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please please help me. not coping after losing my dad to brain cancer

(13 Posts)
rundown25 Tue 03-Nov-15 09:50:42

My dad was diagnosed out of the blue June 2014 after collapsing and showing signs of having a stroke with a massive gbm4 brain tumour. It's the most aggressive form of brain cancer and is terminal. He was given 12 months to live and lasted 10 months and passed at home March 26th 2015. I had just had my 4th baby and was exclusively breastfeeding so spent weeks months in hospital with dad and my new baby . Dad was so strong and did not want to die . He endured 6 brain surgeries and never complained once . He was my rock. He was only 54 and had 7 beautiful grandchildren and my wonderful mam who is now a widow at age 52. Life is so so cruel. I watched him go through the most undignified slow death and it has really affected me so so bad. I miss him terribly amd have nightmares every night . I'm on prozac but they don't help. I'm scared to go to sleep because the nightmares are so vivid and awful. I don't talk to anyone about my feelings however my gp is lovely amd understands. I struggle to get to counselling as iv 4 children and my husband is a farmer so at work 7 days a week. He does however say he will watch kids so I can go. I just need to pluck up the courage to open up to a stranger. Anyways I just want the nightmares to stop so I can sleep.I'm physically exhausted and overcome with grief. I can't stop crying and if I talk about dad I'm in floods of tears.even now I'm in tears. His brain tumour was so out of the blue and we all as a family rallied round and cared for him till the end. It was awful watching a young fit healthy man slowly die. I just miss him so much and wish some days I could be with him but I'd never want my kids to feel the grief I feel from losing a parent. I'm so lost ? Please someone help me amd advise how I can sleep ? I think the insomnia is sending me crazy

holeinmyheart Tue 03-Nov-15 10:12:20

Ok I think it is awful the torment that you are in. I think you would benefit from going on a Mindful course. You could probably get it free through your GP.
Also I think that there might be some PND in there mixed in with the grief. So that might be explored with a separate support group. Perhaps your HV has a group that you could be introduced to.
To comfort you all I can say is things will improve. Maybe you could do with a change of Meds. They take a while to kick in, but after that if they don't work then you need to change them. I definately think you need to tell someone that you feel suicidal.
Also I would get your HV to introduce you to ' Home Start' it is a group that helps families with DCs under five.

Remember this thought though. Your Father loved you too and would not want you to be in this situation because of him. Everyone around you is suffering if you are suffering. You owe it to your DH and DCS to get as much help as possible.

Try and do something practical every day, go out for a walk, scrub the floors..... You can still cry whilst you are doing it. But try and stop your mind from dwelling on what has happened.
Your Dad wouldn't want you to be suffering!
It will get better I promise you. hugs

rundown25 Tue 03-Nov-15 10:27:14

Thank you. My dad would hate me this way. It's the nightmares that I'm struggling most with . I'm surviving on 2 hrs a night and this is not a restful sleep it's when the nightmares happen. I am then to scared to go back to sleep. It's a viscous circle. I'm so so so tired but to scared to sleep xx

rundown25 Tue 03-Nov-15 12:26:48

Anyone else been through something similar ????

amarmai Wed 04-Nov-15 02:38:41

yes when my son died , i cd not sleep and howled with grief at any time day or night. He died in October so i've been going to the cemetery a lot again . I went again today and yesterday altho it was 6 years ago,. But i do sleep more of the night now and cry a lot less as the years go by. Time makes a difference. Nothing lasts forever. Do you think the prozac is causing the nightmares? I am wondering if you will be better without the drugs. When i get too distraught i go outside for a walk whatever the weather or time . It helps to have the sky above me. I get up when i cannot sleep and read or make something warm to drink and then go back to bed when i feel calmer. I also use a sleep mask and nap in the daytime and listening to music drowns out the bad thoughts. Keeping busy helps too. I have a rule for myself -if the thought enters my head that i should do -, then just do it chores, decorating, etc. With 4 cc you will have no problem keeping busy i'm sure. It also helps me to turn around my depression if i write down every single thing ,big/small that i am grateful for. It's amazing how many- starting with your family , home, -- It helps me to have a mantra to repeat inside my head or out loud . I don't want to say what mine is. it's too personal. Only talk about it when it helps you to do so. I never talk about the loss of my son in real life as it does not help me. I just say , i prefer not to talk about it. You will feel better gradually but it will take a long time. Do what is best for you .

amarmai Wed 04-Nov-15 02:39:34

don't know where all the scoring out came from. I meant everything i typed.

