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willowgirl

Loss my husband to cancer it's my fault it was so soon

110 posts in this topic

Found out my husband had cancer in April they said chemo and radiation would help so pretended it was fine.didnt let him have anything with carbs or sugar.i thought I knew everything. Chemo and radiation didnt work. It went to his hip bone and he broke his hip. Dr said aggressive cancer so aggressive treatment.(within two weeks he was gone)so pretended everything was fine . So let him set on the couch to die i shut him out.even at the end I thought he had to many pain pills which he hadn't. Finally took him to the hospital but it was to late. I played nurse and killed him.will never forgive myself.

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I am so sorry! Please do not feel guilty! You did NOT have anything to do with your husband crossing over. It was the cancer, blame the cancer. You helped your husband the best that you could at the time with the knowledge that was available. You were living in the moment and doing the best you could. The cancer was aggressive and it was your husband's time to let go.

Your pain and the feelings of guilt are so apparent, but you have to let go of the guilt and forgive yourself. Your husband is in Heaven now, free of suffering. He does not want you to feel guilty. He has love for you and feelings of gratefulness for being there and helping him.

Please keep posting. This is an excellent forum with many wonderful people who listen, understand and give comfort.

Your husband was in God's loving care and God decided it was time to end his suffering. Please, again, forgive yourself for the feelings of guilt. It is a natural reaction to blame ourselves and go through the *what ifs*, etc. It is all beyond our control.

Prayers and hugs to you. You are not alone here.

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Willowgirl

Bless you, so sorry and sad for you. KMB is right you most definitley did not kill your husband it was the hidious disease 'cancer' that killed him, it sounds as though it was way too aggressive for the treatment, life is very cruel and dont blame yourself you have suffered enough, it is your overwhelming grief thats making you feel this way, take care of yourself sweet girl .

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Willow Girl,

I'm so sorry for your lost.  Few events in life are as painful as the death of a spouse and I know how much pain you are experiencing.  I lost the love of my life of  45 years just over 6 weeks ago and I'm hurting like hell.   I wanted to blame the world and hated the fact that I was here and he wasn't.  I realized that if it was left up to my husband, he would still be here - you see, he promised that he would never leave me and I know he would not.  It was God's will to take him - it was his time - it was suppose to be -  and it was.  So don't  blame yourself.  God's Will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.

I know how deeply wounded you are and naturally your wounds need to be attended to. You'll experience all kinds of emotions (shock, confusion, fear, guilt, anger, pain, numbness, etc.) after all, this was your companion, someone you shared your life with and someone that was part of you.  As strange as these emotions may seem, they are normal and healthy.

Know that his spirit lives on - it returns to God from whence it came. If it's any comfort, know that he is no longer in any pain -   Concentrate on the love you two shared and know that nothing or no one can ever take that away.

Please continue to post.   This website is wonderful with words of comfort and encouragement.   I pray that God gives you his overwhelming love, his strength and his unending peace at this most difficult time in your life.   Open your heart and let God in - he'll do the rest.  God Bless 

 

 

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Cancer killed your husband. I get beating yourself up.  We all do it to some extent.  If only we had (insert whatever here), they would have lived.  That isn't how it works though. Not really.  It sucks (to put it mildly), but it happens.  We lose the ones we love to diease, accidents, sudden health issues.  

Blaming yourself won't change it and your husband wouldn't want you to be stuck on his death.  Remember his life instead.  Or just try and breath.  Take it one moment at a time.  Come here and vent. 

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Dear Willowgirl,

Please do not blame yourself. It was cancer that killed him, not you. Those of us who have been through this understand your feeling that we could have, should have, been able to change the outcome, but that is wishful thinking. Cancer is not influenced by our thoughts, and certainly not by our reactions, including our wishful denial of what its inevitable result may be. You cared for him, you nursed him, and you loved him ... that is what is the important thing. Getting him to hospital a few days sooner would not have changed the outcome, as I am sure his doctor would tell you. Your grief is totally real and understandable, but you must not blame yourself. Please share here, we understand how you feel and we are here to support you, Be as strong as you can, and know that you did all you could possibly do. I am sure your positive "we will get over this" attitude during his illness comforted your husband in many ways. Please love yourself and take care of yourself now.

