Loss of a young gay partner

I lost my partner of 5 1/2 years suddenly to a massive heart attack. He was only 33, and I am 38. We were the perfect couple, with a strong commitment to each other and our future together. He was intelligent beyond words, a gently and generous man who loved me with all his heart. He was my world, my soulmate, and someone I truly imagined I would live with for the rest of my life. It has now been 6 weeks since Doug died. I met his family only after he died and they have surprisingly been very supportive of me and understanding of my pain. Losing a gay spouse is very different, as the world somehow expects you to get over it and move on. There is not the same acknowledgement of loss from friends, family and co-workers.

My relationship with Doug was amazing, honest and built on mutual respect and love. I struggle to make sense of his loss, and don't really know where I should go from here. Being a gay male is very isolating, as I have no family around and just a few friends who I can call on very sparingly. I am looking for other young gay males who have suffered similar loss of a young spouse. There are very different dynamics at play when you lose a young spouse and are in a gay relationship. Hoping to connect with gay/straight people who can understand my struggles. Thanks for reading.

Comments for Loss of a young gay partner

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Sep 17, 2014
Sorry for your loss
by: Anonymous

Michael,

I am very sorry for your loss. It has now been 16 months since I lost the love of my life. There have been incredibly rough days and others that are just silent. The support of a few good friends who stayed by my side, and that of a good therapist has helped me survive. My family is very caring and supportive, but unfortunately they live very far away. I will suggest finding a good grief therapist, as it will help you greatly. Wishing you peace and strength.

Sep 16, 2014
None
by: Anonymous

Michael, I am very sorry for your lost. The first week or two, you will be very numb.. In time, I will tell you, your partner will leave you signs and signs to others for the grief does hinder connections... I believe love doesnt break through death.. It trascends death. Im not just telling you this based on a notion to make you feel better but based on my own self experiences.

The first few weeks will be the most tough and you will have to sometimes pinch yourself to know if this is a nightmare come to life or if its still a dream.

Again, my deepest sympathy to you and know there are others who are here for you and going through the same ordeal.

Sep 16, 2014
My partner just passed away
by: Michael

I just lost my partner three days ago, we were together for nine years. My life revolved around him and this wasn't our "plan." I'm in Arizona and he was deported to Mexico were we have a home in Rocky Point. It was hard being separated from him but we talked a lot and I went there as often as I could.

He passed away from alcohol poisoning. His alcoholism just kept getting worse and worse, it's a progressive disease. He just wouldn't get help - so many people tried to get help. I even made him stay with his mom who is very strict who has the ability to "make" him get help. So many of us wanted this as I didn't want to be a "widower" at the age of 38. His birthday was yesterday and he would have been 42.

It was so painful to watch him deteriorate through this disease. Many of his family and friends had no idea how sick he was or were in denial about it. They have no idea what he was going through, and I guess that is for the best.

He is Mexican and his family is very outwardly emotional. Last night I came back home to his birthday party and rosary here and was consoling all of his sobbing family. They probably think that I am cold but I can only grieve alone.

This morning I called him and it was so comforting to hear his voice and I'm waiting for him to call me back.

Any suggestions on how to deal with the reality when it finally hits me? It would be great to connect with people with similar experiences. Thank you!

Jul 28, 2014
I, too, recently lost my partner
by: Rob

I'm entering the 7th week since my partner of 13 years was tragically killed in a car accident. I am 43 and he was 39. We had just received the keys to our dream house the day before and were excited to start a new chapter in our life. I knew he was my soulmate the minute I met him in Rehoboth Beach. We were in a loving, caring, monogamous relationship - honored and cherished one another - and deeply loved each other. I still can't imagine my life without him - my whole world has been shattered. The pain is so great at times.

There does not seem to be a lot of support mechanisms for gay people who have lost their loved ones. If there is anyone in LA who has experienced the loss of their partner and would like to get together, I would welcome it.

Rob

Jul 16, 2014
Sorry about your loss
by: Joseph

Dear Laurie,

Sorry to have to read your story. It is good that you and your family are all supporting your son. I understand it does not happen all the time. Feel free to contact any of us on here as although stories are similar and circumstances slightly different, it might help knowing how other people in similar circumstances deal with things. Feel free to e mail at any time josephcalleja@mail.com. Take care!

