Coping with Husband's Death

mel03April 7, 2005


My husband recently passed away...I'm still in the "numb" stage. We were married almost 30 years...and it was always just the two of us. Of our friends, we were the youngest couple and he was the first to pass away. I need to talk about him, our lives together, etc. but it seems to make my friends and sister uncomfortable. A friend in FL is very comforting to me but I don't want to "unload" on her all the time. I've always been shy and it takes a while for people to get to know me. I don't work but have been thinking a part-time job may be what I need right now. I seem to be coping okay for now and hope I'll be able to recognize if and when I need some help to get through this.

How have others managed to get through that first difficult stage?


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I still have my husband but at 74 years he is showing signs of ALZHEIMER'S. His brother has full blown Alzheimer's. Now it is like I live with a stranger. I have not walked in your shoes so I can't ans some of your questions.
I would like to say that a volunteer job would be good for you and in time you could go back into the working world.
Volunteer jobs are so many from Hospital to Schools.
What ever you do enjoy your world and I am glad you had the wonderful years to enjoy the one person in your life.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2005 at 12:30AM
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Does anyone in your area have grief counciling groups. Many times churches, hospital social services, medical groups, YMCA, etc will offer this help. Also do you have any hobbies? Volunteer work could help. Look in your newspapers for groups that are asking for help. You could go to some meetings to see if that is what you would like to do. Do you keep books, like to keep records, are you comforble handling money (Treasures), would you prefer children, older folks or just just filing, and sorting stuff. By doing one job at a time, you won't get overwhelmed. Don't be afraid to say no to something you don't feel confident in. Are their any colleges or adult schools around. You could go to school and take fun and/or education courses. Art/Bookkeeping/ etc. You could make a appointment with a counsleor and take test to see where your special talents are. Do you live by yourself in a house? Who takes care of the repairs etc--do you feel safe by yourself. Are their adult living areas that give you more protection. Hope this helps.
Good luck and take one day at a time.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2005 at 9:39PM
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Mel, you might want to consider taking the time you need to settle your affairs and do what needs to be done around the house as you begin a new life without your dear husband. Don't rush into a part-time job, but eventually when you feel ready, I think it would be wonderful. Sometimes going to work can be a little mental vacation from the grieving.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2005 at 10:31AM
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Mel, I'm so sorry you have to go through this - especially if you are having trouble finding someone to let you talk about it. Sometimes when people have spoke to me about my husband they feel responsible for making me upset. He passed away in September and I'm upset whether they say anything or not. I reassure them that I'm glad they said something but I know they still feel uncomfortable sometimes. But my closest friends don't do that and they have helped me so very much. Go to Diane's post "Missing my Partner" and read my post there. Maybe it will help you, too. God bless - Leogirl

    Bookmark   April 9, 2005 at 2:55PM
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Thanks all for your replies. Like I said it's so new that I'm just so numb yet. Today I went to Lowe's and grocery store and had to leave. The only time I went to Lowe's was with my hubby. The grocery store was just a reminder that I don't have him to cook for anymore. He did enjoy my cooking and always thanked me for every meal I prepared. Just so many little things I took for granted and now I miss. I am thankful for the years and memories we shared.

I did do volunteer work before he was diagnosed with cancer but I don't feel I can cope with hospital volunteering right now. I know I'll get back to a routine and and that it will take some time. I have good neighbors and I intend to stay put for awhile at least.

Hospice At Home was supportive during his last days and have indicated they have a bereavement counselor available but, unfortunately, there seems to be only one and the demand is very strong for her time right now.

Thanks again for your helpful is much appreciated.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2005 at 9:42PM
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Mel, my sympathies go out to you. I still have my husband, but I can relate to your grief to a degree since I have lost my daughter and mom who were my closest female friends.
You've been given very good advice. Keep us posted on what you decide to do.

Here is a link that might be useful: Christin Cosby Memorial Web Site

    Bookmark   April 11, 2005 at 5:01PM
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Mel, you sound a lot like the way I feel. I really can't see the beginning of a new day with out him. Today is only the first month since he passed away.

