Bereaved family and friends

For anyone who has lost a family member or friend to cancer to share their feelings and support one another.

Anxiety about carrying on / seeing people

izmoth
Posted by

My dad died a few days ago after a short battle with lung cancer. I don't really know whether I'm handling it ok.

I haven't really seen anyone since it happened, except family. I live alone so I find the evenings difficult. A couple of my closest friends know what happened but I haven't even seen them, although they've offered to come round anytime. I would really like to see them but I'm also dreading it. I'm extremely anxious about getting upset in public. I can't bring myself to reply to messages or call people because I don't know how to talk to them. It's an elephant in the room and I hate the idea of people being reluctant or unsure about how to talk to me too.

I'm also going back to work in a couple of days (by choice - they offered me more time) and I know I have to try and get back into a normal routine, and I welcome it, but it's a solitary job and I'm frightened of breaking down when I think of him. I managed to keep up a facade while my dad was in hospital (unless they asked about him) but I just don't think I have the energy anymore and I can't bear the thought of seeing pity on other people's faces.

How can I manage this transition back into normal life? How should I speak to friends when I see them? I just don't know what to do or how to act at the moment. I know that's normal but if anyone has advice on how to cope I'd be really grateful.

Emmags
Posted by

Izmoth there is no rule book on how to handle this. Live will never be "normal" or at least normal as you know it but please let your friends in, they want to be there. Where mym mum passed so soon afyet my dad i knew hubby and brother would worry about me the first week after aela hubby works away. Day time fine cause at work but knew they would worry abour the evenings so i asked friends to "babysit" me. Massive hugs xz, 

Karrieann
Posted by

Izmoth, so sorry to hear about your dad . I am 6 months on from you now and want to let you know just take each step and day at a time . Like you , I went back to work which is a welcome distraction but you will be a changed person . 

Be kind to yourself. I hope you have lots of support x

GBear
Posted by

Like has already been said , there is sadly no rule book on how to handle a death. I am really sorry and send my condolences for the lose of your Dad. I always say you will know when your ready to talk about it, but please don't be afraid to be upset in front of people. By the sounds of it you have great friends and employer. Have you thought about councilling? Sometimes speaking to someone who doesn't know you helps you to have confidence to talk about your feelings. Of course everyone here totally understands but I would like you to feel comfort at home too especially as you live alone and its difficult to talk about things. If you would like to you can phone our helpline on 08088080000 there open 8am to 8pm everyday, just have a little chat there so your not as alone and they can also help find you local support. Also here on site we do have a really lovely lady called Wendy she's our expert on bereavement support Ask about bereavement support . its totally up to you no one can tell you this is how you can grieve we are all different but I just wanted to say when and only when we are listening and here for you.

I am grieving for the lose of a couple of friends one that dead last year was diagnosed around the same time ad I was and we shared things that only we both knew we would understand and that's the important thing I believe you can understand when your going or gone though it.

Sending you a gentle hug or a hand to hold when you need it

  GBear Xxxx 

What is a Community Champion?    Womb cancer forum  

Call the helpline for free on 08088080000, 8am to 8pm everyday.

“life is like a box of chocolates, we search for the good ones first and hope not to have to eat the bad ones"

izmoth
Posted by

Thanks for all your replies. I feel like I'm managing ok but suddenly have waves of grief that are unbearable. I've read Wendy's responses to some of the questions and it's good to see in writing that everything I'm feeling and going through is normal.

I left the house today and it was horrible, but I was able to talk about my dad without crying. And I'm seeing a friend tomorrow, hopefully that will help too.

You're right, it is helpful talking to strangers as well. I'm on a waiting list for bereavement counselling through my GP, but have no idea when that could become available. I have very little faith in the NHS now, especially after they mishandled my father's last few weeks, so I've tried to find other sources for counselling. Is that something the Macmillan helpline can help me find?

GBear
Posted by

Hello again , yes that is the Macmillan helpline. Its unfortunate that there is a waiting list for counselling in fact its very sad because it shows just how much people need that help, however I am glad that your GP is trying to get something sorted for you. Plus I am glad you were able to go out and talk about your Dad sometimes a gentle walk somewhere peaceful helps, although I'd your getting the bad weather a walk in the rain doesn't sound appealing. I like to walk and focus my mind on other things its not always easy but it does help. I started doing Arts and craft as a coping mechanism for my cancer diagnosis at my local hospice and I also found it good to help with my grief too and I have to admit I really enjoy doing my art and have started going to an art class to improve my skills. Perhaps there maybe something similar in your area that could help? If you go onto the main Macmillan website and click on "in my area" if your put your post code in it will tell you what local support there is maybe helpful for you.

  GBear Xxxx 

What is a Community Champion?    Womb cancer forum  

Call the helpline for free on 08088080000, 8am to 8pm everyday.

“life is like a box of chocolates, we search for the good ones first and hope not to have to eat the bad ones"