We All Have A Grief Secret

Creative Coping / Creative Coping : Litsa Williams

For further articles on these topics:

I remember well the first time I ever saw Post Secret online. It was the year the site started, 2004. I remember thinking what a brilliant, creative way to anonymously share the secrets we hold, those we can't imagine someone knowing, but wish we could express.

If you don't know about Post Secret, I can get you up to speed in 30 seconds or less, because it's a simple but brilliant concept. Post Secret was started by Frank Warren who invited people to mail him postcards with their secrets.

That's it...that's the concept.

And you know what? People did. So many people. So many secrets. So many creative and personal acts of secret-sharing. 

If you didn't know about this before, you might have seen the CBS Sunday morning story about it over the weekend. If you didn't, you should absolutely take eight minutes to watch it. 

This is what had us thinking about secrets again. Not just any secrets, but grief secrets specifically (we were thinking and talking about grief - weird, I know). The thing is, we all have grief secrets. I promise. I speak not just from my own experience, but from years of working with grievers and supporting friends in their losses.

As you may have experienced, there are moments, sometimes quiet moments, sometimes fits of tears or anger, when these secrets come out. Prefaced with reluctance or apologies like, "I can't believe I am about to say this but . . . " or "people would think I am terrible if they knew this . . . ", and the person says something they kept bottled up inside for who knows how long. And then suddenly there is a sigh of relief - relief it has been said, that it isn't trapped inside any longer.  In the interview above Frank Warren says,

"In some ways, I think when we keep a secret, that secret is actually keeping us . . . maybe haunting us, maybe inviting us to reconcile with part of our past we're hiding from, maybe keeping us from having intimate relationships with others or ourselves".

This is likely no more true in grief secrets than other secrets, but we have seen how much power these thoughts, beliefs, and memories can hold in grief.  These secrets can leave us struggling to move forward, struggling to connect with others, and so looking at our grief secrets can push us to face things we've been avoiding. 

The Grief Secret Challenge

In the spirit of something we love around here, finding creative ways to cope, we are challenging you to share your grief secret. We know - this isn't an easy challenge by any stretch. The very nature of a secret is that we don't want to share it for some reason.

But there can be a value in sharing our secrets - a value in facing them and examining them and finding the strength to get them out. When we do, the secret loses a little of its power. There is also value in sharing together. The nature of secrets is that they isolate and keep us separate. When we share and see what others share, we create new space for support and we are hopefully reminded that we aren't alone.

So, we want to compile as many of these as we can, PostSecret-style. We will compile them here on the site and share them on social and we hope to share the physical postcards in some sort of installation or project. 

How To Share Your Grief Secret:

There are three ways we are asking people to share. 

  1. In the comments. Guess what - you don't have to use your real name in our comment section! You can, but you certainly don't have to. So if there is a grief secret that you want to get off your chest right this minute, leave it in the comments below.  
  2. Share on social media. Okay, I hear some of you screaming 'are you kidding, I am NOT sharing a secret on social media. We assume this won't be where most people share their deepest grief secrets. But there might be a secret you have wanted a reason to share on social media, and this is just the nudge you needed. If that's the case, you can post and tag @griefsecret. Or you can find our @griefsecret account and send us a DM.
  3. SEND US A POSTCARD! We were inspired by PostSecret and part of what we love about it is the deliberate and thoughtful act of sending a postcard. Secrets are hard to face, and the act of creating a PostCard and taking the time to mail it gives you some time and space to reflect. It also lets you consider what next steps you might need to take beyond just sharing the secret (more on that below). Your postcard can be anything you like, but if you would like to print out an addressed postcard for ease, we have a template you can print out if you click here. If you use your own postcard or envelope, mail your anonymous grief secret postcards to us at the address below. Get creative and artistic, or don't - just write it down and drop it in the mailbox. Whatever works for you.  There are no rules here.

Thoughts on sharing grief secrets

We want to be clear about something - sharing a secret, a grief secret or otherwise, it isn't going to magically fix everything. Sometimes getting it out makes you feel great and you realize that's the end of it and sometimes facing, labeling, and sharing a secret is just the first step (especially for our deepest and toughest secrets, secrets where we're stuck).

Facing a secret can be a start. Naming it can be a start. Sharing it can be a start. But sometimes we need to go further with it. We need to tell friends or family. We need to seek forgiveness or forgive ourselves. We need to find self-compassion. Or, as another PostSecret postcard so eloquently suggested - we need to talk to a therapist or counselor. 

Before we send you off and hope that you share, so we can share, so we can all feel a little less alone, we want to leave you with some of the power grief secrets people have shared on PostSecret. A word of warning, some of them are difficult. They're secrets for a reason. So if it is a touchy day for you, you might want to browse them another day. 

We always love it when you share WYG posts on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter or wherever you share. We love when you email them or text them when you think they might help a friend or client. But we usually don't explicitly ask you to do it. Today we're asking, because we really want to get the word out about this. We hope as people start to share, then we start to share, more people will start to share.

So if you have a minute, please help us spread the word! We even created some Instagram images for those of you who only use IG. If you are a grief group counselor or facilitator and want us to send you some printed grief secret postcards to use in your groups, just send us an email and we'll mail you some! Thanks for helping us get the word out. 

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After writing online articles for What’s Your Grief for over a decade, we finally wrote a tangible, real-life book!

What’s Your Grief? Lists to Help you Through Any Loss is for people experiencing any type of loss. This book discusses some of the most common grief experiences and breaks down psychological concepts to help you understand your thoughts and emotions. It also shares useful coping tools, and helps the reader reflect on their unique relationship with grief and loss.

You can find What’s Your Grief? Lists to Help you Through Any Loss wherever you buy books:

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123 Comments on "We All Have A Grief Secret"

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  1. Kim  August 19, 2022 at 2:54 am Reply

    My husband passed away suddenly at the end of 2020. He died just three weeks after my father in law passed away whom we lived with. Needless to say the house just wasn’t the same after Dad died. For Rich ( my hubby ) , myself, our 16 months old son, and my mother in law. Rich and I had been arguing the night before he had his stroke (right in front of me no less). I mean REALLY arguing. Screaming even!!! While in the midst of this argument I was thinking things to myself like ” I can’t take this s**t anymore! I just can’t do it!!! I wish he would just DIE and then I would be rid of all these arguments. ” I literally thought the phrase “I wish he would die”!!! I loved my husband with every ounce of energy in my body and I just can’t get over the fact that I thought these horrible things. I WISHED these horrible things and it came true. It all came true. It’s not easier of course and what I wouldn’t give for a good argument with Rich now. Just to hear his voice one last time.. even if it is in anger. Even worse, I can’t take it back. I can’t take everything I thought or said back and THAT will haunt me forever.

  2. k1d  August 14, 2022 at 6:13 pm Reply

    I’ve been secretly and hopelessly falling in love with my doctor for more than 22 years! She’s been dead more than a year and I’m still falling in love with her. I never got to say goodbye to her,tell her how I felt or say thank you. I’m scared I can never be happy now as no matter who I may meet it won’t be her. I can’t want or love anyone the way I love her – nothing in this life compares to her and I’m scared I’ll never stop falling. I can’t go on in life without her but don’t know how to explain things to my family. I love and miss her more than words can say,she was class and elegance physically rendered. I love you Sue always and wish more than anything I could have seen you before it happened. I would have traded my life just to spend a day with you and kiss you once. My one true love was unrequited. Sorry I have to feel this way,please forgive me. xx

  3. DCS1  September 28, 2021 at 3:46 pm Reply

    It has been 5 1/2 years since I lost my husband. Desperate for connection, I still send him emails. It comforts me.

  4. PJ  September 20, 2021 at 10:14 am Reply

    My partner shut me out and told me that she didn’t need me for any support in her grief, while at the same time minimizing my grief. The only comfort I could find, after our son died……was in the arms of another woman.

  5. just me  September 4, 2021 at 9:08 pm Reply

    I wake up almost every night at 2am and cry. Last year my 20 year old son stopped speaking and communicating with me. His dad and I had a difficult divorce, and his dad has convinced him of all sorts of untrue but horrible things, to alienate him from me. It worked. It’s like I’m dead inside.

  6. Lisa  September 3, 2021 at 3:31 pm Reply

    It’s both comforting and devastating to be around my remaining children without their brother.

  7. Tana  September 2, 2021 at 8:39 pm Reply

    My husband died in November 2020. He hadn’t felt well for two days or so.
    I am a cancer patient with Stage IV Metastatic Breast Cancer. He did everything for me for five years since I was diagnosed. We drove to Baltimore for me to take my scans and see the doctor.
    He kept saying he couldn’t breathe with a mask on and canceled the normal things he would have done for himself on our trip.

    I feel so guilty that I couldn’t get him to go to Patient First or ER. He finally agreed to a doctor’s appointment for the day after we came back home. I should have pushed him more. I should have taken the car keys and made him go.

    After we picked up our dog and went home, he made dinner. Always doing everything for me. The dog needed to go out. He complained that he had to walk the dog, that it wasn’t fair, because he didn’t feel well. I said I’d do it, but didn’t
    move fast enough. He took her out. When he came back, I said I’d do the dishes, and I did, and told him I was quite capable of doing the laundry too.
    He didn’t answer. He sat back to watch tv and fell asleep.

    He sat straight up and tried to take a breathe, but his eyes were closed. Then he did it again. He was having a heart attack. In moments, my beloved of almost 50 years, was dead of a heart attack. I should have been able to save him. Now all his symptoms make sense. But I just couldn’t put it together.

    I feel like it’s my fault. I was supposed to go first, not him and I miss him so much.

    • Litsa  September 14, 2021 at 9:30 am Reply

      It sounds like you loved your husband deeply. It sounds like you were doing the best you could with what you knew at the time and that his symptoms didn’t seem concerning enough to be life-threatening. It may be useful for you to talk to a therapist to process this loss and you may find some of these articles about guilt in grief useful – https://whatsyourgrief.com/?s=guilt&post_type=post

  8. Reed  September 2, 2021 at 10:17 am Reply

    My brother overdosed and someone in the room could have saved him but instead left a voicemail for a mutual friend in another state at 4 AM. I’m the only one in my family who has heard this voicemail. I can barely here the man’s voice over my brothers dying gasps for air. I think about it everyday.

