Sudden death

It is now more than 4 years since losing my husband suddenly to undiagnosed heart disease. I attended bereravement counselling in order to come to terms with the trauma of coming home and finding him dead. Following a failed attempt at CPR the paramedics arrived and took over but could not save him. I then had to deal with the police arriving and taking statements from myself and my children. Just a horrible, awful experience. I now find that I am really struggling with living alone and no longer being part of a couple (after 40 years). Also the realisation that I don’t have the constant support that I took for granted for so many years. Making decisions by myself is also difficult. I feel now that I hav had enough and want to find a way to make my life mean something again. I have come to realise that grief will always be a part of my life but I just want to feel some peace and contentment

Hello Marie,
I share many of your feelings , although it’s only 11 weeks since my husband died.I am struggling living alone we had been together 43 years ,and yes that lack of support that perhaps I took for granted has vanished.For instance I mowed our small lawn yesterday, he used to do it,and then had a go with the strimmer. which is something I have never used before
I feel that I am in a nightmare sometimes , but no it’s real,I am so frightened I am never going to feel any different. I miss him so so much
I wish you all the best in finding your way to contentment

Lancashire Lass it’s very early days for you. Don’t try to do too much. You’ve probably heard this so many times but be kind to yourself. You are probably walking about in a daze at the moment so just concentrate on getting through the day an hour at a time. Let other people worry about jobs like doing the garden. It will be a really frightening time for you but that will get easier. Thank you so much for your kind words and support. I wish you all the best.x

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Hi maire, my heart goes out to you , my husband died just over 4years too .he went to the hospital for a chest X-ray and died with in a week , never came home . We where togetfor 40 years too . I feel like I’ve gone throu most of the grief patterns but it will never leave me , how can we move on from 40 years of being with someone, we can only go forward with them . When I cry it’s like he’s with me , so I’ve learnt to love the sadness . The hardest thing I agree, is to be just me ! I’ve spent 40years being a pair ! And he was always my grounding part . I’ve made myself join groups , a craft group and ti chi group . Which is amazing, but sadness comes when I am alone! I try to meditation to stop my mind from spiraling !and walking . But he will always be with me , and I keep try to learn the next step ! With him .

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Hello Maire, I am in a similar situation after loosing my wife. It will be two years in June since I lost the most important part of my life,like you. Away on holiday golfing in Portugal. All going well. Went to bed on the Friday night and woke up to find my wife had died in the night beside me.Her death was an undetermined heart problem. ? We were a great team after been married 45 years. Life isn’t fair my daughters say. Quite right. So we have to live with our situation now. Nights and mornings are not the best but we need to get out and do things as much as we can. Talk to people and meet people. At least then we can try and switch from the tremendous grief we have for a little time. Its good to talk. Derek

Hello Maire, your post resonated with me. My husband died two and a half years ago and having pieced myself back together again after that devastating shattering experience I’ve been trying to find some solace and meaning in life. I have friends and family , although my children don’t live near me, but how to cope with the sense of loneliness and not being anyone’s primary person? Of always being secondary? The main thing that has been my rock and sanity has been meditation . I have also recently got involved in a movement attempting to halt/slow up climate change. Both these things have given me a sense of belonging to a wider community , and a purpose. I’m doing it for the younger generation and for my grandchildren, because after all, if we don’t stop polluting the planet and change our habits there will be no world for anyone. Hope this strikes a cord with you.Jay

Hi Derek. I’m so sorry for your loss. Like your wife my husband died from undiagnosed heart disease. I do get out and about-I still work 3 days a week and go to an art club one day a week. I have a great family and friends but for me it’s the evenings that are the toughest and the coming home to an empty house. There’s not a lot going on in the evening except pubs and I wouldn’t be comfortable going in to on my own. Most evening classes in my town are sports and Keep fit which I’m not into and can’t really do due to a neck problem. I just wish there were things like cafes and coffee shops open at night as being around other people definitely helps…Thank you for your kind words Derek I will certainly keep trying. Good luck on your own journey through this difficult period. x

Hi Gillie. I’m sorry that you are also going through this terrible journey of grief. Like you I just don’t know how to move on. Obviously some days are better than others but I had hoped that I would be coping a bit better by now. When I’m busy and around other people I’m usually ok it’s when I’m on my own that I struggle. Maybe like you I should embrace the sadness after all they deserve our grief. I think I am getting better at doing that but I just can’t deal with the alone time. Best wishes Gillie on this terrible journey. x

Hi Jay. Like you I try to keep busy. I still work as a teacher 3 days a week, which for me has always been more of a vocation than a career. I have joined an art class too so I do have a purpose. My problem is dealing with the time that I’m alone, which is mainly the evenings. I go out a couple of times a month with friends for dinner but this still leaves a lot of alone time. I think like you I am truly struggling with the fact that I’m nobody’s primary person anymore and I suppose this creates a deep loneliness that can’t be filled. Thank you Jay. I think your words have been a bit of an ephiphany for me. They have made me realise that this lack of a primary person is the crux of my problem and maybe understanding this will help me to move forward. All the best Maire. xx