We were married almost 50 years..he was my life.

Hugs, Donna

    Bookmark   May 2, 2005 at 10:07AM
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Hi Donnakt,
I wish I could say it gets easier every day...but not yet. His birthday and our anniversary were the end of April so those were rough days to get through. But I did...with some crying and some laughing as I remembered happier moments. I visited the cemetary and "talked" about some good times. That seemed to help.

Today I start a six week "Good Grief" session offered by our local Hospice. I am looking forward to being able to talk more freely about him. It's hard for people to understand life doesn't go on like before....lots of adjustments and changes. You miss the little spontaneous things that you did together as a couple.

During the day I keep busy or at least try ... the nights are difficult yet. So I guess we just take it one day at a time, try to keep busy, and think of happier times both behind us and ahead of us.

Take care,

    Bookmark   May 2, 2005 at 1:23PM
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Just thinking about you today, how did the "Good Grief" session go. I don't think I could manage going to anything like that yet..too many tears.

let me know how it is can always talk to husband is all I think and talk about..


    Bookmark   May 15, 2005 at 12:58PM
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Just saw your post...I haven't been on the computer lately. I hope every day is getting easier and better for you. I know it is such a diffcult time.

The grief sessions are going fine...I'm glad I decided to go. The days following the first couple session were hard....too many memories, regrets etc but it is getting easier each day. There are only 6 individuals in our group which is easier that having a large group I think. There is a lot of support. We all find that our friends, family have gone back to "normal" living and seem to ignore the fact that we need to talk about our loved one. They have helped me to cope with a lot of things. We have discussed the stages of grief and the fact that at about six months we will most likely experience another overwhelming time of grief. I hope it will be helpful to be prepared and realize that this is normal. We all need to grieve in our own way and in our own time.
I still cry over a lot of things...such as when I had to order new checks without his name, check a form for marital status as a widow...that was a hard one...I think it really brought home the fact that he's not coming back.

Take care of yourself ... try to do something that makes you feel good matter how trival it seems.
Hugs, Mel

    Bookmark   May 28, 2005 at 2:55PM
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Mel, the very things that you're describing are some of the things that my mom, as a widow, has had to face.

I'm very sorry for the loss of your dear husband.


    Bookmark   May 31, 2005 at 3:23AM
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I just lost my husband of 25 years on March 4th. He was my best friend and we were RVers and moved to SC. 3 years of fighting colon cancer and he was fine up until near the end. I have bad days where I can't seem to do more then get dressed and eat and God Bless Cats...I have 2. On the bad days I just take it easy and other days I just get on with things. If it would help you....I am thinking of Sept and doing training for Adult literacy program. One day a week at the library on a one on one with someone who wants to learn to read. Also maybe a water arobics....have to see...have COPD. We are both new to this so expect there will be many ups and downs and just have to be patient and if it gets really bad, see you physician...I have been on very mild antidepressant for a few months. Email me if you feel like someone to chat with. I do understand.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2005 at 7:39PM
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Hi, I know what you are going thru My husband of 10 years past away last year on 10/20/004....he was only 33 and now I am left with our 6 year old son.....I am still in Shock over the hole thing....Everyday I open my eyes and look for Erik to be next to me...but then it hits me that he will longer be there....I know in my heart his love is there.....I look at our son and see Erik...Corbin(our son) is the splitting image of his daddy. You could hold there pictures next to each other a swear it was the same person...I love and need to talk about him but my family and friends are pretty much tired of hereing about him....But I still talk of him all the time....If you would like to chat anytime I will be around to listen just email me

    Bookmark   November 21, 2005 at 2:10PM
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I lost my dear husband on May 9th and seemed to be getting through the days with less grieving until recently when the tears and sorrow have come back in full force. I was interested to read Mel03's comment that her Hospice grieving group said at six months overwhelming grief can reappear. I think reality has fully set in that he's not coming back, and I must now establish a new life without him. I found a link with a beautiful poem set to music that is somewhat comforting:

((Hugs)) to all who have lost their soul mates.


