Too old to grieve loss of mum?

I lost my mum 5 weeks ago. She was my best friend and my inspiration. I have fallen apart since - I m still signed off work. I still find myself howling with grief. I can t get anything done - cooking tea for the children is an achievement. Some days I just sit and play solitaire on my phone.
I feel embarrassed in a way because I am 50 and my mum was 81. I tell people how lucky I was to have such a fantastic relationship for so long but inside I feel like I m a child. I only say that because I think that is what they are thinking.
I have a lovely husband, children and friends - but I just want mum.
I m over emotional and have used alcohol to just “get the day over” . I m short tempered and just want to sleep but can t at night. I feel totally disconnected from the world and feel angry if I see an elderly lady and think why are they alive when my mum is not!! I have 2 brothers who are back at work and think I should be. One sister who is amazing and one I never see who has not made contact since the funeral.

Hi Rachel

I am in my 50s and my mum was in her 90s when she passed away last year. There are others on this forum of similar ages so no you are in no way too old.

We are the lucky ones in some respects as we had our Mums for so many years, their friendship, advice and support. Like you I became a child again last year and still am at times. And I don’t care what others think so nor should you.

Don’t worry about the sleeping thing, have catnaps during the day if that gets you through. The more you fret at night the more you won’t be able to sleep. I find which was recommended on here relaxing - online jigsaws if you like that sort of thing.

You sound as if you have lots of support from your immediate family and friends which is good. The most unexpected people can be so kind yet others you expect to understand are awful so ignore your not so helpful siblings.

Take care of yourself

1 Like

Thank you. I feel totally overwhelmed with grief at the moment. I know I should be back at work but can t face it. Some people have totally ignored the fact I 've lost my mum. People I considered friends - although not close - who are younger and have not lost parents seem to have accepted the loss as natural. It is but it s so painful as you know.

Hi Rachel,
I am so sorry to read your post. It sounds as though it is still to raw for you to return to work, yet. Only you can tell when you are ready. Others may be able to face their bereavement in a different way. Don’t be intimidated to take any rash actions about returning to work…you need time to heal.

I have noticed that some who say to me that I should be feeling better by now are the sorts who have never lost anyone close.

As for feeling disconnected form the world, short tempered and unable to sleep relate to all of them… Marching through a crowded Swansea yesterday I was snarling at those with their mobile phones concentrating on their texting rather than where they were walking…also felt rather guilty of a nasty thought of envy that went through me when I saw people being pushed in their wheelchairs.
I lost my mother on Nov 6th, 2016. She was 88. Her birthday was on Christmas day. That milestone day went in a blur. I am 53 and was my mother’s carer for a number of years. I miss her terribly to a point that it physically ill. I often sob uncontrollably at inappropriate moments especially when looking at her photo or something like a song on the radio or a tv programme or an advert that she liked and then the tears flow…
I am always thinking: “This time last year.” if the weather was good, I would dress and hoist my mother into her wheelchair and then we would tootle off on the bus to Swansea…tea and cakes at the grand theatre restaurant. Since she was left sided impaired due to a stroke I would feed her and help her drink from her cup…completely unabashed even in a crowded café. We enjoyed those days and I miss them so much.

Mel’s good advice works, try a cat nap. don’t feel ashamed for loving your mother and showing it by tears. No matter your age you only lose your mum once.

Have a word with your GP about your issues. if you feel the need to…only you will now when you are ready for work.

Take care of yourself.


Thank you so much for replying. I can see you “hoisting” your mum and enjoying the good days. Sometimes when mum had had her chemo she would say let s have lunch on the way home and we d end up at a tapas bar in nottingham.
As she got more ill, I d sit on the bed with her and do the cross word and just talk.
I took her 15 yr old cat just before she went and had to have it put down 2 days ago because it had liver failure. Me and my sister went to the vets 4 times before we could do It! When we got back to my house we both felt her sitting where she always sat when she came round, saying it s ok- you did the right thing.
I had a full on panic attack at church today. I just feel so empty. Like you the minute something happens or I see something she would like I lose it.
I do agree- It s the people who have not lost people who have the most to say.

I hope you don’t mind me messaging you David I lost my Mum on the exact same day as you and Im devasted Would be good to talk to someone who’s going through the same

Back to top