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Lost my husband suddenly


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Hi,  I am 38 years old. I don't have parents or children.  My husband used to say he is like my parents and child and vice versa.  Last month I lost him to massive cardiac arrest.  I am just clueless and dont know what to do.  I used to feel so secure with him.  Now though I have siblings, in-laws I feel homeless.  I don't know where to go, where to stay, what to do, how to keep myself occupied.  I used to be a happy person always but these days I take a lot of time to do a small stuff as my mind is constantly thinking about him.   How do I overcome this?  What should I do now to lead the life as I don't have the courage to commit suicide!  I feel so lost.  Its the Christmas time of the year which I always used to love a lot, but everything looks gloomy.  I am not able to talk to anybody about what I am going through.  I also want to come out and be happy again but just not able to do it.  I am all alone right now :(

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Hi, Janaki.

You are so not alone right now. Like you, you have come to a place where there are many of us going through the worst life has to offer. I lost my wife of 31 years on November 16th. I don’t have words to express how sad I am for you in the loss of your husband at such a young age. I’m like you in that I’m still feeling alone and lost. But I hope that you begin to feel your husbands presence in your life in a positive way. He sounds like he was your world and did everything in his power to help you in life. Don’t let a thin veil of death seperate that love and devotion he has for you. He’s still with you. I’ve found that instead of  looking everywhere for my wife, I just talk to her. It sounds crazy, but it helps. They wouldn’t want us to be sad. They would want us to live. I know your like most of and you just desperately want to be where he is. But that’s not what  he would want and you know it! I don’t have a lot of advise as I’m new to this Jan. But I will tell you what has helped me:

Read the stories in this forum. They are a roadmap of how to survive this.

Reach out to family and friends. You need all the support you can get.

Try to focus on your health. Eating I know is not high on your list but try to eat a few times a day. Go for walks! It’s a good time to talk with your husband. 

Know that everything your feeling in normal for you! This is your journey and there is no right or wrong way to deal with it or feel.

Time is all we have. The “what if’s” in the past won’t help you now. It’s done. All we have is every second from here on out. You know your husband would want you to be happy! He raised you that way! Don’t let his memory haunt you. Let your memories fill your heart with what your life together was. LOVE. 

I wish you peace and love on your journey. Take deep breaths and put one foot in front of the other. You still have a life to live!

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Hi John,

Thank you so much for being there.  Even though you are also in the suffering, it is very nice of you to take time and give comfort to fellow sufferers.  It means a lot in these tough times.  Please note that I am here as your distant friend/sister whenever you need comforting words.  We will together find new meaning to life.

I am also chatting with my husband on WhatsApp.  I used to send him my frustration on WhatsApp but after reading your messages I started to send my love and concern to him. I also assured him that I will try to come out of it soon and figure out a new purpose to life.

Please take care.




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I’m glad you are feeling stronger. I can feel it in your words and thoughts. I can tell you that every day is different. Not better, not easier just different. We just learn new ways to deal. Today I walked in a park my wife and I used to frequent and we talked awhile. I even saw a rainbow in a fountain that made me think she sent it just for me to know she was there. Keep talking to your husband and keep looking for rainbows. They will speak to us in our dreams and in littte signs if we just keep them alive in our hearts. Death is just a separation of our physical forms not our souls. They are intertwined  for all eternity. Stay strong and keep growing. The waves of grief will keep coming, our job is to learn to ride them out and know there’s a calm after. 

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I am so sorry for you and your wonderful husband.  I lost my wife almost two years ago on Christmas eve.  I know all too well those feelings of not knowing what to do, or say, or even think.  Grief is horribly traumatic on so many levels.  Suicidal thoughts in grief are common.  I see you mentioned it earlier.  If they become recurring, if you have vivid images of them, or if you act in any way upon them, please contact a suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255 immediately.

Everything you are thinking and feeling is normal for those of us experiencing grief.  It does get better with time.  This forum has been a great support for me throughout my grief.  Though I am so sorry you had reason to come here, I am glad that you found us, there are many kind and compassionate people here who know what you are going through and will empathize.

Reviewing and reflecting upon what I have done that has helped me through my grief journey lead me to create this list.  Everyone’s path through this process is unique, but there are many things that we have in common.  I particularly hope that people fresh to the grief process find it helpful, as well as giving those who are further along on their journey opportunity to reflect.

