Grieving the Death of a Sibling

As a general rule, we hesitate to write about different types of loss.  To clarify, I am not referring to types of grief, which we’ve written about extensively.  Instead, I am referring to loss in regards to the type of relationship, such as the death of a parent, spouse, child, and so on. Allow me to share two reasons for our hesitancy:

1. Although commonalities often exist amongst people who have experienced a certain type of loss, grief is as individual as the person experiencing it and their relationship with the person who died.  Although some people might be able to relate to aspects of another person’s grief, no one can completely understand how anyone else feels. On a whole, we recommend you learn what you can from your commonalities with other grievers, but take differences with a grain of salt.  And please, don’t try to compare.

2. For some types of loss, like the death of a spouse or child, an abundance of really great resources already exist. Not only that, but some of these resources are maintained and/or provided by people who can speak with greater authority on the subject than we possibly could.  We know when we’re not needed, people.

That being said, there are some types of loss where few good resources exist. The other day I asked our Facebook community to suggest resources for people who’ve experienced the death of a sibling.  Although some were able to make recommendations, many were quick to point out their struggle to find help and support for their loss.  One reader even said she dubbed herself the “forgotten mourner” after finding sibling grief was so often overlooked in the support world.  Now, we can’t have that!

Obviously, this is just a post and it doesn’t substitute for dedicated organizations, movements, or other types of support – but it’s a start. Whatever you are able to contribute to the conversation in the comments and on social media, please do. The more voices we have speaking on the subject, the more supported and cared for other grieving siblings will hopefully feel.

This post is long, but the last thing we want to do is create another resource that is overgeneralized and unhelpful. At the end of the post, we’ll link to a resource page with suggestions for locating support locally and online.  Got it? Good. Okay, let’s talk about some of the reasons why the death of a sibling (at any age) is really stinking hard.


Feelings and Emotions

grieving the death of a siblingYou may be experiencing grief over the death of your sibling if you feel any of the following –shock, numbness, sadness, despair, loneliness, isolation, difficulty concentrating, forgetfulness, irritability, anger, increased or decreased appetite, fatigue or sleeplessness, guilt, regret, depression, anxiety, crying, headaches, weakness, aches, pains, yearning, worry, frustration, detachment, isolation, questioning faith – to name a few.

Okay, so those things aren’t specific to sibling grief, however, the way they are experienced by someone grieving a brother or sister may be. For example:

You feel guilty because…

…you are the sibling that survived.

…you knew your sibling inside and out and yet you didn’t know about the struggles or hardships that led to their death.

…you weren’t able to protect them.

…there are things you wish you had said, but didn’t

You feel anxiety because…

…you know how fragile life is.

…you’re worried you may die in the same way as your sibling.

…you’re worried others in your family may die.

You feel lonely because…

…although you’re surrounded by people, you miss the one person who you could truly be yourself with.

I could go on, but the important thing is to understand that your feelings are unique and important. Good, bad, or anywhere in-between, your relationship with your brother or sister was different than anyone else’s and so you’ll experience hurdles, triggers, and hardships that others may not.

Your parents, siblings, and other family members may grieve in many of the same ways that you do, but in many ways, their grief may differ.  It’s important to remember this because misunderstandings can arise amongst family members when people react differently in response to a death.  It’s also important for people supporting bereaved siblings to keep this in mind so they can help validate and support the griever’s feelings and experiences.


Overshadowed Grief

This is just a guess, but I suspect a lack of sibling grief resources exists because sibling grief is often overshadowed. People simply cannot fathom the out-of-order-ness of a parent having to bury a child, so when this is the case their thoughts and concerns often immediately go to the parent’s grief. Parents themselves may not be able to effectively attend to their children’s grief and outside family and friends may be hesitant to step in and offer support or suggestions.  It might also be true that support and attention is first given to siblings who are younger or who are perceived to be more fragile. In a situation where any or all of these things are true, a grieving sibling may end up feeling as though other people’s grief is more important than their own.

This may be confounded by the fact that some people willingly allow their grief to go unnoticed by themselves or others. Raise your hand if you’re the sibling who feels like it’s your job to take care of and support the rest of the family.  After a death, some siblings might quickly step in to take care of their younger children and/or their parents because they feel it’s their role or duty. Sometimes this happens out of necessity, sometimes avoidance, sometimes expectation, and sometimes all of the above. It is important for all members of the family to recognize that no one’s grief should take complete precedence. Although family members might take turns supporting one another, at one point or another everyone’s grief deserves attention and needs to be attended to.

overshadowed grief


Changes in Family Dynamics and Support Systems

Families – functional or dysfunctional – often operate according to a set of norms, roles, traditions, and patterns. Each person has their place in the family system, so things can get thrown off balance when someone in the family dies. An important person is gone, and those who survive them are sometimes unable, unwilling, or disinterested in filling that person’s role(s) or carrying out traditions and patterns as they have in the past.

Shifting family dynamics can lead to the weakening of support systems. Parents and siblings who are grieving may be of less, little, or no help. If a person’s support system largely consists of family (which is often the case for children and teens) they may find they’re facing one of the hardest periods of their life without a safety net.

The support system may also be weakened if the person who died was an important source of support for surviving siblings. This may be true at any age, but if the death happens when the siblings are in older adulthood, the person who died may have been one of the surviving sibling’s few living family members

For all these reasons and others, it is common for people to have to reassess their support system in the wake of loss and to seek out additional help while coping with their grief.

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Comparisons and Expectations

You are special and you are wonderful (come on…you know you are). You have no one to live up to besides yourself, your goals, and your own potential.

Okay, I just wanted to say that as a reminder to anyone who feels like they’re living in the shadow of a deceased sibling. Feeling compared or overshadowed is common after the death of a sibling, and (although you may be hesitant to admit it) this experience can result in feelings of resentment or anger towards family and/or the person who died.

If this sounds like you, the first thing we recommend you do is to ask yourself, “Who is making me feel this way?”  If the answer is your parents or other family members, then the next thing you might do is try to communicate with your family about how you feel. This might seem like a scary task because you don’t want to rock the boat or make anyone feel worse in their grief. If this is the case, or if you think your concerns will fall on deaf ears, you might want to consider talking to a counselor about how to approach the situation or enlist the help of a family counselor to work with the family as a whole.

Now, you may find that you yourself are responsible for comparisons and expectations. This might happen for a number of reasons including insecurity, guilt, or the feeling that you need to pick up where your sibling left off.  If you think you might be the source of comparison, then some serious self-reflection is probably needed.

Acknowledging the truth of the situation is a good start, you’re in even better shape if you can identify why this is happening.  As you search for answers, you might find it’s helpful to spend time in reflection, to journal, or to talk to a trusted confidant, support group member(s), or counselor.


Missed Opportunities

When a person dies, you are not only robbed of their physical presence in the here and now, but you (and they) also lose the chance to spend your tomorrows together. Your life after their death becomes a filled with thoughts of “if only”, ” we would have”, and “I wish.”

This is obviously the case for missed opportunities in the future; the happy moments you wish you could have spent together like weddings, graduations, births, adventures, and family get-togethers. We talk a lot about how to handle these moments here and here and here. However missed opportunities are also felt when people wish they could make up for all they didn’t do while the person was alive. For example taking the chance to say “I love you”, “I’m sorry”, “I forgive you” and “I care”. 


You miss the hell out of them

Sibling relationships obviously vary in their degrees of closeness, love, and amicability.  Some siblings may be thick as thieves, others wonder whether they’re even really related.  Regardless, siblings are our ties to family bonds.  They have known us the longest. They understand our history and are the people with whom we have the longest running jokes.

They are our bridesmaids and our groomsmen. They are our children’s aunts and uncles.  They bail us out when we’re in trouble, they loan us money, and then we loan it back.  They are the most judgmental people we know.  They are the most accepting and loving people we know.  Siblings can never be replaced and when they are gone we miss the hell out of them.

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As promised, you can find help locating sibling grief support on this page. Please comment below and share your experience with the death of a sibling and/or recommended resources.

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October 3, 2017

192 responses on "Grieving the Death of a Sibling"

  1. I lost my brother on Oct 29,2017. Which was 22 days ago. He died of a heart attack. They did an autopsy on him and found his heart was abnormal. What was shocking to us is that he was only 23 yrs old. I can’t forget how I saw him laying there in the emergency room. I cried and cried along with my parents and brother and sister. He wasn’t only my brother, he was my best friend. What more can I say? I’m gonna miss him so much and waiting for the day that I can look at his picture without suffocating. I send my condolences to whoever lost a loved one.

  2. Thank you for writing this.

  3. It’s amazing reading everyone’s sharing, and how closely we relate in our pain and experiences despite the differences. I lost my sister on July 27, 2017, a week after she was hit in a pedestrian accident. My sister had survived cancer and gangrene at an early age, and yet it was one careless driver that ended her life. For years, she took the same afternoon walk for simple reasons of health and fitness, one day wasn’t as lucky as the others. She was struck by a driver who claimed the sun was in his eyes. I live in the memories, in the wondering of what could have, would have, and should have been. I question the episodes of the day, time and time again, and rearrange the events in my head to how the whole thing could have been avoided. I can’t help but wonder what were the final thoughts in her head. Did she hear us the week she lay in a coma? The doctor’s confirmed she was brain dead, but our faith held us to believe otherwise. I, of all my family, had the hardest time “pulling the plug,” such a horrible phase you hope to only hear in movies and stories from strangers. Something we never imagine living for ourselves.
    Three months have past and on most days I’m still very near to wear I was that night of the call. That night, our lives changed forever. An officer called minutes before midnight to indicate that a phone had been found at the scene of an accident. He couldn’t give me any details other than the phone number of the phone in question. My whole way to the hospital I tried to imagine every possibility that could explain why my sister’s phone was at the accident location, and she wasn’t. After all the person I was going to identify at the hospital couldn’t be her. It couldn’t possibly be her. We had lived together our whole lives, and we had so many years left to live. We were experiencing the love of a daughter for the first time. My sister who could not have kids of her own, had rejoiced for the last year the joy of being an aunt to my own child. My daughter who is only one, continues calling her “tia” to this day. We were stolen, stolen of years and memories, that can’t be replaced.

  4. My elder brother was shot and killed o the 5march 2017, we were not really close but we did speak from time to time, loved him to bits, he was a very funny guy. I received a call at about 1am that he had been shot and when I got to the scene his lifeless body was laying on the ground. I can’t take the picture out of my mind. I immidiatly got into projects that mode, organizing that his body gets transported home and arranging the funeral, I didn’t want my mom to deal with all the stress or any of my siblings to see me cry. Felt like I have to be strong for them so I don’t think I actually ever cried. I speak about him a lot but I’m always so calm don’t it as if he is still alive. I feel bad that I didn’t cry for him at his funeral and that I kept postponing going to visit him. Now tears creep in whenever something happens like a simple bad day, I cry myself silly. I don’t know how I feel really

  5. hie…i lost my sister on the 26th of December 2015..i cant seem to be able to move on from the pain…the wounds are sooooo fresh seeing two siblings chat or walk together actually affects me now,i get jelous and wish and wish if only my sister was still around too…iv only just begun to find courage to accept that i have a problem hence iv started looking for solutions on the internet..more like therapy…upto now in family we have not yet sat down and actually shared our grief together…i really want to but somehow i feel like i might arouse more grief on my parents….

    im hoping this page helps me…because i need help

    • Hi there

      You may have to grieve by yourself. My only sibling passed away on October 2015 but every time I get emotional in trying to talk about her my mother stops me and closes it down. I understand to cry all the time about her daughter is painful but I need/needed to do it outwardly sometimes. So I have to be sad by myself and accept she has other ways to grieve. For her it is prayer that has kept her for the last two years.

  6. I lost my younger brother on May 22, 2017 in a car accident. He was 15. I’m 19. I have not felt the same since it happened and on the worst days all I can imagine is the sound of my parents crying and screaming as they identified his body at the funeral home. I chose not to see him because I didn’t want that to be the last time I saw him. Five months later and I still cannot recall the last thing I ever said to him but I do remember one of the last conversations we had and how it was about him wanting to name his future daughter after me. One of the worst parts following his death was definitely the backlash from the media because the minute they realized three teenagers were in a car together, it automatically meant they weren’t being safe. My brother was riding passenger and wearing a seatbelt and the only peace I get is knowing that he died immediately on impact and didn’t feel anything. I miss him so much and I’m really looking forward to the day I can look at pictures of him without feeling like I’m suffocating. Thank you for this post. It’s the first time I haven’t felt alone since it happened.

  7. Hey there. My sister died about 2 weeks ago in a car accident along with the love of her life at the age of only 18. I am 16 years old and have just lost my best friend. She was in her way back home in a car with her boyfriend when they crashed.my sister fought in icu for 3 weeks before she died. They where planning to leave about 2 days ago on a plane to the no phi phi don islands in Thailand to start there career as scuba diving instructors and travel the world . I feel like every time something funny is said or I get exited about something I just get brought back to the fact that I don’t have my best friend with me anymore. I don’t have her advice which I’ll need. Her name Samantha.id give up everything I have on this earth just for 5 seconds with her.

  8. My heart is heavy reading all these comments, but sadly comforted in the fact that others feel the same excruciating and immobilizing pain that I do. My younger sister Kate was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia on Valentine’s Day, and after a cancer journey that felt like lifetimes, she died 5 months later. It’s been almost 3 months since her death and I still find myself going to text her or walking in to her room to tell her something, only to find an empty space where she should be. While I believe that Kate was created to only live her very full 13 years of life, I can’t help but dwell in all the things she won’t get to experience – and all the things I was supposed to help her with as her older sister. I know that I will learn to live with this grief, but it still physically hurts to be without her. Hopefully someday it won’t hurt like this.
    Much love to all those who know this pain.

  9. Thank you for this post. Last Friday, 9/29/17, I lost my little sister in a car accident. She was only 21 years old and so full of life. She had so many opportunities ahead of her in life and none of this makes any sense. She was my very best friend and just knowing that there are so many things that she will miss out on in the future hurts so bad. I know that God needed her more than we did, but it just wasn’t enough time. These past few days have been almost unbearable, but my family and I have had so many people reaching out and praying for us so I know we will get through this, it’s just going to take time and a lot of healing.

  10. I lost my brother almost 2 years ago November 20th not even 2 months after his 40th birthday. He was the most loving person you could ever meet. He was my very best friend. Someone I could talk to about anything. Him and his wife and my nephew live beside me so me and him were inseparable. We did everything together. Unfortunately him and his wife were having some problems so he was staying with one of our friends. He was devastated. He had only seen his son a few times since he had left home. The last time he seen him was his 40th birthday and they had a ball together. The day he passed was the weekend to get his son. As a suprise our friend picked his son up and when they walked in to suprise him he was dead. My nephew was 14 years old. I cant imagine the hurt that came over him. They were each others world. When I hot to the house I ran in to see what was going on. Only to see my brother lying on his bed with dried up foam in his mouth. That is the image I have when I close my eyes. He was my protector, my big brother and now he’s gone and I am so very lost. I still cry. Im still greiving even after almost 2 years. Watching them put my best friend in the ground did something to me. It broke me. A piece of me died with him that day and im not the same person I was and I don’t know how to get me back. Im so lost abd lonely and depressed. I feel like everybody has moved on and im stuck in the same place I was that day.

    • I am so sorry. Truly. I don’t have the words to comfort you but just want you to know I’m sorry. My brother is 39, he is alive but was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer and has been given 3-5 years. It’s unknown. I try not to think of the future without him but I’m scared. He is the only person that truly knows me and I struggle to think of my life without him. I don’t have a lot of true friends. I don’t feel like people understand when I tell them my brother is sick. He’s not just my brother, he is more than that. Anyway, I am so sorry you are in this. I started to say “going through this” but it feels wrong somehow.