  9. Angela  August 17, 2021 at 9:55 pm Reply

    I’m married, but I had a nice guy friend for about a year and our friendship ended about 6 months ago. I miss him so much it hurts. He was encouraging and caring. It’s a horrible feeling to act like it never happened and have no one to talk to about it.

  10. kathleen  August 4, 2021 at 11:55 pm Reply

    I secretly go to the cemetery to visit my son without telling anyone because I don’t believe they have the right to share my visitation time. Only I was his mother. I lie if asked where I’ve been and momentarily feel a perverse pleasure from the lie. But then soon after I feel shame for lying and for guilt for feeling their grief is not worth recognizing.

  11. Michelle  August 4, 2021 at 8:46 am Reply

    My best friend died. I miss him so much. Sometimes I wish it was my husband, who I do truly love, but he is mentally ill and extremely difficult, often incredibly unhappy and unkind. I guess I feel that the wrong person died.

  12. Joyce  August 2, 2021 at 3:40 pm Reply

    My husband committed suicide three years ago. My family has so much stigma about it.

  13. Sheri  July 27, 2021 at 6:00 pm Reply

    I both love and hate my best friend right now.
    These last few years have been a mess.
    Three years ago, my dog (14 years old) died.
    Two years ago, my dad died, And right after that I lost my job of 15 years.
    Last year, my grandmother died. My brother refused to talk with any of us after my father died, and when we tried to contact him about my grandmother, he said he wanted nothing more to do with any of us. Although he has come around to try to scam inheritance money from my uncles, but that’s another story. The point is, I lost my brother too, and his wife and children.
    After my grandmother passed away, my uncle as executor of her state, and also as a prescription drug addict, a situation that none of his immediate family chooses to acknowledge but everybody knows about, went nuts and kicked my mother out of the home she’d been living in as she cared for my grandmother. My mother had stage four breast cancer. It was a tricky situation because… Technically they didn’t kick her out, and as executor my uncle and his wife had every right to be overbearing and do what they did, but essentially they made my mother feel unsafe and threatened, so she had to leave the house. So like they didn’t technically kick her out but they also kind of did. So whenever people would ask why she had to move in with us mom would say they kicked her out, and they would say no we didn’t kick her out, she’s making that up. But I digress sorry – The point is was that two weeks after my grandmother’s funeral, we lost ties to our family. So we lost our grandmother, and had to adjust at the drop of a hat to bring mom into our home. There was so much loss… Even the loss of my grandmother’s house, which was like a childhood home to everybody. But the worst of it was definitely the family support system. Gone.
    This is all boiled down to leaving my sister and myself and my mother. Her health declined, a good portion due to the actions of my uncle and my aunt and their greed. This year, after not even living with us for a whole year, my mother lost her battle with cancer.
    I had to get another uncle to help me even contact my brother and let him know she was dying. I got him to come and see her for 10 minutes before he left. And no, he did not even come to her funeral. He didn’t help with her funeral, his family didn’t help with her funeral, none of them gave a crap, none of them came. My sister and I had to take care of everything.
    That was in April, And unlike the deaths and losses that we’ve had over the last three years, I feel like for me everything has compounded. It was easier to deal with the loss of my dad, my dog, my grandmother… But this time around I feel like an orphan, and it’s been several months now, but I’m still not okay. And I am certainly just… I’m not the same person I was.
    Everybody understands my anger towards my family who betrayed us and abandoned us, except for those family members themselves, as they still feel that they have nothing to apologize for.
    Through all of this though, my best friend has stood by me. She was there with me through losing everybody else, but now that I’ve lost my mom, it’s like she can’t handle it.
    My guess is that, because she has both of her parents still living, while it was easy for her to consider the loss of maybe one parent, I think she struggles, as many do, with the feeling of losing both parents and all the family. She doesn’t talk to me hardly at all, and worst of all, like, a week ago, she got mad saying that I’ve been distant and not interested in anything about her life, and felt that I needed to do better.
    I’m so angry! First of all… She was so supportive through everything else, and even so supportive over the holidays when we were trying to take care of Mom… And the part that is so frustrating over this is that I have been reaching out to her, asking her how she’s doing, asking her about her life, the new house she’s buying, how her husband is doing, all of that, because I look forward to having a mental escape into normalcy again. And she doesn’t reply for hours or days… And then she turns around and tries to say I’m the one being distant. Occasionally she does try to talk to me about things, and I admit, I’m not as happy as I was… And I struggle a lot with feeling depressed and lonely and worthless. But I find her behavior to be almost a form of gaslighting, and ultimately I feel like it boils down to that she just wants me to go back to normal quicker so that we can now put all of this sadness from these last three years behind us and go back to being normal.
    We tried talking it out, she got mad and didn’t speak to me for a week, and when she came back to talking to me, she acts like nothing happened. And worst of all, no apology. No apology, just like no apology from the aunt and uncle who kicked my mother out and shortened her life, and like the brother who abandoned. No apology no remorse. Just pretend it didn’t happen. And I’m so mad I want to scream because I don’t like how she’s changed and I’m angry that she just can’t be with me and help me exist. Did you run out of kindness for everybody else in my life who died? You don’t have enough to be understanding through the loss of my mother??
    She was my support system, and everybody still assumes she is, and yet I can’t even stand to think about looking at her, and I feel guilty because of all the things she did to help me before, I want to just block her from everything and run away and never talk to her ever again… But I don’t I guess I think everybody will judge me. And I just suffer through this in silence and cry when nobody’s looking, and try to remember The feeling of hugs from my mom.

  14. Blackroseimajica@gmail.com  July 8, 2021 at 6:23 am Reply

    I wait till my boyfriend goes to bed then I look at pictures of my dad and cry. I wait till I’m alone because I’m ashamed and embarrassed by how broken and alone I feel. My bf lost his dad too, but 20 years ago compared to my 5 months ago isn’t the same. I’m afraid if I don’t look at the pictures and cry and control the time I cry that something in the day will set me off and I won’t be able to control it or hold back the tears.

  15. HomeSlice  March 18, 2021 at 12:56 pm Reply

    I’ve been married for 30 years. I had an affair with a close friend of mine (whom I had know for around 20 years) for several months back in 2017. I gained feelings for her, but she broke it off because I wouldn’t leave my wife. She didn’t want to be the “other woman”. Last week, in March 2021, I googled her name and discovered that she had passed away in February of 2020. I am absolutely heart broken. My wife knows of the affair. I’m wary of telling my wife of my “girlfriends” passing. I’m not able to share my grief, sadness or mourn her death openly (with anyone) for fear of opening a can of worms which would unnecessarily create additional turmoil. I know that all of this is my fault and of my own creation. I’m not looking for sympathy. I had to tell my story to someone.

    • JAMEE  April 29, 2021 at 2:19 pm Reply

      YOU are not alone. Although I know it feels like it. I too have been married for a long time but have always been in love with someone else. We had so many things in place and i was ready to leave my marriage. Its so very complicated. but he died of a heart attack. His brother had his ashes sent to me. They are sitting by my bed in plain sight. But I’m grieving in secret.

  16. Anna  November 5, 2020 at 8:35 am Reply

    I had an abortion 4 years ago. It’s was mainly due to fear, but also selfishness. Now I’m in deep regret and grief.

    I have a daughter born 8 years ago. She was born at 7 months as I was diagnosed with severe preeclampsia. So doctor had to do c section to take her out immediately, she was only 7 months. There’s been a lot of ups and downs when she was little, as premature baby do. I am grateful she had grown up to be a happy, healthy, beautiful girl.

    4 years ago, I thought we could try to have another child. So my husband and I tried, and easily I conceived. But once I know I was pregnant, there were lots of noise playing in my head, also there was the fear that It could be another difficult pregnancy. Will the baby and me survive? If I don’t survive this 2nd pregnancy, then I will miss the growing up of my daughter. My career was also starting to take off then, I remember I was thinking it’s not a good time to have baby now. My husband said it’s my body so he would leave it up to me to make the decision. He said if we abort the child, then we will never speak about it again. We didn’t discuss with anyone else. I then went for the abortion.

    I aborted when I was 6 weeks. At the time, I was thinking it was just a blob of tissues. And when the time is right, if it’s meant to be, we can have another child later. But it was different for my husband. He had been depressed, angry, drain himself in alcohol ever since. I felt very guilty and wanted to try to conceive again, but it never happened. He is now with another woman of whom he can share emotionally and spiritually. We are now separated. And I’m in grief and hopeless.

    • IsabelleS  November 5, 2020 at 10:50 am Reply

      Anna, I am so sorry to hear that you are going through this. Your grief and feelings of hopelessness are completely understandable–This is an incredibly difficult situation. I understand that you feel guilty… but you made the decision you thought was best for you and your body. You may want to check out this article: https://whatsyourgrief.com/grief-abortion-healing-unspoken-loss/ My heart goes out to you.

  17. Susan  August 23, 2020 at 7:07 pm Reply

    I loved my husband of 37 years. He was demanding and difficult, funny and smart and he really loved me. He was diagnosed with AML, went into the hospital, had chemo and died within 23 days. I stayed in the hospital day and night pretty much the whole time. There were times during his treatment that he was delirious and difficult and I was terrified that he wouldn’t get back to his strong healthy self. He would have hated life if he couldn’t do his work and sports and activities.

    One really difficult day I thought “Why don’t you just die.” I felt shocked and guilty for thinking that. When the time came for me to make the decision to let him go, I knew it wasn’t from the place that thought came from, I knew it was what he would have wanted based on his decline and suffering. But I have never told anyone I had that thought that day.

  18. Anonymous  June 11, 2020 at 11:56 pm Reply

    I found out horrible secrets about my husband after he died. He lived a whole other life and was a completely different person than the one I knew. I am conflicted. There is a person I loved and the new person that disgusts me. I feel scared to know I lived with this person and knew nome of this. He has been gone 5 years and I just found some new information today. It feels horrible to know that you were lied to every day since the day you met. I am angry and there is no one to yell at. I have secrets I have told only my mother and she can only tell me there was something wrong with him and its water under the bridge. I screamed today that I hate my husband and asked God not to let me see him again in Heaven. I love him and miss him all the while feeling cheated and hating him.

