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  • Not coping with the loss of my mum



    2 replies

    My mum was diagnosed with lung cancer on 28th September 2016 (her birthday). 4 weeks later she passed away in hospital with no family by her side. I had literally left the hospital an hour earlier. When mum was initially seen in clinic by the oncologist we were told her cancer was adenocarcinoma, a slow growing cancer. When she first passed away, I seemed to cope well, which I assumed was due to the fact that I was arranging the funeral and my mind was occupied etc. As the weeks went by I seemed to continued to cope, which I was concerned about, although I was in disbelief about the whole situation with it happening so quickly. In comparison to my dads death in 2003, I was absolutely inconsolable. In recent weeks, however, things have changed. I am so low, I have had no interest in getting dressed or going out, I have self harmed & I feel so guilty for not being with my mum when she passed & for not feeling any great emotions when she first passed away. I have two sons, 20 & 14, my youngest son is autistic & he is struggling emotionally to deal with the loss of his grandma. He is aware of her death & wanted to attend her funeral. Since then he has started to become quite verbally & physically aggressive at home & has become far more disruptive at school. I have spoken to my GP about my situation but they are reluctant to offer any therapy for 6 months as apparently I need to go through the normal grieving process first. With regard to my son, CAMHS have advised to just keep an eye on him. I wonder if there is any other advice you would be able to offer? Many thanks Mairi

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  • 4Sarah

    Hi Mairi, I hope you are ok? You sound like a strong lady thats used to coping. Use that strength to ask for help until you get it. I hear you and hope you and your family are ok.x

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  • Support


    Hi Mairi,


    I am so sorry to read about the death of your mum and the impact it is having on you and your children. Firstly I want to reassure you that there is no right or wrong way to grieve. The fact that you have reacted differently to the death of your mum and dad is natural. It is normal that our emotions can change over time, and many people tell us that once the initial organising of things like the funeral is over that they take a dip. If you are feeling low it important that you take care of yourself and you are more than welcome to speak to us on the Support Line at any time (tel: 0800 090 2309). Mind has a really good factsheet on self-harm and coping with the feelings which you can read here.


    For your youngest son I would take a look at the information we have on grief and children: As you son has Autism it may be more difficult for him to recognise and express his feelings. It may be worth you contacting Winston’s Wishes or the National Autistic Society to see if they can offer some more specialist advice.


    If you would like to talk about things in more detail please call our Free phone Support Line on 0800 090 2309, or drop us a line via Web Chat:


    Best Wishes




    (Marie Curie Support Line) 

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