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Willowgirl,

It was not you that killed him, it was the cancer.  For him to go in two weeks, it was extremely aggressive cancer, there's nothing you could have done to stop it.  You were doing your best to help him with the knowledge you had.  Truth is, the doctors couldn't save him.  I'm so sorry, we all know how hard losing your husband is, it's the hardest thing in the world.

It's important to learn self-care, to be patient and understanding of yourself.  The one person who would have taken care of YOU isn't able to now, so you'll have to do those things for yourself that he would have.  Make sure you eat healthy, drink some water, go for a walk, when you least feel like it will be when it is most important to do it anyway.  It will give you optimum chance for getting through this, that's what we all need.

Our bodies may die but nothing can kill the love, that continues.

I hope you will keep coming here and reading and posting.  A grief forum is what got me through my husband's death in the time to come.

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Willowgirl, I am not seeing in your post anybody who "killed" her husband, but a loving wife who dd the best she could for him given the knowledge she had at the time. Those of us who cared for our dying partners were also operating in a climate of fear and pain because we knew what was coming. I understand the guilt though, my love, and I know it's something many of us go through. I hope you will find assistance in questioning this unwarranted guilt you carry. This forum is a good start.

Take care,

Louise xo

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Thank you for all of your kind posts. I really appreciate the encouraging words. It helps that I have found people that understand my pain. The memories of everything that has happened is almost to much to bear. His body started shutting down andAt the end he couldn't talk he had on a oxygen mask but he held onto the neck of my shirt and looked into my eyes for over 36 hours pleading with me not to let him go. I really have a hard time dealing with that memory. He fought as hard as he could to stay he didn't want to leave me. I don't think he understood what was going on.  He hadn't been able to clearly communicate for days .You could tell how terrified and scared he was. That memory will haunt me forever. I hadn't slept in days I was so sleep deprived I just remember bits and pieces of what i said to him. I feel like a horrible person for that.That is almost unbearable. We were married for 34 years and together 24 hours a day for the past 8 years. And this is how I treated him in the last year. I am so sorry this is so long and detailed. But I sometimes feel I won't be able to get past these memories. Sometimes they are almost to much to bear. There is so much guilt on everything I did. Sorry if  everything doesn't make sense  and I am rambling it has been a bad couple of days.Again thank you for listening to me.

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Willowgirl, you are not rambling, love. Similarly to you, my Ken had cancer, we thought he was going to survive, it came roaring back and he was gone within two weeks of us finding out he was terminal. He certainly had not made peace with it; he absolutely didn't want to go, and I have questioned things that I did or did not do over and again. It feels terrible, but I am coming to know that on the last day of Ken's life, I was so filled with pain and fear as well as inadequate sleep that I cannot be hard on myself for not knowing exactly how to proceed. I very much relate to seeing the fear in his eyes, Willow, and I believe that these memories are very real traumas - we have been traumatised in one of the worst ways possible. Like you, I don't remember much about that last day - it's not like a film, but more like horrifying film stills. I find these memories absolutely unbearable, and have engaged a grief counsellor to help me unpack that last day in an environment of support. You are definitely not alone - I know that might be cold comfort, but you are understood. And remember that you were there for your man to hold onto.

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On 1/17/2017 at 3:21 PM, willowgirl said:

Found out my husband had cancer in April they said chemo and radiation would help so pretended it was fine.didnt let him have anything with carbs or sugar.i thought I knew everything. Chemo and radiation didnt work. It went to his hip bone and he broke his hip. Dr said aggressive cancer so aggressive treatment.(within two weeks he was gone)so pretended everything was fine . So let him set on the couch to die i shut him out.even at the end I thought he had to many pain pills which he hadn't. Finally took him to the hospital but it was to late. I played nurse and killed him.will never forgive myself.

Please don't blame yourself!!!  You acted at the time with the information that you had.  You were scared, maybe in denial, and didn't know what to do.  You did the best you could with the knowledge you had.  Sugar doesn't cause cancer.  Please know that this isn't your fault!

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Hello 

I lost my lovely husband to Congestive Heart Failure in October.  There is absolutely nothing I don't blame myself for. For every thing I did do right for him, when it mattered I didn't do it well enough.  I should have challenged the medical decisions but didn't, I'm of an age when questioning doctors didn't happen.  I wish I had spoken more for my Husband at appointments but I had started to take over and didn't want to 'bully' him - I wish I had.  The hospital didn't tell me how people die from congestive heart failure die, I was alone with him when it happened and I was so frightened as it happened suddenly at the end.  I blame myself for absolutely everything.  He loved life - it should have been me.  I am traumatised as well, it's like some form of PTSD.  I am a mature, sensible person and I ashamed to say I harmed myself last week.  God gave me the gift of a kind man and I feel I let him slip through my fingers.  I am haunted and tortured 24/7 - but I don't feel it is enough.  I'm sorry to ramble on like this.  I truly empathise with you Willow girl, take care.