Jul 16, 2014
Msg. to Laurie
by: Anonymous

Laurie,

I lost my partner over a year ago and may be able to help. You can reach me at ipulinka@kennesaw.edu
I am very sorry for the loss you have suffered.

Jul 15, 2014
Your loss
by: Anonymous

Hi Laurie. .. I am sorry to hear of your son's loss.. Feel free to contact me and I will be happy to be of support for I am going through the same thing.. Regards, Nic.. Let me know via email , I will love to be of support.

Jul 15, 2014
Loss of son's partner
by: Laurie

My son just lost his partner yesterday. They've been together over 5 years and were very best friends. His partner had chronic health problems and even so no one was prepared to lose him so soon. Right now my son is pretty numb & trying to stay busy. Is there anyone out there that could offer any advice on how to help my son. We're all heartbroken over this sudden loss.

Jun 20, 2014
reply to Doug's partner and hi to the rest esp Nic who lost partner so recently.
by: Joseph

Hi there

Thank you for reply and thanks everyone for sharing.

Yes it would be great if we had some support and private messages.

I know not everyone would be comfortable sharing e mail but here is mine: josephcalleja@mail.com

Feel free to get in touch.

Thanks for listening

Jun 16, 2014
Wishing you peace
by: Anonymous

Dear Joseph,

I am the guy who started this thread by posting the story of my loss. I am only about 8 months ahead of you in my grief, but want you to know that you will start to find peace. Every now and then I wonder how I survive the devistation in my life. The universe has truly brought me to my knees. Your loss will never be over, but you will learn to internalize your longing and keep walking. I am not very religious, and I don't believe any one theory about where our loves have gone, but I take comfort in knowing that we will someday be exactly where they are. The best advice I can give you is to surround yourself with family and good friends. Let the grief keep you immobilized when it needs to, but promise yourself to get up and go out after your have indulged yourself in your longing and misery enough for each day. Please know that you are not alone in this life sentence. Wish this site would allow for private exchanges of contact info., as talking with others experiencing grief really helps. Wishing you peace and healing.

Jun 16, 2014
Yoga and my practice
by: Nic

In Response too

"Nic,

Using yoga to heal your spirit is a very positive step, and one that will engage you in a physical and spiritual practice that will help you heal. I am just over a year out from my devastation, and have used physical practices of movement to help my spirit heal. The road ahead is unfortunately filled with ups and downs. Keep breathing and know that your loved one will watch over you in many ways. Some you will experience periodically and others will reveal themselves to you in time. "


Thank you so much for this inspiring and motivating reply. My yoga instructor has been a divine person along this path and I believe the last 14 months of my practice has helped strengthen me for this inevitable passing of my partner. I have heard many tell em that I will see signs of my partner revealing themselves. That is all I need to know to help me progress and continue this earthly existence. That our bond is so strong that even in his passing, I know he continues to be by my side forever as he always said he will..


Jun 16, 2014
Untitled
by: Joseph

HI all. 4 months ago I lost my partner of almost 8 years I am 32 while Simon was 38. It was after a 15 month battle with cancer. I totally feel derailed now, and do not know what to expect. It feels very lonely even though I know there are open doors wherever I look.

Simon was amazing support and he was/is the love of my life. We managed to exchange vows shortly before the end and that was very precious for both of us. We did not live with each other as we both were not open about our orientation or our relationship. However it had to be cancer for us to be open with our families and friends in an open kind of way. I do feel we lost out a bit because of this but I managed to experience true Love from a unique person, something that not every one manages in their life. From this angle i think of myself as lucky, but then I wish i had another day, month year, decade , whatever i can get...

I know it does not make a difference whether gay or straight, but when you are going through something like this in my head it feels like helpful to find someone with as many common denominators as possible to see how they are coping what are they experiencing and what to do next.

It does not feel like 4 months it feels like 4 years have passed, I know from the stories here many lost their loved ones suddenly and that is terrible. And very difficult. If that was our case, Simon and I would have not managed to have control over things which could only be established in time, during those 15 months precisely. On the other hand it was very disconcerting mourning for someone still living, with the first diagnosis, second diagnosis and finally death. And now I do not feel with it.

