Physical and Emotional Responses to Grief

To support ourselves, and our grieving loved ones, it is helpful to understand the physical, mental and emotional toll of grief. Naturally, the combination of responses to grief are unique to each individual, but below are several common responses to grief that can be seen in adults as well as children.

Physical Responses to Grief

  • Back, neck, or general muscle pain
  • Headaches
  • Dry mouth
  • Stomach pain, diarrhea, constipation
  • Inability to eat, weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Restlessness
  • Chills, sweats
  • Chest pain, difficulty breathing
  • Nervousness
  • Nightmares
  • Clinging
  • Crying

Mental and Emotional Responses to Grief
Grief takes a great toll mentally and emotionally. Below are several common reactions to loss beyond the physical, as well as some suggestions to help the persons in your life who may be struggling with grief.

  • Confusion/Disorientation – Immediately after a loss, it may take a grieving person an hour to complete something that should take 15 minutes. Be patient, provide guidance if possible, and make sure to plan tasks accordingly.
  • Forgetfulness – Grief can consume us mentally. You may notice your grieving loved one become forgetful about daily activities. You can help by discussing upcoming tasks with the person, and encouraging list making. For a child, rebuilding a daily routine will greatly help with this, as well as bring a much-needed level of security back to his or her life.
  • Anxiety – Be supportive, and listen patiently. Try not to get frustrated.
  • Agitation/frustration – Your loved one may become frustrated with others, especially when they feel others are complaining about seemingly frivolous things. Be understanding of where they are coming from, and help others around them understand (peers, teachers, etc.); especially during the holidays and anniversaries. Also help your friend/child understand that the frustration is misdirected by “taking it out” on others.
  • Concentration problems – Even when doing activities they love, a grieving person may have a hard time concentrating, or being motivated and in-the-moment. Taking on challenging tasks in small increments at a time can help.
  • Shock/emotional numbness – Often times, the first few months following a loss can be a blur for the grieving. They may simply be going through the motions of life – get up, get dressed, eat, breathe, sleep. The shock often lasts 3-6 months following the loss. Take your grieving friend/child where they are. If they want to talk, listen. If they don’t want to talk, don’t force it. But let them know you are there to listen when they are ready.
  • Guilt/regret – Know that your grieving loved one may be experiencing guilt or regret associated with their loss. If they are willing to talk about it, listen and support them.

Note: If you are living with grief, and/or raising a grieving child, we highly recommend seeking some level of professional support to help with the complicated challenges of grief. If one-on-one professional counseling does not interest you, there are several peer-support networks nation-wide. Several such organizations are listed on the Hello Grief Resources page.

Photo Credit.

89 Comments:

  1. Valorie Taylor said on April 26, 2011 at 6:00 pm ... #

    I lost my mother 39 days ago. It seems surreal, like maybe she will be back someday. I just cannot bring myself to the realization that my mother is really gone! I am working everyday and I’m living my life but, my mother is gone! This grieving thing is so very difficult. I still count the days since she left. I’m floating through a fog. When it will clear up I have no idea.

  2. Scott A said on June 4, 2011 at 8:56 pm ... #

    I also lost my mom recently (5 weeks tomorrow). My mom and I were so close. We lived together in a house we renovated. I also can’t believe she is gone. She used to call us “two peas in a pod”! I have experienced many of the symptoms described in the article. This is like the worst day of my life that keeps getting repeated over and over again.

  3. LeAnna said on August 15, 2011 at 11:46 pm ... #

    I lost my Grandma, who was essentially a second mother to me, and I can’t remember anything. I’ve locked my keys in my car 3 times this week. I feel like I can’t even do simple tasks right. I’m just thinking about too many things at once and it’s hard to deal with. I’m glad that forgetfulness is on this list because I thought I was going crazy.

  4. Jan said on November 16, 2011 at 10:51 am ... #

    I lost my mom 9-16-10 … and today is 11-16-11, and my dad passed on 8-21-08. My days are still horrendous, I pick up the phone forgetting they’re gone, I see things in the store, and still think they would like that. My memories are still painful, and the thought that they’ll never be back is dreadful. I still have health issues that are grieving related, I know everyone grieves different, I just never imagined it would last this long and be this hard! I was their caretaker for 6 years and the role reversal was difficult, so It’s like losing my children and my parents all wrapped up into one! Being kind to yourselves and making sure you get a great check-up is the most important thing to do when your grieving. You and your health are worth it! I know this will get better, but being an orphan takes allot of getting use to!

  5. Elizabeth said on January 3, 2012 at 12:52 pm ... #

    I lost my dad March 2010 and lost my mom April 2011 and it seems like years ago but then again it seems like yesterday. It’s without a doubt, the worst two days of my life. It seems that you can get a few steps ahead but then the grief and loss just overwhelms you and you’re back to the day after everything happened.

    I don’t think you get over a loss, you just learn to cope day by day.

  6. lisa said on January 13, 2012 at 5:44 pm ... #

    Yes…lost my dad 7 months ago. Very hard adjusting to normal life again. Seems just like yesterday and still missing him so.

  7. Kathryn said on January 28, 2012 at 1:17 pm ... #

    My father was ill for a year then finally diagnosed with ALS just before Christmas 2011. He died less than a month later. I was only working part-time so I spent many hours helping out my parents this fall during Dad’s illness. Every muscle in my body is now aching now and I’m having a lot of problems concentrating for any length of time. After the funeral, I spent the first few days watching the first 4 seasons of Sons of Anarchy because anything more than that seemed way too difficult to deal with. Good to know that I’m not alone. Thanks for publishing this article.

  8. Tanya said on February 3, 2012 at 3:36 pm ... #

    I lost my dad May 2003 and then my husband Feb 2005 my best friend 10 days later and father in law April 2005. All to sudden illness. It was a terrible season of grief for me and my two children. We went through a lot of counseling so with that help and our strong faith in God we got through. My youngest son had to deal with suicide attempts for a couple of years but he is doing much better. He stil misses dad and the grandpas & so do I, we talk of them often. Gone but not forgotten.

  9. Kathleen said on February 15, 2012 at 2:36 pm ... #

    I lost my father in 2007 and then my husband in 2011. Both from terminal illnesses. My husband unfortunately went much quicker w/in a month and a half of being diagnosed. The grief process is to me all consuming. I am now experiencing physical symptoms and you feel as if you are going crazy. At least sharing your thoughts with those who know helps.

  10. Susan said on April 16, 2012 at 11:50 am ... #

    I lost my father 3 months ago and my mother 9 days ago. I am in so much Physical pain and nauseous and SO tired.

  11. Angela said on May 3, 2012 at 12:34 pm ... #

    I lost my mom on March 5th..I do not know what to do with myself…she was ill for five years and I lived with her until the day she passed. I lost my place to live and trying to find a place to live off the cuff has been an additional stress I do not need…I cannot concentrate well, I have a sadness so deep it does not seem bearable..I have not slept an entire night since she left.. I too find myself getting ready to call her or if I think of something I think Mom would like to know about that… losing someone is so exhausting…

  12. Gary said on May 6, 2012 at 12:26 pm ... #

    Can anybody describe the type of phiysical pain you have experienced related to your grief? I lost my mother in December. I have had such terrible grief. I have stabbing pains throughout my chest, abdomen, wrists, elbows, groin……everywhere. I want to believe it is just thr grief. But it seems to be getting worse with time and I am becoming very concerned.

  13. admin said on May 8, 2012 at 9:44 am ... #

    Gary: Thank you for your question. It is not uncommon for people to experience their grief through physical symptoms. However, if your symptoms are worsening it is important to rule out any medical issues/concerns. Your primary care physician will be able to rule out any medical conditions as well as help you research local referrals for grief support.

