Struggling to socialise

I lost my Mum on 20th May and am really struggling to socialise. I get panicky at the thought of going out in a group and when I do try to go out I just end up crying and have to go home again although I’m ok with one friend at a time. I’m supposed to be going out for drinks tomorrow night and I’m already worrying about it. Does anyone else feel like this and if so how do you deal with it. I’m 53 years old and Mum died of dementia and Parkinson’s aged 75

Hello Paula, so sorry you lost your mum,I lost my husband in october last year and it is 9 months since he passed and I can still can only go out with one friend at a time,I hate being in a room full of people so make sure I only go to places where I know it will be quite,if you explain to friends how you are feeling then they won’t think you are being awkward.I have found since loosing my husband that I needed the peace and quiet ,I have just begun to except the everyday noise and being around a few people.I havn’t even been to a shopping centre as that would be to much.just take your time so you can grieve properly.take care Debbie

Hi Debbie - thanks for your response. I’m sorry to hear about the loss of your husband. It’s just so difficult isn’t it. My friends have all been wonderful and really supportive. I know completely that they will understand but I feel so foolish when I keep crying. It’s not even as if I’m thinking of Mum when it happens - it just comes from nowhere.

Hi Paula. I certainly felt exactly the same and actually still do occasionally. However I dealt with it by giving people a timescale, for instance as soon as I arrived I would say ‘I can only stay an hour’ so that no-one would comment when I left. Leave earlier if you want to. Give it a go. Be gentle with yourself and don’t beat yourself up on the evening if you just can’t face it. Its Ok.


Hi Paula. I know how you feel. My mum passed away four months ago and I find it difficult to be around groups of people and I found it especially difficult when certain friends didn’t understand. In this period, I’ve found out who my real friends are!

I agree with the reply from Jeannie, go along and see how you feel. Give it ago.

Please let us know how it went.

I gave so much time and many years supporting my parents,I feel that I have lost my own identity. Before dad died he had alzheimers for many years, mum struggled to cope with it and depended on me completely. Since dad’s death and now excluded from mum’s life, I have lots of time, I am retired. But I cannot copy with large social groups, I am tired in the evenings, and my life is lonely. This Saturday I am going to the football match with my son, I am anxious about this, but will do it, I don’t want to let my son down.

Hi Paula
I lost my son in Jan '17 I know exactly how you feel. The thought of going out trying to be happy talking to people just scares me.

Even at work ppl think I am being antisocial but they are happy etc I am fine if left its when someone asks me how I am. I just want quiet peace . I want to be me again but I can’t I have no control over grief it hits me at any moment I break down several times its happened at work.I snap say I am OK if left the tears flow then I regain control.

I am trying to start again where someone dosnt me know as the woman who lost her son. Its going to take time . I don’t mean to be like this it makes me appear horrible I want to shout leave me alone i just want to be left quiet. I can think freely of him.
Anything can bring the grief sad things on tv e.g long lost family his fave sweet or food in a shop etc. I miss him every moment of every day he talks to me in my head. Also the physical side of life tires me. I think only us in this club of grief know that in time slowly we may regain are social skills with love help and understanding.

I find it hard to be with friends/ couples. It makes me more aware of what I have lost. My husband died in January, I feel as though no one understands. I feel for you this is such a hard situation to be in. I hope you slowly find a way to cope. I have learned to allow myself to grief as I need to, if I`m sad then so be it. x

My mum to had dementia, she died April last year, my husband died in January this year. You must allow yourself to grieve, we all need to do this in our own way. Others mean well, but you have to do things your way. When I have good days I enjoy them and when I have bad days I just allow myself some sad time. I hope you will learn how to cope given time and love.

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Thank you for your reply and sorry I haven’t said this sooner I haven’t been able to face coming back until now. I told all my friends before I went how ideas feeling so when I went i felt under no pressure to stay which really helped. I actually ended up staying for the whole time and was absolutely fine. All my friends knew not to ask me how I was feeling and I had a nice time with them. I hope things are ok for you xx

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I know exactly what you mean. My friends now know not to ask me how I am. I’ve explained to them all that I know they care and that if they’re nice to me it’ll start me off and they’re all really good at it now.

I still find myself crying for no apparent reason - as you say it can be a song a tv programme or even a memory that pops into my head. Sometimes it just happens for no apparent reason.

I guess in time we’ll learn to cope with it all but it’s still early days. Take care of yourself xxx

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Thank you - that’s how I’m trying to cope with it. One day at a time xx

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Thank you - that’s how I’m trying to cope with it. One day at a time xx

Hi Kiki . I did go along and it was ok. I explained to my friends before I went so knew that none of them would ask how I was and I felt there was no pressure.
Thank you for your support xx

I’m so sorry to hear that you are lonely. Do you think you may be able to join a group where you could meet new people and make friends? My friends have been a wonderful support to me and I’m sure you would find the same. How about doing voluntary work of some sort. This would give you your identity back. I hope you are able to make it to football on Saturday but don’t beat yourself up about if if you find you are unable to make it. Please let me know how you get on xxx

I lost someone close 5 yes ago it does not get easier, you just learn to cope better… The grief will creep up on you when u least expect it… Talk to someone neutral, ask yr doctor about grief counselling , don’t feel ashamed too… Just cos you can’t see the ailment, doesn’t mean its not there… I’m now in counselling after a full mental breakdown… 2 friends in particular helped me… Keep the true friends by your side … You will need them very much… Xx good luck