Unbearable anxiety following my Mum’s death

So I lost my mum in January this year to a brain tumour- she was only 53, and was so fit and healthy it came completely out of nowhere. The diagnosis turned my life upside down literally in a matter of seconds, and I think since then I have lived in constant fear.

I have always suffered badly with OCD- it’s worse when I’m stressed, but since losing my Mum, it’s taking over my life. I spend hours of the day doing things that I think will ‘save’ my dad, I.e touching the floor a certain number of times, walking in and out of a room etc. OCD is so embarrassing and hard to explain but I get so upset and terrified that if I don’t do something, I’ll lose my dad too. I am on constant edge and I feel genuinely scared all the time, like something awful is going to happen. I know I would never ever cope if touch wood I lost my dad, and the worry of it is driving me crazy, to the point I can’t even properly grief my mum because of it. Me and my Mum were inseparable and so close, I think losing mum has almost regressed me 20 years back to when I was really young and couldn’t function without her. I’ve completely lost myself and I’m so scared of everything. I’ve tried online NHS counselling (IESO), but with the greatest of respect, it just didn’t work at all for me. I just don’t know what to do xx

Dear RachWBA,

Sorry to hear that your OCD and anxiety have gotten so much worse since you lost your mum so suddenly and at such a young age. I have seen other posts on this site from people who had similar experiences. (If you type ‘OCD’ in the search option it will bring up all the posts that mention OCD. You can do the same with ‘anxiety’. Some of these posts may not be relevant to you, but others may well be helpful.

Have you considered contacting your GP? I know it is difficult at the moment to get an appointment in person, but it should be possible to get a telephone or video appointment. If you describe your experiences he or she may be able to refer you for a different type of counseling than the one that did not work for you. You could also consider bereavement counseling, such as offered by Sue Ryder (there should be a link to this at the top of this page) because help with grief may reduce your other problems.

Have you tried to get any support from OCD help groups or organisations such as ocdaction or ocduk? Often the best people to talk to are people who have been there themselves and can understand what you are going through.

It is good that you are reaching out for help. To live with constant fear of what might happen is very hard and I really hope that you will find the support that you need. You deserve it.
Take care,

Hi there Rach,
Although I cannot help regarding your ocd I wanted to leave a message and not scroll past.
I’m so deeply sorry for the sad loss of your beautiful mum, I too lost my mum in May this year, she passed away at home (her last wish) she had been poorly for the last few years getting gradually worse. I started with anxiety last year when mum got more ill, more hospital admissions (she had heart and kidney failure and COPD) I just got this terrible feeling come over me that I was going to lose her, as the months of 2019 went by my anxiety was still very much present. This year mum was hospitalised right at the start of January only to be getting worse until in February they gave her 3-6 months left to live~ devastated. By this time I’d lost nearly 5 stone in weight due to the constant worry and anxious feelings. Lockdown happened in March and mum was home and bedridden having palliative care from the Douglas McMillan nurses. We formed a bubble and I would sleep over when I could. She died peacefully in May and since that devastating Sunday lunchtime I’ve been going through the motions (I have a 9.5 year old daughter) and as much as we show our feelings I really pop the bravest face on. My beautiful Mum would have been 88 years old on Christmas Day :broken_heart: I’m trying to block it out at the moment, I’m broken but carrying on. I just wanted to say that if you ever need to reach out to share your feelings then I’m happy to be here to support you. Maybe speak to a professional hunny for yourself. Sending heartfelt hugs xxx

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