Simon s family were amazing with both of us, and my family didn't know about things til later on but they are very supportive as well, and will be meeting my partner s family for the first time in less than a month.

Reaching out to you all seems to be less alone though still I walk in the dark.

Thanks for listening.


Jun 02, 2014
Response to Nic
by: Anonymous

Nic,

Using yoga to heal your spirit is a very positive step, and one that will engage you in a physical and spiritual practice that will help you heal. I am just over a year out from my devastation, and have used physical practices of movement to help my spirit heal. The road ahead is unfortunately filled with ups and downs. Keep breathing and know that your loved one will watch over you in many ways. Some you will experience periodically and others will reveal themselves to you in time.

Jun 02, 2014
thank you
by: Nich

Thank you for the support. My partner , in this case, was older than myself. He was 49 and I am 33.. I return home on this Thursday where his ashes be cremated. I am going to get a little tattoe with a paw print on my shoulder that will be one coping mechanism. Also, I resume my Hatha yoga practice 2x a week. My yoga teacher is aware of what happened and wants me to get back as soon as possible to keep the healing going. In retrospect, the yoga over the last 12 months has helped me with this strength I now have.

I am uncertain if anyone here does yoga as a tool to cope. Just a humble suggestion.

Jun 01, 2014
Message to Nic
by: Anonymous

Nic,

I am truly sorry for your loss. Wishing you peace and healing.

Jun 01, 2014
Lost life partner/lover
by: Nich

I have lost my life partner two weeks ago to lung cancer.. It's still unreal . Patrick was my lover, best friend, mate, protector and our bond was absolutely amazing and food for the heart body and soul for the last three years. Now that's all taken away from me but I'm developing my own coping mechanisms and now being on this site, I'm sad to hear all the similar stories but I embrace everyone's grief as much as mine.

I'm engaging in a lot of heavy gym workouts, yoga, meditation, my career and family and some friends l but the hobbies keep me going. I see him in myself , I talk to him in my heart and I believe in his omnipresence. Much love

Nic

Aug 14, 2013
Similiar Story
by: Kristin

Reading about your relationship with your partner felt like I was reading about my own. I lost the love of my life 3 weeks ago. I am 26 years old and he was 24. We loved each other so much and were completely committed to one another. The respect was there, the intimacy, the passion, the attraction, the friendship... it was absolutely wonderful. I was living my dream for two years. My boyfriend was tragically killed in Chicago and it still remains a mystery as to how or why. I cannot explain the pain this causes me. It's not just that someone was stolen from my life... but the love of my life? The ONE person I feel I could not live without? How can this possibly be happening. I am still experiencing denial... along with all the other stages of grief all at once. I started seeing a counselor and she told me that what I am feeling is normal, as crazy as that seems. I also can't grasp getting "on" with my life, as this person WAS my life.. IS my life and will FOREVER be my life... but she also told me to shelve these thoughts as I don't need to figure them out quite yet... that has helped me. But with the passing of my partner, I too met his family (he was Indian and I am white and that created a conflict) but they welcomed me into the family with open arms and that made it so much better than it could have been. I guess the only thing I can offer is that we don't have to figure anything- let things just be, and at least we were lucky enough to find the loves of our lives at all... some people go their whole life without finding what we had, so at least there is that. If you want to talk, I will be more than willing to share my email with you as support as I am going to need a great deal of it as well. Please take care of yourself and I will wish for your peace, in addition to mine.

Jul 27, 2013
Loss of a young partner
by: Cathy

So sorry for the loss of your partner to a sudden massive heart attack. My husband of 33 years died the same way 1 year ago. The first few weeks after he died I was in total shock and couldn't stop trembling. I couldn't eat and lost weight. I understand it when you say that the support of family and or friends go out the window after a short time. I didn't have any support at all after the first few weeks from anybody. You feel as though you are all alone in this time of grief. Personally I would awaken a lot of days with the feeling that I hated everybody and everything. I often feel as though there should be some public awareness of the death of a loved one so that people could be more sympathetic towards us and that maybe we could be better prepared for this nightmare. I don't know. I live alone now and know how hard the death of someone you love is to deal with. Hopefully things will get better for you over time. The intensity of the initial grief gradually does decrease over time.