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Sorry, my Angel date should read 2016.

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Zara---I am so sorry for your loss. My husband's heart gave out in August.  He worked on a heart floor in a hospital.  It always felt awful that he knew so much about heart issues and yet, he didn't know of his own.  

How scary it must have been for you.  I hope you know it really was not your fault.  

As for self inflicting pain, I understand the temporary help it might give, but it won't help in the long term and would make your love so sad and probably is.

Please seek help from a counselor to find other outlets.

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Zara19, I am so sorry for your loss of your beloved husband. My husband also passed of an instant heart attack due to congestive heart failure. He was also diabetic and had kidney failure as well. We were just a few days away from getting him going on dialysis and his heart failed him. There is no cure for CHF. My husband had quad bypass surgery in 2007 and we thought his heart would be stable for many years yet with that surgery combined with many medications. I also thought I was doing everything possible to help my husband. He was having one or two doctor appointments every month and lab work done up every other week. I have had to do a lot of grief work to overcome the feelings of guilt. In my mind, being his wife, I felt it was my job to save him. Nothing could have saved him. I place the blame on the high blood pressure and the diabetes that claimed control of my husband's body. The PTSD symptoms? I had that for the first couple of months after my husband passed. I just tell my mind to stop going there because I choose to focus on my husband's life, not his passing. We just don't know how or when our ending is going to occur.

I am so sorry you felt the need to harm yourself. I know the feelings well that can bring a person to that desperate act. I fight those feelings almost daily because I just want to be with my husband. PLEASE DO NOT BLAME YOURSELF!! Medical conditions are beyond our control. You did everything right in taking care of your husband with the knowledge you had at the time. You were a caring, loving wife and I'm sure your husband knows that. He's not blaming you for anything. In fact, he loves you more than ever for being there and taking care of him. God gave you that man to love and you certainly did that. Cherish the years and the memories, they will help sustain you. Prayers and hugs.

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Thank you Emeliza and KMB for your words of wisdom.  I am truly horrified I harmed myself.  As a Christian I know suicide is a sin and could never do that because I hope God will let me see Dennis again. I just greive so much that Dennis won't get to witness and enjoy life and for us to witness each others life.

KMB, my Husband too had kidney failure.  But Doctors knew all along and they knew he needed a pacemaker.  I just think if only they had attended to these things, if only.

I am sorry for both your losses as well, thanks again for your comments.

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Zara19/KMB

Reading your stories are like reading my own. My husband also died from a heart attack and had other health issues as well (i.e., dialysis, diabetic; conjestive heart failure and a pace maker) I too accompanied him to all his appointments (and there were many) and made sure he took all his medications.  We accepted the life that was given us and continued on making the best of our lives. He (we) were doing fine and even with his health issues, had plans to live life to its fullest - together - not matter what - we would always be together.  What made it so difficult for me was when the doctor said he died from a heart attack and I just couldn't receive that - after all, he had a pacemaker.

I too blamed the world and God.  I was angry, depressed, lonely, confused, you name it, I was it.  It took me to a place called 'rock bottom'.  I felt weak and vulnerable and it was so easy for me to lose my faith.  When I was able to put all the negative feelings aside for a moment, (and I had a lot) I knew I was not alone and neither are you.  Through all the pain and hurt (I know it's unimaginable) know that God never left your side - HE is aware of your pain and monitors every second of it.   HE is aware of your emptiness and will  fill it in a manner beyond your dreams,  HE is aware of your wounds and scars and will send you a healing deeper than you can imagine.

We all will still have those tsunami moments, still have the "Why" questions and still want to be with our loved ones.  That's only normal.   When that happens, try to remember how blessed you are - God specifically designed this man for you and allowed you to spend (whatever amount of time) precious time together.  

Death is just a portal we all must go through sooner or later; I like to think of it as being turned over from time to eternity - Eternity where there's only Love and Peace - where our loved ones are awaiting our return.   That's gonna be AMAZING.   God Bless us All!

 

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Hello Francine.

