My grief has been getting steadily worse since I lost my Husband and I hadn’t been coping very well at all but I thought I’d already experienced ‘rock bottom’. However, I’m totally wiped out by a new and sudden surge of emotional pain that’s taken me right back to all the emotions I had been experiencing previously but to a much heightened intensity. Every detail is clearer, more painful, everything is magnified. All the “what if/if only” scenarios and now what they term “survivor guilt”. It’s like some form of PTSD and now all this new level of pain has come with a degree of anxiety I never before knew existed. Physically I feel shocking too. I had two sessions of Cruse and they were suspended as the volunteer said I was being “too” negative and didn’t want to resume them several months later when I told her I thought I was experiencing “complicated” grief. I then had two sessions of NHS counselling last month and the counsellor said she felt I was not able to continue as I was “not upto it”. Last week I told a stand-in GP at my Surgery that I was “broken” and didn’t know how to fix myself and I came away being made to feel like I had wasted this arrogant and indifferent doctor’s time. I keep having thoughts of wanting to go and “be with” my Husband and it’s like a new floodgate of tears has opened. To everyone else, including family - it’s in the past, for me it’s not. The irreversible “If only’s” are slowly killing me. A fellow member said she felt as if she had died but not actually gone anywhere. That’s a perfect description. I should have died and my Husband should still be here, I can’t have counselling because medics don’t think I’m fit and I dare not go private in case I do more harm than good - if that’s possible. All this sounds so self-indulgent and I apologize but I am in such a very bad way and turn know what to do anymore. Has anyone else ever experienced such a massive set-back and how did you manage to deal with things? Thank you to those who have read this.
Your grief journey is a lot like mine
I’m often in tears at the moment im 15 weeks into this hell
I often feel like you do too with all the what Ifs but at the end of the day without being too blunt thats life we all regret things at one stage or another trust me I have lots ( I stupidly went to work when my partner became ill and I knew something wasn’t right with him but I still went) that will haunt me forever as with regards to counselling they are stupid to turn you away it’s what they are there for to help you through the tough times but to say your not up to it well I have no words
I also feel like a part of me died too I miss my Mark soon much it hurts real bad I hardly sleep anymore because when I wake it hits me all over again im only 36 and desperately want to be with my mark
I know Iv probably not answered your questions but know that there is others going through the exact same feelings as you and im always here to listen
Please keep yourself well
I’m so sorry you are having such an awful time, and have struggled to get the right support. That GP sounds very unsympathetic.
I’m not a mental health professional, but I don’t think seeing a private counsellor would be harmful. You would normally have an initial session with them to assess your needs and see if that counsellor is suitable for you, so this could be a way to ‘test the waters’ with someone.
Remember that the Samaritans are also there for you 24/7 - they are there to listen in a non-judgemental way and won’t ever turn you away for being ‘too negative’. It’s free to call them on 116 123.
Thanks so much for your reply LinseyMark. I appreciate you taking the time to comment whilst hurting so much yourself. I won’t go on as I appreciate our thoughts and emotions are so similar. I read you are due to go back to work soon - I hope you do as ok as is possible, you must be feeling so anxious about this. Thanks again for your kind reply and likewise too, I’m here to listen. Kindest regards.
Thanks so much for your reply Priscilla, I knew I wasn’t getting “better” but was not prepared for such a painful downward spiral as this - how many “rock bottoms” can there be? Thanks again for the comments.
Hi Tina 19
I know where you’re coming from, It will be 12 months since my husband died
on 17th July and I feel like I’m wading through treacle. I remember thinking to myself on the day after his funeral that in 6 months time the pain would be less severe. How wrong I was.
I’ve also struggled with any sort of counselling, firstly Cruse emailed me and it said that they had received an email from my " husband" . That would have been some sort of miracle and although they contacted me full of apologies saying that they couldn’t understand how it had happened as it was a standard email they usually sent both the mistake and the fact they send a standard email did nothing to feel any sort of confidence in them. My doctor asked me if I would try counselling but after 1 session I knew it isn’t for me at the moment. I find it impossible to talk to anyone about my husband even our friends and family. I don’t even allow myself to think about him because all it causes is a sadness that is overwhelming.
