My Dad died on the 8/3/23 in hospital. It was unexpected & I’d actually gone to bring him home. The day before I said to him: just one more sleep Dad & you’ll be home. He was excited about that. The next day, I walked in on him dying. Curtains round the bed & him gasping with his eyes unfocused. I’m haunted by it but I don’t want to try & forget it because it’s the last time I saw him alive or thereabouts. I’ll always wonder if he knew I was there. I promised I’d bring him home & I was too late. Then there was the the look on his face after death. He didn’t look at peace. Has anyone experienced similar with a dying loved one?


Hi, so sorry for what you have been through. I had similar as my partner was taken to A&E where she waited all day. She rang me at 16:07 to say they were keeping her in and sounded ok.
I got an overnight bag ready for her and was getting ready to leave when the hospital said I needed to get there asap and notify her family. Apparently they “found” her unresponsive at 17:23.
Needless to say after CPR etc she passed away.
5 weeks tomorrow and I’m still struggling to comprehend it all. Never in my wildest dreams did I expect this. The shock is unimaginable. So I empathise with you. X


@Tiffany Many thanks for your reply. I felt sure someone somewhere would’ve had an equally awful experience like mine. It’s the “I can’t believe that happened” isn’t it. We’re both new to these feelings & trying to understand is part of the struggle. I’m sorry for your loss, that must’ve been traumatic for you, losing your loved one so quickly. I share those thoughts & feelings with you. Life really is horrible & unjust at times. X


Totally empathise, my wife died a year ago on the 16th April, she was being treated for cancer but her death was sudden and unexpected. She was admitted to hospital, as might be described as ‘walking wounded’, cogent, ambulatory, able to care for herself, make and receive mobile phone calls, etc. Within four days the oncology ward she was transferred to were managing her death. Clinical care was lamentable, very poor management and a shortage of staff contributing.
Her death came quickly, the consultant apologising, that ‘they’d let her down’. The look on her face post death was traumatising too. It was obvious that she’d not left this world without a struggle,
As a qualified nurse herself, she’d never have left a patient in the state we found her.
Our two adult children and I were left in shock and I’m still struggling to come to terms with it.


Yes, my partner mentioned in earlier post, had also been a very caring nurse in earlier years. I agree the look of anguish was not comforting. We still have to wait another week yet for the funeral. I feel sorry for the nurses, because I don’t think there are enough of them any more to provide the level of care they would like to. I still can’t quite believe what has happened. We were so happy.

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@yrhengof your situation sounds like mine. Management & nursing tbh was appalling. Constant delays & dare I say it utter lies. I used to read his notes & think it was the work of fiction. I thank you for your comments especially the bit about your loved one fighting to stay. I’d never thought of it like that. Dad would’ve fought because he wanted more than anything to go home. :pray:t2: x


@Cee I’m sorry to hear about your dad and your sudden loss. I went to work on the Saturday and on the Sunday got a phone call from my son to say that my husband and his dad had collapsed. Time I got home he had passed away. He was just 53 years old. I did CPR but no luck as ambulance hadn’t arrived yet. Had no closure as no chance to say goodbye or that I loved him. Just celebrated our 25th anniversary. Life is so unfair and cruel. Big hugs xx

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@Hazel.1966 thankyou for your input & I’m sorry about your husband’s sudden death. Doing cpr must’ve been an ordeal for you as you go over the what ifs in your mind til it drives you crazy. Life is unfair. 6 weeks in & I’m still in the denial phase but I cycle between emotions a lot. Big hugs to you too & Thankyou


Hi Cee,

Im sorry for your loss, your situation sounds unimaginable. I lost my girlfriend of 8 years 5 weeks ago to suicide. She got up in the night and took her life while I slept and I found her in the morning when i woke up. I have feelings of unease when i think about it, how she looked, not at peace, in pain, cold etc. I have been in my living room around 3 times since she passed because i cant bear it and i see her face in nightmares every night, i think this is somewhat PTSD but im not sure.

Its hard to remember our loved ones in death, any time i picture what happened i try to look at photos and videos of her happy, and replay memories of her when she was happy and alive. i hope that it will get easier with time and i hope it does for you too. Take care of yourself.

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@Diadhuit thankyou for responding. Sorry to read about your situation which sounds even worse than mine. Thankyou for the advice too about picturing better times. I’ve been thinking more about the person dad was & not the end. I hope you are being kind to yourself & taking comfort from these posts on here. Loss is a heavy burden for us who are left behind. Take care. X


My son had MS. only had it for 2 years. Went from fit and healthy to bedbound and unable to manage his own airway or cough. He spent the last 4 months in hospital. Walking and talking when he went in. On the 13th March (my birthday) he was transferred to intensive care, where the doctors kept telling me he was going to die. After 10 days, he was well enough to go back to the neurological ward. After a few days we both caught covid (so both got it from the hospital at the same time). I was then not allowed to go to the hospital until I tested negative. (I only had the feeling of a slight head cold). My son turned 30 on the 27th March. My son was then taken back to intensive care, while I was stuck at home.
On the 6th April, the nurse looking after my son would not tell me much and my heart was breaking as I knew something was going on. At 4.30pm the doctor called me and said that my son was critically ill and they were struggling to keep his oxygen levels up. They asked me to come into the hospital as they did not think he would make the night. The hospital is a 90 minute drive. When I got there, my son was in an horrible state. He was struggling to breath, even with a machine supporting him. I had to speak with the doctors and I agreed to take the oxygen and breathing support away from my son.
My son died within 2 hours. Not awake and not able to talk to me.
I am devastated. I feel like I should have fought more for him, and he may be alive now.
I understand your horror, to all who have shared their experiences. I don’t know what to do. I feel empty and can’t see the point of going on.