  14. Linda said on May 28, 2012 at 2:56 am ... #

    I lost my mother (86) April 2 2012 and after almost two months it is still so hard, even though she was a very difficult and demanding person. I miss her very much but I don’t miss the drama and sometimes meanness. At the same time it is so hard that she is not here because as with most difficult parents there were wonderful things too, and great memories.
    I also have recent major aches, sciatica and very little urge to socialize; feeling more like reflecting. In reading these posts it is nice to know there are others in the same place. This is bigger than I thought it would be.

  15. a. hoeree said on June 19, 2012 at 10:11 pm ... #

    I lost my husband after 41 years of marriage, it was 2 weeks after hearth surgery,we were very,very close i still love him a lot,since then i have been experience so much pain in my muscles knees ,hands anxiety, it is so hard to go trough this experience, the whole thing is so painful,ther are days when i feel like nothig happened, and then all comes back again and the emptines that i feel is so overwhelming.Indeed this is bigger than i thougt it would be, does it ever get better?.

  16. Brenda said on July 21, 2012 at 10:44 am ... #

    I lost my mum 4 years ago at 82. There was only twenty years between us and she lived with me for 34 years after I married.She was my soulmate.
    Im still in grief. When she first passed it was if I had a whole in my side where my heart should be.Its eased some now but today through forgetfulness I lost a pouch containing her rosary beads and a lock of hair in a silver box- Im distraught. Who would want these??
    Im afraid time does not heal the pain.We just have to learn to live with it,

  17. Sean said on October 17, 2012 at 11:59 pm ... #

    I lost my Mom while we were both in the hospital, on the very same rehabilitation floor (me for a broken right knee, she for fractured vertebrae)…she developed pneumonia and passed away gently about 30 hours later Christmas night 2011, with me at her side, holding her hand. We were so close, all life long…as I’m emerging from sleep in the morning, I often have to remind myself that she’s not already in the living room, watching her favorite TV programs. It’s definitely a bittersweet feeling.

    To anyone who wonders “is this particular reaction normal?” and “how long will it last?”, in my experience, the answers are “yes” and “likely for a very long time, but hold on and ask for help if needed”. I’ve either been through, am going through, or are revisiting almost all those reactions listed at the top of the article, but this is, as I understand it, simply the grieving process…the great shift to a “new normal”. Have patience. Be gentle with yourself. Feel free to love.

  18. Daniel said on October 29, 2012 at 4:47 pm ... #

    I lost my son in May 2010. Pain is just a part of my life now. In every moment of happiness, I see an empty place where he should be. I was working towards a degree when he died, but have had to give it up because I just can’t concentrate properly anymore. When he first died I thought that would be the worst I’d ever feel, but it isn’t. The pain grows with the realisation of what I have truly lost, and with every missed milestone my grief deepens. I’m not depressed though, just in chronic pain, I still get up everyday, and take care of my daughter, my house, go to work, and can appreciate what I do have. I just ache for what I can never have again. My little Bailey.

  19. Deborah said on November 6, 2012 at 8:54 pm ... #

    My legs ache. My heart aches too – I lost my dad two and a half weeks ago and my body just hurts. Oddly enough I had just started working at Hospice and then my dad very quickly became a patient and died a week later. I couldn’t have asked for better care for him but I show up there every day and try to encourage the volunteers and all I want to do is lie down on my office floor and curl up in a ball. My legs hurt so much – what about grief would make the bones in my legs suddenly start to ache? They (whoever “they” are) should teach a class in how to do this gracefully.

  20. Donna said on December 13, 2012 at 9:08 am ... #

    I lost my beautiful son Neil on the 18th sept 2011 he was my only child and my best friend he was 32 years old and took his own life and I found him. I lived daily for years with the fear this would happen but coping with the reality of his loss is destroying me. I appear to the world to be coping but nothing could be further from the truth. I ache to be with him I have thought of joining him on more than one occasion. I try my best to be me the old me not the one I am now. I am a normal person but I just think each day that passes is a day closer to being with my boy. Some people at my work think I am not doing my job properly and not trying! They have no idea I am lucky to get out of bed each day. I can’t be the old me they need to work with what I am now not what I was. I feel so sad and empty but I have a husband and granddaughter I have to live for. I think people who have not had a major loss in their life will never truly understand.

  21. Chris said on December 15, 2012 at 9:51 am ... #

    @ Gary:

    I lost my baby boy two years ago and I can’t even tell you the how deep the pain still cuts — beyond even my soul. Just recently, I’ve begun experiencing physical pain in response to ANYTHING sad or disturbing that I feel too emotionally. I talked to someone else who has shared my experience, and she said she actually went to her doctor and wanted them to scan for a stone in her heart.

    @Daniel — I certainly can appreciate your grief and I’m so sorry for your loss. I keep coming back to this thought: it’s so terrible to lose a child, there isn’t even a word for it. I hope you can find ways to refill your emotional reserves by taking care of yourself and engaging in one activity you’d enjoy.

    @Donna — I sometimes feel that pull to heaven that I don’t know if anyone else understands. Just to be with him for one moment to feel that divine, motherly love… I have to find a reason to get out of bed each morning. Some days it works, and some days it doesn’t. Putting up with comments like, “You’re not over that YET?” I have to forgive people’s ignorance because I wouldn’t wish the pain on them for one day. I wish you peace and love.

  22. BARBARA said on January 29, 2013 at 7:57 am ... #

    Donna, I lost my daughter on the 18th September 2011. It gave me a jolt just to read about your son. She too took her own life. I am finding it difficult to cope. I cannot go out except to the shops. I cannot work or socialise. I am tired and sick. People who have not experienced this tragedy cannot understand the intense painful feelings. I believe counselling with a bereavement counsellor helps; someone neutral to talk to who has probably experienced bereavement herself. I congratulate you on continuing to work; perhaps you could explain your pain to your colleagues and ask for their forebearance as you slowly heal and travel to a place where you can deal with your loss. I try to think of the wonderful moments with my daughter rather than her final moments which is difficult but can help. best wishes.

  23. Els said on January 31, 2013 at 4:57 am ... #

    I lost my mum on 17 January 2013. She saw me take my first breath – I was there when she took her last. I am grateful for all the above responses as I understand so many of you. It helps to know that I am not alone and that I am not going crazy.

  24. Sheryl said on February 11, 2013 at 1:38 pm ... #

    Very recently, my aunt died from pancreatic cancer. She was like a second mother to me and helped to raise me in her home when I lost my own mother to cancer just shy of 13 years of age. By profession, I am a RN and have taken care of many as they have walked the path from life to death. In my aunt’s case, however, I gave professional bedside care while she was under hospice care & died in her home. I also provided nursing care to my uncle & cousin…The profound sense of loss I have is intense. I am writing this post while in bed as every muscle in my body seems to really hurt/ache. It was an effort to just get out of bed to get coffee this AM! Intellectually & professionally, I know about the stages of grief, etc. However, as a loved one taking care of my aunt, I am bowled over with the physical & psychological manifestations of grief that I am experiencing. Guilt is also there. Did I do everything that I could have to make my aunt comfortable? Did I give her the best care? I am trying to get off this roller coaster but it is hard. Now, I am back home on one end of the coast while my uncle & cousin are on the other. I am so worried about them & quite frankly myself too…

  25. Sheryl said on February 11, 2013 at 1:45 pm ... #

    I forgot to mention in previous post, that in addition to my mother dying from cancer when I was almost 13. My sister died from cancer (a different type than my mother’s) in February 2012. I also lost my beloved dog to a terminal illness the month before and now my aunt, (my mom’s sister), a few days ago to pancreatic cancer. I have had cancer 2x as well (again a different type) with the second time receiving a stem cell transplant. So much cancer/suffering in my personal life & professional life…

  26. Nichola said on March 11, 2013 at 2:30 pm ... #

    My Dad died at Xmas 2000 when I was 15, and I actually felt very little for a very long time, which I thought was odd at the time, but no one noticed that I wasn’t grieving properly. I did well in exams at school, though I was very forgetful and anxious generally, and went to music college and kept working hard. I recently graduated as an Alexander Technique teacher, and it was during my training that a lot of grief came to the surface. With the release of tension my body had the freedom to express the grief that I had locked away for so long. I spent many an afternoon incapacitated on the sofa…and I’m having another moment now, I feel like it’s a bottomless well of sadness that will never really go away. And I worry about my mum and my other relatives dying too. I have been having nightmares for a while, but they are getting less frequent, and I actually wonder if my chronic rhinitis is connected to it, I think that it may have started around the time of my dad’s death, and whenever I’m unhappy but unable to express it my nose runs. Thank you for this page, it’s reassuring to see that I might not have been going mad and that my body probably isn’t just being stupid…best wishes to all.