    Bookmark   November 26, 2005 at 10:29PM
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Coping With Grief
“All his [Jacob’s] sons and daughters came to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted. ‘No,’ he said, ‘in mourning will I go down to the grave to my son.’ So his father wept for him.”�"GENESIS 37:35, The Holy Bible�"New International Version.
THE patriarch Jacob grieved deeply over the loss of his son. He expected to grieve until the day he died. Like Jacob, you may feel that the pain of losing a loved one is so deep that it will never go away. Does such intense grief necessarily indicate a lack of faith in God? Definitely not!
The Bible portrays Jacob as a man of faith. Along with his grandfather Abraham and his father, Isaac, Jacob is commended for his outstanding faith. (Hebrews 11:8, 9, 13) Why, on one occasion, he even wrestled all night with an angel to get a blessing from God! (Genesis 32:24-30) Evidently, Jacob was a deeply spiritual man. What, then, can we learn from Jacob’s grief? Deep feelings of grief and sorrow when a loved one dies are not incompatible with strong faith in God. Grief is the normal and natural response to the loss of someone we love.
What Is Grief?
Grief can affect us in various ways, but for many the overriding feeling is one of intense emotional pain. Consider the experience of Leonardo, who was 14 years old when his father suddenly died from cardiorespiratory problems. Leonardo will never forget the day his aunt broke the news to him. At first, he refused to believe that it was true. He saw his father’s body at the funeral, but it all seemed strangely unreal. For about six months, Leonardo was unable to cry. Often, he found himself waiting for his father to come home from work. It took about a year before the full impact of the loss sank in. When it did, he felt terribly alone. Ordinary things�"such as coming home to an empty house�"reminded him of his father’s absence. At such times, he often broke down and cried. How he missed his father!
As Leonardo’s experience well illustrates, grief can be intense. The good news is that recovery is possible. However, it may take some time. Just as a severe physical wound takes time to heal, so it is with bereavement. Recovering from grief may take months, a few years, or even longer. But the acute pain you feel in the beginning will lessen in time, and life will gradually seem less bleak and meaningless.
In the meantime, grief is said to be a necessary part of the healing process and of learning to adapt to the new situation. There is an empty space where before there was a living human. We need to adjust to life without that person. Grief may provide a necessary emotional release. Of course, not everyone grieves in exactly the same way. One thing, though, seems to hold true: Repressing your grief can be harmful mentally, emotionally, and physically. How, then, can you express your grief in healthy ways? The Bible contains some practical advice.
Coping With Grief
Talking about your feelings can bring a measure of relief
Many bereaved ones have found that talking can be a helpful release. Notice, for example, the words of the Bible character Job, who suffered the loss of all ten of his children and endured other tragedies. He said: “My soul certainly feels a loathing toward my life. I will give vent to my concern about myself. I will speak in the bitterness of my soul!” (Job 1:2, 18, 19; 10:1) Notice that Job needed to “give vent” to his concerns. How would he do so? “I will speak,” he explained.
Paulo, who lost his mother, says: “One of the things that has helped me is to talk about my mother.” So talking about your feelings to a trusted friend can bring a measure of relief. (Proverbs 17:17) After losing her mother, Yone asked her Christian brothers to visit her more often. “Talking helped to ease the pain,” she recalls. You too may find that putting your feelings into words and sharing them with a sympathetic listener will make it easier to deal with them.
Writing can be helpful in expressing grief
Writing can also be a helpful release. Some who find it difficult to talk about their feelings may find it easier to express themselves in writing. Following the death of Saul and Jonathan, the faithful man David wrote a deeply mournful song in which he poured out his sorrow. This emotional dirge eventually became part of the Bible book of Second Samuel.�"2 Samuel 1:17-27.
Reading about the resurrection hope can be a real source of comfort
Crying may also serve as an emotional release. “For everything there is an appointed time, even . . . a time to weep,” says the Bible. (Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4) To be sure, the death of someone we love is “a time to weep.” Tears of grief are nothing to be embarrassed about. The Bible contains many examples of faithful men and women who openly expressed their grief by weeping. (Genesis 23:2; 2 Samuel 1:11, 12) Jesus Christ “gave way to tears” when he neared the tomb of his dear friend Lazarus, who had recently died.�"John 11:33, 35.
Working through grief takes patience, for you may feel that you are on an emotional roller coaster. Remember that you do not have to be ashamed of your tears. Many faithful individuals have found that shedding tears of grief is a normal and necessary part of the healing process.
Draw Close to God
The Bible tells us: “Draw close to God, and he will draw close to you.” (James 4:8) One of the principal ways to draw close to God is through prayer. Do not underestimate its value! The Bible makes this comforting promise: “Jehovah is near to those that are broken at heart; and those who are crushed in spirit he saves.” (Psalm 34:18) It also assures us: “Throw your burden upon Jehovah himself, and he himself will sustain you.” (Psalm 55:22) Think about this. As we noted earlier, many have found it helpful to talk about their feelings with a trusted friend. Would it not be even more helpful to pour out your feelings to the God who promises to comfort our hearts?�"2 Thessalonians 2:16, 17.
Paulo, who was mentioned earlier, commented: “When I just couldn’t endure the pain anymore and felt that I could not cope, I would get down on my knees and pray to God. I begged him to help me.” Paulo is convinced that his prayers made a difference. You too may find that in response to your persistent prayers, “the God of all comfort” will give you the courage and the strength to cope.�"2 Corinthians 1:3, 4; Romans 12:12.