  19. Kitti Virts  June 8, 2020 at 3:54 pm Reply

    I wish I had loved my husband better/more dearly before I knew he had cancer and his life would be shortened.

  20. Guilty&Grateful  May 26, 2020 at 8:35 pm Reply

    My husband died by suicide. Two days before he was arrested for sexual assault of a minor. Very publicly arrested by us marshals in our front yard. I put the guns away and bailed him out if jail. But I didnt check his truck. Thats what he used while I took our 10 yr old to school. I miss him and my grief is hard, but I still think our daughter is better off this way than living with the shame of him in prison. She doesn’t know about his misdeeds and hopefully never will.

  21. Connie  March 15, 2020 at 5:57 pm Reply

    My secret: I don’t want to live without my husband. I won’t hurt myself but I won’t do anything that would make me live longer either. No doctor’s visits or medicines. no yearly exams, no exercise and no eating healthy. I specifically buy foods that I know are bad for me. My advanced directive at the hospital states that nothing is to be done to keep me alive. I’m old and I’m ready to go.

  22. Gail  February 15, 2020 at 10:38 am Reply

    I wish I had screamed and fought my stepfather harder on my mother’s behalf. He ignored her living will, treated us horribly, tried to move her in the middle of the night once, kept us from seeing her on occasion and prolonged her misery by weeks. As her medical power of attorney we had no say in her care and he allowed us no input. When we pushed, he shut us out. But I wish I had gone ballistic. I trusted and loved him, now I hate him with my whole being.

  23. Evellyn  January 21, 2020 at 2:17 pm Reply

    My dad had some health issues and I always knew he wouldn’t live as long as other people. This fact always made me anxious thinking the tiniest thing could mean he was dying. My grief secret is that I think the only thing good about this grief is that I don’t have to worry about his life/death anymore since he’s not here. Although I wish he was, it makes me feel relieved that I don’t have to go through all of that anxiety anymore.

  24. Mary  September 27, 2019 at 7:01 pm Reply

    My fiance passed away in a car accident. He fell asleep while driving and I was on vacation that weekend so I felt a lot of guilt for not being there, like, how was he dying while I was enjoying at the beach far away? Now I find my self trying to know every single detail about his last day on earth and how everything happened. I even looked for pictures and video of the wreck, I still feel the urge to know everything but I know that´s not the healthiest thing to do.

  25. Anonymous  September 9, 2019 at 8:04 am Reply

    So it was a Thursday night very late or extremely early Friday morning and I heard my mom stirring. I went in to see her and she was mumbling. I pulled over the wheelchair and sat down next to the bed and held her hand. She spoke But I can’t honestly remember what she said. I remember thinking how I wished I was asleep if even on the couch because I hate waking up in the middle of the night. She slowly fell asleep or so I thought. I then got up and went back to the couch. I layed there awake and soon could hear her calling out looking for someone. She even called my name but I didn’t go to her or see what she wanted I knew she was safe. Had I known in less than 36 hours she would be dead I would have crawled into her bed and layed beside her until her final breath and then some.

  26. Anonymous  September 3, 2019 at 8:21 pm Reply

    My Mom passed away this year in May. She lived a life of hell the last few months she had left. She battled amyloidosis, a horrible unforgiving disease. I am very much alone now that she has left. I wish her back even though I know she would be miserably in pain. I hate that my siblings got to watch her decline from their comfy chairs while I watched the harsh reality by her side. Watching her fight a battle that she would never win no matter how hard she fought. I watched her literally take her last breath while they were at home living their normal day to day lives. My life was on hold as I watched the woman that gave me life fight for her own life while there was nothing I could do to help her. Now I battle to move forward and find my place in this world without my best friend.

  27. Alone  September 3, 2019 at 7:19 pm Reply

    All my grief is a secret because I loved my father and had a good relationship with him (rebuilt after many years) and my brother and mother hated him. He wasn’t a cruel, abusive man. He didn’t hit anyone and didn’t drink or do drugs and didn’t spend other people’s money. He just didn’t want to live with us any more and he left to go live by himself and they never forgave him. My brother never wants to hear anything about him. Much less how sad I feel that he is gone. He was like my best friend. My father and brother never made up. They were both stubborn and at the end I could tell my father wanted to make things right but didn’t know how. My brother just sat there and watched him die and didn’t even go up and hold his hand. And now that he’s gone, if I start talking about him too much, my brother leaves the room and my mother gets all angry. I have no one to talk to and I cry every day about my father and I do it in silence when everyone else is asleep.

  28. Sara  September 3, 2019 at 5:13 pm Reply

    My older brother – and only sibling – passed away Dec 2018. My Dad passed April of this year. My Dad and I weren’t really “close” – he was sort of harsh and judgmental, and I’m super sensitive, like my Mom (who passed in 1998). I don’t feel the intense grief about my Dad that I do about my brother. I feel guilty for it, but I am glad that I don’t have to worry about him calling to ask questions and then be judgy or tell me what to do, etc.
    I feel awful for this feeling.. but I knew I wouldn’t be that sad when the day he passed came. And he passed suddenly in the night. So no prolonged illness. Maybe that’s why I’m more numb to it.

  29. Anonymous  September 3, 2019 at 4:28 pm Reply

    My father died almost three years ago while waiting years for a liver transplant. He had cirrhosis. I know he “did it to himself” with alcohol but he had been sober for most of my life and was doing well before his health deteriorated. Fast forward to this summer, my best friend is diagnosed with liver failure due to alcoholism, is put on the liver transplant list and gets one three days later. I’m very familiar with the transplantation process and I know on a cognitive level that they were different. I know. But still.

    I am so relieved that I did not lose her as well… but I am also furious. Why did my dad not get a liver?

  30. Leigh  September 3, 2019 at 2:29 pm Reply

    My mom died 2 years ago of cancer and my family fell apart during the hospice portion because of stuff that someone did that pushed everyone apart, and then spiraled more after she was gone. She wasn’t even 60, and it there were lots of family and financial issues going on throughout her illness. She and I had a tumultuous relationship and she was horrible to me right up to the end, with smatterings of kindness (which made it worst tbh), and I’ve had to figure out who I am in the last 2 years, and I didn’t get a chance to process things properly the first few weeks and months because I had so much stuff to physically sift through and pack/get rid of/gift to people… even though I wasn’t her executor. None of my siblings or my dad were ANY help and put all the burden on me, and they and their spouses act like they’re the only ones who went through anything. Now that I’ve finally gotten to a better place and fallen in love, all I can think about is that she’ll never meet my partner, or my future children… she’ll never see all the things I’ve managed to accomplish. And on the flip side, I’m glad she’s not here… she would have been so critical of a lot of my decisions, and she had created a really toxic set of relationships through trying to control everyone and everything around her… I have a better relationship with my dad now that she’s not pitting us against each other, but for some reason I still miss her… even though I’m glad she’s not here criticizing me and putting me down all the time. Apparently she told everyone all the time how great I was… but I never heard that to my face. The voice messages and the 1 note she left for me as she was in her end stages aren’t even particularly nice.
    It leaves me so conflicted every day…I feel bad for my partner and the emotional roller coaster he’s had to accept the last 10 months, he didn’t sign up for this!

  31. Grieving Mom  August 26, 2019 at 11:18 am Reply

    My son died on March 19,2019, he was 13. He was chronically ill with a rare genetic disease, MECP2 Duplication Syndrome. My grief secrets are that I hate it when go to social gatherings and listen to other people’s “problems”. I want to scream MY SON DIED and your worries of getting a new house do not matter! My 3 sisters have abandoned me, they don’t know what to say, so they say nothing at all. It is so disappointing and very hurtful. They seldom visited my son when he was in the hospital off and on for 12 months, so why does it bother me?! I am angry that I can’t feel my son’s energy and that I can’t give myself time to feel the pain of his loss, despite grief counselling and grief groups.

  32. A Mom Trying to do Good  August 18, 2019 at 11:19 am Reply

    My son died of a complication from a Congential birth defect, everything that could be done was done. He fought hard for 11 days, but just couldn’t fight anymore. I did everything I was supposed to during my pregnancy watching what I ate, exercising, and attending all my doctor’s appointments. I work in addiction recovery with pregnant women and while I do this because I want them to have their babies and win their battles against addiction, sometimes they give in to their addiction and don’t choose their babies over relapse. I know it’s a disease, but I am so jealous of their happiness and so angry when they throw it all away for a high.

  33. Empty  August 16, 2019 at 1:43 am Reply

    My dad got very sick when I was 14 and spiraled into depression. He was stubborn and rather than follow doctors orders he continued his path. He became an abusive asshole that messed up our family. For 14 years my mom and I took care of him. We put up with a lot of mental and emotional abuse…He got sicker and sicker, but she did too. He died, and it hit me hard. I remembered the man before he was sick and missed him. Mom got cancer. I took care of her alone. I resented being alone because my brother completely checked out. He wasn’t there for the chemo sessions that wore her down. He didn’t take care of the house. He didn’t have to work 2 jobs 6 days a week and then come home to find her in shock when her meds messed her up. He didn’t stay up all night holding her hand terrified she would die because he did something or didn’t do something. He wouldn’t help me those last few days when I was running on fumes and she was in a terminal coma. I was crushed when she died. And then I had to take care of everything…probate, the house, bills…I am still so angry at him for not being there for Mom and for not being there for me.
    Then my dog got sick. I had to have him put down, and while I’m glad he has no more pain, I feel guilty and wonder if I should have waited…or was it really late and I was too stupid to tell.
    And later, my cat got sick…I knew it was time. He wa old and had so many problems. The day he collapsed I knew. But rather than call a vet and put him down, I wanted his end to be at home. He hated vets. So I held him for hours and cried..I held him until my guilt about his suffering began to weigh heavy. I loaded him up to go to the vet, bundled him in a blanket and laid him in the passenger seat of my car. And 5 miles down the interstate, I was crying and trying to soothe him. He bit me HARD and in anger I pushed him away in pain. After a minute I reached over and my poor guy was gome. He died in pain, in a car, and 5 miles from home. Truth is, I hadn’t wanted to spend a small fortune to call a vet to the house. My selfishness caused my sweet boy pain that I can never make up for. I regret it so damn much everyday and I can’t fix him.