  27. MaryAnn said on March 22, 2013 at 2:17 pm ... #

    My dear husband died on March 6th, 2013 he was 73 and the love of my life. We were supposed to celebrate our 25th anniversary on April 29 in Las Vegas..even had purchased the tickets/made reservations. He had MDS which really did not respond to any of the treatments. On Saturday they were telling him he would go home on Monday and he passed on Wednesday morning. He was the best husband I could have asked for. Am in such intense stomach pain, have a hard time eating I think I must have an ulcer. I was physically ill all night when he passed and then had to make all the arrangements and now he is gone and never coming home. Thanks for the comments and info at least I know its not just me. Am back to work but really crash when I get home, its just like a bad dream and I keep wanting to curl up with him one more time.

  28. Melissa said on March 24, 2013 at 4:17 pm ... #

    I lost my mother December 1, 2012. I feel like the pain is getting harder instead of easier. I am a lost soul without her.

  29. rebekah said on March 25, 2013 at 8:50 pm ... #

    I lost my mom January 28 the 2013
    I have all the systems
    I loved her greatly and she tough me music and piano singing flute tambourine . and so much more !!!

  30. Colleen said on March 28, 2013 at 11:15 am ... #

    I lost my husband December 14, 2012. I go to work, but I am really not functioning. I forget to collect the mail, take out the garbage, clean the house. My body aches, I sleep but not well, I can’t sit in the living room (his favorite spot to watch television), I can’t eat, my head hurts, I burst into tears with no warning and I cannot remember anything. It’s been 3 1/2 months and I just can’t get it together.

  31. Megan said on March 29, 2013 at 1:51 pm ... #

    @ Colleen

    I know exactly how you feel. I lost my fiance’ in a terrible car accident the day before your husband died. He died on December 13th, 2013. It’s been about 3 1/2 months since he has passed, and I ache and my heart yearns for him every single day. My fiance’s actually fell asleep at the wheel and hit a tree head on going about 75-80 mph, and I have to pass that tree EVERY SINGLE day. I understand completely how you feel. Its like I am not my self. I see pictures of us together and I can barely get recognize my self cause I am smiling in those pictures, and I do not smile almost never any more.

    Keep your faith and believe, you are stronger then you think and I am certain that you and I will both get through this journey. Just take it one day at a time. You will start to remember again, your mind is just overwhelmed right now with grief and sorrow, but it will get better.

  32. Jan said on April 4, 2013 at 9:57 pm ... #

    I lost my husband of 45 yrs January 11 2013. Cancer was the cause, 31/2 yrs. I knew it would happen one day and watched the horrible end months. We had a rocky marriage. I thought I was doing ok..but I’m not. It just hit like a bomb. My youngest son lives with me and I have three shelties for company. My muscles hurt, fibromyalgia and it’s worse now, I have general anxiety disorder and anxiety attacks are now every day events. I did all the financial stuff quickly.. now it’s like I ran out of gas.. then I did a new carpet project, painting, hiring people. I think it was too much… I’m so tired of feeling hopeless… when will it get better?

  33. judy said on April 11, 2013 at 9:27 pm ... #

    My dad passed away 4 days ago. I’m now having digestive problems which gets worse when I eat and the feeling aches and pains with a runny nose. Can you please tell me if this can be caused by my dads death and any special fruits or vegetables I should eat. Thank you. Judy

  34. Annie Campion said on April 14, 2013 at 11:38 pm ... #

    I lost my Mom, Mary Elizabeth on Holy Thursday, March 28, 2013. Writing always helps me. I started a draft folder that I go to and write down how I am feeling if I need to. I just finished crying. It’s Sunday I tried to do normal things like clean and work in my rose garden. I do not want to sit on the couch watch TV and just be sad. When I go to Heaven I want my loved ones to know and yes miss me of course but think about the Eternal life that has begun. My Mom began her first days in Heaven celebrating Easter Sunday! God sends us all kind of signs that our loved ones are with him. For me the first sign was the day he choose to call her home. Our Lord knows everything about us and this is what he knew about me. Over the course of time and decorating like crazy when our kids were little my very favorite decoration was a little sign I use to put out at the edge of the street for all to see when they drove by along with all of the other Easter decorations, “He Is Risen” If I greeted you on Easter Sunday I would say, “Happy Easter (your name) followed by, He Is Risen” God knew that this would help me, sustain me and then it did something even greater. I now think about Our Eternal lives. When our work is done here we will all be called home and there greeting us will be all of our loved ones. Yes I was crying a little while ago but now I feel the peace, joy and love my Mom sends to me telling me do not worry about anything the rest of your life everything will be just fine. Oh yes it is a wave, the other night I went into her room holding on to her wheelchair, crying and crying but then I knew she has been made whole, she is young again, free from her 90 year old body, she is singing and dancing in The House of Our Lord. Try to stay focused on the beautiful place are loved ones now live in, no war no poverty, no killing, only joy, love and everlasting light.

  35. Mariellen said on April 16, 2013 at 8:11 pm ... #

    My beautiful mother, 86 years old, passed away April 6th. I loved her so much and even though i saw her in her casket last Wednesday, I cannot conceive that she is gone from my life. I am 61 years old and I want my mother back. She and I were so close. I started back to work yesterday, which is a diversion, but once I return home I am paralyzed and grief stricken. I cannot sleep and have terrible sweats at night. Does anyone else have this symptom? My father died three years ago. Though I loved him, it was not as bad as this.

  36. Jay Jones said on April 18, 2013 at 10:47 pm ... #

    I read this blog article called: The Greatest Gift. It helped me better understand the purpose of grief and suffering. I now have more strength to move on and live everyday with the pain. Hope this helps someone. God bless

    http://giantoaktree.wordpress.com/

  37. Sue Nicholls said on May 6, 2013 at 1:34 pm ... #

    My beloved youngest son died suddenly on 30thDecember 2012 aged 36 of a colloid cyst which caused hydrocephalus and brain stem death. I am devastated and so full of unbearable pain. The fact that he donated his organs after death to six people brings me no comfort. I get up and go to work and do necessary things and, to any outsider, I am ‘normal’. I spent most of today in bed as I really could not face the world. Tomorrow may be better and I can pat myself on the back for getting through today. I wouldn’t wish this pain on my worst enemy

  38. khadijah johnson said on May 13, 2013 at 9:05 pm ... #

    I lost my three year old daughter in october 2012….She left an took a large portion if mommy with her….I loved my baby….an life is hard…i cry..i feel tired every hour of the day …my body aches an sometime i just feel so sick…sizzy…dizzy weak…no energy….I dont know what to do anymore…really…just want some relief ….