Jul 24, 2013
I understand
by: Still struggling

Hi.. I lost my partner of 19 years 15 months ago. I understand several things you have said. First that many of our work colleges don't seem to remember or think that our loss is equivalent to a married straight couple. Its a catch 22, you have to be normal at work- I mean you can't cry all day long, so they think-"oh, its not really that big of a deal".

I still cry every day, but it lasts only a few seconds. Also I still have grief attacks (these are several days of haunting memories, connections, and yearnings), but they are not a intense as 8 months ago.

One thing that really is hard to accept is that you never really get over the loss, but rather you get used to it. This is scary, but in a strange way also a bit liberating because you can stop wasting energy trying to find a solution to your pain.

The boredom mixed with the lack of desire to do anything or change I think is common and it is a form of depression. We also are sort of attached to the grief because it is a connection to our partner. I think it is important to try, even when you don't feel like it, to engage in new types of activities that are brand new.. in essence you are creating new pathways in your brain and new experiences to build from.

If you live within a few hours of a big city- join a grief support group and they may even have a gay grief support group. Meeting other who have gone through the same experience will open new doors in your mind and help a lot..

God bless, and remember that no one can take away from you the love in your heart for your partner and that your grief if a result of a strong love lost.. its the price we pay and it honors your lost love.... it sucks but it is the way it is.... maybe accepting that will will help in the struggle.

Jul 01, 2013
same here
by: Anonymous

I too lost my partner and soul mate after 20 years together in a gay relationship. It's been 19 lonely months since he passed.
It's hard when you don't have a family or children to share your grief. It was just him and I in very much our own little world for 20 years and now there is no one but me.
We lived in a rural area and had mostly straight friends who are all married with children and families. Although they are supportive of me I feel very much like they have their lives and family and I now have no one. I feel out of place even being with them.
I basically live in my memories as nothing seems to be happening anymore. It's like someone has turned the lights out.
I keep busy and work full time, yet I'm still very lonely and miss what my partner and I shared. Life is just an existance for me now, nothing else.
I feel like I'm waiting for something, don't know what? My boring routine is driving me crazy. Work, home, washing, mow the yard, cooking work and it's just repeat repeat week in week out. And yet at the same time I have no desire at all to change anything.
So yep I know where your coming from, it's tough and it's lonely. I miss him terribly! Living in the past? It's hard not to when that's all you have.

Jun 26, 2013
makes no difference
by: Lawrence

Gay or straight, when you lose someone you are devoted to it is the worst thing that can ever happen.
Everybody on this website has been, or is going through it and it is a devastating and shattering nightmare.
Read all our stories and see you have joined a club nobody wants to be a member of but unfortunately every survivor in a loving relationship will go through it, being gay does not exempt you from the pain and anguish of your loss..
Take care of yourself.
Lawrence

Jun 26, 2013
i understand!
by: Anonymous

My partner and I had know each other for almost 5 years. We moved in together in fall of 2011 and planned to be married. He had been struggling with what we thought was the flu for a few days and finally he relinquished and let me take him to the hospital on Good Friday (April 2012). His health quickly deteriorated (undiagnosed ruptured blood vessels in his stomach) to the point that he slipped into a coma, within 24 hours was placed on life support, and I had to make the decision to disconnect. He passed 10 minutes later on Easter Monday morning. Like you, my loss is incredible and at times still feels unbearable (even 14 months later). As you say, it is different for same-sex couples - even in this day and age. I do understand where you are coming from and the grief and struggles ahead. You are not alone in your journey. Please accept my condolences and support.

Jun 26, 2013
No matter your Orientation
by: Judith in California

I'm sorry for your loss. Gay or straight loss is loss. There is no difference. Anyine who thinks as you say is very small minded or stupid.

No one expects, nor should they expect ,you to get over your loss because you're gay. . But it's what you oerceive. There is no time lmit for grief. It's been 2 years and 9 months since my husband passed. We were married for 35 1/2 years . It is still very painful and tho I cry less and goforth every day , the void I feel will not go away and I doubt it ever will. IT STILL HURTS LIKE HELL. Plain and simple... I miss US.

God give you the strength to endure the horrible heartbreak of your love's passing and see younthrough to the peaceful accepting side of it.

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