    Now I’m alone. I struggle every single day with suicidal thoughts. I have no one, and am so tired of plodding along without anyone. Some days the only thought that keeps me going is that I don’t want to die alone and not be found for weeks.

    • Kathy Farabella  November 13, 2019 at 4:36 am Reply

      You don’t have to feel alone. I have guilt too about my dear Daisy girl, she’d been with me for almost 10yrs, she would have been 10 on Feb.,19 2020. The emergency room dr. talked me in to letting her go, and now I believe she didn’t have to be put down.
      This happened this past Mon., the 11th of this yr.
      I’d love to talk to you, and we could help each other heal! There’s lots to talk about. I’m a Mother and Grandmother, no fear!
      Get back and reply to this reply, and we can take it from there!

  34. Kenz  July 29, 2019 at 9:21 pm Reply

    Late Friday night my fiancé and I rescued a baby raccoon, and told very few people about her. She instantly stole my heart and gave me purpose. She was still nursing so I bought bottles and puppy formula, and loved every second of taking care of her (piper) just like an infant human. Saturday she was refusing her bottle, my mother insisted she needed the nutrients so I would get her to open her mouth and quickly slip in the bottle for a few drops, and I did this several times. My mother also grew concerned over her body temperature, she grew cold and her gums were white. I went back and fourth thinking “she’s perfectly healthy, I’m over reacting” and “what have I done!! I must have over-fed her and she’s aspirated and she’s possibly dying!” Well my fiancé went to a party Saturday afternoon with some friends and that turned from a 4year olds birthday party to a drinking party for the parents, and he didn’t drive. I begged him to come home, I was so worried for piper and I needed to get her pedialyte. At this point she had thrown up formula during a bath, and seemed to have trouble breathing. I made a sugar/salt/water mixture that was for Emergencies before obtaining pedialyte, and she threw that up all over me. My fiancé (because he didn’t drive) still had not left the party , he hadn’t even asked the driver and other person that rode with them if they could leave. I wrapped her in heating blankets, towels, and even put her in my shirt for warmth. Then when she felt even colder than before I laid her on a heated blanket and made a sock of rice to heat. I rushed it to her and she put her sweet little paws out for warmth! A victory I thought. So after a moment I moved the sock to put her in the very warm spot it was in and she reached back out for the sock. At this point I thought we could make it, after all my fiancé claimed to be headed home soon and he was an hours drive away. We could make it an hour! Well he lied. He made it home 3 or more hours later, I had fallen asleep and my little baby piper died around 2am Sunday morning shortly after he got home, before getting her the pedialyte she needed. I’m 22, this was my first baby, and her death has demolished me. I’ve blamed myself, I’ve blamed my fiancé, I’ve HATED him for not being home in time, for not getting her what she needed. It’s been awful and the worst part is I’m grieving secretly. It’s possibly illegal to own raccoons in my state (though I’ve known several to do so) so no one knew I had her, and no one knows I lost her. I had her for only 24 hours but she instantly became my whole world, then my world was shattered.

  35. Alex  July 22, 2019 at 11:43 pm Reply

    Recently had an 8 year relationship end. It was a secret relationship. Same sex couple. We kept it hidden to try and respect some of our more conservative family members and friends. Well, needless to say, things ended rather salty. I feel really lost. Been going through the grief cycle for months now. Cant seem to totally move past it. I feel angry, depressed, sad, and lonely now. I also feel lost. I don’t know who I can confide in, and trust them not to tell my secret or judge me, I am also afraid of losing the small number of friends that I have. Looking for advice on that. I don’t want my friends to look at me differently or in a negative way. I just want to me”me” not the “gay” or “different” person. I have many regrets about our relationship, as I look back I feel that I was weak, and that there were warning signs I should have known, but like they say, love is blind. Cam (my partner) cheated on me in our last year, I think It only happened that one time. not sure though. I didn’t know officially until we parted ways. We were so happy in the beginning, young and just figuring things out. Now I am just so lost and feel like I lost a huge part of my life, I suppose I have, its literally been 8 years. Also, I hate to say it, but I also feel confused about my orientation. I am not even sure that I am gay, perhaps I am bi or maybe I am straight and was just looking for someone who would care about me, someone to share life with.

  36. GaryB  July 19, 2019 at 9:18 am Reply

    Not really a “grief secret” as I say it to anyone who gets into my story.
    We had just retired and were looking forward to many wonderful Golden years (me 64- her 62) after working nearly 40 years each. It was 38 years and alot of struggles financially but it was always about love and we got through. It was now “our turn”.
    My wife passed away August 9 2018- but I had already passed away June 7th when we got the terminal (you got 2 months) cancer diagnosis.
    I now walk this earth in anguish, despair and anger forever-gladly to have changed places.

  37. Anon  July 18, 2019 at 7:10 pm Reply

    When I saw my tiny micropreemie daughter in the NICU for the first time I thought “My god that looks like an abortion.”

  38. Christopher  July 9, 2019 at 9:13 am Reply

    After experiencing seven “significant life events” in a 90 day period, I subsequently fell into a major depressive state that lasted eight years do to cumulative grief.

    About six months ago, I overcame the day-to-day sadness and expected life to improve.

    Now, I find that without the struggle to overcome the depression, I no longer have a purpose and have fallen headlong into anhedonia.

    I do not feel safe.

  39. AnonMiss  June 20, 2019 at 5:59 pm Reply

    When I was 20 years old or so, I was in a relationship with a very abusive person. I felt trapped in the relationship because I had no family, no friends, no where to go. I would always forgive him when he said sorry after he was done shouting or physically abusing me. I thought my life would never end..like a caged animal. When I became pregnant, I was so thrilled- he was not. He told me he did not want children and made me an appointment to have an abortion immediately. I did go- but came out of the clinic and lied to him and told him I was too far along, so I had to keep the baby. The physical abuse got worse and worse the bigger my baby bump grew. I would curl in a ball so that the baby wouldn’t be hurt. At times he would tell me he would kill us both, and if I left he would find us and kill us. At nine months and 4 days along in my pregnancy, as I got to the top of the stairs to gown downstairs, he gave me an almighty kick from behind. I landed at the bottom of the stairs on my stomach. I was immediately lying in a pool of blood. I crawled to the neighbour’s house to call an ambulance. At the hospital, I was asked how I had gotten all of the bruises and broken ribs and I lied. I lied because I was afraid. I knew what had caused this, but I didn’t tell them, I was too frightened. After seven hours of labour, my son, Sam, was stillborn. He was perfect and beautiful, just like any newborn, in every way except one. He was dead. My partner did not attend the hospital or his funeral, he sat drinking with his pals instead. Almost a year later, my ex partner was jailed for 36 years for attempted murder (of me). But I am the one with the lifelong sentence. I will carry on knowing that I failed my son because I was too scared and blind to seek any help. I failed to protect him by not getting out, even if it had meant living on the streets I should have gone. He would have been 28 this year. I am so sorry Sam. You were my first and last child. I’m sorry I failed you so.

    • Alex  July 22, 2019 at 11:51 pm Reply

      Its not your fault. I understand you must feel an immense amount of pain and loss after losing your child. But you are not the cause of what happened, you didn’t fail. Your partner failed you both. It is understandable that you would feel that guilt but its not your fault. I hope you will heal from this pain soon, I know its not easy.

  40. Marge  June 12, 2019 at 1:55 am Reply

    My husband fell off the deck of the house we were
    building together. It took paramedics 24 minutes to
    get his heart re-started. All testing showed he was gone but I was the one who killed him. We had an agreement that we would not let the other live on machines, so I had them turned off. I don’t know how or why I am still existing.

    • Suzanne Utts  July 10, 2019 at 10:46 pm Reply

      I understand. I had to make that decision for my mom. It was the right decision, but OH how painful.

    • Jane Forino  July 13, 2019 at 1:16 pm Reply

      You honored your husband’s wishes and it was the right thing to do,even though it was so hard.
      When my husband was dying of cancer I signed a DNR because he never wanted to talk about his wishes and I know I did the right thing. If he “coded” I had the power to bring him back and cause him to suffer even longer instead of allowing him to die peacefully. I remember feeling like I was signing his death warrant, but knew I had to do it to live with myself. I could not be the cause of his suffering.

    • Gail  February 15, 2020 at 10:33 am Reply

      My mother had the same wishes that my stepfather did not respect. The added weeks of suffering she endured because of it have me very angry that he over-rode her express and written indications. Her last words to me were “Help me” which leaves me with tremendous guilt that I could do nothing as he made the decisions. It is hard, but you did the right thing and saved him additional suffering by permitting him a natural death instead of agony before passing.

  41. Patricia Matthews  June 6, 2019 at 12:07 pm Reply

    My maternal uncle died just under six months ago. He was like a father/grandfather/uncle/friend all rolled into one. He was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer in August; he told us in October; he died in January. His wife has never been particularly close with our side of the family. My mom and her sister aren’t speaking with my uncle’s wife and she’s not speaking with them. I am angry with them for what I perceive as weakness. It seems like all of them are being selfish and acting like their grief is somehow worse than the other person’s . My mom is accusing me of acting like I’m superior and taking the “high road”. I think she’s kind of right that I’m acting superior, because I really have been seeing her inability to separate from her emotions as pathetic and weak. I don’t know what to do with that information now that I’ve established that I think they’re being weak and selfish. They’re just grieving, and their grief looks more volatile than mine.