  39. Martha said on June 19, 2013 at 1:57 pm ... #

    I lost my mum 4 weeks ago….,I have never known such pain.its unbearable.But to all that have written I understand your pain.this wasn’t just my mum,she was my friend,I was never afraid to expose my thoughts and feelings.when I was troubled we spent nights talking and sharing and she listed intently…..my mum got sick and died within 5 hours..many times I’ve wished it would be different!But the pain m going thru reminds me of her absence in my life.I will always always love her and I miss her so much…,

  40. Julie said on June 21, 2013 at 3:32 pm ... #

    My husband was killed in a car accident 2 weeks ago. My heart is breaking. I feel like I’m trying to not let the sadness out because it will be too much to handle. I have a great support system but while they go on with their lives, I am home alone and finding it hard to function. I have no energy, although after reading about symptoms of grief, this is quite normal. Nothing feels normal anymore – I feel like this is all a bad dream.

  41. iris said on June 23, 2013 at 8:16 pm ... #

    I lost my best girl friend Jan 2011/I lost my mother Oct 2011since then I am not sure whether I am going or coming I am constantly depressed. Crying sometime other feelingtimes feeling worthless.

  42. Cheech said on June 27, 2013 at 10:30 am ... #

    My best friend died three days ago. She is 18, and my chest hurts so bad I can’t figure out what to do. I am in so much physical pain.

  43. Dia said on August 4, 2013 at 9:47 am ... #

    I lost my beloved mother on 22 july (13 days ago). She was my ma, my best friend, my companion , my biggest cheerleader and supporter. She was very pure hearted, the epitome of kindness, love, beauty and grace. She had a heart of gold and never hurt a fly. She had cardiomyopathy which eventually lead to her passing. I was her caregiver for the past 14 years through the good times and the bad. I feel lost, shattered , heartbroken. My biggest fear has come true. How am I supposed to live in this evil world without my mum? She suffered tremndously with health problems and other issues. Life was not kind to her. God was not kind to her. What I cant accept is that why a pure ,good person like her suffered so much in life and in death. Its so unfair. I’ m angry and miserable. I ache inside when I think of all the injustices she endured. We are Asian ( Indian) . As per our faith (Hindu religion) the soul is immortal. However at this time I’m questioning God, my faith , the unfairness of it all. Somebody please help me. For the past 14 years my whole revolved around her . Now I’m lost , lonely, heartbroken. People except me to move forward in 2 weeks. This is the most tragic , painful loss ever.

  44. laura stamey said on August 6, 2013 at 12:26 am ... #

    My son was 15 when he took his life it happend march 14. Found his lifeless body on march 15 he hung his self no note was left no final words I get this terrible pain in my chest when I think of him not knowing or understanding why he felt as he did I cry daily people throw parties and think I should go when I do I feel like I’m celebrateing what do I have to celebrate being left behind I get to where I don’t wana leave my house I send. My husband to do everything my memory is a complete blur I find myself falling apart at times not wanting even to exist and not understanding why people around me don’t feel the same.sincerly a mothers broken heart

  45. Antoinette Ashworth said on August 22, 2013 at 8:04 pm ... #

    Hi, I lost my daughter to suicide May 2012. She showed no signs of depression but now we will never know. To start with everything was a blur , surreal almost , now 15 months later I’m getting spasm in all parts chest leg arms. The pain moves to different parts. Went to hospital they took blood X-rays and ECG blood pressure was fine . I started taking voltaren and Panadol every 4 hours to try manage the pain, I never normally take tablets so it was chronic pain. I believe it’s stress, but wondered if anyone else experienced this pain.

  46. Trish said on September 8, 2013 at 9:47 pm ... #

    Julie and Cheech, I can relate to the physical pain. Daddy died 6/26/13, I have been so busy with probate I just started having chest discomfort, was checked out, nothing found. Delayed physical pains. My Psych doc has removed or is weaning me off my clonopin at this time as well. hMMM, guess I will be in full blown withdrawal, vomiting, peeing, screaming, inability to walk,plus weird chest pain ya, looking forward to it. He has no compassion especially since he was the one who put me on a very high dose daily since 05 then down to a half a mg daily for 6 days, then off. I am gonna lose my mind or die or both.

  47. Amy said on September 11, 2013 at 12:59 pm ... #

    My beautiful, 33 year old son, Tony, went to be with the Lord on March 5th, 2013. It was unexpected and we still do not know all the details because he died overseas in while out walking…police reports are slow. They say that the sudden death of a loved one is equal to a horrific car accident. That we suffer not only unimaginable emotional pain and loss, but also real physical pain. There is no prescribed time that can put on healing and everyone’s grief is unique. We do all, however, share a common experience that cannot be understood unless you have lived through it. When I think about what Tony would say to me when I am at my worst, I remember him saying, “God has numbered our days, Mom…he alone knows when we will go home”. It was this part of my son that caused him to live fearlessly. He loved life ad he loved people. Saturday was the first time in 6 months that I had not cried. In my journal I wrote that Tony would be happy and so proud of his mommy. He would not want me to suffer or to stop living. I have a long way to go, but in God’s strength I get up everyday (I no longer hate the sound of birds) and I pray that I will find purpose in the things God gives me to do today. Every night I thank God for my children, including Tony, because I know that, although he is not here, he is still very much alive and I will see him again. We used to joke, “if I never see you again, we have eternity”. I want to get to the place where my new normal includes living life to the fullest. Laughter has returned in the midst of puddles and sprinkling of tears. I am beginning to do some of the things I loved to do before Tony left, and I have great hope for the future.I have been told by those who have passed this way that time makes it easier, that we will always miss our loved ones, and that God will never leave us or forsake us. Tony is home and God is good! I will praise him in the storm and look forward to the miracles that he will show me in the absence of my dippled-face, sweet, funny, precious son! God bless you all.

  48. Toisan said on September 14, 2013 at 9:27 pm ... #

    I lost my beloved son Jimmy (28years old) he was murdered by 2 brothers who were supposed to be his friends! He was on life support for 2 days before he was pronounced brain dead. My oldest daughter said it brought her comfort to know that his organs helped three people to live on. I found no comfort in that at all! Of all my five children he was the closest to me. I lost his father three weeks before he was born so he was just mine from day one. I am a Christian woman and as much as I believe in God, I can’t believe after losing his father God would take him too. Jimmy died July 29, 2013 and I’m devastated! During the day I keep busy….at night I sob the tears of a heart broken mother. My other children three older one 10 years younger cry missing their brother. Broken family!

  49. Peggy said on September 21, 2013 at 3:06 pm ... #

    My husband passed away three weeks ago. I’m so completely lost!! He left me and our 7 year old son. He’s my best friend in the whole universe. My guide, my mentor, my protector and my lover. We had such plans for after we beat his cancer and got him a liver. I’m so bitter and eaten up with grief and remorse. My entire future is gone. I weep in public and I cry probably 50 times a day. Now I’m experiencing pain and body aches, as well as an upset stomach and headaches. I’m in such emotional pain that there are no words to begin to express how I’m feeling. My heart has been ripped out of my chest. Why did God take my best friend, my precious love, the center of our home and the light of our lives??? I’m so angry and I don’t understand any of this!

  50. Aunty said on September 25, 2013 at 10:43 am ... #

    I have lost so many people. Some days my life feels like it is full of ghosts and memories and empty of real life.
    Last year my beautiful nephew was murdered in a terrible way. He was only 21 years old, he was like my own boy. We all lived together at different stages of our lives as my sister and I are close, my daughter and my nephew were like brother and sister. My nanna is dead. My aunty is dead. My two brothers are dead. My lover of 10 years is dead. My closest friends are dead.my other nephew commuted suicide , my other sisters son.
    And now my beautiful nephew. My sisters eldest boy. My boy.
    My heart hurts. I have to go and lay down and today we heard some news regarding his murderers and I had sever chest pain and body pain he was stabbed to death I feel as if I’m being stabbed over and over my heart breaks and I just escape into sleep. I have other children. I have to try and move on but I’m so sore and sad. My heart hurts. My heart hurts. My heart.