  11. I lost my only brother in March this year after a six-year battle with cancer and already I agree with so many points on this post. He was only 17 at the time and I was 19 and I really struggle to comprehend what’s happened because it’s just so unfair. This feeling of unfairness has overshadowed most of my life and I really see what you mean how we experience ‘missed opportunities’. I feel this so deeply because although I now grieve that I never got to share his 18th with him, or hit adult milestones with him, I still grieve about all the things he never got to do when he was alive, because he was so sick. It brings feelings of guilt to a whole new level, especially how you mentioned we feel guilty for being the one that survived, I still feel so guilty for being the healthy sibling. You are right, there aren’t many support recourses for siblings but for once I find myself agreeing with most things on this post, because its so honest, you don’t try and play down the harsh reality of sibling death.

  12. I found two months ago that my baby brother died. He was gone two weeks before I found him at the medical examiner’s office. They had identified him but didn’t care to notice because he is one of the many who have been dying to overdosing on heroin mixed with other drugs. He was born when I was 16 years old and he was always like my own. I tried to give him a long leash after our mom died and he went to live with his dad. His dad basically started him in this lifestyle. Now that we have the death certificate, I have to stop denying that he’s actually gone. He will never bug me again. He will never call and say Hey sis- sorry I haven’t called. I miss his ladies man smile. His laugh. His passion for helping others. What will I do this year without him to serve the needy on Thanksgiving? He was 24 short years old.

    • Wow I’m so sorry for your loss
      Like you I too found my baby brother and only sibling who was 9 yrs younger than me dead from the same horrible drug that was laced with deadly fentanyl on Aug 2nd this yr
      He was just 24 yrs Old and I miss him so much
      My heart aches deeply he had been clean and relapsed
      My children also are grieving as he would come stay with us to stay away from that group of people
      I seen him the night before he passed and wish I would have said so many things I’ve been told I’m grieving to much and should be moving on by now but my heart just can’t

      • No one can tell you how, or how long to grieve. Each one of us are different. It takes time. You never really get over, you just learn to deal with it! So, you take all the time that you need. We laugh, we cry. Just pray and try to carry on……..within your own time!! Be bless

      • Reading your post, I thought I was reading my own story. My older brother passed away August 3; because of the same; heroin laced with fetnal. I feel your pain and am sorry for your loss. My brother was supposed to go to rehab the next day. I remember having to wait for the autopsy to come back to find out that it was laced. As angry as I was, I found relief in this; knowing that he didn’t overdose. He had a history of attempted suicides. It was just before his 32nd birthday, we are only four years apart. I didn’t have that close of a relationship with him, that’s the one thing that I find I struggle with the most right now. That and that he never got to meet my baby boy born a week before he passed. I wish we were closer, I go to the cemetery to see him and talk to him to try and keep that relationship. He had a 13-year-old son, who I am just devastated for but have no idea how to help him.

  13. I find comfort in this post. I’m 19 and lost my 16-year-old brother when he drowned in the Atlantic Ocean June 11, 2017. If you search his name (Eric Clark), the news articles are some of the very first returned results, to give some insight as to how public the tragedy was. My life and family changed forever, in the blink of an eye. I’m commenting to share, to let other siblings like me know they are not alone, and to extend my support. Sending my love to each and every one of you living with a hole in your heart in which only your lost sibling could fill… Kyla

  14. I find comfort in this post. I’m 19 and lost my 16-year-old brother when he drowned in the Atlantic Ocean June 11, 2017. If you search his name (Eric Clark), the news articles are some of the very first returned results. My life changed forever, in the blink of an eye. I’m commenting to share, to let other siblings like me know they are not alone, and to lend my support. Sending my love to each and every one of you living with a broken heart, in which only your lost sibling could fill… Kyla.

    • Hi kyla,

      I lost my 22 year old brother on the 3rd March 2017 unexpectedly and I’m 25. I have not found anyone who could share in what I’m going through. If you feel the same , feel free to get in touch . Xx

      • Xenye,
        I can relate to you as my sibling was younger than I and we were about 2.5 years apart. It’s very hard at times. Some days I don’t even believe my brother is gone. How are you doing today?
        Kyla

  15. Good afternoon everyone. It has been one week today that i lost my younger sister 51 to a massive heart attack. It is still a shock to me and im still having a hard time dealing with it. We have had some differences, and was getting our relationship back on track. We had been estrange for 7 years, and i saw her for the first time in August again and we were just starting to talk again. I had even invited her to my daughter in law and feature daughter in laws baby showers in Oct. When i saw her in August at my ex-husband house, she was here with her husband, i broke the ice and started the conversation first. And the same 2 weeks later. I planned her furneral, and it was on Wednesday Sept 13th, and then my birthday the next day. Her 4 children are still in shock, so that is why i took on the funeral planning. I never dreamed that i would be burying my little sister. We have a older brother, who i had not seen since 1988, so i feel like right now, my sister is all i had. And now with her gone, i have no siblings. Alot of people that have never lost a sibling, don’t understand how we feel. Like a tell everyone, loosing a mother, father and grandparents, the feeling is alot different from loosing a siblings. It hurts, and with me, it like when she died and drew her last breath, part of me went with her. Even though im here and Im still alive and i wish i could have at least told her that i love her, a part of me is gone too. It will never been the same again. My husband has lost a sibling too, so he knows where im coming from, but like i told him, he didnt have to plan a funeral. My mom died in 1970 when i was 12 and she was 4. My grandmother (my mom’s mom) took us and raised us, untill i got married and then my sister came to live with me after i got marrie at 10 years old, and lived with us untill she got married and moved out. I was there for her, through the birth of 4 beautiful children. And im glad that they had their mother into adulthood, and that my sister got to see her 1st granddaughter. There will always be a big hole in my heart that i dont think will every heal. And some i of the suggestion that hat have suggested on here, i have been there, as far as the feelings and emotions. And yes i wonder why im the surviving sibling, and yes i have thought am i going to go the same way she did, and yes i am afarid that im going to loos another family member. I know she is in a better place and she is with family and friends that have gone on before us and she is having a wonderful time. Her birthday is coming up here in a couple months, and it know its going to be hard on me.Like i said its been a week today and i thinking she will come through the door. Loosing a sibling is hard, cause they are a part of you and now she ‘s not coming back.

    • Barb, your story sounds so much like mine. My younger sister went into the hospital August 14th. ( Our mothers birthday) She was at work and she collapsed at work. She came around and told a co worker to call mom. My mother arrived at her place of work as they were putting her in the ambulance. My mom asked her to help find her health card. She did as mom could not find it in my sisters wallet. They took my sister to a local hospital and at this point my sister became unconscious. They told my mom it looked like an aneurysm and it didn’t look good. They started prepping my sister to airlift her to another hospital.
      My mother called me with all this information as I live 4 hours away, and I was instantly thrown into a daze. My son picked me up and we drove to the hospital. Without going further into too much detail they did an operation and my hopes were lifted only for a short period of time. My sister never regained consciousness.
      They called my sisters death August 19th.
      We were suppose to go on a wine tour this weekend. She was suppose to come to my new place for a visit. She was suppose to attend my sons wedding next month.
      So yes I am still in disbelief by this. I feel the anxiety, worry, and cry off and on when I think about certain things.
      The group that were going on the wine tour wanted to know if we should cancel. I told them “No” My sister would have wanted us to go and enjoy it as she would have. I’m trying to move forward with life but at times feel guilty. I know it is a normal feeling. It that it is still so fresh in my mind.
      I will miss my sister.

  16. our oldest son took his life last november. he jumped from a 200-ft bridge while away at navy school, where he was working to be a machinest. my husband and i have an 8 and 9 year old, both boys. our oldest was 18. we have not told them what really happened, just that there was a terrible accident. today, while eating lunch with the boys at school, my youngest told me that he was writing a book about his brother, about how he knew awesome yoyo tricks and went to the navy, among other things. he also told me that he is writing about how no one will tell him how he died. after much deliberation, i said i would talk to daddy, but that i didn’t want to lie to him, the truth of how he died is just quite scary and im not sure he is ready for it. he told me he was ok with that, but now i wonder if i really should tell them the truth. he was such a good boy, and a wonderful big brother. he had a lot of issues at his birth moms house (i am his step mom, ive been with his father since he was 3). my husband and i feel that he loved her so much, he didnt want to dissappoint her. she has had many problems of her own, and he handled that life, but he shouldn’t have had to. we spoke to him the night he died, and everything was fine. if i am correct, which i believe i am, he spoke with her after us and he confessed he was failing at school (a common occurance, which is why he attended so many different schools). i realize that some of these points seem irrelevant, but i wonder if they contributed to his suicide? i cannot imagine he would have willingly jumped. he NEVER would have done that to his dad, our boys, even his mom. i feel like we dont have any answers, and we never will, and it scares me to share with the boys.

  17. thanks for doing this page. i lost my older sister 2 years ago to breast cancer when she was 28 i had an op 2 days before she passed away so i didnt get chance to say goodbye..and i miss her soo much there was only 4 years between us but we was always togethor weither at each others houses or on the phone. i feel like i cant really show my grief to my mum as she lost her child and she was only my sibling and your expected to be just be strong for them so the forgotten morner does come into play on that one..so i feel guilty whenevr i do and funnilly enough i felt the guilt of why wasnt it me at the time? my son talks about her all the time which is as expected cause hes only young but it breaks my heart and itll be her 30th birthday on friday the 15th of september so its feeling like im grieving all over again.

  18. My brother Tom Pottebaum at the age of 22 took his life on February 18, 1989. He died 2 weeks after i was supposed to pick him up from college in Ames, Iowa. He didnt want to go home with me that night because i got there tok late!! I felt for years …if only i could havw brought him home that night he would still be alive today…talk about survivors guilt for years. I was the last one in my immediate family to see him alive. It took a lot for me to realize that…he would have done it anyway regardless of what i did that night…i dont think you can stop a suicide unless the victim tells someone…essentially – it’s up to them to go through with it or not…just my thinking…this comes from a personal experience from attempting suicide myself…

  19. Wow. Reading these post and seeing just how many people have lost their sibling(s) literally makes me weak. It’s heart breaking. I lost my only sibling 26 years ago. My brother was 18, three years older than me. He was my best friend, my idol, my everything. It was a total shock to me. I can remember listening to a song on the radio and then turning it off and then just laying on my bed in silence for a while. Sometime later my phone rang. There was a voice on the other end saying, your brother just got shot. I can’t remember what else they said. My response was “No he didn’t, stop playing on my phone. ” and I hung up. They immediately called back and said it again. I repeated, “No he didn’t” and they said “don’t you hear the ambulance?” They told me they were at the high school sock hop. I denied a final time and hung up. Laid back on my bed again and cried. I had to gather myself enough to go tell my mom without breaking down , which was inevitable. After watching her fall apart in disbelief we put ourselves together enough to make it to the hospital. I don’t know which part was the worst, waiting to see him, seeing him with his eyes taped shut and a breathing tube down his throat, or being told he was recovering and sitting on the floor in the hallway waiting for him to come out (seemed like an eternity. Just to be sent to another room full of dying people on life support machines following my mom who could tell which body was my brothers from the bottom of his sockless feet. I can replay the entire day like watching a horror movie. From the time I was in school that day and talking to him on the phone after contemplating going home because my zipper broke. I got to tell him I love him , but I should’ve gone home. That way I would’ve seen him before he left or been able to stop it from happening somehow. (his death). Like I was saying my brother was the best thing to ever come into my life. Next to my maternal grandparents. My grandmother and my brother we’re my support system. Paw paw passed when I was 9. My grandmother passed 16 years ago. She my brother and I were like the three amigos. Always telling jokes, making each other laugh, providing each other with moral support and hanging out shopping, just enjoying life. Anyhow sad to say I haven’t been the same person since brothers death. (Cutting short my life story)
    I still haven’t gotten over it. I found this website because I am trying to find out how to let him go, how to let go of my pain and confusion and anger. Because it’s caused me to not be able to love anyone and I do mean anyone Completely. If I don’t push people away then I find ways to hurt them and that’s not what I want to continue do. I want to be able to give and receive love, the way I was taught to and not go bazerk when someone does something I don’t understand or like.
    I’m a loving person but I just feel used and unappreciated because out of all the kindness I’ve shown to people ( one being my mother) who I always wonder why I was left here with because she was and is nothing like my brother and grandmother. My support and loyalty and genuine love has never been reciprocated without her knowing she would receive something in return.

  20. My brother drowned 47 years ago. He was 8 and I was 9 at the time. I loved and still love my brother very very much. I feel so guilty though because I was not always good to him. I didn’t want to give him a hug as he left for summer camp because I was too shy in front of my friends. I was anxious for him to leave so my friends and I could go swimming at the pool. God how I wish I could hug him now. That still haunts me to this day and just breaks my heart. No matter how many years pass by, you’ll always, always miss your sibling.

  21. Both my brothers passed away on the 8th of August 2017 due to drowning.

    I was back in my home country when that happened. They passed away in foreign land.

    I still cannot believe I have lost 2 brothers (14 and 16 years old) when I am bearly 18.

    The process of waiting for all sorts of reports so that the body can be transported back was the most disturbing

    • I am so sorry to hear if this tragedy in your life. Your two brothers at the same time. I encourage you to get support professionally like through hospice. It would be very very hard to go through this alone. Prayers to you.

  22. Hi all. I lost my little brother 1 week ago. He is my best friend too and only 15 years, while im 21 yo. I live on different city because i have to go to college and only go home every 5 months. He passed away 7 days after i arrived home. During the 1 week before he died., i always hang out with him. Waitung until 2.30 when he came from his school and planned to eat and finding every fancy olace to go. On 12 August, 1 day before he passed away, i took a long tri pi with him. We go to several food stores and he loves it so much. He said hes very happy. And i still cant believe hes not here anymore. He drowned due to swimming practice on 13 auguts 16.30. Its very hard. It hurts the most. I also cant let tears fall down because my parents will sad. I m feeling alone because i cant tell anyone here at home since i dont want my parent to feel sad too.

    Please pray for my little brother and my family

    • I can totally understand your feeling.
      Both my brothers were drowned too, recently.
      It was shocking, considering they were young.

      Will pray for your brother.

      • I find it hard to believe all these drownings one week away. People making up these stories need help! But not on this forum.

    • Im sorry for your loss, I understand how you feel my sister died in march this yr. Its hard to talk to my siblings about it bc they become upset so I keep quiet. Feel better! I also lost a brother in 911. He was my best buddy! He was 39, and he was older than me by 2 years…he taught me so many things. I get it but in time you will learn to cope. Be well and safe!

  23. My sister passed away July 26 2017 a week ago she was 39 years old with 2 children 4 and 6 they don’t know exactly why she passed gotta wait for autopsy results my grief is unbearable I’ve lost my best friend my right arm we are only a year and a half apart we did everything together I had a child at 17 she was there and walked with me through all of it I just don’t know how to deal with this my heart is so broken now I have 6 kids whom witch they love there Aunt so very much and now I have 8 kids because I could never be without my niece and nephew

  24. My sister passed away July 26 2017 a week ago she was 39 years old with 2 children 4 and 6 they don’t know exactly why she passed gotta wait for autopsy results my grief is unbearable I’ve lost my best friend my right arm we are only a year and a half apart we did everything together I had a child at 17 she was there and walked with me through all of it I just don’t know how to deal with this my heart is so broken

  25. I’m 21 and my sister is 16. We have different dads, but our mom has had custody of us our entire lives and my sister and I are very close. Yesterday, her 2 1/2 year old brother on her dad’s side drowned in the backyard pool her dad and stepmom had. All I want to do is protect my sister but I don’t know how. She shouldn’t have to deal with this at her age. I don’t know what to do, I love her so much, and my entire family is grief stricken.