  42. Susan Kaplan  June 3, 2019 at 10:06 am Reply

    My father died in 1968, on my mother’s birthday. The funeral was the next day, on my youngest sister’s 10th birthday. He had pancreatic cancer. I left for college four days later. I have a number of grief secrets about this. First, I’m glad he died before I left , because I’d been dreading the call that he’d died and dreading having to come home in a grieving state. Second, we were engaged in father/daughter separation even before he was diagnosed, and while I learned from my mother that he was dying, I was even angrier at him (oh my, that’s a big secret ) and I couldn’t talk to him about anything, as we were a very reserved family. I would have loved to talk to him about how I felt about my future would be without him in my life. And the biggest secret is I’ve never completely gotten over feeling betrayed and abandoned by him, through no fault of his own, and I think that’s why I never married or even had relationships beyond good friends with men. And the other secret is that I’ve always wished it had been my mother who died young, not my dad, because my relationship with her was fraught with conflict, probably from the day I was born.

    It has been cathartic and healing to write this. Some of it I’ve vaguely alluded to a few friends. But until now, it’s been in my head and in my heart – I have never written it down, even after all these years. So I’m grateful for this opportunity to reach deep inside my soul to put these parts of my grief about my dad into the Universe.

    • Suz Khan  August 10, 2019 at 11:01 am Reply

      Your comment resonated with me. My heart goes out to you, Susan. You have said what needed saying and I hope you can heal and go forward with much well deserved relief and find joy in your life! The things you’ve shared are not terrible blameworthy feelings, but rather normal responses to the loss of your father. We have different relationships with each of our parents, and I’ve been closer to my Dad and had a bumpy relationship with my Mom. His decline and current suffering with a horrible disease has paradoxically made me furious with him. Anger and betrayal he’s leaving my life forever I can relate to. I realize it’s not his fault. He doesn’t want this either! So normal to feel this. We all can support each other in this normal response. Let’s not waste a second keeping it a great secret, or any of the other things you wrote about. Just the normal pain of the human heart in our broken world. All the best to you as you go forward in your life. I wish you peace and happiness.

  43. D  June 1, 2019 at 4:17 am Reply

    My mom died 2 months ago. I wish it had been my dad.

    • Vee  December 1, 2019 at 12:47 am Reply

      I am where you are. I feel that I lost the wrong parent. I feel so much rage and no longer believe in justice or karma.

  44. TJ  May 31, 2019 at 9:01 pm Reply

    My best friend died almost a year ago. I knew he had numerous health issues but he hid from me he had cirrhosis of the liver. He was a closeted alcoholic very adept at hiding his ailment apparently. I feel very guilty that I did not pick up on all those signs that were there in retrospect. I wish I had helped him more and seen through the to the heart of the matter. I miss him horribly. We talked virtually every day if the last 10 years but I missed some very important signs.

  45. Taylor  May 19, 2019 at 9:07 am Reply

    My husband and father of our 4 children died last night. While death is always a shock our family has been residing at deaths door for close to 10 years. We have gone inside only to be pushed back to the threshold repeatedly on the journey. Autoimmune disease, cancer and multiple undiagnosed chronic illness changed our lives and family over the course of these years. It changed who we are, how we live our lives and what we believe about the world in good ways and bad ways. We have learned to love hard. To smile when we want to fall apart. To look for the rainbows while enjoying the rain. My secret is, after these years on the roller coaster of living in constant fear and often turmoil I can exhale. The worse has happened. We (he) fought the good fight. Pushed back against an illness that tried to take him on multiple occasions. He came home to his family many times from ICU over the years against debilitating odds to have more time. So the landscape of our lives has changed. I exhale for myself and my children. Now we learn to navigate this life differently but we are thankful for the practice of a often changing course over the past 10 years that has made us flexible travelers.

    • Sandi  May 27, 2019 at 2:24 pm Reply

      Hi Taylor I identify with your situation 100%.
      My husband and soul mate died 6 weeks ago after 40 years of the most wonderful marriage. He also suffered over the past 10 years. Especially the last 2. I’ve feel ive been on a treadmill and somebody has pulled the plug. I’m so lost and lonely I feel so confused and my brain is fuzzy. We were blessed with grandchildren who he never knew due to dementia and they are now my salvation. But in the alone times I feel like I’m drowning. What will become of us?

  46. Bex  May 19, 2019 at 12:19 am Reply

    My secret is I hate hospice. I also hate my sister because she was too sad to come over and help me. They send patients home to die with family members who have never witnessed death. They collect lots of Medicare money while providing only pamphlets and hospital beds. Nurses, social workers come once a week and sit typing reports on their computers. They do not provide experienced humans to educate or guide the family through this terrifying experience. My beloved dad suffered and I was helpless. Being afraid to hurt him more when I should have given him pain meds and tranquilizers for us both. My mom was lucky she was mentally ill and didn’t understand. Death is about money in the U.S. Not only funeral parlors take advantage of our grief to make money, hospice is making even more money off the government.

    • GaryB  May 20, 2019 at 9:56 pm Reply

      I agree the toughest time of my life and the most confusing at a time when all I did was what I was told and supposed to do. Yet I feel I failed and fact is none of us in that situation fail. We do our best with the limited skills we have. We were never prepared-who expects this? The literature is useless-we have no time to sit and read and learn. We are thrust into a losing battle from the start. My poor wife sat on a commode for over 3 hours till we could get a nurse in for emergency one night. She sat like a saint refusing to move while in pain and suffering lung/brain cancer. It was a 24/7 battleground for myself and my 2 sons just trying to do our best for her. To this day 8 months later so many thoughts and visions still linger. While we did not fail-we did our best-there is still a feeling of could have done better-somehow-someway. The hardest part is we knew time was leaving her and yet we still carried on each day as if there was hope-it was for her-even though we knew-she refused to

    • Jessica Cabness, LCSW-C  June 13, 2019 at 1:27 pm Reply

      Bex, I am very sorry that your family had an awful experience with your hospice provider. That’s not the way hospice is supposed to be. I felt the lack of compassion that you experienced in your grief secret. Let me assure you that, when delivered compassionately, hospice is the best support to patients & their families. I have herd this repeatedly from families who were served by hospice. For this reason, I have referred patients to hospice care for help with living while facing a life-limiting illness. I also refer them for bereavement services for grief support, another service that hospice provides, often at no cost to the client. I hope that you will find comfort in knowing that you provided the best care for your Dad & that your pleasant memories will sustain you. Be well.

    • L  September 3, 2019 at 7:12 pm Reply

      I feel bad reading about your bad hospice experience. While I’m not an unreserved rah-rah cheerleader of hospice, I guess we’re lucky where I live that we have a good hospice organization, I went through two different experiences with this organization 25 years apart. Yes, basically they just provide pain medication (or should), a hospital bed, diapers and general information. Hospice isn’t for everyone. If our medical establishment would just grow up and accept the fact of death, then hospice organizations would not have to fill the gap.

  47. Marie  May 18, 2019 at 4:00 pm Reply

    When my mum was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in her 50s and they had given her a couple of months to live, I was so scared that I could not even be around her. We had lived together for 30 years and had been best friends. But I would describe myself as being wild with panic, all the time, pants-wetting terrified. Of the unknown. Of what symptoms would unfold. Of what her death would be like. She wanted me close to her but the non-stop panic made my entire body be in agonies of physical pain, and I could never breathe properly and I literally wanted to be unconscious all the time but there was no responsible way of me doing that. The fear was UNBEARABLE. I will always regret not sleeping in her bed with her like she wanted and I have nightmares about it all the time and my body physically aches with regret all the time.

  48. Laura  May 15, 2019 at 8:36 am Reply

    I’ve been with my husband for 24 years. Since I was 19 years old and never in that time have I even thought about cheating, but the past few years have been really difficult……we have problems he doesn’t want to deal with, let alone talk about, which has left me feeling unloved, unwanted and really, really alone. 9 months ago, my high school crush contacted me and within 20 minutes of talking, I knew I was in trouble. Every one of our passions in life was the same….same upbringing …same everything and I knew immediately, he was going to be someone I loved. He had demons though….a year prior his second marriage failed and it sent him over the edge. He was drinking out of control and making really destructive choices. The sadness in his eyes always conflicted with the smile on his face and I knew I had to help him….or he was going to fall. So, I loved him….tended his wounds and made sure he knew how wonderful he is. In turn, he made me feel like the most beautiful, sexy, interesting, girl in the world….things I hadn’t felt in years. I loved him and he loved me. Honestly, we never even slept together…..instead, we made out like kids in his car and sneaking away for a hour or so at a time. Before anything could go further, he was offered a job where his children live and he took it…..but he was so scared without a saftey net of loved ones, he was going to slip……and that’s exactly what he did. He drank himself to death. He died feeling alone . I keep going over every conversation, thinking maybe I could have done something…said something. The pain I feel is unbelievable. It’s only been a few days. I can’t talk to anyone. I have to just pretend he was my just my friend . I have no one to lean on. Thank you so much for letting me get this out. I don’t know what else to do.

    • TJ  June 1, 2019 at 2:19 pm Reply

      Hi Laura, I can relate with your grief story. Mine is similar my best friend of the last 10 years also drank himself to death. Only I did not know it was the drinking. He told me he had other health problems. He was estranged from his family and I was not able to attend his funeral or get usual kinds of closure. It’s almost a year now. Hey miss him horribly and am attempting to navigate this emotional one year anniversary alone. I think pray you can find a friend or counselor to help talk out your feelings. There are places like Al-a-non that are completely confidential who might be able to help you in your journey to cope with the side affects of the alcoholism of a loved one as well as the associated grief you are enduring. You have my best.

  49. Lilly  May 14, 2019 at 8:45 am Reply

    My Dad died in our home tragically when I was 18 years old. Though we lived in the same house, he was very distant and as far back as I can remember only told me he loved once (a few weeks before he died). I felt very much alone and in the way in my very dysfunctional home. I was supposed to drive the family car to go shopping on the day my Dad died. But he drove it to work (knowing my plans) instead of driving the old car he always drove. I was really angry and remember thinking “I wish he were dead”. That afternoon, my maternal grandfather who lived with us, shot and killed my Dad when a violent argument erupted between my parents. For the past 45 years I’ve carried the secret of wishing my Dad dead, and then having it happen that same day. The guilt has been with me 45 years, and I don’t think it will ever go away. I wish I had not had those thoughts over something as insignificant as driving the family car to go shopping.