1.  Take it one day, one moment, one breath at a time. - It is ok to look at the future, particularly if you are having strong moments or days.  When it starts causing anxiety, panic, or discomfort it is important to consciously stop and grapple with grief in smaller, more manageable pieces.

2.  Practice self-care, particularly in the small things. – Your loved one would want you to take care of yourself.  This applies to all aspects of grief, but basic elements in particular.  Eat what you can, sleep when you can, exercise if you can, and drink plenty of water.

3.  Accept help from others when you need it, and help others when you can. -  It is hard at times to accept help.  Grief may make you may feel that you are a burden, or that you aren’t worthy of being helped, both of which are untrue.  People who offer help do so because they want and need to.  It is often part of their grieving process.  If someone offers help without specifics, you may try to think of one small, but concrete thing they can do.  Let them pick up something from the store for you, cook you a meal, or help clean a room.  These are small things, but ones that have solid visible results.  Also remember the "when you can" of helping others.  Helping people helps build a sense of self-worth and purpose, but you have large burdens of your own and don't need to put the weight of the world on your shoulders.

4.  Establish and stick to routines. - This puts order into chaotic lives.  Try to get out of bed every day at the same time.  Set schedules, with alarms in your phone if needed for the basics of life, shopping, caring for pets, eating, or cleaning.

5.  Allow time to grieve. - Ignoring your grief may lead to further problems.  There are times when it is appropriate to try and disguise your emotions and grief, but if you do that for too long it may lead to a setback in your grieving journey.  You may want to add this to your routines, and set one time a day to think about your emotions, loss, and how to cope with it.  Over time you may find you simply know when you need to take time to process your grief.

6.  Before making big changes make sure you have had time to properly think them through. – This seems to go against one day, one moment, one breath at a time, but it is important.  Avoid making any big changes in the first year.  Slow down and make sure what you are doing is good for you, not a reaction to your grief.

7.  Make an effort to try new things. - This is the reverse of establish and stick to routines.  While routines bring order to the chaos, trying new things opens the door to future possibilities.  Start with small things, as simple as changing your routes to and from work or the store.  When you feel comfortable, look at trying large things such as changing long term patterns of behavior that no longer work for your situation.

8.  When you aren't sure what to do, do what feels right for you. – Self-confidence is often damaged by personal loss and grief.  You may stop trusting your instincts and second guess yourself.  Often your instincts are still correct though.  If you don’t feel you are ready for something, listen to that inner voice.  This journey is hard enough, on occasion it is ok to indulge yourself even if it seems selfish to others.

9.  Separate guilt from regrets. -  Regrets are natural, nothing is ever perfect, and we all wish we could do or had done better at times.  Guilt is feeling you have done something wrong and blaming yourself for the situation.  None of us needs blame or condemnation through this process, least of all from ourselves.

10. It is OK to not be OK. – You are going through a very difficult experience.  It is normal to feel panic, anxiety, fear, anger, and depression.  Learn to take those moments for what they are and work through them as slowly as you need to.  If you don't get something the first, fifth, or five thousandth time, that is understandable.  Take your time, regroup and try again.  Anyone who doesn't understand it doesn't matter, and anyone who matters will understand.

11.  Grief can be a part of you without controlling you. – Early in grief it is all you may feel, in ways it may define you.  As you find your way through this grief journey, you will slowly come to points where you can define your grief rather than the other way around.  While you may never be rid of it, you do not have to give it power over you.  In time you can find ways to live with it and find happiness even though grief may still be a part of you.

 12.  When truly lost, seek out an expert, then take and follow their advice.  -  No one knows everything.  If you have car problems, go to a mechanic, if you have health problems, go to a doctor, if you have grief problems seek out a grief counselor.  Asking for, and accepting help doesn’t make you weak in any way.  It gives you the strength of your entire community.