ProfessorPreciseaBug Wed 04-Nov-15 08:03:23


You have already started to open up. Perhaps it is easier to say things on an internet forum than face to face, but you have taken the first step.

One step at a time is all it takes to walk a thousand miles. Good luck

motheroreily Wed 04-Nov-15 10:52:27

I am so sad to read your post.

My mum also had a gbm4 it came out of the blue like your dad and she died 5 months from diagnosis.

I am sorry I can't offer much advice as I am still trying to deal with it myself. One thing that helps me sleep is listening to hypnosis and meditation when I'm trying to sleep, if I wake up in the night I put it back on.

I started cbt recently which has helped me control some the anxiety I've had since

motheroreily Wed 04-Nov-15 11:10:27

Also sorry forgot to say I do cbt over the phone. I know how difficult it is to be able to go to appointments when you have children.

VocationalGoat Wed 04-Nov-15 11:48:26

Hugs, love, support, and just loads of sympathy OP. sadflowers
I've been there. My dad was in the final stages of kidney failure while my uncle (who was almost like a brother, lived with us when I was growing up, was part of our immediate family) was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme. My son is now 13. At the time, he was one and I was divorced. What can I say? It's completely, utterly scarring. I've learned to live again without being totally dominated by fear, anxiety, guilt, and sorrow but the trauma was too much to bear. I have no words to describe what a tough time it was. I know your pain and your walk is all uphill. But not forever. flowers My uncle's death was harder in many ways because he was young and the diagnosis and illness was shocking and quick. It was brutal. Life was there one minute, then it was just gone. Taken. It took me 5 years to stop the horrendous thoughts and memories of that time from invading my mind. I had no therapy of any kind and I should have sought help.
My mum did seek help. CBT. For her, it worked wonders. Losing her beloved husband and baby brother within a year was enough to rob her of her will to live. We all felt that way. CBT helped her stop the nightmarish memories from creeping in. She learned over time to remember the lives of dad and her brother instead of being haunted by their deaths. I eventually came to that place on my own. But it took years.
I would definitely get some counselling. If anything just to help blunt the trauma and anxiety that inevitably comes with what you've been through and are going to go through for a while. flowers I am just too sorry and so sad for you. I wish I had better more optimistic words for you. You're in the trenches and it just doesn't get any worse. sad But it will get better. Your silver lining will show itself.

VocationalGoat Wed 04-Nov-15 11:55:33

amarmai Your courage is inspiring. Goodness now I'm in tears.rundown25 my uncle was also 54. sad

rundown25 Wed 04-Nov-15 11:57:17

Thank you so so much. Gbm 4 is the most horrifying harrowing death iv ever witnessed. I in some ways wish dad had of just had a heart attack amd it was a quick painless death (obviously I wish he didn't die at all but hope u get what I mean) . I'm not sure if the prozac could be causing my nightmares and I just assumed they wouldn't. I may ask my gp about this. Gp gave me propranolol yesterday and it seems to have calmed me down a bit. It's so exhausting fighting with my mind daily. I never knew grief could hurt so so much. Losing a child though that must be on another level so I salute you on how well you are coping. Hugs to you all. Thanks for the support. I think I do fine it easier talking on Internet than face to face.I cry all the time at the mere mention of the word dad so I'm super embarrassed to seek a counsellor because il be a snotty blubbering wreck. People keep saying time is a healer amd it's been 7 months but I honestly feel like it's getting worse ? Xmas is going to be so hard because my dad loved Xmas and even more so since becoming a grandad . I will have to look after my mam this year as she will find it tough . She is so so strong though and seems to be coping way better than me. She lost her brother 5monthe before dad died then she lost dad and then can you believe 4 months after dad lost her sister ??? It's such a cruel world . Thanks again for this support. It's helped a lot to know what I'm feeling is quite normal xxx

holeinmyheart Wed 04-Nov-15 12:18:11

I am an orphan and had lived through many people close to me dying. Some went too soon as well, hence my name. There is a hole in your heart when someone close to you dies.
Unimaginable if it is your child, as the grief gets worse as time goes by and yet also better, as you are able to bear it slightly more every day. It just wells up. People around you forget as well, so on birthdays and significant days, it is you that remembers.

However, I do hold on to the fact that I know that none of them would not want me to be howling and carrying on grief stricken in their memory. In fact I can hear them saying ' for goodness sake'
I didn't have nightmares but I had recurring dreams mainly related to my Father. But then he was a nightmare.

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