  50. anonomus  May 14, 2019 at 4:40 am Reply

    My 4 year old son walked on the ice of the little pond following the dogs the evening before he died. It didn’t break and I didn’t yell at him in particular or do a good job of explaining why it was dangerous. He drowned the next day in the afternoon while the babysitter was on duty, when he walked the 1/4 mile to the big pond by him self with the dogs. I didn’t teach him how to stay safe.

  51. Donna  May 13, 2019 at 5:08 pm Reply

    When my husband was dying with cancer I discovered he had been having an affair.Thats it.

    • Anonymous  July 18, 2019 at 12:00 am Reply

      The last 6 months of my marriage my husband drifted from me. He was having an online interest. I blew it off… now that he is gone, I lave since learned from her all the emotional pain he was in. I now suffer with the thought i didn’t make him happy… and now I’m angry, he left me with more pain and confusion to struggle through. I still love him, no less than before, but now I fight anger, jealousy, regret, and resentment. I was my happiest with him, he wasn’t his happiest with me.

  52. Her Mom  May 8, 2019 at 6:43 pm Reply

    I prayed and prayed to God to relieve my daughters suffering from Drug use. He did, he called her home. I do know she is no longer in pain.

  53. Karla Bond  May 7, 2019 at 12:33 pm Reply

    I am a grief counselor in the area of Palliative Care, working from east coast Canada. Requesting post cards, as I feel this is a wonderful idea I could present to some of my groups. If there is any way I could promote outside my office even with a poster and information. Please email me and I will forward you my mailing address

  54. Anonymous  May 6, 2019 at 1:32 pm Reply

    I think about death every moment of everyday… I can’t wait until it’s my turn and we can be together again because I sure do hate being here without him – this is not a cry for help… just my one and only wish.

    • GaryB  May 6, 2019 at 6:30 pm Reply

      May I ask how long it has been?
      My wife has been gone 9 months and I feel same as you do.
      I do not see it ending either.

      • Anonymous  May 7, 2019 at 1:49 pm

        1 Year, 4 Months, 3 Weeks, 3 Days, 6 hours, 24 minutes -since the exact moment he passed away.

        Everyday gets harder not easier…

      • GaryB  May 7, 2019 at 9:15 pm

        Thanks for responding.
        Sorry for your loss and I hear you.
        I know it will ever end-the never ending quest to join my wife as well.

  55. Michelle  May 5, 2019 at 9:56 pm Reply

    My mother is mentally ill and has tried to take her own life multiple times. The few times my father had serious health issues I was beside myself with grief just imagining he might die. Recently when my mother was in the hospital, both my sister and I were relieved it was her and not our dad. She’s finally getting what she wanted. Our family was never enough to make her want to stay alive, and I’m not nearly as sad about losing her as I will be when our dad passes.

  56. Spencer's Mom  May 4, 2019 at 3:42 pm Reply

    My son, 31, died suddenly and unexpectedly while I was thousands of miles away on a vacation in Europe. He had Down Syndrome and had lived an extraordinary independent life until his last year. In hindsight, his body was declining but neither I nor his doctors could see it in the aggregate. He developed a complex and rare eye condition that required eye drops every two hours which he could not self-administer. He was living in a condo five miles away and I was his sole support. It was an arduous four months of multiple daily trips back and forth and navigating numerous systemic roadblocks to arrange for outside nursing assistance to take over some of the shifts. He was diagnosed with severe sleep apnea right before I left for my trip and we had an appointment for him to be fitted for a CPAP machine the day after I returned. I doubted he would comply without supervision.

    I was facing the gut wrenching decision to remove him from his own home (he owned his condo) and put him into institutional living. He was fiercely independent and would never have forgiven me. Then suddenly, he died from a pulmonary embolism the night before I was returning home. After the agonizing, raw grief abated I could not tamp down the thought that at least I never had to mount taking him out of his home and that I now had a lot more freedom in my daily life. I don’t feel especially guilty about these thoughts because they are based in the reality of his life and his death. But they are not thoughts I feel I can express to anyone but my husband, although not his father, lived through it all and understands without judgement.

    I know I would trade everything to have him my sweet son back alive. If I had had any inkling he was going to die while I was away I would have stayed and guarded his door .

  57. Anonymous  May 4, 2019 at 12:55 pm Reply

    When I miscarried I could have held my tiny walnut sized baby and given it a proper burial with ritual, but instead I flushed it down the toilet.

    • MSC  July 18, 2019 at 7:03 pm Reply

      It’s ok. You will not be judged.

  58. Mickey  May 3, 2019 at 7:56 pm Reply

    My brother died last year from after a long illness and depression. After he died his adult children shared with me that he had always told them that I was his favorite sister. I was not vert fond of him and don’t know why. I don’t feel any guilt about it either.

  59. Anonymous  May 3, 2019 at 4:34 pm Reply

    I hate my husband for dying. I can’t forgive him and he lied to me, which caused his death. If he had told me something it was hard for him to face, he would be here. I just hate him and he abandoned me. I can’t feel gratitude or love, things people tell me to feel now. I wish I could forget that I’ve met him and I regret the day we first spoke. I had no idea he would fuck my life up because the love was bigger than the love I have for myself. I can’t forgive and I don’t want to.

  60. Anonymous  May 3, 2019 at 2:45 pm Reply

    When I lost my husband a little over two years ago, two other people went with him: myself and the little girl that we didn’t conceive. I think about my husband all of the time, and I also think about how life would have been inf he was still alive. We would be chasing around a nineteen month old toddler (at the oldest). We would be taking her to museums and parks (we both love long walks). We even had a name for her (I’ll call her L here). I knew that she would be a daddy’s girl, and my husband would spoil her.

    I don’t tell others about this because they will think that it’s odd and unhealthy to also mourn someone that didn’t exist, But I just didn’t lose a marriage, I lost a dream. Throughout my whole life, I knew that I wanted to be a mom. Now, that dream seems unlikely. I get really jealous that others can go ahead and have a second, third, or fifth child. Why? Why them and not us? I refuse to acknowledge those children’s existence.

    I’m angry that my husband’s life got cut short. I’m also upset that we will never get to meet L. As for me, I don’t know why I still exist.

  61. GaryB  May 3, 2019 at 2:36 pm Reply

    I have so many guilt secrets when I think about it . In addition to resentment at my wife passing and leaving me alone in “our retirement and golden years. There was resentment of her smoking that caused it despite years having stopped-the damage was already done and it chose the worst of times to show its ugly face as if to deny us any shot at a good life. But also I recall not spending enough time when she was in her final days as hospice inpatient. I became a coward I could not bear to see her go- she lung and brain cancer and her brain cancer was causing the staff problems through and I was told her last few nights were hard. I remember the shock on her face when she called nurse for “potty” and she came and said you have a catheter and bed pan now. When she was first admitted they would help her but she had 8 days at inpatient-her final days. To see her be told that hurt me-shocked her. Another regret led into that as she was never told she was dying. She even looked up at me and asking “am I dying” and I lied and said “no-stop that of course not youre not dying”. She was brought into hospice for her last days but she always said it was rehab to get home and when hospice took her from us at home they even told her”we need to get you stronger to get back home. We all knew that was not the case-but she didnt- or refused to hear of any end. To this day we all debate what did she know but through her 2 months she refused to be told she would not make it. The guilt of knowing she would not weighed so heavily on my head as I soldiered on for the 2 months home hospice as I soldiered on same with the “rehab”. Despite knowing what Drs and nurses told me. It hurt but I could never tell her she was dying. If she did not want to know who was I to tell her? That was a dirty little secret we/she took to the end. So I turned coward because nurses told me she had a few rough nights and I couldnt dare to see that and be helpless as I would be. Then she went onto her coma and in 2 days she was gone. I have guilt because I was scared to see her going as she was with so much anxiety and delusion. It hurt so bad my heart. Please forgive me is all I ask. Please when I go let her be the first to see with her “hi Daddy” I so miss now every day. Its all I want as I soldier through my days aimlessly and sometimes zombie like- to be with her. I have our companion urn in our bedroom- I want to keep her till I go and then we go together into our niche. It was always together for ever for us. I only hope that time comes sooner than later. But oh so much secret guilt I will take to our grave with me. How could I ever have known to act it all came as a sudden and horrible shock. To think we were riding off into our retirement sunset rightfully thinking another 20 or so years and it all came crashing down within hours. How fair was that? I am still battling with God and church on it. I may never get back properly with God but I need to make good somehow-someday-How else can I ever see her again? But for now my anger and resentment and guilt remain heavy on my soul. God/ Heaven help us all who come here to post these grief secrets known only to us and for us to bear.

  62. Z  May 3, 2019 at 2:42 am Reply

    I can’t. The guilt is so overwhelming that I feel like I’m choking just thinking about it. I don’t know how I am supposed to heal when there is so much I can’t bear to think about, let alone say.

  63. J  May 3, 2019 at 2:06 am Reply

    When he died I was relieved. It was too soon, he was in his 30`s but I was exhausted worrying about losing him in some other way. He was an aggressive alcoholic that liked to pick fights. He had already been stabbed, I was relieved I got to listen to his last heart beats and he slipped away in a nice clean hospital bed.

  64. Anne  May 3, 2019 at 1:54 am Reply

    My Mom had a very extreme reaction when I came out to her during my first queer relationship. She told me she never wanted to see me ever again and that she was sexually abused by her dad and brother as a child. With the help of various therapists I’ve deduced she has symptoms of borderline personality disorder, likely caused or impacted by her abuse. So much has happened and it’s not healthy for us to have a relationship right now, so I have her blocked in my phone and have her e-mails filtered. I promised myself I wouldn’t unblock her number or check if I’ve gotten an e-mail from her for a whole year.

    My secret? I moved to a new state last year and feel SO RELIEVED she doesn’t know my current address. It feels good and safe to know she can’t just show up at my place unannounced. Even though I miss her and I want her in my life, I really can’t. I’ve been grieving our relationship for 5 years now even though she’s still alive.