  51. Ger said on October 16, 2013 at 2:46 am ... #

    Personally Lost father 10 years ago at 18 yo, mother 6 years ago at 22 yo, paternal grandfather 3 years ago at 26, maternal grandmother 10 mon. ago on my birthday, like mentioned earlier, you never get over it, but you just learn to cope, at 20 and 21 years old, respectively spent time in the psych ward about a month each time and was involuntarily admitted, doctor didnt know what was wrong with me, but he needed something on paper and wrote “schizo effective and “bipolar type 2″, well anyway almost 10 years later here i am, off meds (without my psychiatrists orders, call me a hypocrite, but i wouldn’t suggest stop taking meds unless you really know yourself and my family doctor thinks i just had some psychotic episodes when i came of age, and there’s nothing wrong with me, so who is right?) for about 4 years, and graduated with honours from college in ‘10, and have been working as a Paramedic for 2 and a half years, got married and have a 2 year old Daughter and 2 mon. old son. so there is hope for us suffering loss and/or mental health problems….

    I hope my story has inspired some of you, and no I can’t and don’t take credit because I believe in God even though I don’t go to church and I am really taken back by this story because I actually do have something to share and to offer that’s useful because some of your stories are heartbreaking

  52. Jo said on October 16, 2013 at 10:34 pm ... #

    I lost my father Oct. 10, 2012. We had to allow him to go peaceful and stop life support. Not 1 year later we lost my Mom. (October 4th). Both ended up being buried on October 15, 2013. I feel like I have lost my support systems and my best friends. I did not expect to lose both parents so soon in their early 70’s. They both had so much going for them and were always helping someone.. They had worked hard all of their lives and I wanted them to enjoy their retirements. As things turned out that did not happen. I miss them so much.

  53. MLL said on October 30, 2013 at 7:17 am ... #

    I lost my brother and mother within the past few years. They lived with me while in Hospice. This week I lost my dog to a sudden death. I creied so hard when it happened that I could feel something physical turn into a hard knot. I could literally feel the knot when touching my abdomen. Totally uncontrolled, us composed grief. Reliving all the losses in my life. That’s visceral pain.

  54. Jenn Nodine said on November 13, 2013 at 11:46 pm ... #

    I would like to address the people grieving from a suicide. I experienced this loss myself; a long-time friend who was like a brother to me took his own life. I do understand how you feel about suicide taking grief to a whole new level. I believe this is a result of the regret that we feel when someone we love slips right between our fingers like that. We don’t ask ourselves if we think we could have done something to change the outcome, we know it. When people tell us that we couldn’t have saved them, we pretend to agree, but there is nothing that can convince us of that deep inside. The fact is, no one can know either way. Maybe we really could have said the thing that they needed to hear to plant a new seed of hope within them. This puts our focus on an unanswerable puzzle, and it keeps us tied up with regret in a never-ending mind-f.
    The only way out of that for me was to accept that I might have had the ability to have saved him, and then to forgive myself that I didn’t do it. I didn’t do it simply because I didn’t know how much pain he was in, because he kept it hidden – and I could admit that part wasn’t my fault. Once I set myself free from regret, I began feeling a little better for the first time in almost 6 months of intense, daily grief because of a conversation we had two days before he died. I stopped looking at it as him reaching out to me as a cry for help, but as his way of checking in with me to say goodbye. And I’m really glad he did.
    The next major breakthrough for me came when I realized that those grieving over a person who had suffered through a long illness were in more of a very sad state accompanied by a sense of relief that their loved one’s suffering was over. I began to see suicide itself as a long terminal illness that caused much suffering for my friend in the last months of his life. I imagined how much pain he had to be in when he wrote his note, when he pulled the trigger. And I decided to feel relieved that his suffering was over.
    I share these with you because everyone thought I needed to hear things like, “it wasn’t your fault”, or “you couldn’t have done or said anything to change the outcome”, or my personal favorite, “suicide is a selfish act”. The truth is, no one is to blame. It’s just another illness that causes suffering, and death is what sets then free from it. I hope you find these thoughts as helpful as I did. Best wishes.

  55. ashley said on November 16, 2013 at 4:31 pm ... #

    I lost my mother on March 31st this year. She was only 45 years old and went in for a simple carpal tunnel surgery and somehow went into respiratory failure. She was pronounced brain dead from lack of oxygen to the brain. Obviously the nature of her death in still unresolved and has now turned into a civil case. I have NO idea why she died or why God would take my best friend away from me WAY too soon. I don’t know why I had to bury her and I may never know. I started to think I was crazy. I forget a lot of things, I have outbursts where I’ll be seemingly okay and then I’ll just bawl. I also have lost 50 lbs. Since her death and I didn’t even try. I barely eat because I have suffered from nausea and bouts of diarrhea and constipation, like my body just cannot get back to normal. I was convinced I was having a heart attack so have been in the ER several times in the past 7 months with symptoms anywhere from shortness of breath, migraines, heart palpitations, abdominal pain. I was told I have an ulcer from the stress and was told to eleviate the stress which just makes me laugh! If I could have my mother back I wouldn’t be in this shape! I have trouble doing mundane tasks. Like going out with friends I just feel like I’m closed in, like I’m panicking. I feel like I just should be over this already but can’t rush myself. The holidays are coming up and my anxiety and physical symptoms have gotten worse knowing that my mother, my best friend won’t be here to share them with me. Can anyone else relate? I just need relief.

  56. tosh said on November 19, 2013 at 6:46 pm ... #

    This year has been hard for me…I lost 3 people to suicide and 2 from natural causes…when it got to the 3rd one its like my heart stopped (he died of natural causes) he was my best friend of 13 years he passed away September 26th 2013 my heart hurts my chest hurts I just can’t get over it. I haven’t even processed the last two because I am stuck on him ….I am lost as to why him why did god have to take the one person I needed most! I just can’t stop hurting I feel so lost and I’m in such physical pain since I found out and its almost been a month and a half. Idk what to do no one around my understands they just keep telling me to be strong and that I’m ok when all I wanna do is break.. idk how much more I can take of this pain…I feel so empty ..

  57. Jan said on November 22, 2013 at 5:27 pm ... #

    I lost my love, companion, and very best friend “My Husband” after 28 years of marriage 3 1/2 months ago. The Pain is excruciating. I might feel okay for a very short time but it comes back in waves that he will never be back here on earth again. They say time heals all wounds but the scars will be in my heart forever. I miss you Dan.

  58. Peter said on December 3, 2013 at 5:56 pm ... #

    I’ve found reading these messages so comforting that I feel ‘inspired’ to leave a message too.

    My girlfriend died six weeks ago. It feels like a year.

    I knew I loved her but I didn’t realize how much until she died. She was older than me and had had various health problems for years and then suddenly had a heart attack and died.

    I too have had health problems- so we lived in a sort of bubble helping each other through life.

    Today, driving home for a couple of minutes I sort of imagined she was still here and felt the pain in the centre of my stomach go and momentarily felt the security of having someone I love on this planet with me return.

    I looked up ‘physical pain of bereavement’ when I got home and found this page.

    I feel so raw. I feel the cold like I never felt it before and the damp (I live in England). Time goes so slowly. I have little appetite and I sleep less.

    I too sometimes fell like I’ve turned a corner with this pain and then it’s back. I cry & cry but don’t feel better for having done so.