  26. My 31 year old sister died unexpectedly on July 24th, 2017. She was the mother of 3 young kids, 2 boys and 1 little girl. I am overwhelmed with sadness, hopelessness at times, numbness, fear and more sadness. She was working at a nursing home, outside about to lead an aerobics class for some of the patients. She was fatally struck by a car being driven by someone who mistook the gas for the brakes. My sister pushed some residents out of the way, saving them with her own life. She is a hero. I wish she never would’ve gotten that job. I wish she wasn’t walking outside at that time. I wish she wouldn’t have pushed the others out of harms way. I have so many resentments and am consumed with worries about her children. I wish I could have them but it’s not an option right now due to their living parent. I want the memory of my sister to live on forever. She was a bright shining soul who was never unkind to anyone. She was the best mom I ever saw. She was absolutely gorgeous. I hate that this happened. I want my sister back.

  27. I have a different situation. My sister and I were seperated when I was about 5 and she 8. I never got to know her. I met her again when I was 40 but it was hard to bond. It was nice having a big sister though. Now 20 yrs later she passed away yesterday and I dont know how I feel. I am named in the obituary as a sister. I dont know if I am suppose to grieve or what. I could cry when i think about her being gone but we werent really together. can anyone relate

  28. I sit here reading all the posts, I feel for all of you. I am not yet in your shoes but will be soon. My baby sister Racheal who is 48 years old has small cell lung cancer that has metastasized to her liver and now they think her brain. The Dr. has already told us all we are doing now is giving her a little bit more time with the chemo but as soon as the chemo stops the cancer starts to grow again and more spots are found. Soon the chemo will stop working. I have 3 sisters, 2 older 1 younger. The 2 older ones are very close and me and Racheal are very close. Both our parents are gone and I just don’t know how I am going to deal with it when she leaves me. I am the one to go to all the Dr. visits, scans, chemo and radiation. We are very close. She has 3 children, 2 sons and 1 daughter. They are young adults. Her oldest son is in collage, he wont take a break because he wants his mother to see him graduate before she dies so he has doubled up on his courses so she can see him. She has asked me to love and hold her grand Children for her because she will not be here when they are born, she has asked me to be with her daughter and sons when they get married because she wont be here. I don’t know how to feel about all this, I still have her and it is killing me, how will I be when she is gone? I love her so much and she is my best friend… How will I deal with this when she is gone

    • Hello, I’m so sorry to hear about your sister and it’s got to be hard to know that her life is drawing to an end. I don’t usually reply to comments but I think a higher power is at work here. I happen to be watching Dr. Oz, today and I don’t really often but wifi was down for a few hrs. The segment of cancer breakthrough in which involves precision medicine w/ immunotherapy for cancer patients have been unbelievable successful even in patients that have had chemotherapy and unsuccessful. If there’s a chance i encourage you to never lose hope. I will add the link below for you. God bless You, Your Sister, & Family.
      What You Need to Know About Immunotherapy: http://www.doctoroz.com/article/what-you-need-know-about-immunotherapy

    • Hi Becky – my little sister died July 19, 2017. She had colon cancer. She was diagnosed in 2008 – fought for almost ten years. She turned 41 in June. It hasn’t been two months since she died and I can tell you at the beginning it’s an hour by hour thing, and it’s starting to work into a day by day thing. There are three of us – brother 3 years older than me, and my sister was 6 years younger. She and I have sons 4 months apart – her son is in jail right now. There are so many layers to my journey, and I hope yours is much more straightforward. She spent her last ten days in a hospice pain-management facility. She didn’t have a will or POA, so it’s been a real mess dealing with everything. I have no regrets where she is concerned. I made sure to tell her everything I could think of that I wanted to tell her, or that I thought she needed to hear. I always did the best I could for her. So I have that, even if sometimes it doesn’t seem like enough. You’ll be in my thoughts. Give your sister a hug for me. <3

    • Oh Becky, your post hits so close to home. I lost my younger sister and best friend last April from breast cancer that has metasticized to her liver. She was diagnosed as Stage 4 about 18 months before she passed at age 53. Her daughter (my Goddaughter) was engaged at the time she was diagnosed, planning her wedding for a year later. The dr told my sister she had better move it up a year. We threw ourselves into planning a wedding and reception within a 4 month time period. My sister LOVED babies and children, and took care of my daughter as well as several other nieces, nephews, great nieces and nephews, etc. Once my niece was wed, she and her husband tried soooo hard to get pregnant so that my sister could meet her grandchild before it was too late. My niece miscarried twice, then couldn’t get pregnant at all. One month after my sister passed, my niece became pregnant. She is due in February. I’ve been planning a shower for her, and it’s so bittersweet because my sister would have loved helping me with this. I feel like such a baby sometimes, the loss is so overwhelming. I’m dreading Thanksgiving and Christmas. She and I planned Thanksgiving every year. She knew me better than anyone. My advice to you, if I may, is to spend as much time with your sister as you can. Be there for her whenever she needs you. My sister really appreciated that, and I have no regrets because I know I did all that I could for her. God, I miss her. God bless you and your sister, Becky.

  29. I lost my brother, my best friend, 3 weeks ago to lung cancer. I feel like my life has shattered in to a million pieces, that I have lost a part of my heart and my soul. We were supposed to retire together. I want to call him, to text him and I can’t. I was the one who told them to stop resuscitating him at the end, and although it was the right thing to do, I feel awful and I can’t get the images out of my head. I tried everything to advocate for him, I attended all of his appointments, helped take care of him when he was really sick. I tried so hard to get him healthy again. I would never wish him back in the state he was in, the best thing that I could do was let him go. I know it will take time, but I am just so, so sad. We did everything together. How do yo move through this kind of grief?

  30. Hi,
    This article was a great read. I lost my 33 year old younger brother (as well as only sibling) on March 8, 2017. I have experienced every emotion, and then some die to this tragedy. My brother and I were very close. We lost our Dad in 2014, and our Mom is very sick and doctors said her time left is limited. We don’t have a large family and hardly ever see our extended family. Therefore, once my mom passed it would just be my brother, myself and my son left. He also was very close with my son as well. Therefore, when I got the call from my mom that my brother had passed….my world turned upside down. We were prearranging everything for my mom……yet my brother passed. It was all backwards. I can’t even put a word to what I felt the first month or so. I was in denial….this wasn’t real. He had dropped me off at my house after a great dinner not to long before his death. Due to an argument between my brother and his girl, my brother was alone when he passed. His girlfriend at a hotel close by. So by the time his landlord found him, he had been gone for days. The funeral home said we had to have a closed casket service. That makes it so much more hard for me to process he is gone, because I was unable to view his body and let my brain process that he was dead. Anyway I am currently a list soul…still expecting him to knock at my door. I feel that the grieving of my brother is so different from when my dad, grandparents, etc. Passed. Very different and no one understands that. I wish there was a place I could go to find support in the grief of my brother. General groups won’t do the truck because of how different I feel. His death has changed me and my entire look on things. I will never be the same person I was before. I’m just taking one day at a time….trying to see what my purpose is. Before I had a clear plan and outlook. Its like I’m a high school senior all over agai n trying the world on my own for the first time.

    • Hi jen, I just lost my brother who was only 26 unxepectedly too, May 14, 2017. situation similarly I just left him home and he was not speaking to his girlfriend at the time. Finding him in his room two days later keeps coming in my head. I don’t know what to do at times and I think Im going to lose my mind. I need some kind of help to get past this stage of grief.

      • My brother, aged 33, and also my only sibling, passed away suddenly in May. The official “date of death” is May 19th, 2017, however we were told he was deceased for days before the police found him, at the prompt of his landlord and my father, because he had not paid his rent. We were able to have a “private visit” with his body at the funeral home, however it didn’t look like my brother, it didn’t feel real. He was a fiercely intelligent yet humble, funny, kind-hearted human being who we were all incredibly proud of, working in the Canadian federal government straight out of college. We had an amazing childhood. He quit his job in January 2016 due to conflicts with managers, and other things he never shared with us because he felt like he had to “spare” us from everything negative in his life. His mental health began to deteriorate and he was unable to find work, isolating himself from everyone, feeling like he let us down. We tried to help him as much as we could, but he would never accept it. The police tell us it was a drug overdose, mentioning the fentanyl crisis, white powder they found near his body. Besides dabbling in marijuana, he showed absolutely no signs of abusing drugs, ever. It will take 5-6 months for toxicology results to come back to us, which will provide some kind of answers, as his autopsy just established that he was physically healthy when he died. My parents (very fervent Catholics) are viewing his death as an accidental overdose, while I believe he acted to end his own life. I have struggled with mental illness myself in the past and I understood him on this level, saw the anxiety, mental anguish and exhaustion he was going through. He would degrade himself when I saw him, saying that he should be married at his age, with a good career. Every time I told him it was the disease in his head, we all loved him as he was and would do anything for him, and things would get better in time.
        It tortures me to think, which I very often do, of what was going through his head the night he died, isolated from everyone in his lonely apartment. The feelings of guilt at myself for not reaching out more, and anger at the world for how it moulded him and made him see it as unbearable, are overwhelming.
        My brother was the smart one, the one who had his life together. It makes no sense to me: how I feel like I have gone through his same struggle at a different period in my life, and somehow I made it through and I am still here, while he is not.

  31. I recently lost my younger sister, while I was very sick. My health is improving with medical care.
    I will always remember her and carry the memories in my heart. She was always caring when I
    would become ill and would help me. I hope she knows how much I miss her with love.

    I appreciate and thank you for this website.

    • These posts are helpful, it’s going on a year and a half and I’m still hurt, angry, lifeless at times because I lost my beautiful baby sister unexpectedly. I feel like I should have been the one because she left a beautiful 10 year old behind and it kills me to hear her and my nephew asking where she is. I’m not myself and I isolate myself from other people and I don’t want to be like that. I don’t sleep and all I can hear is that phone call over and over. I’m just trying to get my life back just a little. It’s not the same in any way. I miss her so much

  32. I grew up with two sisters (I was the middle child, my older sister was 2.5 years older than me and my younger sister is closer to 3 years younger). My older sister was raped by a friend’s mother’s friend during a sleepover at 15 years old. My older sister was beautiful, popular and one of the kindest people – she never bullied and always stood up for others who were vulnerable, she brought people together: I was an overweight bully who excelled in academics. We loved each other without question and in all are differences were very alike (and butted head and knew how to push each other’s buttons). We never had a older sister/younger sister relationship – we were always peers to each other. After the rape, my sister rapidly declined starting with bulimia and anorexia and then alcoholism and drug abuse. By 20 years old, my sister already had significant liver disease and my parents had remortgaged their house twice to send her to treatment. She was 5’3 and weighed 64 pounds with ascites and when you hugged her, you could feel the bones in her back bend with fragility. After witnessing years of denial, fear and absolute insanity from my parents and my older sister, I left on a scholarship that college 8 hours away. Prior to that, I had witnessed my sister disappear for months without explanation, locked my younger sister in the bathroom and threw my older sister across a room in panic when she was chasing us around the house in some kind of altered state with a butcher knife, watched my dad physically take down
    My older sister and pin her to the floor to control her out of desperation, found my sister passed out in slum houses, tried to keep up with my sister in drinking just so I could be around her, begged my sister to stop if she loved me and being filled with anger when I thought she wouldn’t stop for me, watching my parents in absolute dispare all while having way to much freedom for a teenager because though I was internally completely hopeless, depressed, practicing self-harm and alcoholism, I wasn’t dying and my sister was so my problems were not even acknowledged let alone a priority. During college, I made multiple midnight drives to hospitals near my hometown when I was advised my sister was dying from end stage liver disease. I acknowledge years prior my sisters case my pretty hopeless and she was dying, my parents were in denial until the end. My sister always pulled through somehow however there was no chance of recovering in her condition so it was only a matter of time (patients with liver disease due to chronic alcoholism are not on the top of the list of a transplant list). My sisters last stent in the hospital was bad. Her skin on her legs was literally rotting away, she couldn’t walk, she was almost green in appearance and couldn’t control her bowels. She was 22 years old. I stayed home that summer to care for her in a hospital bed in our old bedroom. I helped bath her, wipe her and cooked for her. Eventually she was able to walk again and when she could, she left my parents home to a trailer park with a man I had never even heard of. I felt so angry, as I got older I realized that was really deep depression. I didn’t see my sister for at least a month when I came home (completely drunk) from a fishing trip with friends. There my sister was in the living room, I was shocked and again, had a deep sense of anger. My sister told me she loved me and I gave her a dirty look and walked out without responding (I was 19). I blacked out that night but fortunately woke up at my parents. As soon as I woke up, all that was in my head was guilt about how I treated my sister. I remember thinking she was dying and I need to go speak with her now and tell her I love her. When I went downstairs I saw her on my parents couch sleeping (both my parents were at work and my younger sister was out getting haircut). I nudged my sister and her whole body rigidly turned. She was dead. All I could remember was a buzzing sound and fullness in my ears and I walked outside in a daze. My sister was not in that house, it was just a lifeless body. In all my numbers, I started hearing a whimpering and felt a warmth on my left leg. I looked down and there was my dog who meant so much to me attached to me. She never left my side and she snapped me back to reality. I remember thinking in my head that I needed to go back inside and take the opportunity to say goodbye to my sister without anyone else around. I went over to the couch and sat at the coffee table in front of it. I told her I loved her and kissed her forehead. I still can’t remember everything and never have been able to. That was in 2004. I called my mom and said briefly, “mom, it’s ______”, my mom must have heard something in my voice because that is all I said and my mom was on her way. I hung up and called my dad who was strangely nearby and told him Kenzie was dead and I had already called mom. My mom got there first and I watched as my mom found her daughter dead. She was yelling so loud and was on top of her body. My dad came in next and I watched as he shrunk into a chair and saw the life literally drain from his body. I think seeing my parents see there daughter dead for the first time was more traumatic then finding her dead initially. I left the living room and went to the phone, I remember knowing I had to wait before calling 911 to give my parents time but I eventually did call and watched as they took her body from the house. My younger sister did not arrive until my older sisters body was gone. To this day, no one really acknowledges what happened that day. Only two years ago, a little over ten years since her death did my mom’s sisters know I found Kenzie dead. I can’t talk to my parents about it and when I try they get very defensive in that they did everything to shield us from what was happening with our older sister so I have stopped trying to talk about it. I have seen a variety of therapists since then, some that specialize in PTSD. I have gotten in significant legal problems due to alcoholism myself after the event. Luckily, I was put in rehab within two years after her death for four months instead of jail, it saved my life and I wish my sister would have had the same opportunity. I am a RN now and work in the substance abuse field. My sister’s suffering was not in complete vain, through the experience, empathy and passion learned throughout this ideal, I have been able to help hundreds of other people struggling with addiction but I still struggle myself. Especially around this time of year. I wish I knew where to start to work through this or find peace in that I never fully with. Or control the way I feel and my impulsive around the anniversary of finding her dead. Every year, I think I am going crazy and don’t know why until I am reminded that on 6/30/2004 at 19 I woke up to an empty house to find my sister dead and then witnessed my parents finding her dead all while remaining completely calm and taking control of the situation because I knew I had to.

    • Bethany, I can relate to your experience.I am so very sorry for your loss.My younger sister just drank herself to death in a 20 month period, after her youngest son shot himself while away at school. She truly believed that she could “find him”.I was with her when she died, and it was a horrible thing to watch.It was July 8 of this year, and I learning to live my life without her in it.It is the most difficult thing I have ever done. I must say though-when her spirit left her body, she was the most at peace that I had seen her in since her liver and kidneys failed her…(actually, technically she failed them). I am happy that you went on to help others and that you are taking care of your own addictions. If you wound up with liver disease, it’s like her life will have been in vain.I decided to stop drinking after my sister died, even though I don’t drink a lot.

