Mixed up Feelings

I seem to be fine coping too well don’t understand .

Grief is such an unpredictable experience, isn’t it yvonneb. It’s so different for everyone and there is no ‘normal’ way of grieving to compare to how you feel. That can be difficult.

We have an article on our website about coping with bereavement, which talks about the different ways we might cope with loss. Perhaps there’s something in there that resonates with you: https://www.sueryder.org/how-we-can-help/someone-close-to-me-has-died/advice-and-support/how-can-i-cope-with-bereavement

Take care,

That article was really helpful.
Thanks .

I know exactly what you mean.
I lost my husband suddenly on 25 th November last year. After the initial shock and numbness I appear to be carrying on life, kind of normal! I think my mind is still in a kind of denial that I’ve lost him. He was disabled and I was his carer so we spent a lot of time together, so the must be a big void but I can’t feel it.
I’m wondering if grief counselling might be a good idea.
I feel I should be crying but I’m not.
Does this sound like how you are feeling? X

I’ve just read the article and think maybe I’m still in the numb zone x

Hi Suvicki,
Yes that’s exactly how I feel. I do have moments now of extreem grief but generally I feel able to carry on it’s as though my husband has gone away. I don’t really think it’s really sunk in he’s never coming back.
I feel guilty that I haven’t gone to pieces . I feel hard hearted and it makes me question my love. But my husband and myself were childhood sweathearts he was the love of my life !!
I just don’t understand .
I think we need to get kind on ourselves but that in itself is hard.
Take care ,


Hi Yvonne
I also feel guilty!
Why am I able to carry on? Why aren’t I in bits?
I keep thinking that each new thing will make reality hit. Christmas, scattering his ashes, my birthday, etc but none of it causes what I expect it too.
I also fear it will all hit very suddenly, like when in supermarket and I’ll just lose it.
Take care

I was wondering if you are on your own or not ?
My children are grown up and living away from home .(Although I see them and hear from them regularly.
I have amazing support from fantastic friends.
I have taken over my husband’s role within our business and I am very busy most of the time. I do also worry when it’s going to hit which I guess it will. I do think that death for my husband was the kindest outcome as he had cancer which had spread extensively to his brain ,and liver from the lung. I also am thankful he wasn’t really ill he basically discovered the cancer and 10 days later he was dead.
I know that’s harder for the ones left behind but for him it was better . I think it’s crazy but that helps me. We used to discuss in the early days what is love ?
Occasionally we’d do something for the other maybe get up early and tidy the house as the other slept for example.Then we’d say oh that’s what love is !
I think maybe my coping not falling to pieces being strong "doing amazing "( as all my friends are saying to me )
Maybe that’s me trying to show my love .That’s how I am making sense of it in my mind. Even writing this makes it a bit clearer.

I don’t know if any of it resonates with you.

Take care,


I’ve been following this thread with interest as it fits so well with my own experiences, and it’s posed questions that have made me think of the period since my wife died in August 2018.
My wife had been diagnosed with a Stage 4 brain tumour in June 2014 and after surgery to remove it she was told it would grow back and she would die. Average survival rates were 14 months. I think I experienced massive trauma at that point and the process of anticipatory grief began. She lived for over four years and endured chemotherapy, radiotherapy and a second brain surgery. Physically she handled things quite well but I can’t be sure as to the mental toll she endured, as she hid it well.
I thought I was well prepared for her death but now realise that was a fallacy. I existed in a state of shock, fog, numbness but wasn’t hit by the expected tsunami.
I have been able to function quite well and I devised a survival strategy which included setting myself challenges which, over time, were stepped up to become harder.
Looking back I think certain things have contributed to how I have coped. I think that one loving relationship can be markedly different to another loving relationship, and that as grief has a clear correlation with love, it’s no surprise that it can be so unique, so different.
I’m becoming quite confident that I’m not going to be hit by the tsunami now but I do know that I will grieve forever and that I will be able to build a new, different life around that.
The key to this, for me, has been an acceptance that I can’t change things and that I know what my wife expected of me.
It’s our wedding anniversary today. As we didn’t do anything in particular to celebrate it I can deal with that by not over thinking it and not attributing any greater significance than is necessary. I feel a sadness but no more than on other days.
Reading this back it all looks fairly dispassionate but I put that down to my way of coping. I hope I have given you more to think about, and also, alleviated some of your concerns.

Hi, yes I am on my own, my girls are 33 and 27, the eldest lives in France and the youngest is just around the corner.
My husband was 56 and died very suddenly of a heart attack, we didn’t even know he had heart problems. We were married for 34 years, I was only 18 when we married, so being with him is all I have know for my whole adult life.
I get told I’m brave and doing so well but I’m not! I’m just carrying on autopilot.
I am glad it happened so fast for him but it’s devasting for me.
Take care

Hi, I think tsunami is a good way to describe my fear.
My husband had given us scares over the years, but always came back fighting and although he was disabled he was never a ill person. He was the comeback kid!
He went into hospital on the Thursday with suspected heart attack , Friday doing well and moved to regular cardiac ward and Saturday he had an ’ episode’ and needed clot buster drug which worked and he was moved back to intensive cardiac ward. He looked great and me and my youngest spent all day and even ending with him. We thought we were out of the woods!
Sunday I ring to see how he is and am told to get there. On arrival we can’t go into see him as they are working on him, then they come and tell us he is gone!
We go straight into him and I just howled but since then it’s like I shut down.
I hope this wasn’t too much information but explaining how it happened seems to help.
I had to cope with a lot of financial stuff too,which I suppose a lot of us do, which meant I needed to be clear headed. We were on benefits due to his disability but they were all cut off the day after her died and I was left with no income for 2 months whilst waiting for my Universal Credit claim to come through.
When he died I lost the love of my life and my job as his carer.
I think I clicked into survival mode and can’t click back out of it.
Take care

I think the amount of information was necessary to enable me to understand more. In my case the amount of trauma I suffered was much greater at the point of initial diagnosis than it was at the point of a peaceful death. I don’t think there’s any doubt that, in your case, the trauma was in the circumstances of your husband’s death. It’s likely that your brain is working to protect you and that you may need specific help to process things and move on. As you say, your brain, or parts of it, have shut down. Although my background is in Psychology I don’t profess to know enough about the clinical side but I would suggest you discuss it with your GP initially and push for a referral to mental health services as they could identify an appropriate course of action, quite probably some type of Talking Therapy.
They would also have some idea as to whether there is a timescale norm in terms of how and when change would take place. We hear a lot about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in relation to Police, Fire, Army etc but I think it’s now recognised as being linked to Traumatic Bereavement.
Finding out more and better information seems like a good way to go, particularly if there’s a chance things could become worse.
Best wishes for a good day.

Thank you. I’m looking into grief counselling X

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