Hoping you find this helpful, and wishing you all the peace and comfort possible


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I am so sorry for your loss, I don't know how I missed this post of yours.  Losing your husband is hard enough, but to go through this so young it feels doubly hard.  Life sure isn't fair sometimes.  When I lost my husband, he'd just turned  and I thought that was young!  I remember how I felt at the time, even though it's been 13 1/2 years now...I didn't see how I could live a week without him, let alone the rest of my life!  It terrified me but the missing him was the hardest part of all.  Over the years there have been some things I've learned that have helped me so I wrote an article I want to share with you, if even one of those things helps you, that's good.  The single best piece of advice I got was to take a day at a time...I have anxiety anyway and can worry about anything so staying in today really helps me.


There's no way to sum up how to go on in a simple easy answer, but I encourage you to read the other threads here, little by little you will learn how to make your way through this.  I do want to give you some pointers though, of some things I've learned on my journey.

  • Take one day at a time.  The Bible says each day has enough trouble of it's own, I've found that to be true, so don't bite off more than you can chew.  It can be challenging enough just to tackle today.  I tell myself, I only have to get through today.  Then I get up tomorrow and do it all over again.  To think about the "rest of my life" invites anxiety.
  • Don't be afraid, grief may not end but it evolves.  The intensity lessens eventually.
  • Visit your doctor.  Tell them about your loss, any troubles sleeping, suicidal thoughts, anxiety attacks.  They need to know these things in order to help you through it...this is all part of grief.
  • Suicidal thoughts are common in early grief.  If they're reoccurring, call a suicide hotline.  I felt that way early on, but then realized it wasn't that I wanted to die so much as I didn't want to go through what I'd have to face if I lived.  Back to taking a day at a time.  Suicide Hotline - Call 1-800-273-8255
  • Give yourself permission to smile.  It is not our grief that binds us to them, but our love, and that continues still.
  • Try not to isolate too much.  
  • There's a balance to reach between taking time to process our grief, and avoiding it...it's good to find that balance for yourself.  We can't keep so busy as to avoid our grief, it has a way of haunting us, finding us, and demanding we pay attention to it!  Some people set aside time every day to grieve.  I didn't have to, it searched and found me!
  • Self-care is extremely important, more so than ever.  That person that would have cared for you is gone, now you're it...learn to be your own best friend, your own advocate, practice self-care.  You'll need it more than ever.
  • Recognize that your doctor isn't trained in grief, find a professional grief counselor that is.  We need help finding ourselves through this maze of grief, knowing where to start, etc.  They have not only the knowledge, but the resources.
  • In time, consider a grief support group.  If your friends have not been through it themselves, they may not understand what you're going through, it helps to find someone somewhere who DOES "get it". 
  • Be patient, give yourself time.  There's no hurry or timetable about cleaning out belongings, etc.  They can wait, you can take a year, ten years, or never deal with it.  It's okay, it's what YOU are comfortable with that matters.  
  • Know that what we are comfortable with may change from time to time.  That first couple of years I put his pictures up, took them down, up, down, depending on whether it made me feel better or worse.  Finally, they were up to stay.
  • Consider a pet.  Not everyone is a pet fan, but I've found that my dog helps immensely.  It's someone to love, someone to come home to, someone happy to see me, someone that gives me a purpose...I have to come home and feed him.  Besides, they're known to relieve stress.  Well maybe not in the puppy stage when they're chewing up everything, but there's older ones to adopt if you don't relish that stage.
  • Make yourself get out now and then.  You may not feel interest in anything, things that interested you before seem to feel flat now.  That's normal.  Push yourself out of your comfort zone just a wee bit now and then.  Eating out alone, going to a movie alone or church alone, all of these things are hard to do at first.  You may feel you flunked at it, cried throughout, that's okay, you did it, you tried, and eventually you get a little better at it.  If I waited until I had someone to do things with I'd be stuck at home a lot.
  • Keep coming here.  We've been through it and we're all going through this together.
  • Look for joy in every day.  It will be hard to find at first, but in practicing this, it will change your focus so you can embrace what IS rather than merely focusing on what ISN'T.  It teaches you to live in the present and appreciate fully.  You have lost your big joy in life, and all other small joys may seem insignificant in comparison, but rather than compare what used to be to what is, learn the ability to appreciate each and every small thing that comes your way...a rainbow, a phone call from a friend, unexpected money, a stranger smiling at you, whatever the small joy, embrace it.  It's an art that takes practice and is life changing if you continue it.
  • Eventually consider volunteering.  It helps us when we're outward focused, it's a win/win.

(((hugs))) Praying for you today.


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