    I think this experience will change me forever and it will make me forever a better, more sensitive and sympathetic person.

    Thanks for sharing your stories.

  59. Sherry said on December 10, 2013 at 2:55 pm ... #

    I lost my boyfriend suddenly to congestive heart failure at 53 a few weeks ago, we were together almost 5 years.I found him after he passed and that image still haunts me. I never loved anyone like him. My soulmate.He was the youngest of a large family of siblings and they all told me he was going to propose to me on Christmas. I am devastated but I am also a Christian. I know he is with the Lord, and he was walking the walk. But my body aches like the flu a month later… terribly ever minute, it never goes away, at times is so bad I get upset. I have to work, I have 2 children but I understand the pain everyone that has written feels.Peace and sometimes joy at moments other times complete and utter despair and hopelessness. I pray all of you find peace and that we all honor the loss of the one we loved so much in beautiful ways. We will see them again..God isn’t done with us yet, he still has a lot more good things for us to do for Him! Before we are all reunited.God Bless

  60. penny said on January 5, 2014 at 10:49 pm ... #

    It is interesting to see how many people have lost a loved one to suicide. I found my 19 year old son 12/12/13 after he had hung himself. I knew he was suffering and had been trying to get him the help he needed.
    Jenn, I appreciated your comments because my head has been, and probably will be for a long time, full of guilt. I have had to make several decisions regarding his mental healthcare over the past few months. So I know that I made choices that affected his life/death. I’ll never know which were right and which were wrong. Our last conversation was about his future. I was hopeful that he was getting better. He was sure he would have a psychosis the rest of his life. There is so much more I could have said to convince him, but I didn’t realize how little time I had left. I am trying to forgive myself so that I can heal.
    Nausea has been a constant part of my life since I found him. Grief can be overwhelming at times. It is nice to talk to others who understand.

  61. Doris said on January 6, 2014 at 6:16 am ... #

    My heart goes out to each and every one of you hurting souls. It brings me some sort of peace to know that I am not alone with these feelings of guilt, nausea,anxiety and depression and that all of the above and then some are totally normal emotions to be feeling in time of grief. How do we get through the fog though? I’m moving but yet, I feel as if I’m standing still. How do we take care of ourselves during this difficult time without feeling more guilty that we’re still here and our loved ones are not?

  62. penny said on January 7, 2014 at 7:18 pm ... #

    Moving on does cause a huge amount of guilt. I have been reminding myself that my son did not do this to hurt me. He would want me to continue taking care of myself. It hasn’t pulled me out of my stupor yet, but it does help me do simple tasks like eating fruit and brushing my teeth.

  63. susan leek said on January 9, 2014 at 11:41 am ... #

    My brother died in a tragic climbing accident on Sept 14th 2013. I still feel numb and guilty as we had not had contact with each for 6 years due to a family rift caused by my father.Imiss him so much and wish i could tell him how much i miss him and love him.The pain i feel some days is unbearable cant get my breath and cry so much Grie grief is a physical pain andi hope one day it will go away.

  64. N-Ann said on January 15, 2014 at 8:56 am ... #

    Today marks 1 month that I lost my best friend, My Mom. She was my everything. The last few years we became very close and I went out of my way to make her comfortable and make our moments special. I would call her every day and the days I couldnt call I would send an SMS. Sadly, after many years of smoking, she passed peacefully at home on 15.12.13. I have had severe chest pains, and body aches. I have also been vomiting alot. And after reading all your comments, I know see that this is quite normal. I am trying to be strong and keep it together for my Dad, but its hard. I sit here at my desk staring at her photo and the tears just want to come, but I have to hold them back and be professional at my reception desk. I sincerely feel for each and every one of you because I now know what grief feels like. Hopefully one day things will be easier, but for now, my world is a mess. What I stood for, believed in and turned to is no longer there, I cant even phone her. My thoughts are with each and every one of you xxx

  65. T said on January 28, 2014 at 5:25 pm ... #

    I lost a really close friend a week ago today. The first 2 days I cried, but I didn’t feel so much emotional pain. 4 days later, I completely broke down. I’m having dreams, nightmares, my chest hearts, dry-mouth, and headaches. I had him for a class and everyday it’s a struggle to not break down in it. He was the only person who I felt that understood me and never judged me. He was always there, and we always talked either by texting or Facebook. It’s been so hard lately. I find myself every two hours fighting back tears. It’s hard to stay home because I feel tired, sad and I get anxiety attacks. I’ve been getting distracted easily too. I don’t know what to do. We went to school together everyday. He helped me with my homework, private life and many things and now my closest friend is gone. I feel sometimes feel urges to text him or message him on Facebook. I know he’s gone but I just want to talk. Like we use to, about school and our random conversations. I feel like I have no one to vent or talk to and it’s so difficult. I’ve never experienced a pain like this before. It’s now a struggle just to get up, get ready, eat and go school. I can’t sleep either, I find myself crying myself to sleep every night.

  66. Anonymous said on February 3, 2014 at 11:24 pm ... #

    My mom passed away 12-25-13 at 6:11 pm. My brother and I held her hands as she drew her last breaths. I have not been able to sleep much at all. When I do sleep I dream about her. I got very sick the day after she died and was diagnosed with the flu and pneumonia. I had severe muscle aches around my sternum and ribs for several weeks. Now I have that pain in my left chest. Until I read these posts, I was convinced I was having heart problems. I cry for my mom every day. I look at pictures, I listen to voice mails. I will never be the same physically or emotionally.

  67. Liz said on February 8, 2014 at 10:11 pm ... #

    My partner of 20 years died suddenly of a heart attack 11 weeks ago today. He died alone and I was unable to say goodbye. He was too young, only 54. The first few weeks, I was in shock and numb. Then the full blown grief set in. I sob everyday. I cry walking to the supermarket and back. I feel nauseous. I have to force feed myself. But I am still losing weight. Those who said they would always be here for me haven’t contacted me for weeks. We had no children. At the moment I just exist, and I fear what my future holds. And I curse him for leaving me alone like this. I look forward to sleep every night so that I can forget my reality for a few hours. He was my mate, a beautiful soul, my world, and he is gone. It sucks.

  68. deb said on February 13, 2014 at 3:45 am ... #

    My mother passed away 40 years ago this past year. I was barely a teen left with my dad and a brother who is 6 years older. On June 14, 2013 my dad passed away and 4 months later, my brother died. Having dealt with death as a girl and now as an adult, I know days will get better, but it is a long process that you have to accept. Live to honor them. I am devastated beyond words, but I try very hard to think of them before their death and brief illnesses. Nothing will change the emptiness their dying created, but I have control over my life. Loving me as they did, I know they want me to find peace, enjoy my life, and be happy. I played “I Will See You Again” at the service because I believe I will. Instead of fear and desolation, we are still a family, they live in my heart, and my memories are reminders of days past and days promised. Though a stranger to all of you, I wish you the best. Hold onto your faith and if you don’t have faith, search for it.

  69. deb said on February 13, 2014 at 4:18 am ... #

    To “Liz” who posted above… The anger, sleeping, and loss of appetite have been a part of my life since June and doubled in October. Please know, too, that death makes people uncomfortable not because they don’t care, but because it’s frightening to face their own immortality. And people grieve in different ways. What you see is not necessarily what they feel inside. Someone reminded me that I’m not the only person who loved my dad & brother…others feel the loss as well. That comment hurt me at first, but when I thought it through, I realized their point. Grief turns us inward…and sometimes we take it out on others. Be kinder to yourself and if you loved him that much, he must have loved you. And that being said, he wouldn’t choose to leave you…he had no control. You have life left to live and there are people who can help you. Value yourself enough to ask. After you take that step, you will feel better, I know.