He died instantly from an aneurysm after never having been to a doctors in his 59 years. I had only been out of the room for 10 minutes, I don’t know if its the shock or just the total longing to have him back in my life that is why I can’t seem to move forward a step. I’m working every hour possible that means I haven’t time to think but every now and then it comes to head and I have a meltdown,
Like everyone else that has suffered a bereavement we have no idea what to expect.
Hello Blue Moon - Thank you so much for replying and sharing your story, it was a reasonable thought that you may be more settled at 6 months. You may have been if there had been no shock involved and no thoughts that it was such an untimely loss but there was. My Husband also had never stepped inside a Doctor’s surgery in over 50 years so it all adds to the disbelief and sense of bewilderment. I can see why you would be upset with how Cruse have conducted themselves, I did think of complaining but you end up thinking “just what is the point” so I didn’t, your experience with them must have been more upsetting. The NHS counsellor did say she thought I was conflicted and I was trying to keep my Husband alive - which I suppose I am, but it’s downright emotionally painful isn’t it and yes I know understand completely about the longing. I don’t get to discuss my Husband with anyone so every now and again everything does come to a head as you say. In a way it’s a limbo situation where we logically know what’s happened but aren’t in a position to accept it. I really appreciate you sharing your story and send you empathy and kindest wishes.
Hello Tina19. I read your post quite by accident while I was having my coffee! I was so moved by it that I am stopping my jobs to send you a message. The most significant part of your post is the part concerning ‘what if’ and ‘if only’. It seems to me that is is this that is making you so ill. When my husband died I had all the same emotions. We all do to some extent. I went to see the hospital doctor to ask the questions I should have asked at the time but was too traumatized to do so. Our conversation contained a lot of ‘what if’ and ‘if only’ and ‘should/shouldn’t have’. He undoubtedly had heard all this many times. He was quite firm and said ‘Don’t think like that. It’s over and you can’t change it.’ It was a simple statement but is is so true. I have had to cope with regretting the past and wishing I could go back to a happier time. I do struggle but I think we have to live in the present. That is all we have. Try to do something for someone else. I’ve said this before in a post and it sounds rather saintly but isn’t meant to. Find out about voluntary work in your area or if this is too scary help a friend or neighbour. Do some shopping for them or help with baby sitting or gardening- whatever is right for you. This will focus you on the present instead of the past. Giving pleasure to other people brings a little happiness and it is something you can do. You just can’t change the past but you can use the past to be a better person in the present. I do try to do this in little ways and find it is useful. I’m sorry you have had such a bad time with doctors and counsellors. They can probably only help you if you are prepared to move on.Don’t imagine that everything is wonderful for me. I think the morning is the worst when I wake up and it all comes back but I get up and keep going! Hope some of this is useful I know everyone is different but we do share the same emotions. Take care. Pattoa.
Hello Patoa. Many thanks for that.
Hello again Tina,
I’ve just got home from work and saw your sad message. As you know I am also going through something similar so can fully understand where you are coming from. Maybe you just didn’t get a very good counsellor at Cruse and should ask for the opportunity to go again with someone else. I have been told that sometimes people just don’t gel with certain counsellors. I received counselling through the hospice my husband used to attend once a week and the lady I saw was wonderful. It was an opportunity to talk about my husband, which you say you don’t get at all. I am struggling to talk to family about him as it feels that they must think that I am ok now. They never ask about him or how I am. Try to explore other options where you might receive counselling.
But the other thing which I mentioned before and which Pattoa also mentioned is voluntary work. How about finding out if there is any voluntary work with old people in your area, who might need a friend. This might give both of you an opportunity to chat. You might find that they too lost a partner and have words of advice to help you. It might be the start of a real friendship
I know it is hard to overcome negative feelings. I have tried all sorts of things to feel better - work, exercise, volunteering but maybe we just have to go through this to come out the other side. You can tell I am feeling slightly more positive today. No real reason for it. I think it is just sometimes good days and bad days, good moments and bad moments. It can change from one hour to the next. Thoughts can just pop into your head and make you sad again. I try to keep busy, but then being busy all the time makes you so tired, but not necessarily a good tired. Does being with friends help? I find that the only way I relax is if I’m with a good friend and can sit down and talk to them. My best friend does get put upon a lot, but I know I would do the same for her.
You know there are people on this site who will listen to you and fully understand what you are feeling. We are right behind you. Look after yourself, Corinne xx
Many Thanks Corinne for replying. I appreciate the comments.