    To anybody who has lost somebody who is still alive, I’m sending you love. When I do my daily meditations I often think of the other “me’s” out there who have lost people due to mental illness and trauma. <3

  65. Lois  May 3, 2019 at 1:14 am Reply

    10 years after initial diagnosis and treatment, my wife was diagnosed with breast cancer metastatic to her bones in 2013. After the initial difficult year, she has done well on progressive courses of treatment. We have spent nearly all of our savings between medication.insurance, and other expenses. Now we are on the last possible treatment regimen. She is losing weight, getting weaker, and easily fatigued.
    My first partner died of cancer 20 years ago. I survived being widowed at 50, but being widowed in my 70s seems unbearable. At the same time, I wish this would just be over. I don’t know if I can bear to go through her dying. I worry about money all the time, and how I will get rid of all her stuff and mine. I don’t know how I will go on. Everyone thinks I am brave.

  66. Anonymous  May 2, 2019 at 11:44 pm Reply

    I lost one of my best friends last summer. We had a very special and different friendship. (She had special needs, I was a good friend to her and somebody that worked with her to teach her skills). I had the opportunity to know her and share an amazing friendship with her for many years. Looking back, I really regret not taking and cherishing all the time I had with her even on days that were a bit more challenging then others. I get mad at myself looking back at the times where I would get home from work and not want to go to her house for a tutoring session or a community outing because it was already a long day but in the end she always made sure I had fun. The night before she passed away , I was going to do some errands and almost invited her to come with me. Due to time constraints, I opted to just go and I really regret not going to pick her up because if I did , I would have been able to say goodbye in person one last time. This was also the 2nd significant loss I had to go through with 18 months, with both being individuals that I have supported at one point or another. My heart crushed both times, even into more pieces the 2nd time around. I’ve kept it a secret, but I have somewhat built an emotional protective wall around me with all the children that I support because I am afraid that I am going to have to go through this grief a third time. I feel doing this will save me from some heart break (not all) and make it less painful if it ever does happen again

  67. Jennifer  May 2, 2019 at 9:54 pm Reply

    When my mother was dying, in hospice care, from pancreatic cancer, we (I) had the responsibility of dispensing the oral morphine. Not well educated on the signs of impending death, I thought my mother was in pain and administered another dose of the morphine. When i called the hospice number to ask advice and get emotional support and information ( I needed reassurance! ) the person who answered the call blurted OMG, you gave her HOW MUCH? – the prefilled syringe was what I gave her- and when she died 8 hours later, obviously I believed I had killed her. See how I am still explaining how I was only following instruction? For years I kept the secret from everyone…. I ” put down ” my mom. 10 years later I learned that the amount I gave her was such a tiny dose it was impossible that I killed her, and I learned that what I interpreted as pain was the normal breathing patten of the dying person…. but it’s all still a secret from everyone but my spouse and the nurse who finally educated me.

    • GaryB  May 5, 2019 at 9:08 pm Reply

      My wife was in home hospice 3 weeks before they took her to inpatient for final days. Oh how I hated doing the medications-the morphine- Ativan-Haldol- I just did and gave all I was told to do. Now I read more on hospice and was I used to kill my own wife? I dont think so as she died in hospice center. But I think back and wonder about it. But I was out of my mind in fear and stress at what I was doing and what I was watching as my wife was dying from cancer. I look back and ask her-did I do all right? Did I do what I should have?Please forgive me if I did not for I have no idea what I was doing. I was prepared for retirement with you-not to see you die at 62 only 2 months after! How could we ever have been thrust into those situations we were? It was love but really nothing could have prepared us. The hospice training was quick – we had no idea what we were to be up against. Please forgive me.

  68. Not a mom, not a grandma  May 2, 2019 at 9:30 pm Reply

    My husband and I were unable to have children and adopted three children as infants. I was very upfront that I wanted a closed adoption with records never to be opened. Of course times changed and the older two found their mothers and said “she is my mother”. I was and still am devastated and heart-broken. We maintain a relationship and I try to be happy for them but all trust is gone and I grieve for the loss of two children, five grandchildren and two great grands. They don’t see much of these birth families and want things to just go on like nothing changed but for me everything changed forever. So I pretend when I see them and grieve alone when they leave. I know other adoptive parents don’t feel this way but I do.

  69. anonymous  May 2, 2019 at 8:32 pm Reply

    My husband died 20 months ago (I realize I’m counting like someone does with a young child . . . ) We had 43 years together. It wasn’t all perfect or easy, of course. But it was very good. I loved my husband. He loved me. And we loved our life. I would live it all over again with no changes, if it were possible to do so. So, my secret – I’m sometimes jealous of my children. They’re married or in very loving relationships. I remember that with such longing. And I’m so happy for my kids! But, also – jealous . . .

    • GaryB  May 2, 2019 at 10:58 pm Reply

      I lost my wife to horrible cancer in August. I am a combined jealous and envious at every couple I see in our age range or older. All I think of is “that should be us- why were we robbed”. I am not sure that will ever change either.
      I think your and my reactions are fairly normal and common in grieving.

  70. Elizabeth  May 2, 2019 at 7:10 pm Reply

    I am angry that my Dad died and left us, especially when our family was finally so happy after many years of trying to find our way together. Now I am all my mom has and I am struggling to have time to myself and time with my own family without feeling guilty because I don’t want her to be alone. He was supposed to be here for us and for my mom and he isn’t. He left me to handle everything without him and I am not strong enough. I wake up everyday thinking it’s going to be different and it never is. I feel like I have so many grief secrets that I will never heal and they find a way of coming to life in my dreams or I guess nightmares is what they truly are.

  71. Laura  May 2, 2019 at 6:04 pm Reply

    I talk to my deceased adult son in my mind every day. He answers me. Sometimes he tells me things I don’t know, and things that will happen in the near future. He is always right, but it is still hard for me to believe in him. I do believe in an afterlife and have always been able to communicate with loved ones “on the other side” but his death made it really hard for me to believe my own BS. Yet I feel closer to him now than I did when he was alive.

  72. Marina  May 2, 2019 at 5:02 pm Reply

    I know my life, my previous life as I knew it, ended when my mum suddenly died to a rare, rapid, fatal cancer, 45 days before becoming a grandmother for the first time. She went from perfectly healthy to dying in 10 weeks, 7 from the diagnosis.
    I’m in my early 30s and nobody I know ever went through the loss of somebody really important, so nobody can understand what I’m going through.
    I feel like I belong to a different Universe, separate from that of everybody else I used to know and share my life with.
    Occasionally, I just feel like ending things with all of them, and start only seeing people who understand grief. I’m tired of cheering them up about how much they’re helping, where the truth is that I need to do self-care after most interactions. But I know ending things would be stupid.
    The truth is that “I feel” alone because “I am” alone, something that was hard to accept. The people around me just don’t get it and right now this adds a layer of discomfort in the daily horror I face. For me, the same day starts everyday and ends everyday, before starting again. For them, it’s thoughts about work, life, relationships, things I don’t care about anymore.

    • GaryB  May 2, 2019 at 11:07 pm Reply

      I too detest wearing this mask just so other people in my family and neighbors wont run away from me. Although family? they pretty much have. Un fortunately for us we know we have to put that mask on for the outside world as painful as it is. We have to try and act like we care-give a damn while they all have long since moved on in their lives. They now talk about holidays-birthdays-baptisms-vacations-happy stuff and I want no part of it. Yes all things I once loved but now all are gone since my wife left me and they were all things we shared. It was her that made them and life special. She is gone and for all intents and purposes so am I.

  73. Gary B  May 2, 2019 at 4:40 pm Reply

    I love but resent my wife for dying (August 9-2018) just when we had both retired after working and having a hard life. My Mom had passed away 2 years before and eased our way to finally be financially free of debt. In addition we bought a beautiful retirement home with our always dreamed for in ground pool. We were just about to get back “OUR TIME” after giving so much work and effort. We had maybe 2 ok months before her diagnosis of stage 4 lung with mets to brain cancer. She was not herself during the treatments. It was attributed to her own smoking that she had done for so long with too many packs a day. I resent her for leaving me along in a now too big house at a time that was supposed to be “our time”. She never gave me the chance to be her white knight again. We deserved 20 more years (me at 64 and her only 62) to be able to see our grandchildren grow-to travel and see places we always talked about. It was the perfect retirement plan and now she ruined it because she smoked from maybe 16 to 45. She stopped after heart attack at 45. She was now 62- we saw no signs of anything- But it decided to ruin 2 lives at the most inopportune time just when life had turned the corner towards good times and golden years! I sit here now alone in anger and resentment at it all. Now my life as well has been ruined. As if I want to live without her. My Mom outlived my Dad by 38 years- My God dont let this happen to me I cant take it! Why was I allowed to stay? This is hell and torture and yes I do resent her for leaving me all alone now. But I love her forever and cannot tell anyone I resent her at the same time. It will always be my untold secret to my kids.

  74. Anon.  May 2, 2019 at 4:30 pm Reply

    I’ve had terrible nightmares involving my parents since, well forever, but it became worse once my Mom passed on xmas eve 2017. My Dad died 3 months ago and the awful dreams came back with a vengeance. I feel like I did all I could do for them, but in my dreams I let them down in every way and I watch them die all over again. Everyone else in my family says they have great dreams about them so I haven’t told anyone but my husband. Also, I’m glad that he’s gone in a way since the end was simply awful but also so I don’t have to celebrate xmas anymore if I don’t want to. My husband and I aren’t into it, no kids, so parents to keep happy.

  75. Elizabeth  May 2, 2019 at 3:58 pm Reply

    My husband was very sick for 3 years, we had just turned forty. We thought he might make it… he’d get worse then better, then worse. I had such a hard time becoming the head of the house. Our son was young and I had to work so much more, plus take care of my husband. On particularly insane days, I’d steal some of his pain meds. I know it was awful but I just needed something to take the edge off.
    It’s been over a year and I am angry and sad. I feel guilty that I couldn’t be more available to my sick husband because I had so much to do. I should have held him more. I was so scared of him dying that we never talked about it. Like if we mentioned it, it would happen. I wish we could’ve talked about it. I miss him so much.

