I am really struggling with intense feelings of grief after my dad’s death.

It has been seven months since my dad died and the grief started to feel somewhat familiar and predictable. Constantly missing him, but carrying on with my day despite the sadness and longing. Then days or weeks where the grief feels unbearable and debilitating.

I miss my Dad more than ever. This time last year Dad had back pain which we would later find out was advanced cancer. None of us suspected.

Last June we were on a family holiday at my parents holiday home. This year it’s conversations about taking steps to inform the relevant authorities there and to sell the house. No one can bare the thought of going back there without Dad.

The memory of my Dad working in the garden is seared into my brain. We were making plans for future trips and I can see him so vividly in my mind. Happy and carefree, an old life that I loved which now feels like a distant dream. It’s excruitating how much I wish I could get that time back. I know cancer and death happens to people all the time and no one is exempt but it all feels very surreal and painful.

The old familiar tormenting thoughts of why did it have to happen, why didn’t Dad live until his 80’s and then feelings of guilt as people lose parents at a much younger age. I am fortunate to have such a wonderful Father but the loss is debilitating and the grief insurmountable.

My Dad never felt sorry for himself, he said he was 70 and it’s not a tradgedy. It’s doesn’t feel that way though.

I feel dread about Father’s Day on Sunday. My Dad would tell me it doesn’t mean any more than any other day. You show your love for a person in your every day actions, but it is a stark reminder that my Dad isn’t here.

The GP told my mum that Dad’s sudden illness was incredibly stressful that this is when the grief really starts to hurt. You think you can get through it at first but then the reality of the loss sets in and people struggle.

I feel daunted about the next five months up until the anniversary. I don’t know if it’s because I was subconsciously worried about Dad’s back pain but I remember everything so vividly. My dad’s final months of life. I wish I could change my perspective but as much as I try I feel at the mercy of the grief and whatever thoughts my mind throws my way.

The good and bad memories both hurt and the reminders are everywhere.

I’m worried that I’m fooling myself that I can get through this and I’ll ever feel ok.


Hi, sorry that your grief is feeling so intense at this time. It sounds like your new reality is starting to kick in as you endure a life without your Dad. You won’t ever be the same as before but you’ll adapt and get used to his absence. In the meantime you’ll have all these ups and downs when your grief feels so sharp. I’ve encountered loss before but my Mum died in January and it has been the worst. I have to check on her empty house and tidy the garden that she lovingly created. Each visit is hard and sends me into a spiral of grief. But I keep gritting my teeth and knowing that this time will pass, the house will be sold and my grief journey will move on. It’s natural to look back on the months before… my Mum died unexpectedly, we didn’t know she was ill. I often look back at photos from last year, trying to look for signs and wondering if she had pain that she hid from me. I think you will manage the pain of your grief by taking each phase as it comes because what else can we do? Take care xx


Hi @Katherine86,
My mom died of brain tumors in April 2021, she was 64. She collapsed 2 days after my birthday 2020 & was rushed into hospital. Up until that time, she would often get very tired, but not knowing she had a cancer, we dismissed it as, partly getting older, partly that she was always babysitting. I know what you mean about father’s Day, It’s painful knowing it would of been a special day you would of shared with him, but I’m sure he’ll be with you in spirit, & knows how much you love him. Days like this, it can be helpful to spend it with family, so you can support eachother through it, sharing thoughts & memories. Anniversaries & birthdays are always hard, it’s like another milestone that says “this is how long they haven’t been here,” it is very upsetting, heartbreaking, & stressful. My baby passed away 2007 while I was pregnant with him, 5 days before my birthday, so June is a really tough month for me, as a result, I hate my birthday, & prefer to treat it like just another day. All I can say is, take it one day at a time, it’s usually if you look too far ahead it becomes overwhelming. Sending hugs of support.


Hi Rosiepink,

Thanks so much for your reply. It’s so tough to lose a parent it’s unsettling in so many different ways.

I think everything has just got on top of me at the minute. There is lots of stress as everyone’s life has been turned upside down. I am trying to just keep getting through each day but it’s exhausting. I know it won’t always feel this intense but when it does I’ll continue to lean into this site for support. Sometimes just posting my thoughts feels like a weights been lifted.


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Hi Pandaprincess,

Thank you for your reply. I’m so sorry for your losses.

My brother has said that it’s a blessing that we didn’t know Dad was ill as it kept life as normal as possible for as long as possible. It’s incredibly strange looking back on it all now though. I find myself just going over every detail sometimes despite there being no point.

I got my Dad a father’s day card and I’ll put it up in mum and dad’s house where he would always display them. I feel so fortunate to have such a loving Dad so hate when I sink into what feels like the pits of despair.

I hope you are getting through the month as best you can.


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