Passed... Passed away...

My husband Duncan, died nearly 3 years ago. Diagnosed in April and died in September. So quick, devastating and traumatic. I miss him every day.
There are times when I still feel the anger and unfairness of it all and question why him. But I am comfortable with my grief on the whole. I know my grief won’t go away and accept that, as what happened during his illness and his subsequent death was something I had no control over. Its been a difficult journey which continues.
I’ve written today and have used the words ‘he died’ and ‘his death’. Very important words to acknowledge and for me to use.
I don’t understand why the world uses ‘passed’ and ‘passed away’. This I feel is indicative of people’s reluctance to be more open and honest about death which makes those who have lost a loved one feel perhaps more isolated in their grief. This is a very personal opinion I have but feel strongly enough about this I felt the need to express this as part of my frustration in my grief perhaps. And I hope I am able to use this platform to do this comfortably.
I understand why people are reluctant to use the word Due, Died, Death. Apparently because they don’t want to cause more hurt.
We all die at some point, the grief, trauma and hurt of those left behind is enormous. I don’t under estimate this at all. I’m there.
But for me, to acknowledge that Duncan died is more honest and makes me feel my family and friends are more empathetic and that they don’t feel reluctant to talk about Duncan to me now. And believe me it’s so good to be able to talk about Duncan, he was the best.


Hi Heather7

My husband died five months ago and I also use the words died or death rather than ‘passed’ or ‘passed away’. Or when poeple say “sorry for your loss”. To me they don’t really express the impact that a partner’s death has on the one that is left behind.

Take care.x

I saw a video about grief and a grief counsellor said exactly that. We should always use the words died and not passed away or lost as that is what has happened they have died. Personally I hate the term lost as it seems like I’ve lost him somewhere and will find him somewhere. We all know that is not going to happen unless it’s when I die and I see him again. That’s a another debate xx

Hello both.

I do understand what you mean. Not using the “D” word, as I just can’t, probably does extend the grief and has the potential to disrupt the grieving process. Rightly or wrongly I use “passed away” as it’s just not as brutal, it’s got softer edges. Some, myself included just can’t manage with the “D” word when already so vulnerable. But I can only really comment for me.
To me, “Lost” has many different meanings, from the traditional sense to the abstract so I have used that too. I think it depends on the person, their culture and coping skills and probably generation.
I can see your point though.
Sending kindness.

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I know my friend who is widowed hates the term passed. For me, I do like it as it aligns with my belief that Mum has passed to somewhere different not just gone, full stop. I suppose I feel like dying is what she did, passing is the journey it took her on.

What is important is that people use what feels right for them and arent judged for it or tons it is wrong.

Heather, Duncan sounds like he was great and you found a good one! Grief is just love finding a new route

Beki x

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