  70. Liz said on February 15, 2014 at 7:05 pm ... #

    Thank you “deb” for your kind words, and taking the time to respond to my post. I know I’m being harsh on myself and his siblings and that they must be also struggling with their grief. My partner’s funeral was 12 months to the day of his mum’s, and his dad died the day before his funeral, so the last 12 weeks have been horrendous for siblings as well. I have always been very independent, and tend to hold things inside so perhaps they thinj I am coping. I will try to take the step of contacting them this week, and understand they are probably feeling as bad, if not worse than I am. I also need to visit my doctor (was also my partners doctor) as I am getting worse daily. The anxiety and depression are overwhelming. Thank you for encouraging me to take these steps. xx

  71. LynIris said on February 16, 2014 at 7:25 pm ... #

    The grief I am experiencing is a romantic break up. I can’t eat and cry..I thought I try to look up grief and found this site. I haven’t eaten almost three days. The food stays in mouth and can’t swallow. I have awful feeling inside my heart is breaking…

  72. Chris said on February 19, 2014 at 5:27 am ... #

    Lost my dad 18 days ago and it feels like I am walking with an open wound.

    But some days are ok, like I forget about it and then I see, think, smell, taste things and I am reminded of him and I am back to the person with an open wound. I miss him so much that I feel like there is a void in the middle of my chest. I am not crying as much as I did when my mother died five years ago but the pain is still very intense.

    I have gained weight, weirdly. I have headaches, nightmares, chills, neck pain and I experience a rush of very strong emotions whenever I see the image of my dying father in my head. I want to get rid of these images.

    I miss his big hugs and I feel kinda lost, knowing that he will not be there anymore to support me, to tell me that I have to fight for the things I want in life. I just miss him so much.

  73. deb said on February 19, 2014 at 12:51 pm ... #

    Hi Chris… Your dad is with you. Your words prove it. He taught you how “to fight for the things you want in life.” When your shock and intense pain ease (and they will), you will see that those lessons are his gift to you.

  74. deb said on February 20, 2014 at 1:28 am ... #

    To Liz,
    Your pain is very real, and while it’s good to open up to others, even family members may get the idea that you are okay when, in fact, you’re falling apart. I’ve gotten the impression that some people feel enough time has past & I should be over my dad. I’m going to feel better, I know, but there are good days & very bad days still. I’m okay, then I sob like a baby. I’m a grown woman, but losing my dad is hard. It doesn’t matter how, why or when…he’s my dad, & if people don’t accept it, I can do without their opinions. I will grieve in my way on my terms. Depression can arise when you feel stuck and anxiety is crippling. There are doctors who may help, but medicine is a temporary fix. Time won’t make the loss go away, but you will accept it. Everything changes when we lose someone we love, even we change…but life has a way of carrying us through the change and in time, we find our own strength. Be good to yourself, my friend…grieve on your terms and take the time you need. There is no time table.

  75. Janet said on February 25, 2014 at 12:57 am ... #

    My heart feels for everyone’s grief expressed. I can relate as I lost my husband of 24 years on Easter morning March 31, 2013. He was only 53. 12 days before his death he was diagnosed with bile duct cancer and told he had 3 to 6 months to live. He got incoherent so fast we had no time to digest this and say goodbye and he had no time to put things in order… He ran his own business At home in me to say that husband who have passed the important And for Mason… Please share it with your wives as doing taxes was very difficult and stressful for me this year. I know it was a precious gift from God that my husband did not have more suffering than he did and the fact that he passed on Easter morning, ( the same morning that we celebrate that Christ conquered death) This gives me hope since someday soon Christ will conquer death once and for all. My hope is in Christ and He sustains me. Two months after my husband died my son in law had a stroke and this really throttled me. praise God they found a hole in his heart and were able to repair it And he is well now . I have a son and a daughter my son of age 30 Got involved in drugs and ran off with a woman to another state across the US. he abandoned his two children . It has been a year and he has not paid child support. Now I am struggling financially but trying to help my former daughter-in-law to survive. When I look at the circumstance with my physical eyes it seems that God helps me to see with the eyes of my heart. A tool that has helped me immensely is attending a grief support group called griefshare. No it is not hospice it is given all over the country both at churches and YMCAs… You can look it up at griefshare.comand it will tell you your nearest location. Please take this and it will bring you closer to healing because healing doesn’t come with time comes I allowing God to help you open your heart to his healing this tool really helps. God is close to hurting hearts. Seek him and you will find him.

  76. grady said on February 25, 2014 at 4:12 am ... #

    Death happens to everyone of us, but we feel no one has hurt as much as we. We are all different, all unique. Grief has many common stages, but we all handle them differently. Don’t let any book dictate to you where you should be…God will move you a long at just the right pace. Do your best, and let Him do his.

  77. Clara said on March 1, 2014 at 11:37 am ... #

    The acute pain of the death of a loved one is

    so intense…..A mother blackbird in anguish,

    furious in the loss of her baby bird, to the claws of my cat , flew down and sharply cut off the flower of a perfect white Iris in front of me.

    I had never seen anything like this before.

    I lost my dear husband to MDS last December .

    The pain of my grief gives me no rest.

    Sometimes I wish I could die too. I can’t ever imagine feeling whole or happy again.

  78. Liz said on March 3, 2014 at 1:58 am ... #

    I have decided to not read any more sites or articles by psychologists which bang on about the 5 stages of grief. Unless they have lost the love of their life., they are not qualified to know how I feel. I experience all of these so-called stages within the small space of an hour. Last week, I accepted he was gone, on the weekend I was back to numb. Today I was begging him to come back to me. Some of his friends and siblings seem to be moving on. I will not let any book or person tell me where I should be after 14 weeks. Even my doctor, when I saw him a week ago, and told him I was struggling, had the audacity to say to me, “still?”. I did not choose this grief. I will deal with it my way and in my own time. Clara, I am so sorry for your loss. I understand your pain, and send you hugs.

  79. deb said on March 11, 2014 at 10:31 am ... #

    To Liz, I’m glad you’ve taken a stand. I’ve been right where you are & know each day & night really are endless. You want someone to validate your despair, but it doesn’t always seem they do. And for the most part, they don’t. I’ve heard “well at least your dad had a long life.” That’s true, but how does that lessen my grief when I’ve lost my first & longest best friend? My dad didn’t know he was dying, yet the week he died, he said “you know, this old world spins so fast, every now & then one of us falls off.” He lost 4 brothers & their wives, two wives (married to each 30+ years)& many, many friends. But he got up every day, dressed, shaved & embraced the day. He knew that if he allowed himself to be consumed by sorrow, he would become thankless & useless for the time he’d been granted. I’m not as strong as he, but I try, half-heartedly to push myself to make my day count for something even if it’s shaving my legs–baby steps. I don’t succeed every day, but I do know life can’t be lived in isolation & sweatpants. I’m so tired of living with one foot stuck in the pain of the past & one foot trying to drag me forward. And losing my only sibling 4 months after my dad, leaves me confused most of the time over whom I’m grieving. Just hang in there…that’s the first & most important step. You, I, all of us can do this, just wait & see.