  33. I lost my 3yr old little brother on May.29.16. We were at my aunts house who had a swimming pool. Next thing I know I am standing at the hospital and everything looks like a blur. We had adopted him and even though I only had him for 3 years it felt like the candle of joy in my heart had just died. I felt guilty and I felt like I missed opportunities and I felt angry at god and at myself for not looking after him. One thing that this article didn’t put in is that a child watching mother lose her baby is the worst thing in the world. Watching her smile just fade everyday is the worst. It’s almost been a year and it’s harder and this article wrapped up almost everything that I have been dealing with.

  34. I lost my big sisetr on the 27th of December 2016. She died during Labour n her little girl died a few days later. Pain and hurt can not begin to describe wt I hv bn feeling. I relied so much on my sister she took take of me since we were little girls. I was looking forward to receiving our new angel planning a baby shower for the 8th of Jan 2017. We were living together but on 20th of Dec 2016 i travelled to be back in two weeks. While I was away on the 25th she went into Labour she was at the hospital for 2 days n gave birth on the 27th that’s when she bled to death. While I was waiting 4 The call to say the baby is here I receive a call saying the only friend n sister had been snatched from this earth. I haven’t gotten over the shock and guilt of not being with her in that moment. Growing up I ws the weaker sister always sick but her I can count the number of times she was sick, I managed to hv 2 kids bt her being as strong as she was could not survive having 1. I have lost my Faith I am failing to understand what kind of God would put us through this. I see my sister in my dreams telling me I should let her coz she hasn’t moved on, I am trying to bt it has not been easy. I didn’t jus loose a sister but I lost a best friend, confidant, my strength, my adviser n a shoulder to cry on. The biggest thing has bn that the one who would hold my hand thru everything is the one that’s gone.

  35. On the 23rd it will be 6 months since I lost my baby sister Olivia who was 20 years old to a tragic accident. All I can say is that God is getting me and my family through, we’ve had numerous signs and visions of my beautiful sister in heaven. A few months ago my mom went to go hear this preacher and he went up to her and said they say goodbye from heaven, he had no idea we lost someone. Keep faith and keep on pushing because there is an afterlife where you will be reunited with your siblings, I can’t wait for that day, until then I have peace in knowing my sister is cheering me on to make it to the finish line. I recommend this book called, “within heavens gates” by Rebecca Springer…life changing. God wants to use our grief for grace so that others may make it by our stories. ❤️

  36. With high density of sorrow in my mind due to the demise of my younger brother at his 45 years on 08.06.2017. It is an unexpected event in my life. He was a lever patient and suffering from a couple of diseases. On the fatal day, he joined with his parents in heaven at 5.00 pm. I was so shocking; I couldn’t even understand that. Where is he now? Today evening, I had a haunting memory of him. I couldn’t resist the feeling. I didn’t know what to do. Where is he now?

    • Hi Shibu, I am with you here. it’s now 17th October 2017, and I lost my 41 years old brother on the 20th Sep 2017, no even 1 month ago. And I cannot find myself in ‘this world’, this is not ‘the’ world I was living in a month ago. I cannot find my brother in it. I have a folder in my laptop with his name and I have been writing him letters each other day, as a way to do something with my pain and see his name.

      I still haven’t come to terms with him not existing. I saw him deceased, I attended his funeral, there should have been closure, but there isn’t. I am still trying to know what to do with myself in this kind of parallel reality that doesn’t feel real at all.

  37. My younger brother died unexpectedly on April 28th 2017. No one had heard from him for 9 days so we called the police. After a few hours the police came to our house to tell us that my brother has passed away at his home. Foul play and suicide were ruled out. The cororner and pathologist are involved in my brother’s death as an autopsy did not show cause of death. A special blood test had to be done to look for a cause. We r still waiting for the results. My life will never be the same. There is a hole in my heart where my brother was. I am very traumatized and cannot wrap my brain around it.

    • My younger sister passed the same unknown way. She was alone nearly two weeks. It’s so horrible to think about. I wish I had answers

  38. Three weeks ago today I lost my older brother. I’m 17, he was 18. He committed suicide. Everyday I feel so sad because we used to talk about everything to each other and he never mentioned that he was not in a good place and never reached out to me for help. I know it’s not my fault, but I just can’t believe none of my family realised anything was wrong. I feel so sad thinking about all the things we would have done together in the future and I still feel so much pain realising that I will never do these things with him. I don’t know if this feeling will ever go away but I miss him so much it hurts. I just feel so sad thinking that his final moments must have been so horrible. No one that I know closely has ever lost a sibling so it’s so hard to talk to my friends because they don’t understand, and I don’t expect them to. It’s just so hard watching the world carry on around you and see people carry on with their normal lives meanwhile my life has been changed so dramatically forever. I’ve been finding it really hard to accept his death because I miss him so much and my mind keeps wandering, thinking maybe it didn’t really happen and maybe there is some way you could go back in time and change things. I know it’s not a healthy way to deal with things and I know I need to accept that he’s died and I will never see him alive again but it’s so hard to imagine it because I have the rest of my life ahead of me, and so far he’s always been a part of it and now suddenly he’s not. I know i’ll be okay eventually even though I know I will always miss him forever, but I’ve just been reading peoples post and it’s so reassuring knowing there are others out there who understand the pain I feel and who have experienced it before and have said that it will slowly become easier over time.

  39. I lost my big brother April 18, 2017 He was 64 years old. He died from Glio Blastoma (brain cancer). Tragically, his wife had already been diagnosed with the exact same thing almost two years ago. She died March 15, 2017. I am my brother’s trustee so was left to plan two funerals, try to console his two sons (one of whom is emotionally challenged), and sell his home and manage the assets. I feel completely empty and alone right now. He was the only person that always truly understood me. We were a lot alike, still fought sometimes, but always there was intense love and support between us. He would vent to me and I would vent to him. I just don’t know where to go from here. We were supposed to retire together and buy a couple of town homes in the same area and live out our retirement lives together (with my husband and his wife). We were in constant contact every day via text or telephone. I look at my phone now and there’s nothing…no texts from David anymore. Just so incredibly sad.

    • I feel the same. Lost my 54 year old brother to cancer18 months ago. We texted every single day and he was my only sibling. I have no one that understands me like he did. He was my rock. I don’t know how to go on but somehow do. I feel like a limb has been amputated.

  40. My big and only sister 47 (7 years my sister) fought stage 2 breast cancer and come end of September 2016 we thought she had beaten it. She had a month where she was ok and then things deteriorated. At first we thought she had belspalsy as her face dropped and speech was affected but after a few weeks her balance went and she had to walk with sticks, kept falling then within 2 weeks she went completely deaf. I couldn’t sit and chat to my best friend anymore and she couldn’t hear her 6 yr old daughter laugh and sing. December 10th I had to get her an ambulance as she was in so much pain. Brain scans showed nothing but she continued to decline. I spent the next 11 days pretty much with her as my mum was also in hospital at the same time and my dad looked after my niece. My sister started hallucinating and her personality slowly faded away into someone else. Occasionally she would shine through. I watched her deteriorate in front of me eyes. Then we were told the cancer had spread to the lining of her brain. They wanted to try treatment but by then she was so agitated they couldn’t move her. They made her comfortable and good and fluids stopped. I slept beside her at the hospital and only left her for 10 minutes at a time – I didn’t want to leave her alone. Her daughter came in with my mum and dad on the 21st December so that my niece could say goodbye. My sister was heavily sedated now. They left and I stayed with my sister – I wouldn’t leave until she did. Later that afternoon she died and my world collapsed. My heart broke and I don’t know how it will ever heal. Ive lost my best friend and sister. We were supposed to grow old together. I’ve not had much time to myself as had to arrange everything as my parents couldn’t, my mum is destroyed by this. I’m now mum to my niece and had no children of my own. My work had to change to more suitable hours in a different department. I now live in my sisters house with my niece and currently fighting her absent for 5 years Turkish dad and as after he heard of my sisters death decided he wanted my niece (and her money).
    This isn’t my life, I don’t want this life. I want my sister back. I’d switch places with her if it would bring her back. I can’t forget how much she suffered and I couldn’t do anything to help her but hold her hand and cuddle her. There were times I had to restrain her when she got agitated and tried to pull out her tubes and I hated myself for having to do that. I miss her so much and the pain is like nothing I’ve ever experienced. I’d rather not be here anymore, I’d rather be with my sister but I can’t as she wanted me to look after my niece and it would kill my folks. I’m forced to live a life I don’t want and isn’t mine and everyday miss my sister and despite people around me I just feel so alone. I also look at my family and at the moment I couldn’t care less if everyone else died – it’s like my facility to love my family is no longer there. I feel nothing – I don’t know why but I feel nothing for them and everything for my sister. I’d give up the rest of my family to have her back. I know that’s horrible but it’s how I feel. My life is forever changed and I hate it.

    • Alina your post broke my heart. My brother was my best friend. He was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer and moved in with me to die. He lasted 7 months. I value that time we had but it was horrid to watch and deal with. I miss him every day and can’t imagine life without him. It’s been 18 months and although it’s “better” I still want him back and would do anything to have him back. We texted every morning over coffee and at night too. We lived together most of our lives. Siblings are so overlooked when grieving. People always ask how my mom is doing…what about me? Thanks for sharing as it makes me feel a little normal

    • The amazing thing about what you said is that I totally got you . You don’t need to apologize for saying it . It’s THAT painful ! I felt like when you were describing your relationship and love for your sister you were talking about my brother Ricky and I . Amazing Amazing friendship ! Nothing even close and I have two amazing Best Friends !
      But Ricky was my biggest fan and I was his . Always there to say something kind to me or anyone and make them smile with a silly one liner or something . He was cool ! I miss him , he passed on May 22, 2017. Unexpectedly from multiple myeloma . I love you Ricky your sister Amber

  41. I lost my only sister a few months ago down to Sudden Death Syndrome. I have had no idea how to be able to grieve properly as I am only 20 years old so this type of life experience is new to me. With the death being sudden and completely unexpected, it took us 2 months after the death for us to be able to find out the cause therefore we couldn’t have her funeral until we knew the cause. Those two months were the hardest, being stuck in limbo whilst trying to grieve at the same time. But like I said I still have no idea really how to address the fact that my sister is no longer with me. I am sad yes but I think I am more confused and lost than anything and to be honest I am a little worried if the grief is going to hit me later on in life like a brick wall.

    • I was also 20 when I lost my sister – that was 7 years ago now. She was 18 and it was also sudden, for her the cause was SUDEP (Sudden unexpected death in Epilepsy). I feel for you and your uncertainty about the way to grieve. I can’t say I have the answer but I completely relate to that- at 20 I had no friends who had experienced anything like it, and most people’s thoughts and attention were with my parents. I didn’t know what to do. She was my only sibling. Looking back I wish i’d done some more soul searching… I think i was in such shock that I repressed my feelings rather than address them. I wish you all the best.

  42. I lost my elder brother 40 years ago, on 3 June. He died in a dreadful car crash and seemed to take my future with him. He was highly intelligent and quite good looking; certainly girls seemed to like him. Back then there was no grief councilling, or if there was it hadnt reached the north west of England, where we lived at the time and though our little brother was given a lot of leeway I certainly wasn’t. I had to grow up and comfort my parents and brother. It was very difficult and in many ways stunted my emotional development. I was 17 for years and even now, getting on for 60, the affects of his abrupt disappearance still resound for little bro and I. We don’t ever expect any relationship to last and I am convinced that something awful will happen to people I love. I wonder if I will ever really be free of that car crash and the damage it did all of my family.

  43. My brother Patrick died two years ago of a drug overdose. The last 10 years of his life were filled with turmoil and pain. The last 4 years of his life were in-survivorable. His substance abuse started in his early teens and so did his emotional and physical abuse of others. Patrick managed to maintain and create new relationships despite the fact the most important ones in his life were either crumbling or destroyed. Like most drug addicts, Patrick was able to be codependent and carry the role of caregiver. He would cook and clean for others to survive without working. Until the very end our mother had faith that Patrick could survive. It got to the point where he knew if she stayed with him in his last weeks alive she would either find him dead or would find him holding onto life and would take whatever measures required to keep him on this earth. He forced her to leave his side so he could embark on the end of his life alone.

    Patrick died one day after his 36th birthday. He was two weeks sober, having spent time in the hospital. Upon his birthday he reconnected with his dearest and oldest friends. He ate well, told old stories and was hopeful of his own road sobriety. Patrick experienced a natural high, a feeling one isn’t accustomed to feeling after a decade of hard drug abuse. The next morning, that feeling was gone. And the fact was he knew it would take too much to feel that good and that loved. Patrick lashed out at those around him that morning. Started arguments, insulted those around him and holed himself into a room and came to the conclusion he was going to use. He didn’t know that would be his last bad decision. He didn’t know that last cocktail of heroin and meth he shot into his failing body would kill him. He didn’t know he was destroying his family. That he would be killing part of his little sister, his little brother or his parents. He just knew he wanted to feel better.

    Two years later, we remain the same. Withdrawn, isolated and as siblings the original set has been broken. There’s a missing part of the our trio. We resent our parents for not doing enough. We are angry when our mother says “I’m Patrick’s Mom”. We are utterly furious he could be so selfish, so mean and narcissistic as to leave us here with all of the pain. The truth is he experienced far worse pain, every minute of every day. Until that last moment when the pain was gone.

  44. I lost my baby brother and only sibling on the 20th of November last year. It’s nearly 6 months and the grief I feel consumes me.
    The thing is I never wanted to live and now I’m stuck living a life I hate and feeling so alone and lost because my parents have already lost a child and don’t know how I could do that to them.
    So I’m stuck.
    In limbo.
    Not able to end this life of mine I hate so much.
    But merely existing.
    Thom deserves to be here more than me. He died of a brain cancer which left his body wasted but his brain conscious of everything happening around him. It was gut-wrenching

    • Libby I am sorrow struck to hear this.. I am crying for what I would feel for my brother if he had to endure that. Please think about how he would want you to carry on in his place.. i am sure you already thought about that a million times in 6 months. My brother killed himself just a few weeks ago Libby… all I can think is how crushed he would be if I did that too… for their sake we gotta keep going till one day.. please one day let it get easier. Libby stay tough… be in the world he was denied, what would he have wanted to do? Travel to Thailand or surf or…. is there something you can do in his memory? I hope you find strength to do what he would have wanted for himself and or for you. We must choose to live Libby.
      -Jenny

    • Libby, I understand how you feel. I lost my baby brother almost 8 years ago. Sometimes it feels like a million years ago and other days as though it was yesterday. No one seems to understand the pain of losing a sibling and they act as though there should be no pain. The pain is so overwhelming at times it feels like an ocean and I feel like I’m drowning. A part of me died that day. Even though I was 44 at the time (he had just turned 38) another part of my childhood also died. We were friends, we were enemies, we hated each other and yet we loved each other. We felt like killing each other at times, but yet no one else should ever mess with the other one. His anniversary would have been June 10. As I walked down the aisle as one of the bridesmaids I looked at him and he winked at me. The tears began to flow and they didn’t stop. The night he left us after an almost 5 year battle with rectal cancer, I promised him once again that I would take care of him by making sure our family would be ok. My prayer is that I haven’t disappointed him. My prayers are with you Libby.

  45. Reading all of these posts has helped me because I realise that Im not alone in the way that I’m feeling. I lost my sister, who was my soul mate, mum and best friend nearly 21 yrs ago. I miss her so much. I struggle with an eating disorder as a result. I constantly beat myself up. I wish that it had been me that died in the car accident instead of her. I’d of hoped in that way it would have been easier on the family. I’m nothing compared to her. I am destroying my own life as a result yet I achieve so much….nothing is good enough. I long to have one last hug with her. I relate certain foods to her and don’t eat them as a result… It’s too painful. Yet again I find myself seeking help. I hope that it will help me to live my life for her as I have that opportunity… At the same time I feel guilty though. I hope that by eating the foods I associate with her I’ll be able to let go and move on to a healthier and happier life.