Hi @Cee. You chose the title of “ptsd?”.

I was a fellow sufferer, not due to Penny’s death, but because of previous happenings at work.
I booked myself into a “results focussed hypnotherapy” course. I was being driven mad by regurgitating damaging thoughts from my past and beating myself up, then putting the thoughts back, only to be regurgitated the next day, they day after that etc etc.
Penny died a few months after that, but the changes I had made were very good at helping me to get through my grief.
I would recommend it! I dont now keep visiting those regrets, guilts, hurts etc etc.
It was all done over zoom, and took only one hour a week for 10 weeks.
My therapist was extremely good, and if you would like his details, I’ll pm them to you.

PS dont get the impression that being hypnotised in this way is like the stage acts when you strutt around making sounds like a chicken. All it does it make us highly relaxed (which is a brilliant feeling) whilst we learn new thinking patterns.

@Daisy13 thankyou for sharing, I started the thread because I’d hoped I wasn’t alone in seeing a loved one in the worst of circumstances. My sincerest condolences on losing your son like that. It changes you doesn’t it. I too go over the what ifs. If only I’d got him discharged earlier or was more assertive with the staff. It doesn’t change anything now. You’ll drive yourself crazy with those thoughts. I’m taking the bit by bit approach. Some days I can’t function & that’s ok as is the anger & anxiety of it all. Have you been offered bereavement counselling? X

@tykey Thankyou for your input. I chose the title ptsd? Because I wasn’t sure if it’s what I have. Maybe it’s just shock. Watching my dad’s dying moments have haunted me ever since. Nobody told me what was happening. It was horrendous. I had to call my mum who was expecting him home to tell her he’d gone…Hypnotism does sound like something I’d like to try so feel free to dm me. At the moment I’d settle for anything that would ease my anxiety just for a few hours. I’d certainly like to look into it. Thankyou. X


@Cee I think you called it correctly, following the somewhat unexpected deaths of your father and my wife, we both found ourselves in shock at witnessing what we found to be a traumatic ordeal.
My adult children expressed exactly the same views; temporarily we struggled to cope with it, finding the situation we found our selves in otherworldly.
Trauma is a person’s emotional response to a distressing experience. Unlike ordinary hardships, traumatic events tend to be sudden and unpredictable, and generally beyond our control.
I wish you comfort and solace along this road we all travel.


Hi Cee,
Your post has touched a nerve and like you, I do wonder if PTSD is a possibility after witnessing the traumatic deaths of loved ones.

In March 2022 my father died suddenly, I did CPR, but was not able to resuscitate him.

In July 2022, my partner was taken ill and we nursed her at home until her death just before Christmas.

It was an aggressive brain tumour that came out of nowhere.

Ironically, we had been doing a life laundry and taken five camper-bus loads of stuff to our local Sue Ryder shop!

She was so brave, but so not ready to go and the flashbacks of her anguished looks are so painful to bear.

She did not die peacefully and I was saddened not to be warned of what might happen when her last breaths we taken, despite the amazing palliative care support given to us all as a family. I am thankful however, that I was there to hold her hand at least.

I’m not ready for more counselling yet.

Again, I had excellent support from a hospice psychotherapist, but now I have to find another one and I just don’t have the strength to do that and get through a day.

I have been looking online for support and was so heartened to find this community.

It has been SO helpful to know I am not alone in my emotional mess.

Grief is horrendous in so many different ways and understanding that there are no hard and fast rules in dealing with it, for any of us, is useful to know.

Everyone here has something of value and support to say, despite their devastatingly painful losses.

I so appreciate the time and thoughtfulness that people have given just by joining the discussions and then to be able to take comfort in reading them.

I am so sorry for everyone’s despair and pain of loss.

Thank you for sharing and thanks to SueRyder for enabling this community to exist.

It has enabled me to be so grateful for at least having our time together at home and to be so grateful for all that we had during our 40 years of loving each other.

It doesn’t mean the pain and trauma is any less, but I know I am not alone and I was one of the lucky ones to find my other half.

Your plan to think of all the positives is such a good thing.

Doesn’t mean it will get any easier, but maybe those flashbacks will ease and slowly, but surely, be replaced by happier ones? I’m certainly trying that.

Thank you for sharing your experience. It has really helped and enabled me to share mine.

Take care of yourself and think how proud your Dad would be of you, finding your way through this.


@Milly456 thankyou for your kind words. I started the thread to try & connect with others navigating the indignities of dying. Like yourself, I never realised just what happens when life stops. We’re unprepared for it. Ironically the person I’d have told my experience to is the one who has died. You’re right about this website though, knowing people in the same situation, experiencing pain beyond measure. We’re now in this grief club trying to make sense of life. Thankyou once again for sharing your experience. X