My sister took me to the supermarket today and I came home in a bit of a tearful state, then I logged in here and saw your words of comfort so I think of your comments as a helping hand from God. Thank you.  In the UK it's not that easy to come across many people in online communities that have been affected by Congestive Heart Failure, and others just don't understand.  They know heart attack and they know stroke, but they don't know CHF.  I wish the Hospital would have told me that CHF patients die by sudden cardiac arrest, it was so traumatic and sudden.   I feel Dennis was snatched from me. I expect you feel the same.  He could and should have had a pacemaker but the opportunities weren't acted upon.  The if only questions are a source of torment but it seems all the if only questions lead only to one place - a whopping big sad dead-end.  It hurts for us all I know. Kind regards Francine.

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17 hours ago, Zara19 said:

I am a mature, sensible person and I ashamed to say I harmed myself last week.

How did you harm yourself?  I hope you will get some professional help as that's sometimes something too big to get through on your own.  It's very common to feel guilt after their death, we personalize whatever happened and accept the blame for something we aren't responsible for...it's as if we're looking for a way to rewrite history, to change the outcome, but the outcome can't be changed and there is no "fix" for this.  There is only learning where to go from here.

It's so important to learn self care.  This is a good article about doing that:
http://www.griefhealingblog.com/2013/03/physical-reactions-to-loss.html

I've posted this before, not sure anyone actually reads the articles I post, but I've found these helpful and hope you will read them:
http://www.griefhealingblog.com/2012/12/grief-and-burden-of-guilt.html

http://www.griefhealingblog.com/2016/03/in-grief-coping-with-moment-of-death.html

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Hello KayC

Thanks for your words.  I regretfully broke the skin on my outer wrist with a knife.  My lovely husband would be horrified - and so am I.  I felt overwhelming pangs of sorrow and tears didn't release the tension.  Writing those words now make it seem like it's a stranger that could have done such a silly and pointless thing.  

I will look at your suggested reading, thank you.  Your explanation of Guilt is quite accurate.  I have also heard it said that Guilt is one way of maintaining a connection with our loved ones and when we let go of Guilt we let go of them as well.  Surely there must be a better way.

Thanks again for your kind words

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Some people try to stay close to their loved one through their sorrow or guilt but out real connection is through our love, so we can rest assured it's okay to let go of the guilt and it's okay to smile without losing our connection to them.

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Zara19, I think of the *if onlys* too. Whatever we think should have been done, God would have seen to it.  My husband's body was just worn out. His legs were giving out on him. He wanted to stay but the physical body can only stand so much when it comes to long term health conditions damaging the system and the chemical medications.

Do you have a support system of family and friends? Have you sought out a grief specialist? Listen to KayC. Love is the bond connecting us to our loved ones. They don't blame us for anything. Letting go of the guilt is releasing a negative emotion which we don't need if we want to heal. What we are dealing with is enough without adding to it.

I am largely dealing with my grieving on my own. I do attend a monthly support group. We have a small family that have moved on with their own lives and our mutual friends have faded away. Unless someone loses a spouse, which no one I know has, they don't understand how much more you need their support down the road. It is quite lonely for me adjusting to living alone and if it wasn't for our pets, I don't know where I would be in this situation.

This forum and all the caring people here has been my life line. As I hope it will be for you also. Keep posting and we are here listening, ready to give what comfort we can.

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Willowgirl,

You must not blame yourself.  We all have the "what if's".  What if I did this or What if I did that.  It's so easy to look back and blame oneself.   Know that you did all that was in you to do.  I know it's hard and soooooooooooo difficult, but I know within my spirit our love ones are in a place where we only dream to be.  A place where love and peace is the norm, where there is no more hurt, pain or suffering.   

7 hours ago, Zara19 said:

I feel Dennis was snatched from me. I expect you feel the same. 

I use to feel that way and in some moments (if I'm truthful with myself) still do.  Sometime I don't know what I know (if that makes any sense).  What I DO know is that the love my husband I shared is forever - I know that I was blessed with a man that I loved deeply and who loved me - I know that death is not the end - I know that I will be with him again, only this time it will be forever.  I know that God will bring us through this pain; I know that God's strength will hold us, HIS wisdom will guide us; HIS word will speak to us; HIS hand will guard us; me, HIS shield will protect us. HE speaks to us through our hearts, because all that God is, is LOVE.   

God bless and keep you safe.

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Francine, your words are comforting.  Thank you.

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