  46. I am sorry for the losses that you all have decided to share. I have recently found myself grieving the loss my twin sister. We are 44. I am her brother. In a way it still doesn’t seem real. But I am feeling the void, the twin connection I had with her. I am sad that I was not able to do and say more to her. I am sad that I will not be able to do and say more to her. I just can’t properly express my feelings right now, it’s only been less than 2 weeks since I lost her.

    • I am so sorry for your loss. I am not a twin but I lost my older sister a little over a month ago. She was 49. It was sudden and unexpected. My mother had been trying to call and text her all morning and I went to her house to check on her two dogs and I found her dead on her sofa. She had died the night before. The autopsy report said she died of a heart attack. It hurts so much. I miss her so much.

  47. I lost my brother 25 years old on 25th April 2017 it was such a horrible day. A car accident we could do nothing at all. Just pray for him he shall always live in my heart people pass away but memories always remain.

    • Im so sorry for your loss. I lost my younger brother on the 11th of June 2017 from a tragic accident, he was just 18. After staying with him unconscious for almost 4 hours they had to then the machines off. I hate living without him I just know this isn’t going to get any easier. There’s so many unanswered questions I have. Where do you to from here? I believe his tried to let me know his still here but I want him back

  48. My baby sister died on the day she turned a month old 1 month and 2 days ago from SIDS I wish I could of protected her.She didn’t live long I could’ve spent more time with her thank you for this post it has helped me understand more.Alot of my friends don’t understand so its good I can read this and know what else is happening.

  49. I lost my older sister when I was 15 and she was 18. She was murdered while working an overnight shift at her job. It’s been almost 5 years and it hurts more now than the day it happened. I miss her more than anything. She was my best friend.

  50. I lost my big brother 4 months ago. He was a 16 year cancer survivor that caught pneumonia for the last 6 months of his life in both his lungs and his lungs shut down. Throughout the years we never lived together but always kept in touch. He was about 12 years older than me. we had the same father, and along with him I have 2 other older brothers, the youngest of the 3 died 18 years ago, the oldest is still alive, but neither of them meant as much to me as the one I just lost 4 months ago, as terrible as that sounds. Frank was the only one who reached out to me from time to time, who made any effort to try and see me or be there for special occasions. Frank was the glue to my other family members, and now that he’s gone I feel like I lost more than just my big bro, but that I lost the rest of my family. Family meant everything to him, and he tried to always get everyone together while he was alive. I feel like I took the time for granted while he was here because he survived for 16 years when he was first diagnosed with cancer and the doctors only gave him 1 year, maybe I should have made more of an effort to see him more, or be there for the good times, and not only when I got a phone call that he was sick and or in the hospital. And now that he’s gone there’s no getting that lost time, lost opportunities back…. and its eating up inside of me. The other family members that I no longer speak to I’ve tried to fix that and try to be in there lives, but I feel like its only me trying, only me reaching out, and it gets tiresome. Its bad enough that I lost the most important man in my life, but them too… but then I say to myself… they weren’t really there while he was alive, so I really only lost the best big bro ever. No matter what I do, no matter what I try to do… its never gonna bring him back or get the lost time back, but I’ve been finding it hard to be happy, and move on with my life and continuing to live and keep him alive within me. I’m so depressed. I don’t know how to let him go. I will be 40 years old this year and it will be the first time I don’t get a HBD baby sis from him, no more text messages, no more calls… and its a hard realization.

    • I’m so sorry for your loss – losing a brother is so hard. My older brother, by 15 months was my rock, I still miss him all the time but I’m thankful that he was so
      Important to me- many people go through life never experiencing the bond we were blessed with. He’s been gone 5 years and there’s that part of my heart that never stops aching. There are days now that I can laugh (and cry) at some of the memories. The memories become such a treasure. Wishing you good memories …

  51. I lost my little sister 2 months ago. My sister was only 19 and she was my best friend. She was born with health issues has over 5 open heart surgery and had so many other health battles that she had won in her short life. This last health battle was so unexpected she was in the ICU for 3 weeks we still don’t know what caused her to get so sick but this would be her final battle. She started recovering and getting better then it all went down hill and was gone. We never expected something like this to happen so suddenly with my sister. She was my everything I saw her everyday and hung out for a few hours a day. I pretty munched raised my sister I feel like I have lost my child. I can’t even explain the pain my whole body aches I even feel it in my bones. I cry everyday I visit her grave 2 or 3 times a week. I can’t imagine life with out my little sister. I feel like I have gone an eternity without her already and it’s only been 2 months. I’m ready to see her again I just want to be with her so bad. How am I supposed to move on from this? The pain is so miserable I don’t know how much longer I can take it. How do you continue to live life with such pain?

    • Dear Autumn,

      I’m so sorry for your loss. I too lost my sister 8 months ago. She was 33 when she passed, and I know she was much older than your sister, but I had always considered her my baby sister. She was 2 years younger, and when we used to fight, I would always remind her that “Even when you are 100-years-old, I would still be 102 and older.”

      My sister died quite quickly from end-stage stomach cancer. Our family didn’t have any history of cancer. Both our parents passed away more than 10 years ago, so my sister was all the family I had. Even though I was the older sister, she was the one who was more matured and more grounded. She was my rock. When she passed away so suddenly, I was in alot of shock and denial.

      All the body pains that you are describing, I had those as well. I had chest pains, back pains, pains in my legs, wrist, bones (I even thought I might have bone cancer), tightness in my throat for 3 months, Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I did alot of blood tests, utrasounds, scans, and they all came back fine. I have been having headaches on my left side, numbness in my left arm, irritation in my left eye for more than 2 weeks now. Everyone tells me it’s due to stress and grief. I don’t know when my life would go back to normal.

      I am not in your exact same shoes, but I have some idea of what you’re feeling. You have to take good care of yourself, because your sister (and other family members) would want you to be happy and continue to live life. Our sisters are no longer suffering and I believe my sister is in a better place. We miss our sisters, but the love, memories and good (and bad) times that we have had with them will never disappear.

      I don’t know if you have a religious belief. Someone once shared this story with me. Suppose you and your sister went to a party. For some reason, your sister had to leave first, but she told you she would see you at home later. She wants you to stay at the party and continue to have a good time. In this case, would you cry or miss her? Some religions teach that we will all re-unite after death.

      I tried to find answers online about “Why” did it happen to my sister, and found the below articles quite helpful. I read everything, whether religions or non-religious and would like to share them with you. I hope you will give yourself time to heal, and do whatever it takes to help you get better and move on.

      http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/1388654/jewish/Why-Do-Some-of-the-Best-Die-Young.htm
      http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/im-heaven-now-brave-boy-9184928

      Hugs,
      Lynette

    • Dear Autum, I lost my youger sister almost the same way she was going into her 5th open heart surgery. There was complications and within 2 weeks she passed, I watched my sister get better and get worse. I know the pain you are going though because i had the same. Not being able to help her, I watch her grow up as I grew up. At the time my sister was 12 and this year she will be 14. the pain never goes away only become mangable

  52. I lost my 54-year old brother on Monday to bone cancer. He has always been and will always be my best friend and the person I have cherished most in my life. The giant hole ripped from my heart will always miss him badly and it will not be filled until we are together again in the hereafter as we were in this life. He was 21 months older than I was and so we shared pretty much everything together – bedroom growing up, our friends, a few girlfriends(!), life’s dreams and downfalls, and our triumphs and tribulations. I am totally and simply lost in extreme sadness. My body and mind keep reminding me of the loss of my brother no matter what I do, and while I am trying to think of all the good and wonderful times we had together as a celebration of his life, I remain paralyzed in frozen sadness. I just can’t stand the emptiness and loneness I am experiencing. I am broken.

    • George …

      Thank you for sharing.
      I lost my best friend my brother on the 26th April 2017 and he was 54 years old.
      I have no idea how I am suppose to keep going. I can’t imagine my life without him in it.
      We did so much together and I just don’t know how to go on.
      I can’t believe that someone so precious can be suddenly taken away, no warning, just gone.
      The shock and the emotional rollercoaster I am on feels like this is what it will be like until I am with him again.
      He was my big brother and I am devastated,. I can’t imagine how to get through his funeral…………
      I can’t imagine anything without him
      Its only 4 whole days and it feels like forever already……:-(

  53. Back in the days I was afraid to die. I was terrified I was unable to go sleep without covering my body from head to toe with a sheet.
    Now after I lost my only brother my baby brother my everything the one who supported the one who looked after me. I feel like nothing matters to me. My brother and I grew up together and he went through hell we grow up without our parents living with relatives , but my pain is not our past life or being rejected from our parents; my pain is the death of my
    Baby brother and words cannot describe how much love I feel for him moreover how much I miss you. Can’t wait to meet again manito . RIP Fernando Ortega 10/292015

  54. Thank you for sharing ?

  55. My brother Matt died on 07/15/16. He was only 39 years old. Him and his wife were coming home from a Harley-Davidson bike night. A truck pulled out in front of them. Matt was killed instantly, his wife was life flighted and is still recovering in a facility. I miss him like crazy. So many years ago when Mom brought him home after giving birth, I was convinced she had brought this precious little boy home just for me. We became best friends, built a trust like no other, got in trouble together, never told on one another. As our childhood grew into adulthood we still gave each other hard times and also true loyal compassion. We talked openly. We kept in contact daily, even during challenged timed. What I wonder is WHY my spouse will not let me grieve? Why does he think that my life will EVER be the same? How can he even think about intamacy right now, AND truly want to have relations? That is the last thing on my mind. My life will never be the same since this beautiful and unique man left my life. He was my brother.

  56. I am so glad to have found this site. I just lost my older brother two days ago and am devastated…..I held his hand and hugged him for 26 hours while watching him die. He had no wife or girlfriend, no children. I had no idea he was so sick; he kept on working up until two weeks ago w/no complaints. Not only am I devastated but I feel so guilty that I was not more supportive of him. I had jealousy issues w/him over the years because our mother really loved and doted on him and did not have much time for me. And I let that jealousy affect how I viewed him sometimes. So now I’m going through this stage of beating myself up for this. I’m glad though that he had that love from our mother all his life. Having that love made him the wonderful person he was.

  57. I LOST MY MOM IN AUG 2012 THEN LOST MY DAD 13 MONTHS LATER , I have a really big family as you no we was all distraught , l have 7 brothers & 3 sisters we all live separate got our own family’s we were all so close , but September this year my brother was killed in a motor bike accident he was married with 1 sibling & 2 step sons was on married 12 months , but I’m so angry I have fell out with half my family even the wife of my brother don’t really want to go in to to much detail , let me just say she’s gone back on her word some days I don’t feel angry but I have had argument with most my brothers even the 1 brother I’m really close too & I don’t even feel guilty about the rows iv had either , because what iv said I feel is true to me it’s like no one as listened even if I shouted it from an hill top

  58. Hi. Today 22 years ago I lost my eldest brother to a heart attack he was 21 and I 12. I was the one to find him. He was my all. My heart is still very much torn. 4 years ago I lost my last brother he 32 and I 29. I feel totally lost. I often feel angry and that unfairness. Try to be a soldier but boy it is hard. Questions like I’m not the one supposed to take care of my parents and to do their funeral arrangements Ect. My whole life is over. Folks live with me I take care of them financially and physically. Dad had a stroke a year ago leaving him like a todler. I’m 34 and no where to go. Won’t be able to live my life eva.

  59. I am so devastated. My baby brother died 3 weeks ago from today at the age of 19. I call him baby because he was special needs, unable to speak or hear, and I was his caregiver for the past 6 months while my parents were working. He was my favorite person in the world, he had such a pure innocent heart and such a wonderful personality. He was always smiling and laughing, regardless of how many surgeries he had gone through. He was the person I spent the most time with and vice versa. We were extremely attached to each other. I don’t know what to do without him here anymore. It felt like he was my purpose in life and I had always pictured my future with him in it. He made me a better person and I am so sad I will never be able to see him or feel him again. I would do anything to hug him one more time. He stopped breathing in my arms after an epilepsy attack and he then passed away in the hospital as I held his hand. I keep reliving his death and I don’t know how to get the horrifying memories and feelings out of my head. His presence in the house leaves a large void and everyone is heartbroken. We all feel like something is missing and it leaves us all depressed. I hope I can get better but the pain is the same as the day it all happened.

  60. My big brother passed away on Friday and I’m a broken man 🙁 He was my pillar and the person I could always go to for advice.It feels like a part of me died and life without him would not be the same. I cannot sleep and just burst out in tears when I think of him. I’m just glad I had a chance to say goodbye and I will never forget our last handshake. I keep asking myself why it wasn’t me ?? He has two beautiful boys and they need him and I have no family of my own and I would do anything to change places. I suffer from depression and I’m in a dark place at the moment but I know I have to get myself together as I promised I will always be there for the boys and be the man in their lives. Thank you for the article

    • Hello Phil,
      As I’m on this site looking for support, guidance, just anything to help. I came across your post and feel pretty much the same way. Last week I unexpectedly lost my older sister. She has one daughter and I just feel that if someone had to go it should of been me. Her daughter needs her, my parents need her. But being the sibling I feel left out and not so much needed. Sigh maybe it’s just too new. I can’t think and I cry at just about anything. I noticed you posted a few months ago now, Does it get any better? Is there something that you’ve found that helped? I don’t really have many friends so I am struggling here.

  61. There is a wonderful book. “Surviving the Death of a Sibling” T.J. Wray

  62. I’m glad I came across this article. I lost my younger sister to a heroin overdose in March of this year. Every day since has been a roller coaster. I can really relate with a lot of the things written about- survivors guilt is a big one, even though I’ve never done the drug and am not worried I will pass in the same manner– it’s just a question of why her, why then? I grieved her passing before she was physically gone because of her lifestyle, and came to terms with the fact that choosing to live her life the way she did was a risk, and she knew that. When she passed away, it was during her longest stretch of sobriety in her adult life. I had no idea she was back into using. Even though I know there was nothing I could have done… I’ll always question–what if there was? Looking forward to checking out the support groups mentioned.

    • kaityin im so sorry for your loss. i understand what you’re going through. my brother passed away last year. that was the day i stopped living. he had a very bad substance abuse problem and pain pills. he fell down his stairs. it was a couple of hours before anyone found him. not a day goes by that i dont think about him i miss him so much. i wish so badly that we could have got him help. i blame myself i didnt try hard enough. he was my best friend

  63. I blogged about my loss of my identical Twin sister at the age of 13. It may be of use to someone else. http://www.oneoftwostillhere.blogspot.com

  64. My older sister died in a snowboarding accident on December 7th, 2015. I will always be a little bit lonely without her and although life may be good at times, I know it would be even better with her here. It saddens me that people (strangers, friends, family-to-be) will never meet her, for she was one of a kind. I miss everything about her, even the way she yelled at me when she was angry. I am lucky to have the most supportive parents, but at times still nothing helps and I know that my grief is a burden I will bear forever. I have tried counseling but it all seems redundant and there is no ‘fixing’ to be done. I simply wish I could talk to her, hug her, hear about her new adventures, meet her new friends and loved ones. My parents and I have a saying that helps sometimes “we may be broken, but we are still good” we use this quote to help us realize that we must still stick together. My sister died instantly at age 23. I was 20 at the time. Now I’m 21. I’m so scared for the day I turn 23 because I don’t want to be older than her. sharing and receiving love are the only things that help me through. I try to live my life as if she is guiding me.

  65. Thank you so much for writing and sharing this. My younger sister died when I was seven and I’m still coming to terms with it, partly because I had no counselling or other support (other than my loving family). I’m writing a book about it. I’d be happy to talk to anyone who’d like to share their experience too. Thanks for all the wonderful work you do, WYG.

