello everyone
I didnt expect to be using this site at this stage. It is well over a year since my husband died of cancer of the oesophagus and i have images in my head that I cant seem to get past. This type of cancer is brutal and it took him from me bit by bit over a period of just a few months. We were just 16 when we met and were married for 51 years. I have a wonderful family around me but the face I show to them is different from how i really feel. I thought i would be feeling a bit better by now but sometimes it feels just like it did last year. I really don’t want all our years together to be defined by those last few months but at the moment can’t see a way past it. Anyone with a similar experience?


Hello @Sue70 ,

I’m part of the Online Community team and I can see that you are new to the community - I’d like to thank you for bravely starting this thread and sharing how you are feeling confused by your grief. I’m so sorry to hear about your husband. Most community members have sadly experienced the death of a loved one and so will understand some of what you are going through.

I’m sure someone will be along to offer their support, but I wanted to share a few Sue Ryder resources with you that might be helpful.

I really hope you find the community helpful and a good source of support and I also hope you feel you can access more support should you need it.

Thank you again for sharing – please keep reaching out and know that you are not alone.

Take care,


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Hi @Sue70 I think what you’re experiencing is very understandable. Losing your beloved husband to the brutality of cancer is traumatic so no wonder you are tormented by memories of his illness. Remember there’s no timeline to this grief journey so don’t have expectations of how you should be feeling at whatever point. Perhaps you could have a chat with a good friend or family member, just to be honest about how you’re feeling? Remembering all the lovely memories before the illness might help too. Going through photos, if it’s not going to add to your distress, can help with this. Grief seems to move in phases I find, so find comfort in knowing that this difficult time will pass eventually. Best wishes xx

So sorry for your loss, over 50 years of marriage is a long time! Cancer’s is just horrendous. I still have the imagine of my uncle when he passed and now my 43 year old husband is terminally ill with cancer. I saw an old photo of him the other day and both myself and my youngest didn’t even recognise him, :pensive:

Thank you for your reply. My heart goes out to you and your husband, 43 is far too young, such a waste of a young life. We also lost a nephew to cancer at the age of 40 last year. This is such a cruel disease. I hope your husband is as well as he can be for as long as he can be I really feel for you.
Best wishes and look after yourself. x

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