Here is a link that might be useful: Watchtower: Coping with Grief

    Bookmark   July 1, 2009 at 7:23AM
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my beloved husband died very suddenly 3 weeks ago, he had a heart attack and i had to do cpr while waiting for help, it was very traumatic. I miss him desperately and noone I know can truely understand the depth of my grief and loss, he was my soulmate. we were together 3 years, married for 9 months, a second marriage for both of us, and knew we were meant to be together, finishing each others sentences, laughing at the same things. I am desperately sad and go from needing company to craving my own company. Is this all normal, or am I going mad with grief? His family have had no empathy and feel they have a biger right to grief than me as I was only with him 3 years, and have been of little or no support to me, He was my best friend, lover, soulmate.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2011 at 9:15AM
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My husband of 31 years died suddenly 2 months ago. I found him collasped on the bed after attempting to get dressed for the morning. The 911 operator told me in order to perform CPR I needed to get him off the bed and onto a hard surface which I was unable to do alone and had to wake my son to assist me. After getting him in the floor and attempting CPR it was apparent he was already dead. This was all happending during a ice storm and it took the police and ambulance awhile to arrive. The image of my husband lying on the bed half naked and my son having to also witness is almost more than I can take. Due to the hard economic times we lost our life insurance and we owned our own business which he did the manualy labor and I did the paperwork is now gone. I have no money, no income, had to move from my home less than a week later and am now living with my sister and her family. I feel like I am a masive burden on everyone along with the severe grief I am feeling. i had to pack all of my husbands belongings up and put in storage just a few days afer his passing. He was only 50 and we do not know what his cause of death is yet. I am so depressed I dont know what to do.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2011 at 11:18AM
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My husband of 28 years passed away last March 24. I was in denial and cannot believe that he is gone. There are times when I just get so depresssed and cry. Though I have children, they all have their own life and family. I feel like talking to someone about my husband everyday. He is my husband, best friend and soulmate. We were inseparable that's why when I go to places where we usually go,, I can't help but miss him.

I know how you feel because that's what I am undergoing now. I just pray to God that He will make it easier to us widows to cope up with our grief. I want to attend some sessions on how to cope up with grief of losing a husband but I think where I live there's no sessions klike that going on.

If you want to talk about your husband, you can just email me.

God bless all widows.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 10:31PM
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