    • I think thats wonderful that you are writing a book. Our daughter was 5 when our son passed away from brain cancer at age 3. They were only 20 months apart and she lost her best friend. I noticed that there aren’t many books at all on sibling loss. Its a shame and it would be nice if there were more.

  66. My brother was killed in a car wreck March 24 2016 i don’t know how to handle it well i think about it constantly everyday it’s hard for me to sleep and i stay depressed my heart was ripped to shreds on that horrible day.

  67. My younger sister died 3 months ago. She was one of my best friends and I miss her every single day. I had a few very bad days, when getting out of bed was a challenge. But I went to see my former therapist and that helped. I think the worst is over but I know I will mourn for my sister until I die.

  68. My only sibling, an older sister, died 5 months ago. Both our parents are deceased. I also agree there is not much information available that addresses adult sibling grief. Most people do not even acknowledge your grief. I received few sympathy cards or calls. People who I thought were friends have fallen away. After her death, I volunteered to send out the thank you notes for my brother-in-law and helped him with discarding some things at their home. This kept me busy for several weeks. But now I am feeling the extreme loss of her death. I tell myself that I had over four years to prepare for her loss but you are never prepared for that final day. I have taken a grief recovery class which helped very little and have read a variety of books on grief. Keeping busy helps for the moment but find I have many “memory embraces” that leave me in tears or sobbing. This loss of my sister has affected me much more deeply than either the loss of my parents. She was part of my history and even though we were six years apart in age, she was always there for me. She was a strong individual and seemed to be able to handle almost all type of crisis, even stage four cancer. I know I will get through this but don’t see it happening in the near future.

  69. As a grandmother I watched as my grandsons siblings grieved as their brother battled through his cancer journey
    They were with him as he died and spoke at his funeral all at the tender ages og 13, 9 and 4

  70. I lost my older sister 3 weeks ago, it was unexpected. She died on the operating table during a surgery that was supposed to save her life, not end it. There were 26 years between us, so she was an aunt as much as a sister. We always used to scheme and surprise our dad with something big and epic on Father’s day, like a new set of tools or a room full of worlds best dad equipment. Crazy maybe but in addition to doing something nice it was our chance to bond. Flying solo this year I just feel lost and wish I could drag her back down from heaven to remind me what this year’s plan was. All I do when I’m alone is sit and listen to ‘Sissy’s Song’ by Alan Jackson miss her and cry

  71. I am 27 yrs old, my younger brother was 25 when he passed away two months ago now. I don’t know how or even what I feel yet other than pain and sadness almost every day. He was in a sudden car accident where he died very quick. I wish I could comprehend what’s flowing through me right now, the feelings, the rush of air leaving me when I think of him, the tears that suddenly flow when I type this. I hate that I feel so much pain and it angers me at times when I think about not being able to see him and or share our futures together any longer. I truly hate accepting his death and I’m not sure how to come to terms with it, I just want to be able to go a day without losing my breath and not being able to stop my tears no matter where I am. Half of me was suddenly stripped away from me and taken forever without warning, he was my guardian as I was his, and it’s extremely hard to shake the feelings of complete loneliness. I need help, I know I do.

    • Corey: I am so sorry for your loss. My sister died in March. Although she was 67, it’s still difficult. I remember feeling like my heart was breaking and wondering if my chest would explode because the ache was so severe that day and all I could do was hug a teddy bear and sob. 61 years old! But thst bear helped comfort me. We just take each day momemt by moment. Hopefully, the pain will lessen.

  72. having lost my older sister recently whom i was her carer suddenly and having no other relatives to count on nobody seems to understands my grief as i found her dead in bed in the house we shared feeling lost and alone now its 6 months and i still miss her and sometimes don’t feel like getting out of bed just want to be on my own people just don’t understand how i feel they want me to get out and meet people get a job but i can’t do it

  73. I lost my sister 42 days ago. She was the middle one, i have an older sister of 45, I’m 36 and my sister who died was 42. She gave birth to twins 5 months ago and on 24 April 2016 she.just. died. Her husband and I tried to resuscitate her but we didn’t realise at the time that she had suffered a quick death and that whilst I was blowing my air into her lungs, she was gone already. It’s 42 days later and i miss her every day. People support me but im amazed at the uncomfortability people feel when you grieve. My cousin in her innocence told me last night wow! You are really grieving for your sister. I thought to myself, what do you mean? Of course! My heart is broken, i MISS her, my life will never be the same again. We lived in the same gated community and i went to her every day. We chatted every day, we sat next to each other and sang silly songs, i told her my secrets.. and now.she.is.no.more.. my eldest sister lives in the Netherlands so I have become the manager of everybody’s feelings. I help where I can, i comfort everybody. But even though I have friends who listen to me etc, i feel alone in my grief. I’m sad and i miss my sister so much.

  74. this is so hard to talk about. i still cant believe my brother is gone he was my best friend. he was 47 when he passed away. he had a substance abuse problem and we had tried for years for him to get help but he wouldnt . the night it happened he fell down his stairs and died of positional asphyxia . he suffered for a couple of hours before he passed. i feel like im going crazy i wake up every morning hoping its been a horrible nightmare then realize its not.. i try so hard to be strong for my parents and my kids but its so hard. i feel like i have to cry alone. i know life will never be the same ive lost part of me. i just dont understand how this happened no one is ever prepared to lose someone. we were so close we talked everyday when my phone rings i still think its him. i dont know anyone who has lost a sibling or have a support group where i live so im glad to have someone to talk to that understands.

  75. Great post on the subject! Even though it’s been a long time since I’ve lost my siblings, the subject is very much in my experience recently. A dear friend of mine just lost her sister. We felt it is important to talk about the subject. So we’re going to do so on blab.im. If anyone wants to watch or join us, you’re welcome to with open hearts. You can go to https://blab.im/WakingKathy and look for the scheduled blab called Processing Sibling Grief is a Unique Journey on April 24th at 5:00 pm EST ♡

  76. I commend you on the post. It’s true there are not many resources for sibling loss. If I may, I would add a few points based on my son’s experience after his brother’s passing.
    Especially with small kids there is fear (could this happen to me or someone else in our family), guilt (for those times they weren’t nice to their sibling or jealous of them). With children their grief evolves as they grow as they begin to process and understand death, love, what it means to have a sibling or not have one. In a way they relive the loss as they mature

    • Yes, there is fear, guilt, sadness, and the overwhelming feelings that you can’t make things better for your parents or the children left behind. What makes it worse are the words left unsaid. I’m on rollar coaster and can’t get off….

  77. Thanks for posting about sibling grief my eldest brother was killed 3 years ago I was expected to support everybody and when I tried to grieve was told by my parents I was selfish so I didn’t grieve until last year when I had a breakdown and ended up trying to take my own life my family no longer talk to me as iam the bad one the one who should’ve died not him even though no one could’ve saved him that day and I wasn’t even there is have been vilified and had all my parents anger and bitterness directed at me until I finally said enough I’m done and refused to have anything to do with them my brother was I years older than me and was like a father to me he was my hero and I looked up to him so losing him felt like the end of the world and being told by my father that he had no kids anymore as the only one that mattered was dead hurt me even more siblings are overlooked in grief I know I have but I have now got support through doctors cruse bereavement and my partner and my baby who I was pregnant with when my brother died was born with ginger hair just like my brother so I will always have that reminder it never gets easier you just learn to live with the constant pain and heartache

    • Kristi, i am truly sorry to hear about such cold rejection: parental rejection is cruel. My Mom experienced this as a young baby girl. The damage can devastate one’s future relationships … even though you know it is wrong for the parent to have been so cruel, even if you forgive them and see them as the child they act out. I am glad you recognize this and even though you cannot be 100% … 100% of the time you have a head start on many people when it comes to understanding authority and love. Try if possible to see the gifts you have which you would otherwise not know if you had not experienced such pain from you father, of course, layered with the pain of loss of your brother. You are special and there are people who need the gift of understanding in you. I hope you try to reach out to people and help them. My Mom grew to become an empathic loving person through her pain… I hope you find the gifts within you that stand along side your pain then transform them into tools to help others and counter the damage upon your heart by bringing love and light to others, (no matter how small, or how unnoticed, an act of kindness is a seed that grows), sending you love

  78. My sister and I are the only siblings in our family. I’m 4 years older than her and she died in a car accident 30th December 2013. I’ve never known life without her…apart from the first 4 years of my life we’ve been there for each other, so being without her is a very alien existence. My parents don’t talk to me much anymore. ..they don’t visit me and it’s as though the grief of her death is all theirs. ..they have never comforted me and they don’t let me be involved with anything pertaining to her…this sounds harsh. ..and it feels harsh for me because it was never like this when my sister was alive…but on reading this article I now relate and understand why it is like this. ..I have tried talking with my parents and visiting them weekly and hoping that love from me could change. ..but it’s making no difference. ..so I’m having a break from them to get my head together because I thought I was going crazy…my adult children and husband have always been there for me and I have to remind myself that this is a wonderful thing. ..but I miss my sister terribly and existing without her is pretty empty and a huge challenge for me daily. ..I have had some counseling but it was only telling me the obvious. .that I miss my sister and time will help. ..your article has helped me more identify and understand the loss of a sibling. …x

  79. I’ve lost two sisters in three months. I am devastated beyond words. I cannot accept that they are gone. I never got to say goodby. I miss them both so much.

    • That is a lot of loss in a very short period of time. I’m so sorry for everything you must be going through. 🙁

    • I am 82 years old and grieving the loss of my brother who passed away at 78 years very recently. My younger brother passed 22 years ago. There is nothing to compare to the loss of a sibling..very different from one’s parents passing..even though that is painful. I truly feel for all who are going through this unique pain.

      • Anne, I am so sorry for your losses. It is hard to imagine adjusting to a world without a person who has been part of your life for 78 years. I hope you find some support here on our site. Take care.

  80. My only sister died in 1953 at the age of 12 from a kidney disease. I was 4 at the time. I have memories of her. I remember seeing her look at me and wave through the glass of a window in her hospital room. I was not allowed to see her. Within 2 months she was dead and I remember seeing her in her casket and asking my mother why was my sister sleeping there? My mother could not answer me and told me to go to my father, who said nothing. Over the years I had asked questions, but very little information was given to me. My aunts talked with me in later years about “things,” and how “fragile” my mother was. Even now, I feel like the left out one. I miss my sister and the times we should have shared. A couple years ago I did put together a scrapbook of what pictures I had of us together and I wrote little notes along with the pictures. Healing….maybe. My parents are both gone now and life was never the same after my sister died. It was a sad household. My father would sometimes talk about my sister (about something she may have done) and my mother would look at him with knives in her eyes. The conversation stopped. And so it went…………………..

    • Oh Joanie, I feel so sad for you. I feel sad for your parents as well, but I can only imagine what it must have been like to be 4-years-old and to have so many unanswered questions about your sister’s death. I’m sure you also had questions about her as a person as you grew older, but it sounds she wasn’t a topic of conversation. Although it sounds like you have looked for ways to grieve her and remember her in your own way, you unfortunately never had the opportunity to freely share, remember, and grieve as a family. This had to be tough 🙁

  81. I had 2 sisters in my family, my younger sister was murdered in Florida in 1980. My older sister died in 2009. I lost my only child, a daughter in 2005. I do have a younger brother in California. It’s really hard for me

  82. Other than my older sister, my brother knew me longer & better than anyone. When he died, I felt like many memories died too. He helped me remember things I had forgotten.

  83. Thank you for this post. I am actually writing my dissertation on unexpected adult sibling loss. I really struggled with the literature review in terms of finding sibling specific resources. Everything you said is spot on and helpful to this kind of loss. I feel as if you interviewed my participants. Everyone loss was unique, but the patterns are similar. I am so grateful that someone else is trying to shed light on the loss of a sibling.

    • Hey Robyn,

      I’m shocked how little there is for supporting people through the death of a sibling. You’d think there would be more, considering how many people leave behind one sibling at the very least. I’m glad to hear you’ve been looking into this, everything helps!

      Eleanor

  84. My sister was killed in a tragic car accident 39 years ago today…..it was Easter Sunday. I was nine years old and I still suffer from this loss. This past week I have been struggling to just be……missing work, staying in bed and reliving the horrific event over and over. My brother was 11 and he too suffers but bottles up his pain but I know him so well. We were kind of just pushed aside….I’m sure folks thought because we were “just kids” we would be fine…neither of us have ever been fine. I have sadness creep up on my suddenly when I least expect it and sometimes it lasts for days and days. Just today a close friend asked me if I have ever considered grief counseling…..at first I thought it was a crazy idea because it was so long ago and then I thought maybe I can find some help with this sometimes unbearable pain. So here I am….looking for help and maybe some relief from this never ending pain.

  85. We are definitely the forgotten grievers. My sister had been terminally ill for 11 years, she died 3 years and nearly 3 months ago, she had just turned 20, I was 3 weeks from my 17th birthday. I was forgotten about almost straight away, even by friends…always the question ‘How’s your mum?’, even my mum has forgottten, we argue a lot and she always throws in my face ‘I’ve lost a daughter’…yeah well I’ve lost my sister but you don’t seem to care about that? The guilt, anger, regrets are all there of how I treated her, I did get a chance to say ‘I’m sorry please forgive me’ and ‘I love you’ before she passed as she was in a hospice for a week receiving palliative care so I knew she was going but she wasn’t able to respond but I feel she knew and I sat by her bed all day and night that week,keeping her company and telling her it was all okay and she was going to stop suffering and get to see her dad again. I can’t comprehend what losing my sister has done to me and I know no one I know will even ever slightly understand because of the way I come across…like I’m not bothered and that I’ve forgotten about her because I don’t like talking about her but that’s only because it’s too painful. I recently turned 20 so I am not officially the age she never got past, I find that so weird and struggled on my birthday to deal with that, I tried talking to my friend but felt like I was bothering her so I changed the subject. My whole life has been changed/affected by my sisters illness and then death…my family is not a family, we are far too damaged and broken now. I will never forget my sister and I love her to bits, sleep easy Rachel and party hard up there with grandad and your dad…and the other family we have up there <3

    • I’m glad you found a forum where you can express yourself and not feel guilty. Your feelings are valid and it’s okay to get them out. I don’t really have any advise for you, as my own grief has changed my life irrevocably. But I am thinking of you and I’m so sorry for your loss. Keep in touch.

  86. It was nice to find this site, I don’t even know where to begin. I guess I can start with my sister died suddenly, almost as if it was a bad dream. We spoke on the phone and she had a horrible cough. I had begged her to see a doctor. The next evening, her husband had called me and told me she was dead. She was 46 and left behind two young children with two different fathers. She left behind my parents and me….no warning….no time to express our love. A year or so has passed. I have spent the last year trying to hold everything together, my parents health and grief, the blending of my niece and nephew and their new family dynamics which is forever altered. I have realized that my own grief has been pushed aside. I have so many regrets and words that were left unsaid. As the world keeps going forward, I have to keep moving as well. Although, there are many days that I would like to curl up in a ball and simply replay my memories of my beautiful, older, only sister.

    • Stefanie,

      I’m so sorry for your pain and the stress you’ve been under. I worry so much about the person in the family who everyone looks to to hold things together, because this is often the selfless person who seldom gets a chance to focus on his or her own feelings. Now that you’ve realized this, I hope you find some time to really acknowledge and work through some of your own grief. And I know we all have to do what we have to do in life to get through, but you deserve a day once in a while to feel sad and to remember your sister. Please let us know how we can help.