  76. Jennifer  May 2, 2019 at 3:40 pm Reply

    We agreed during his illness, I would not make a move to attempt treatment, help, or resuscitation when his final moments came. On the morning of his death, he hemorrhaged something fierce to the point it looked like a crime scene. I sat there with his head in my lap, covered in blood, first listening to him gasp and gurgle and then nothing. I sat there for another hour… before I called anyone, just to make sure he was dead.

    This is what he wanted, what I had promised, he knew I was emotionally resilient enough to do it and I have zero regrets.
    Nonetheless… not exactly details you can share with his family

  77. Jo  May 2, 2019 at 2:49 pm Reply

    I feel guilty that I don’t miss my husband of 30 years more. His long illness turned us both into people I didn’t much like. I miss the man I married, but not who he turned into. I’m beginning to see signs of the me I used to be, but I feel oh so guilty and yet angry that I got so lost over the years. Is this just another part of the grieving process?

  78. Aishling Guerin  May 2, 2019 at 2:06 pm Reply

    Hi there.
    I’m glad I stumbled upon this forum while searching for some reassurance that not only do I suffer in silence. My story is I suppose a little different as the person whom Im grieving for is alive. This is my 22 Yr old son whom I adore and love so much, he was the funniest kid made us laugh popular, kind and had a lovely spirit about him. He was always an ansious child as he got into his teens 16/17 he began to withdraw from everything with this surge of ansiety that sweeps through all of his thoughts each and every day. Unfortunately he began to smoke weed which I never new, he hid it for yrs and when I did find out he was in deep oweing money all along to these dealers which I paid off 3 times. He spiralled into depression and won’t seek help, I am helpless in helping him he confides in me and when he is low I he says he is better off dead. I now have learned to cope as if I’ve lost him I dread when the phone rings. I think about him every minute of the day and night I’m burnt out emotionally and mentally. He won’t get help, is there such a thing ‘grieving for someone still living’? I would love advice ??

    • Michelle  May 2, 2019 at 3:19 pm Reply

      Yes, to grieving your son…I had to grieve two sisters that were living..One passed now but I had to grieve the hopes and relationship I wished for. When my therapist said you have to grieve your sister’s..At first I say back and said she’s not dead?! My therapist had to explain you must grieve your loss…It’s not just in death..

    • Anne  May 3, 2019 at 1:44 am Reply

      Hi friend, yes… you can indeed grieve somebody who is still alive. Have you heard the term ambiguous loss? Here’s definition from Google, though I know WYG has sometimes covered this topic before: “Ambiguous loss is a loss that occurs without closure or understanding. This kind of loss leaves a person searching for answers, and thus complicates and delays the process of grieving, and often results in unresolved grief.”

      My form is grief is with my mom, who’s also still alive, though her mental health and trauma prevent us from having a healthy relationship and I miss her daily. WYG is hosting a webinar called “The Grief of Non-Death Losses” and I’ve had it on my calendar for months. Join me and we can grieve together? <3

    • Leigh H  May 24, 2019 at 4:39 am Reply

      Dear mom of 22 yr old. See YouTube of Tammy Stewart. . Living For A Purpose. She helped her son get a new life. You must address your hormones properly with 1 of the 15 practirioners in the USA who KNOWS how our bodies work. In the meantime, stay hydrated and eat vegetables and try not to do processed foods. No grains or dairy for long while. See knowthecause.com too. I pray he gets 3 friends who he will listen too. My deceased friend never got help for his depression and when he got deathly sick all his friends were far away. You get some godly friends and eat healthy!

  79. Leigh Gage  May 2, 2019 at 1:47 pm Reply

    I never really grieved my dad who died in 1982. Yes I was sad for a few weeks but somehow I put it out of my mind. My daughter died in 2017 and I learned what real grief is. I’ve been thinking of my dad more often since her death. He was a great dad and I’m sorry I didn’t grieve more. He came to me in some dreams – and I believe in the afterlife.

  80. Anonymous  May 2, 2019 at 12:29 pm Reply

    My grief secret: While I miss my mum terribly and always wish for one more day with her, I’m also constantly aware of all the times she did things that hurt me & the times I needed her to be there for me & she chose not to.

  81. Chris  May 2, 2019 at 12:17 pm Reply

    My husband was sick for ten years and suffered horribly the last year of his life. During this time I was employed in a bad job situation. When he died, I was relieved that his suffering was over. I retired and made some other changes in my life that made me feel back in control, and I felt something like happiness for the first time in many, many years. I feel guilty about this and never admit it to anyone. Now that it has been four years since he died, I can begin to think of him the way he was before he got so sick, and I miss him so much.

  82. Kat  May 2, 2019 at 12:05 pm Reply

    I find myself staring at/ stalking boys who look similar to my son who died by suicide as a teenager. I see the boys and I am compelled to stare until I am able to see a distinct difference between them and my son. I told my close family about it and they looked horrified, so I haven’t brought it up again.

    • Spencer's Mom  May 4, 2019 at 3:44 pm Reply

      This makes absolute and complete sense to me. Until you have a child die you cannot possibly understand what happens to a mother’s heart.

    • C  November 30, 2019 at 3:20 am Reply

      My mom and I both did that for years after my brother died. We want to see that face, crave it, or the closest we can get to it.

  83. Anonymous  May 2, 2019 at 11:59 am Reply

    My friend’s mom was recently diagnosed with cancer and was able to have the tumor removed with surgery. While I am of course happy her mom is going to be okay, I am angry and jealous that when my mom was diagnosed with cancer she died two months later. Why did this have to happen to me.

  84. S  May 2, 2019 at 11:15 am Reply

    My grandmother had dementia for years and the family and my grandfather cared for her. Her illness caused her to be violent , yelling at everyone and hitting my grandfather. She thought my grandfather was dead or cheating on her when he is wheelchair bound and clearly right next to her. This was a large change in behavior coming from a loving, soft spoken and sweet woman. She died a few months back at 93. I loved my grandmother very much but my mourning happened during her illness. She was no longer there or very are of what was happening in reality.

    The entire family misses her and we all feel a sense of relief that it is over. None of us would ever say that to my poor grandfather, who is deeply mourning the loss of his partner. He said he would deal with the violence as long as he could just to have her by his side.

  85. Beth  May 2, 2019 at 11:05 am Reply

    I’m smoking pot too much to mask the pain and just so I can be social

    • Amanda  August 18, 2019 at 11:22 am Reply

      I have been there and found that talk therapy and antianxiety medication helped me decrease the amount of pot I smoked and increase my ability to be more social. Do what works for you.

  86. Ann  May 2, 2019 at 10:59 am Reply

    My mom died almost 2 months ago. She had a 23 year long battle with stage 4 cancer, over half of my life. I was so tired of dealing and worrying about her illness, when it was going to come back, her mental state, her relationship with my dad, etc. The last 6 months we spent most of the time catering to her…. I feel guilty for sometimes being glad I don’t have to deal with that anymore. Sometimes I am happy knowing that is no longer a worry for me, and I am enjoying myself. I loved my mom and miss her each and every day. I am thankful she is not suffering anymore, selfishly I am glad I don’t have to worry any longer and wonder what is next.

    • Belle  May 2, 2019 at 2:25 pm Reply

      My sympathy to you in the loss of your mother.
      I recommend the book “A Monster Calls” by Patrick Ness. Found in the YA section of my library (but don’t discount it based on that), I found it exceptional.
      Be gentle with yourself.

    • Bill Robson  May 2, 2019 at 11:45 pm Reply

      23-year long battle with stage 4 cancer is a long time at that level. Anticipatory grief is like sudden grief except there is a longer period getting ready to say good-bye. As a caregiver it becomes how one defines oneself. “I am my Mothers’ caregiver.” On death the challenge becomes “Who am I now?” No longer a caregiver but just me…. Feeling guilty does not mean you did something wrong (then or now). It does reflect the new reality that you are not needed in that role any longer. The “New You” is redefining itself and having fun or enjoying social activities with friends is a part of defining that new you. No guilt required. You loved your Mom and for every day forward that love will not change. Balancing your responsibility of remembering and honouring is a gift you give to your Mom. By being true to the you you are striving to become honour you to yourself. They do not have to be exclusive of each other.

  87. Anonymous  May 2, 2019 at 10:48 am Reply

    My secret: my boyfriend died unexpectedly last fall and while I miss him sometimes, I am glad he is gone. Since his death, I no longer have to deal with his lying, manipulating, anxiety and cross-dressing which has been so nice.

  88. Lily  May 2, 2019 at 10:48 am Reply

    I’m grieving the possibilities with the love of my life which seemed to exist until I found out he didn’t tell me his true age. Today I’m especially grieving the loss of my dreams and I can’t talk to anybody else about it because I’m ashamed about it in so many ways.

  89. Tracy  May 2, 2019 at 10:35 am Reply

    My dad died from brain cancer when I was 14, 3 days before my birthday. We buried him on my birthday. My birthday is difficult every year, yet I act happy because everyone says “Happy birthday”. My grief experience has been unsupported, unacknowledged by my family and I resent them for it. I resent that they don’t speak of my dad or honor the person he was or the role he played in our lives or how he suffered. They disrespect him. I feel alone and at times stuck in my grief.

    • Bill Robson  May 2, 2019 at 11:49 pm Reply

      A life time together often blends two people into one. The loss of a partner is like losing half of oneself. Remembering your Grandma as she use to be before dementia is one way to honour her memory and bring some peace to you and your Grandfather. We all grieve at different intensity and in different ways. Respect his and know in so doing your way of grieving is OK too.

  90. Kristin  May 2, 2019 at 10:28 am Reply

    I feel hopeless and joyless every day and my mom passed away a year ago. Nothing helps – not my boyfriend, not the medicine; I’ve even stopped drinking. I don’t know if I’ll ever be myself again.

    • Dominique  May 8, 2019 at 4:39 am Reply

      I feel the same way. I lost my father to leukemia on February 28th of this year and every day feels like a curse. My Mom said it best: “It’s like a life-sentence.” We just wait to go to heaven to see him again, but how does someone wait their whole life?! Just know that you’re not the only person who feels that way. I take some comfort in feeling less alone. Love you.

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