Hi Marie .
Your circumstances are very similar to my own . The cpr , the sudden death , no history of heart disease the para medics then police and post mortem . It was a roller coaster of confusion and numb comprehension
Then when all the activity has passed the deluge of pain and lonliness sets in . The realisation that no one sits in " that " chair anymore and never will again . My wife died on dec 11 2018 . You say it has been 4 years since your loss . That fact makes me wonder if we ever become " normal" again

I do apologise Maire
I called you Marie …and me irish as well
Unforgivable …lol

Hi Mac. I’m so sorry you had to go through this as well. My husband died 25th November 2014… I remember that we had to wait a couple of weeks for the funeral bcause of the post mortem. The procurator fiscal was backed up. I remember feeling like I was in limbo and like you totally numb. It is early days for you Mac and I promise you it does get easier. You get more used to it and slowly learn to cope with life again, What hasn’t changed for me is the empty space that my husband has left behind which is more difficult when I’m on my own. Much of the advice I read when I was at your stage talked about a ‘new normal’. I think this is true and life as we knew it pre loss has definitely changed. I think the answer is to find a new purpose in life something that fulfills. This is what I’m striving to do,. My advice to you would be to look for that purpose and create your own new normal. You should maybe consider counselling to deal with the trauma you experienced. It helped me come to terms with it. I promise you that life has moved forward for me, it’s just the whole living alone that I’m sruggling with. The not having that significant other in my life. But I am getting better and you will too. xx

Haha it’s a common mistake many people make and have done all my life. I’m actually Scottish but of Irish descent. What is Mac short for. My maiden name is McLaughlin


My lovely husband collapsed while we were out and all attempts to revive him failed. Everything seemed normal that day and suddenly he was on the floor. It’s a trauma I will never forget and how desperate I was for him. It’s 14 months ago and I’m struggling with the loneliness and the hole he has left in my life. I’ve tried so hard to get out every day, join things, meet friends but the sadness and sense that I have no purpose doesn’t go away. Today has been awful as My children are always busy and one lives at a distance from me. How do you ever feel “normal” or enjoy things again. I feel so different with couples we were friends with and even with my grandchildren as the dynamic seems all wrong? It’s the unfairness as he was only 66 and we had lots of plans. Did any of you feel you had satisfactory answers for the sudden death? I was refused a Post Mortem asvtgey just said it was a Cardiac Arrest which apparently everyone has whatever is the cause of their death. I still have so many unanswered questions.
Thanks for listening

I’m so sorry Marie … it’s heartbreaking for you. Both my sons died in their thirties and my husband is in hospital having been diagnosed with cancer around his spine, in lungs, liver, prostate and bladder. It’s devastating… I understand how you feel. I will be without my husband d if 43 years soon after watching all his suffering and awful hospital care. I do t know how I will do it. It’s almost two years and almost seven years since my sons died. Love to you x

Thank you Pedro. Big hugs to you at this dreadful time. xx

Hello everyone,

My first post on this category. Had a really bad day today and feel so sad.
My husband died suddenly and with no warning at work 10 weeks ago tomorrow.
Myself and our two daughters are still in shock I think.
He was 58 and to all intents and purposes fighting fit! A mountaineer and the love of my life! We had been together for 40 years.
The sense of horror and trauma is so intense. I’m having counselling and hope it will help.
I just want to feel his presence again. The way his hand felt in mine. Watch him walk to the garden. See his smile. Watch him with the grandchildren playing and having fun. Hear him pottering about. Make him a meal and watch him enjoy it! All gone.
Life feels over, all our hopes and plans dashed. Hard to do things on my own but friends and family have been lovely.
Holidays were once a year for us but we always planned a perfect one. Just cancelled the one for this year. How can a holiday be enjoyed again without your life partner?
Hope I feel a bit better soon. Sad tonight…

Hi Maire
I too went through a very similar experience 2 years ago. Finding him, CPR, Ambulance, Police, Post Mortum. It was a devastating experience as he was only 55. I am still really struggling with living alone. I have sold my large house an downsized as I just could not live in the house anymore. Everyone at work was looking forward to the Easter weekend, but I am dreading the loneliness and pain of missing my soul mate. I have family who are great but that huge void is still so raw. I just try to keep going as that is what he would want me to do xx

Hi Doreen. This so resonates with me. You could be describing me. I too moved house as I couldn’t bear to live in the scene of the worst trauma of my life. I too am struggling with living alone and like you I don’t look forward to holidays because I dread the loneliness. My family too is great as are my friends but nothing fills the void. Like you I know he would want me to carry on but it’s not easy. I just yearn to feel at peace again. xxx

I wonder what peace is now or how we find it again. Everyone keeps telling me I have to make a new life for myself. I really don’t know what that means or how to begin with this new life? I just know that I am so lonely without him. I am going to Spain next week with my friends, but it is not the same. I just keep up the smiling game and just keep hoping it will get easier…A day at a time, that is all we can do.