      Eleanor

  87. Thank you for writing this. I have read many articles on grief but only now realize it’s the type of loss (sibling) and with whom I was closest to of all my siblings – because of that I feel terribly lost. My true confidant and literal soul sister died almost a year ago. I find myself crying a lot again after months of bottled up tears. I suppose as the anniversary approaches I am reflecting on the final weeks & days with much clarity. I miss her. My other sister has tried to fill that void and I do love her deeply and she’s here but it doesn’t change the fact that my deceased sister is not. You would think I’d embrace the living sister the same but that seems shallow and false and I suppose could mean I hurt less. I also feel passionately that the deep pain I endure proves my love and loss is real. We should be honored to feel so much, however debilitating it is. It’s ours, we should embrace it with fullness and intensity.

    • Maria, I am so sorry for the pain of losing your sister. The reality of losing someone is that they can never be replaced. Though new relationships might form and grow, though perhaps it may even bring you and your other sister closer, that will never fill the void. Those new or strengthened relationships can be a huge comfort and support in grief, but it is important to know that we should embrace those relationships for what they are and what they can be, not to replace something/someone.

  88. My eldest of 5 Sister’s whom I was closest to passed unexpectedly in 2014. Being the oldest Sibling now I felt a sense of responsibility to keep it together snd coordinate the final plans, I did not want to burden my parents, other siblings or the children, nieces. nephews. I was surprised at how alone I felt in my grief. I did find one book on sibling grief but did not find it helpful. The first 6 months were a secret nightmare for me, I think I suffered a nervous breakdown. Had I been able to turn to s support group I think I would have survived the immediate grief much better. I will be checking out Mourning our Brothers snd Sisters on facebook as a previous post suggested. Thank you for this post

    • Mari, I am glad you found this of some help. I am so sorry for the pain you have been though over the last couple years. Out of curiosity, what was the book you read? We are always looking at grief books and wanting to know what people found helpful or unhelpful and why, as it helps us guide others. Please share if you happen to have a chance.

  89. This is a great post and has hit on almost all of the emotions and issues that I have dealt with since the loss of my sister and her husband in a plane crash over 30 years ago. Many times time does not heal, but we learn to deal with over time. When the accident occurred there was not a lot of resources available for siblings.
    With all the issues that were going on with the loss as well as grandparents decline in health made it even harder for my parents to deal with their emotions as well to be a support to myself.

  90. Thank you for this post, it always helps to be reminded that we are not alone out here in this world. I was 24 and my brother was 29 when he was KIA in 2006. Being a military brat growing up my brother was a big support for me and always stepped in when my parents were gone at work, busy with friends, or out at a bar. He was who I went to when School got extremely hard for me and I wanted to drop out and just give up. When I lost him it tore my heart out and I felt like I was lost at sea because my father acted like my sister and I didn’t exist or need support. It became all about his “widow” (who my brother hadnt even known that long before he married her). I was left floundering having so many questions and not knowing who to ask or go to with them about what happened to him. When I turned 29&30 were 2 of the roughest years after I lost my brother because all I could think about is why do I get to make it past 29 and his life was cut short. Without the help of TAPS ( Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors) being there when I needed them I dont think I would still be here. I believe that more people need to realize that sibling grief is real and painful as well as other types of grief.

  91. Two days ago was the 6 year anniversary of my little brothers death. I can never seem to find words to explain what losing a sibling was and is like. My brother was KIA in Afghanistan by an IED and even now I still try to wrap my mind around the fact he is never coming home. I tell my self it wouldn’t hurt so bad if it wasn’t so tragic or if he had been sick and we had expected it but the truth is nothing would make it better. I want to let you know though. For siblings, parents, children and spouses that lose someone in the military there is an amazing program called T.A.P.S. ( Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors) they have so much to offer and get you linked up with people going through the same things. It doesn’t matter if your loved one was KIA or as a result of PTSD they offer help for everything. I encourage you to check it out. I know it really helped being around other siblings that knew how I felt.

    http://www.taps.org/?gclid=CLn9_Znt8MoCFQgxaQodlDoIjQ

  92. This poem by the author of the Sibling Connection, for me, expresses perfectly how to embrace one’s grief rather than try to push it away:

    Sorrow

    She rises out of nowhere, like a wave from the sea,
    Slowly at first, silently, then crests and peaks;
    Still I have a choice
    I can turn away, go to work, watch a movie, play a game…
    But I know sorrow well.
    Though I turn away, she will wait,
    Perfectly patient,
    Until I am still,
    Then crush me with all of her accumulated power.
    Once I had angry walls to shut her out,
    But her incessant pounding tore them down.
    So now, when she rises,
    I turn to her and say,
    Here I am, I know you, sorrow.
    She crashes on my shoreline,
    And sorrow and I are one
    Until, trailing frothy whitecaps,
    She sweeps away.

    by P.G. White

  93. Oops, sorry for some of the jumbled sentences in my previous post, can’t edit. “…socializing when other people your age don’t get it…” “It covers the complex expectations…”

  94. Hi, I lost my sister when she was 19 and I was 18. Many, many hard years later I finally found this website on sibling loss, which helped tremendously:

    http://www.counselingstlouis.net

    It is extremely thorough and so on target, covering the issues that arise for loss of a sibling at different stages of life, if you are a child, a teen, a college student, or older. Issues such as challenges with socializing when there people your age don’t get what you’re going through, or when your parents are needing you emotionally so you neglect your own needs to become an independent adult. It covers are the complex expectations around being the surviving sibling. It also amazingly covers a lot of the stupid things people say to people who have lost a sibling. This site helped validate what I went through at a college that had no services for bereaved students. It also clarified for me how to accept my grief in a society that has a cultural habit of keeping mum or denying grief. I highly recommend it for anyone who has lost a sibling. I only wish I had come across it much earlier.

  95. My only sister died on 4 October 2015. I miss her so much and I am not sure where my future is going without her. Naturally she looked after me when I was a baby and was my biggest supporter, my confidant and my mentor. She helped me so much with many of the issues in my life and as an older sister she guided me too. Before she died I felt the pressure of stepping into her shoes as I felt I wouldn’t know what I had to do to help and support out widowed elderly mother. I am doing what I can for our mother now as I have to. I’m hoping she will guide me into making the right decisions and choices for our mother.

    Already I am getting a sense of people thinking I should be over the grieving period. It’s so hard especially at this time as Christmas approaches.

    The only beautiful thing that exists in all of this is that I was with my sister when she passed away, I held her hand and she gave me the job of informing others who were there also when I realised her breathing was changing and death approaching. She seemed to hand the reins over to me. X

    • Esther,

      I’m so sorry about the death of your sister; I am sure you miss ever all day every day. I am glad you can hold onto the beautiful final moments that you shared. I am sorry you’re feeling subtle pressure to move on. People don’t know what the right thing to say is and they want you to feel better because it makes them feel better…just remember though that they aren’t right. Grief takes time, it’s something that we cope with little by little every day. You can and should continue to feel the pain of this loss for as long as you need to.

      Eleanor

  96. Thank you for addressing this issue. My brother died unexpectedly and suddenly a number of years ago and for some time, I felt as though I was the forgotten mourner. It felt as though others didn’t recognise my grief as being relevant or as important as the grief of my parents. I distinctly recall being approached by friends and family after the death and asked, “How is your mother? How is your father? It must be so hard for them”. This question/statement was repeated time and time again. It was rare for anyone to say, “How are you? This must be so hard for you” – and in the meantime, my heart was broken. I’ve slowly worked through the “if onlys”, “I’m sorrys” and other “shoulda, coulda, wouldas” as I like to call them. It has taken time and required me to be vulnerable and ask friends for help and support but I now feel that I’ve waded through the immediate grief, have pulled myself up onto the shore and can now breathe and look forward to the future. I know that my grief journey would have been made a lot easier if sibling grief was recognised and appropriate resources had been available.

    • I just discovered this site this morning, and was profoundly affected by several of the posts. I’d like to have my children read several of these comments, but they’d realize how much of a failure of a mother I was when their brother died. Roger was the oldest son; right in the middle of 7 children. He had asthma all his life (as did several of the others, but none quite as bad as Roger) and spent a year at the Children’s Asthma Research Institute and Hospital (CARIH) in Denver when he was 10. He was supposed to be there for 2 years, but we missed him too much. That was probably wrong of us also. Parents aren’t supposed to have a “favorite child” but he was mine and his siblings knew it and didn’t resent it (at least outwardly) because he was their favorite sibling also. Everyone who knew him thought he was a fine young man; a great friend, a good athlete (in spite of the asthma) and a shining example to others. When he died from an asthma attack at the age of 17 (35 years ago) from what we thought was just a routine trip to the emergency room, our whole world fell apart. My husband and I went to grief counseling, but he wasn’t comfortable with it.I went once without him because I DID get some comfort. I don’t think we even knew about any sibling counseling. They say some couples divorce after the loss of a child, but we knew we had to go on for the sake of the other kids. Unfortunately we really didn’t know how to HELP them cope, although we did try. We even moved to another state (for 5 months) to attempt a “fresh start” with the three other boys, but that was a disaster. I’ve said several times over the years that our family wouldn’t be as dysfunctional as it is if Roger had lived, because he wouldn’t have allowed it. Now I realize that we should have tried to do more to help them cope instead of letting our OWN grief overwhelm us, but it’s 35 years too late. My husband died 14 years ago, and I’m still dealing with that. At least he and Roger are together in Heaven, breathing free.

  97. Thank you for this. I recently lost my 26 year old little brother and, six months later, my 30 year old big sister. My sister died of an overdose but I think her heart was already broken. When my brother died it felt like losing a limb. I stilldon’t feel like a whole person anymore, and even when I’m around friends, I often feel lost and lonely. I don’t understand how everyone else can just carry on as if nothing happened. I think they are tired of my grief, they think I should be better now. I don’t think I’ll ever be better, because parts of me are gone.

    My siblings were my closest friends, and now I find myself without many others. It’s hard to figure out how to be close to people, to make new friends. I don’t talk about them around others because I know it makes people uncomfortable, but it’s always on my mind. It colors everything I do. Losing a sibling is unimaginable and I wish that no one else had to feel this.

    I haven’t found many resources or any support groups in my area, but I did buy a book called “Angel Catcher” that I have found helpful at times. It’s a journal with helpful prompts and supportive ideas and quotes. I bought one for a friend who lost a sibling and for my youngest brother, who I know is having a hard time of it all too. I’m grateful for this website and I listen to the podcast often. Thank you for putting all of this out there.

  98. All I can say is I just love this article it really hit home. Me and my brother WERE thick as thieves. I also couldn’t protect him and I didn’t get to say I’m sorry. Also, I knew him inside and out, I knew his heart, but I didn’t know his struggles, I thought I did but it was more than I could comprehend. It was way over my head. I thought I knew but I didn’t even after. I still don’t know. All I know is that I miss him horribly every day.

    • Thank you so much for your comment. My brother passed away less than three weeks ago, and I am still in shock. I had no idea how sick he truly was, and never got to say I was sorry for not realizing his pain. Diabetic and in renal failure, he passed away suddenly and at 38. I was naive about his health and his quality of life, and regret minimizing his struggle. He was my best friend and I can’t believe he’s just gone. Your comment hit home with me and I had to write. I am sorry for your brother’s passing.

      • My brother passed away less than three weeks ago, and I am still in shock. I had no idea how sick he truly was, and never got to say I was sorry for not realizing his pain. Diabetic and in renal failure, he passed away suddenly and at 38. I was naive about his health and his quality of life, and regret minimizing his struggle. He was my best friend and I can’t believe he’s just gone. I had been approved to be his kidney donor; he just didn’t get healthy enough to have the operation. I should have taken a more active role in his care and maybe he would still be with us. Life for me will never be the same. Knowing he is gone.

  99. My brother died almost 3 years ago and so much of me died with him. In fact, the family sort of fell apart. Who knew this wonderful man was what held us together in so many ways?

  100. I only know one person who lost a sibling and she never says anything outside her family about it.
    I’m a member of a club nobody asked to be in; the ‘People who know relatives and friends who died by homicide’ group. Her brother was murdered at Columbine High School in the library. That’s where most of them were killed but not Daniel Rohrbough. He was killed outside and laid there for 3 days before anyone would claim his body. I never understood that but oh well.
    Christine never says a word about it beyond helping with gun safety and keeping firearms away from absolute lunatics like Dylan Roof, who killed 9 people in a Charleston, South Carolina church.
    The only comment she’s made is was to say that certain comments from so-called well-meaning people make her crazy. The ones who say things without having any idea that their words might be construed as insensitivity of the speaker.

  101. These comments are very hard to read because they resonate so much with my own feelings and experience. In 1974 our mother died of an overdose, the last of multiple attempts. My brother was 13, my sister 9 and I was almost 15.

    From about the age of 8 or 9 I knew what was happening when our mother went into
    hospital and became complicit in keeping her depression and suicide attempts secret from my younger siblings. I knew what the warning signs were which indicated that she was sliding into depression and also the subtle hints she gave before taking
    another overdose. More than once I had to accompany her to the local hospital and wait while her stomach was pumped out. When she was in a local psychiatric hospital (a horrible former asylum with naked old people wandering around screaming and faeces smeared on the walls) we would visit her and I don’t think my brother and sister ever questioned why she was there or why (as a result of ECT) she often forgot our names and appeared to think we were her siblings.

    I discovered my mother’s body beside my sleeping father and had to wake him and phone for an ambulance. I had to tell our neighbours who took my sister back to their house before the ambulance and the police arrived. I had to tell my brother and try to comfort him while my father dealt with everything else. I became a very poor substitute for my mother at the age of 14. My father was obviously grief stricken and was subsequently prescribed antidepressants which triggered epileptic seizures and again I ended up taking a parent to hospital and wandering if they would be coming home but not knowing what would happen to us if they didn’t.

    My brother became very angry and withdrawn and my sister just wanted to be comforted because she wanted her mother back. We became very close but our relationship with our brother was never the same again.

    We all survived and went on to marry and have children but my brother’s 2 marriages broke down, mine ended after 12 years and eventually my sister’s did too. She developed a severe depression and sadly in 2009 she hanged herself in her garage, knowing that I would be the one to discover her body and deal with everything, from telling her ex-husband to phoning my poor brother with the news. My brother was very angry with me for not telling him she’d become so ill and the fact that she’d begged me not to tell him was, in his eyes, unforgivable. He remains quite distant now, but we do sometimes talk and he was very supportive when I became depressed in 2011. He has also experienced depression himself since that time.

    When my sister was initially diagnosed with depression the team treating her suggested that her reaction to her marital breakdown was as a result of the huge sense of loss she experienced when we lost our mother and her extended family who blamed my father for my mother’s death. He was very distant from his own family so we felt very much alone, just the four of us of whom now only my brother and I survive. We became estranged from my father about 10yrs after my mother’s death because his new partner was a very domineering person who preferred to keep my father to herselfmand he would meet us in secret but the meetings were very brief and he was never able to spend time with our children, she didn’t even tell us he was ill, I saw his name in the “Death Announcements” in our local paper and once again I had to tell my siblings of the death of one of our parents. Shortly before she died my sister managed to track down both my mother and father’s families and sadly we were all reunited at my sister’s funeral.

    I’m sorry this is such a long post but what I really wanted to say was that you can overcome such loss, it takes a long time and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone but I am so grateful I had my beautiful mother and baby sister for as long as I did. The love we all shared didn’t die with them, I carry it with me always.