  80. Liz said on March 11, 2014 at 8:15 pm ... #

    Thanks Deb for your words of support. Your post really rings a bell for me. The last few days I’ve been in regular contact with my sister-in-law. And for the first time she’s admitted she too is struggling. Like you, she also lost her brother and dad in a short space of time (in our case within 9 days of each other). She’s one of those who keeps the stiff upper lip to be strong for others and I think I’ve encouraged her to drop the lip, and cry, screan and rant. I forget sometimes that I’m not the only one grieving. Grief tends to make us selfish and self-absorbed. As for those superfluous statements “at least your dad had a long life” and in my case “at least you had 20 good years”, Comments like that are far from comforting. Like I should be grateful after their death. I am not grateful. I loved them, and they’re gone, and I hurt. “. I don’t see any light at the end of this black tunnel yet, but I will strive for it even at my own slow pace. ((hugs))

  81. Robert said on March 12, 2014 at 11:42 am ... #

    I lost my mother last week. I didn’t know the effects of it could be physical on me. I have an upset stomach and feel a bit dizzy quite often. Just don’t quite feel right; very similar to flu symptoms.
    Just in case anyone else has those physical feelings and wonders if it is normal; I know now that it is.
    Bless all of you and good luck with whatever you are dealing with. You are not alone.

  82. Adele said on March 12, 2014 at 6:02 pm ... #

    Tomorrow will be a month since my mother died.
    Some days it feels surreal. Other days it’s an open wound.
    I feel disconnected. I don’t want deal with people.
    I want to be alone, in my head, with my thoughts, and my
    Feelings. I wish I could go away, somewhere remote.
    I feel I should be able to continue with my life.
    I feel I should be able to work, take care of my home and my family.
    But there is a fog that just won’t clear. A pain so intense
    I woke up today and feel sick. My grief has become a physical thing
    I have a fever blister, something I never get, I feel like I’m getting a cold.
    I realise there is no easy way to get through this. But I feel worse with each passing day not better. This pain, this raw emotional wound. My loss. It hurts.
    I know I will heal, given time. But that’s just it, there is no set time, you can’t say
    “In a week, month, year, I’ll feel better.” I think our need for a time frame makes grieving so much more difficult. Not only for those going through the grieving process, but for those who surround us. With time, I will heal. For now, I will try to accept that this is normal.

  83. L.J.W. said on March 24, 2014 at 11:47 am ... #

    I lost my sister. She was born with sever Down’s Syndrome. She was two years older than me, but I always had the role of the big sister and I never minded. She was sweet and smart. Always happy. She had a smile that would light up the room, and she never complained. She loved to dance, color, play video games, and play with her baby dolls. One night she started having terrible head and back pains and was in too much pain to move. We called an ambulance and they gave her pain medicine that didn’t really help. Turns out she had lower lobe pneumonia. She had seemed to be doing okay, but then she had a seizure and she stopped breathing. She never regained consciousness and her blood pressure and heart rate dropped. All together her heart had stopped three times and the doctor told us it was going to stop again. In the end we decided to let her go, but I miss her so much. Between the time she started to be in pain and when she passed, it was less than 24 hours. The house is so quiet with just me and my mom. I wish I had spent more time with her. She never hurt anyone. There were so many people that loved her. Me, my mother, my father, my grandmother, all of our other family, and friends that knew her. She was more outgoing and cheerful than I ever was and could ever be. She never was ashamed of herself. She loved herself for who she was. She knew she was loved and she loved us. I just never thought it would be her. Never her. My mother tries to be there for me, and I for her, but I know she is hurting more than I will ever know. I can’t get up the motivation to do anything, but I will try. She was always happy to hear I was doing well in school, and I know she wouldn’t want me to throw it all away. The only positive thing I can think of is that she is no longer in pain and our separation is only temporary.

  84. Chad Thompson said on March 26, 2014 at 7:51 pm ... #

    I lost my wife nearly 6 months ago. She was only 40, but had Type 1 Diabetes since the age of 9 and eventually ravaged her body the last year of her life. Despite that, her death was still a shock to me when it happened. I drifted to this site after looking up grief and physical exhaustion. I am able to sleep but I am tired, exhausted, constantly. If I could work 8-12 every day I could probably handle that, but I teach school and the day is long. I’m good for about 3-4 hours. Regardless, fortunately I had built up many sick days over the years and have used them in plentiful fashion this year. I don’t care what any Administrator might say–not that they have to this point. I cry about 4-5 times a day which probably contributes to exhaustion. Someone above mentioned the pain getting worse and I can relate to that. Things certainly have not gotten any easier. More time is more time to ponder their absence. Good times are only fleetingly enjoyable before she pops back in my mind. Radio stations have to be switched quickly at times. Irrational anger sets in when I see life and others moving on and when I see overweight people with (probably) type 2 diabetes. I’m not exactly depressed but feel profound sadness constantly. It is the most life changing and unimaginably difficult thing I have or will ever experience.

  85. gracious said on March 28, 2014 at 5:20 pm ... #

    Graci on 29 sep 2013 it was sunday. My fience n baby died by car accident. I’l neva 4get dat day , my memory ws shutdown nt knowin wat 2 do . Olwys dey came thru ma mind n my tear flow I nid help I fil lyk m livin hell. My body starting 2 be weak I fill tired havin a headach olwys. My lyf changed at ol I dnt even c de nid of living dey left me way 2 soon my fience ws 29 n my dota ws very young 1yr seven month. I fil lyk God forsake me. M 2 young 2 carry this burden hw am I goin 2 liv? Sumtymz lyf is unfair. I lov dem so much olwy tinkin of dem can’t spent 30 min wthout tinkin of dem I’v no happines at ol m livin hell olwys cryin. I fil lyk I can even take my lyf is jst I fil pity 4 ma parents n sibling cause der r olwy bin der 4 me tryin der best 2 make me happy. Angela my dota mommy loves u a lot I olwys hear ur voice wen u say “mama” oh Lord what I did 2 u 2 dersev dis killer pain? Andrew my fience I olwys hear ur voice wen u say “graci I lov u” oh God m tired of dis hell world m dead aliv . Andrew my lov take care of our lil dota Angela until we mit again! Wl b misin u. Olwys luvin u. I cnt wait 2 b wth again. Life is notin wthout u.

  86. Regina said on March 29, 2014 at 10:56 am ... #

    I lost my son a year and a half ago. His birthday is Monday my greif has come back to the surface and I am so forgetful, I can’t even remember conversations

  87. Mel said on April 5, 2014 at 12:58 am ... #

    It was just 2 days ago that my mom passed away from a tragic accident while hiking. I’m 13 and im trying to get through this. My world is spinning and I’ve been getting no sleep. Im thankful to have such a great dad to support me (and i can support him), friends, and online communities like this. I find talking to people and tying to distract myself helps best. But there will always be a hole in my heart. I read and read about other peoples experiences and I wish I could meet them all! So we can all cry together. My mom was so special to me! Cheering me on at my swim meets, teaching me things I didnt know. And most of all being there when i needed it. But now shes gone and I am lost for words. I will make my mom proud! And i promise.

  88. deb said on April 6, 2014 at 10:24 pm ... #

    Mel,
    I’m so sorry about your mom. I was 16 when I lost mine. I’m now old enough to be your nana, and I still remember every second of the day my mother died. I can sense you love her very much by seeing your future as a way to honor her. She is very proud of you already for being strong and compassionate about others especially now. Just remember to take care of yourself. God bless you sweet girl.

  89. Say said on April 22, 2014 at 10:04 pm ... #

    My grief is different. Actually, mine come from the adoption of my child. I was 18 at the time and he is going on 3 now and my heart seems shredded in pieces. I got no support in the matter. It hurts a lot more when his adoptive family takes forever to send me an update. It sometimes feel as though they are disclosing my son from me, and I feel neglected. I told the adoption agency how I have felt, and it seems as though they don’t even care. We was supposed to set up other ways of contact, but that was never revisited again, even when i contact them about stuff so much. I don’t even know what to do with this situation.

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  1. By How I’ve Been Grieving | Elizabeth Barone on February 5, 2014 at 6:22 pm

    [...] can also experience physical symptoms. I thought I was getting sick, because I’ve been having night sweats and chills, and my chest [...]

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