    • Your post conveys a very sad and poignant story. I feel like the untimely death of my mother, and then of my sister, have been quite significant in shaping my adult life.
      My mom took her own life at the age of 55, by carbon monoxide poisoning in the garage of our home. She had run away from home twice and tried to overdose on sleeping pills in nearby motels when I was a senior in high school. She was in the psych ward at St. Anthony hospital for a few weeks. She killed herself on the day I came home from my first semester at college and I believe she wanted my father and me to find her.
      I am still angry that she bottled up and would not talk to the family about her troubles and discontent, and that she didn’t leave a note, which might have shed some light on her despair and dissuade some of our guilt.
      My angelic older sister died of advanced leukemia at the age of 33. She was petite, popular and charming, and also fragile. She lived 9 months after her diagnosis, leaving behind an immature needy husband and a very bright 2-yr-old son. The husband remarried a jealous wife, who tried to murder my sister’s son for insurance money. She left him with permanent brain damage and multiple other injuries. It is up to me to provide for and love my beloved blind and bed-ridden nephew, and I know my sister is his guardian angel.
      Had my sister survived her son would never have been injured. He would have enjoyed a normal life and have been able to be an independent person.
      I have most of all missed not having had an adult relationship with my sister. It must be a wonderful thing to go through life’s seasons with the one person who knows you best, your sibling. I will always miss Cheryl.

      • Oh my goodness Patti, I am so sorry for everything you (and your family) have been through. That is a horrifying story about your nephew. It’s hard to believe such evil and greed exists in this world. I’m glad your nephew has you, although I know being a caregiver can be stressful at times. I hope you have people around you for support.

        Eleanor

  102. Thank you for talking about this subject our siblings matter there is a bond there no one can fill, I to have suffered the lost of both my brothers , back in 1981 my brother Mike was playing with a gun in front of his friend it went off and killed him he was only 13 died on May 13 I was 14 yrs old and my other brother Bobby was 15 yrs old it was hard but to young to really understand everybody pushed us aside family drifted away our school friends helped us get through it and really they dident even know they were helping us by just wanting to hang out is what we needed cuz we just weren’t getting it from the family now looking back on it in a adault point of view everybody was just broken and so were me and my brother me and him always vowed to never fight again and we never did we loved each other and only us two knew we had each other and we both understood were we have come from and what we have been through well 3 years ago when Bobby was only 47 he got colon cancer and he passed on Aug 13 at 47 years old i now was faced with losing my soul my brother my only sibling left I was and am still broken I had to watch these two young healthy strong brothers die on tragic deaths and I am sick inside people think your crazy but they don’t understand everything you have endured and everything that goes through your head like why am I still here watching them die killed me watching them being so young it takes you back to your child hood you handle it then and you as children I felt like I was still a child watching my brothers die and they were my brothers dieing . Another for me they both died on the 13 I’m scared every month the 13 th day comes up , I go through every day alone knowing I will never grow old with them watching my mom broken burying two children also again what little few family left watching them disappear you get scare what do you who is going to help take care of me if something is to happen all kinds of things that go through your mind . We need more support with cancer hitting the world as hard as its hitting there are going to be more of us out there and when it hits you at a young age you find ways to bounce back but when Bobby died 3 years ago I got hit hard with mikes death to from 1981 . Please we need to have people focus on this subject and I would love to help in anyway I can . Please anybody reading this love your brothers and sister cuz once they are all gone your childhood is gone . Parent are not suppose to bury there children and siblings aren’t suppose to go through it alone .

  103. Thank you for so much time put into this. My younger sister passed about three years ago and I have yet to see anything like this out there ! Keep it up id love to see where this can go in the future!

    • How long did it take. It’s been only 3 days for me. I lost my baby sister and she left behind a beautiful smart 9 year old and every time I see her I see my sister. I break down one day the next I feel calm. I don’t know how to handle it.

  104. My brother shawn died on August 2 2015. We were so close and I miss him with all my heart and soul. I do feel siblings are the forgotten mourners and we feel as though we have to support our parents more than ever. Which isn’t a bad thing but I would like some support too as I get weak and saddened behind closed doors and just fall apart. Siblings may feel they need to protect their parents sense it is the first time they ever see them helpless and lost. It’s a difficult time. My brother was amazing the bible has helped me so much with comfort.

  105. The forgotten grievers. I lost my half brother 5 years ago, he was 12, I was 23. He had a freak accident. We didn’t live together, and I think because of that my sisters and I were totally forgotten. Friends of my dad and stepmum’s family would write condolence cards without mentioning my sisters and I. It was always oh your poor parents, never how are you coping. I was coping shit. But no one asked, it seemed no one cared. And I felt guilty for the times I called my dad because I needed him, but knew I was taking him away from my brothers mum when they needed each other.
    There was no help or support from anyone, they and my stepbrother had councilling while my sisters and I had nothing. I now admin a Facebook group with a lovely small community of brother and sisters. Everyone is friendly, everyone helps each other, and I am grateful that I along with the group members am able to offer the support and advice to other bereaved siblings, that I needed so much.

  106. Thanks for sharing this great article. It’s been five years since I lost my brother, KIA in Afghan. He left a wife, a son at 5 mos. (now 5yrs.), my mother and younger sister. I’ve been and still are the backbone of this family, never having the time to deal with my own grief. It’s hard to care for yourself when so many people depend on you. Just because you seem to keep things together and functional for everyone else, they forget that you’re torn inside and also grieving. I was close to my brother, we were only a year or so apart, it’s been hard for me to keep my own personal life together. It’s true, Guilt is something that never leaves you, from wishing to have protect them to remembering the last hug or good bye. Surprisingly a lo of support systems, including military, are for spouse, parents, or children of the deceased. Siblings for some reason are always forgotten …

  107. Thank you for talking about this…my brother was not expected to live when born and lived five wonderful years…his death, although, expected was still very hard. It is something, that honestly I have finally started to really grieve 35 years later. Knowing that my parents are reunited with him is what keeps me going. Thanks for the great blogs.

    • May I ask how old you were when he passed? I worry about my other children since their sister died. We go as a family to grief counseling since her passing.

  108. My husband lost his sister when they were in their teens. His entire family still grieves over her but he really can’t even talk about her. It’s been 23 years. I have watched his parents go from not celebrating holidays to embracing them and enjoying them. They are able to talk about her and share stories about her. They are gradually working through their grief but he is not at all. When our children ask questions about her he can’t talk about it. I encourage them to refer their questions to their grandmother (I never met his sister) because it causes him pain to even mention her. I truly believe he could benefit from a sibling loss support group.

  109. It is horrible that people forget about the friends of the deceased. Friends are important in our lives

  110. Wow, you covered it extremely well, I can relate to so much of this. My only brother was 5 years younger, we lost our dad about a year before him. I already felt that patriarch role falling on me after Dad passed, but I had my bother to share it with. After he died I had his wife, kids, my Mom, my sisters and others coming to me. At least that’s how it felt. (which is okay) There was a tremendous out pouring of support for his wife & kids and my Mom. Which was great, but I kept looking around for my support and it just wasn’t there. I eventually found your site and a couple of sibling loss on-line groups but nothing local.
    Thanks for this post.

  111. Wow, you really know how to hit the nail on the head with the great and awful timing. 12 yrs ago tomorrow, my best friend and for all intents and purposes brother, died of sepsis, he was 7 yrs old. He and I had the same medical issues and bonded as we fought the same battles and went through the same things. We were closer than many blood siblings. When I woke up that morning twelve years ago and found out that he was gone, it felt like someone ripped my heart right out of my chest and ran it over with a truck. I felt so guilty that I was still alive, that there was nothing that I could do, and that I would never have the chance to tell him how much he meant to me, I was angry because he deserved a heck of a lot better than what he got, because the doctors at the hospital had failed to save him… I was lonely because I seemed to be the last person on earth anyone expected to miss him… I hated, and still hate everything he missed out on, that he never got to play real baseball, he would never go to high school, let alone college… I wanted us to grow up together thick as thieves the way it had always been… now that future, all those years we had ahead of us, I would have to spend without him… I ask you… how is it any different than if Matt and I had been brother and sister by blood?

  112. My only sibling Sean died 16 yrs ago. And you are right, we are the forgotten ones. Everyone focuses on the parents and that is it. We are pushed aside. Some of us are told to forget our grief by our parents I know I was. My parents told me to get over, stop talking about it that I was driving everyone around me crazy. I ended up having a nervous breakdown over my brothers death, because I had no one to talk to, no therapist or anything. I have learned over the last few within myself that I can put him in a safe place in my heart where I can deal with my emotions. I haven’t forgotten him, but I can cope now. I still have my bad days every now and then, but I know now how to deal with them. I know he wouldn’t want to self destruct.

  113. Thanks for this post. Loss of a sibling truly is not something that is spoken about enough. I recently wrote the grief I feel since losing my sister which others may connect with: http://www.mamamia.com.au/wellbeing/why-i-dont-want-to-get-over-my-grief/

  114. Thank you for posting on sibling grief. I agree, there are little resources for sibling grief, let alone adult sibling grief due to loss of sibling via suicide. Not only is sibling grief overshadowed and downplayed, there are few sibling support groups out there for this type of loss. Suicide is still a societal stigma and it makes grieving a prolonged pain. In the Bible Belt area, for example (where I live), my grief was compounded by a polarizing general attitude of judgement and isolation. I was actually shocked by some of the comment my mother and I received (even from Christians), like, “was your brother on drugs”, “you don’t go to heaven when you take your own life”, or “that is so selfish and sinful”, or “God doesn’t forgive those who commit suicide”, and the list goes on. It was very difficult at the time, now it has been 11 years so I am well through the acceptance process, (but still, the pain is a wound that never really heals, especially since it happened on my birthday). I feel for anyone who has gone through this type of grief. Thank you so much to Eleanor and Litsa for all of your work to keep this website up and running.

    • I am the oldest of 6 (now 5 ) lost a brother 3 years ago to suicide. He was an identical twin, and 47 years old. My brother’s death will be my catharsis for starting a group for people who need grief workshops and resources, and I welcome any input from those who have experieced this horific situation in their lives. I agree that there is a stigma on the word “SUICIDE” and not a lot of resources pertaining to this topic out there. I also agree that people in general say some non comforting things when this happens.
      Let us all pull together with this experience in our lives, and learn to share and love one another, and to not take anything for granted. Thank you all for this insightful website, and for those who were brave enough to share their feelings.
      It was definitely a GOD WINK – as my brothers anniversary was 4/9 and here it is 4/11.

      • My twin passed April 2016 and now it is September 2016 and I am at a loss. My twin and I are 47 years old and I feel a loss I cannot fathom. I have many thoughts about him dying and finding him lying on the floor I cannot explain. I do not know where to turn and feel ashamed to a point that I am a 47 year old male and cannot handle my brother’s unexpected death. I do not know if anyone can understand how important he was in my life or if I am able to find a substitute.

        • Ronnie – I am a 47 year old twinless-twin. There is no age appropriate response. Pain from loss does not consider age. Pain is pain and it hurts. Some days are harder than others… Especially when you have a tough situation and feel stress, because we are primed to turn towards our twin for comfort… Only to feel the sting over and over again that you cannot connect with them. Grasping for breath at that point. We have to walk around and pretend that everything is alright everyday… Even though you may not even feel dignity. It is a hard life man. I pray that you have happiness and nice times while you are here in this world. Alafia.
          John

  115. A very well-written and accurate post — thank you. There *are* so few resources on sibling grief, especially for adult or (bare) adult siblings. “Overshadowed grief” is a new term for me, and I needed a term for this. It’s not that my grief was unacknowledged, just that it’s always treated as less significant, less earth-shattering, less life-altering. Just “less”. In the shadow of your parents’ mountain of grief, it’s always less.

    • That was my exact experience when my brother died almost 9 years ago.

    • My brother died a year ago in May and it’s been really hard. I’m so glad I found this, because it’s really hard to talk to my parents because I see the anguish they’re in, and when I talk to my aunts, they basically say, “Yeah we’re sad too but how is your mom?”

  116. Marty Tousley (@GriefHealing)August 18, 2015 at 11:29 amReply

    You’ll find a long list of resources I’ve assembled on my “Death of a Sibling or Twin” page, here: http://www.griefhealing.com/death-of-a-sibling-or-twin.htm

    • Thanks for sharing Marty. I’ll link to this on our resource page as well.

    • I lost my sister in January this year. She was diagnosed with cancer and died 8 weeks later. She was a teenager when I was born and became my mentor , my confidant and my friend. I feel angry towards those in our large extended family who were dismissive even mean during her illness. My niece has just been diagnosed with cancer and I reacted badly to the news. She will be ok as she is young and string. Not being understood by some and losing my beautiful sister has changed me for ever and left a hole that will never be filled.

      • I lost my sister to Cancer and feel the same way. Misunderstood by my other brothers and sisters who were not there for my sister during her 4 years of suffering, Lymphoma. I was her caregiver in the end and my sisters millinial sons now have diss connected from me. I was never paid during my time of caregiving. I rented my own home close to my sister. It has been 4 years now since she died. I am only now getting my financial life back in order career wise after moving from New England to Chicago. I know your hardship and emotional heartache. Losing a sister has been harder then losing both my parents who I loved with all my heart. Today my sisters oldest son married at 37 a successful man he is. I cried most of the day, all these years later as I was not invited to his wedding. My sister his Mother talked about this day for his entire lifetime. I also have another Sister…she also was not invited. We came from Educated happily married parents and my sister was happily married as well, until she became a widow at 47. I want to understand as well as you, why family detaches from us.

      • I lost my sister to Cancer and feel the same way. Misunderstood by my other brothers and sisters who were not there for my sister during her 4 years of suffering, Lymphoma. I was her caregiver in the end and my sisters millinial sons now have diss connected from me. I was never paid during my time of caregiving. I rented my own home close to my sister. It has been 4 years now since she died. I am only now getting my financial life back in order career wise after moving from New England to Chicago. I know your hardship and emotional heartache. Losing a sister has been harder then losing both my parents who I loved with all my heart. Today my sisters oldest son married at 37 a successful man he is. I cried most of the day, all these years later as I was not invited to his wedding. My sister his Mother talked about this day for his entire lifetime. I also have another Sister…smhe also was not invited. We came from Educated happily married parents and my sister was happily married as well, until she became a widow at 47. I want to understand as well as you, why family detaches from us.

  117. Adult sibling loss – where ones’ sibling dies when both are adults–is perhaps the least supported and written about. There are few resources for this phenomenon, which happens all the time. It is made more complicated precisely because of the changes in roles, the need (often) for the surviving sibling to assist their grieving parents (who have by definition lost a child), as well as other family members. Having lost both my sisters, as adults, I am working on a book to help other adult sibling loss people. The grief is, in many ways, a different kind of grief.

    • I have, over the years lost two siblings…one was 33 and the other earlier this year was just 59…I really relate to the “forgotten mourner” comment early in this article. Mine especially felt and feels trivialized as my brother lived several provinces away…after returning home from going to his home town with my other siblings and family to lay him to rest and look after his affairs I felt “flat” for several weeks… Life is busy and the only option is to move on with life but I think about him daily, feel a deep loss and am profoundly sad for his struggles.

    • please do work on a book, I am still surprised at the lack ofm information and resources regarding adult sibling grief.

  118. Thank you for this post – especially today.
    In a few weeks it will be exactly seven years since my sister committed suicide, but as I struggle to help my sons cope with their lives since the death of their father, my husband, the person I miss most is my sister. In addition to her professional insights and her wonderful sense of humor, she loved my sons and they loved her, and my sister and I basically raised our sons together. I miss being able to talk the problems through with her, figuring out how to deal with all the hard things together.
    This is one of the blog posts I wrote about missing her: http://livingwithplanb.derieg.com/2013/05/sisters/

  119. I’m so happy you made the distinction between types of loss. My younger brother (and only sibling) died almost 4 years ago. It is true that you reevaluate your support circle. I have found there are some people I feel safe opening up to, and some I don’t. Something that helped me was finding a support group of other surviving siblings who truly understood what I was feeling and I could open up to. And since I’ve found them, I have become an active member. There is the online support group (via email) called Mourning Our Brothers and Sisters/MOBS. We also have a Facebook page.
    Thank you again for this post.

  120. Thanks for dealing with types of loss.I think about that a lot and how strongly it affects how we grieve. How about more?

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