Loss of my big brother

by Dolores

I lost my big brother almost 7 months ago to muscular dystrophy. I got to say my goodbyes and felt at peace. Unfortunately I live in the Middle East so had to return from home in Ireland after 2 weeks. For the first 5 months I was fine and then it hit me like a bolt of lightening. I didn't understand what was happening and thought I was going crazy. I then worked out that it was grief and it is truly crippling. The pain is unbearable to the point I can't cry and suffer from bad anxiety. In the last few weeks it's all been coming out and I've been sobbing uncontrollably. Have been seeing a counsellor for the anxiety but just need some reassurance that in time this does get better. The good news is that I go back home in 10 weeks for good. Everyone else seems to be doing fine. Maybe it's because I'm out here with too much time to think and no family support. My husband can't seem to understand and is of little help to me. I just feel so frightened.

Comments for Loss of my big brother

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Jun 15, 2014
by: Dolores

Thank you for your words Doreen. They really do mean so much and they make perfect sense. I woke up the other morning and finally it hit me that he isn't coming back. It's hard to believe that for 7 months I had been living normally. I've never cried so much in my life but it felt good to let it all go. I had a good day yesterday and then I worry that I shouldn't be feeling good. I think you are right though and I just have to expect that every day will be different and in time things will get better. The world feels so different now and I have to get used to a new life without my brother in it. Feels so strange but I have hope now. Thank you again. I hope one day I can give support to someone else like you have for me

Jun 11, 2014
Loss of my big brother
by: Doreen UK

Dolores you say this is your first experience of grief. It will be very confusing not knowing what the grief experience feels like and what to expect. This is an experience like no other. Since you are a positive person the grief experience would confuse you, because no matter how positive you try to be and even changing your thinking does nothing to alter the way you feel. The pain is so UNBEARABLE that you will be in so much pain that all you wish you could do is take some medication to feel better. Grief feels as if one is so beaten up you want treatment urgently to take away the pain. Days go by and you get in between breaks of feeling a little better then the pain starts all over again, assaulting you, confusing you. You may wonder if you are grieving at all, and when it will be over. We have all been where you are. Wondering if we are grieving the right way.
CRYING is the first experience of grief you will feel and it will get less over time. TAKE ONE DAY AT A TIME. Build yourself up by doing good things for yourself like PAMPERING YOURSELF. Do this every day and let it be a way of life. It is like putting ointment on a wound to help the healing. Sit tight and let the tears wash out the pain. You will soon start to feel stronger each day. You will have good days and bad days. They will get less. You will get your life back. This is important to keep this Hope, that change for the better will happen.

Jun 07, 2014
Loss of big brother
by: Anonymous

Hi Dolores,thanks for your comments.I know how hard it is to grieve and although I would love to say that it will get easier with time it is a slow process with ups and downs and good and bad days. I agree with Doreen that counselling is helpful or failing that just talking over your feelings with some one who understands is helpful. I joined a bereavement group and it was a positive experience.We were all in the same boat and hearing that you are not alone in this situation is a small comfort.The raw feelings lessen over time and I am almost a year into the journey of grief and I still cry daily but I am now more at peace with the situation. it is a process and as I said it takes patience.I wish you all the best, as some one said you have to feel it to heal it. I hope it gets easier for you.I sometimes try to think that mum is still with me in spirit and that helps me get through the difficult days when all I want to do is cry. good luck.Therese

Jun 07, 2014
To Doreen

Thank you so much for your comments. I do feel so alone out here and although I am going back in under 10 weeks it feels like a lifetime away. Had another bad day but I'm ok now. It's just so confusing.....just when you think you have worked it out then it changes shape again into another form. I am a positive person and I HAVE to get through this and I will but it's so difficult when I have those deep hours of despair. I was almost physically sick today because of the grief and then it lifted again. I get so afraid of what I am feeling isn't normal and constantly need reassurance and then I worry if I am grieving the wrong way. It all sounds so silly but it's my first time and I never expected this at all. I am so sorry about the loss of your husband. I do find a huge comfort from your words. I will never forget them. Thank you

Jun 07, 2014
Loss of my big brother
by: Doreen UK

Delores I am sorry for your loss of your big brother. You feel so isolated and ALONE in a strange country with little support and this will make your grief worse. Crying is good grief and will get less over time. But don't fear crying. What you are feeling is normal. Even seeing a counsellor is good because if we get stuck in grief a counsellor is trained and skilled to start the process of grief by helping us with blockages.
When you feel so unhappy with unbearable grief it can make us feel as if we will be like this forever and never recover. This is what grief feels like. But in time life will get better and you will get your life back. Don't rush the process of grief.
Many husbands don't know how to handle grief let alone support their wife/partners. Grief can often trigger off memories within them and they feel stuck. Perhaps going silent and becoming withdrawn which could make a wife/partner feel worse and feel let down.
I lost my husband to cancer 2yrs. ago. We were married 44yrs. He didn't know how to support me often. But I understood his reasons for being withdrawn from his own hurts that he didn't resolve and so I didn't look for support from him when I knew he couldn't offer it. It helped me to lower my expectations, and not feel that he didn't care. I armed myself with knowledge, self help books and then when I reached the end of the road and still needed help I went into counselling in my 40's. I have now reached a point in my life when I am content with knowing Who I am and how to help myself. But saying this People do need people. WE cannot survive well in isolation. WE do need each other on this planet. Counselling was the best thing I ever did in my life. I got my life back.

Jun 07, 2014
To Therese
by: Dolores

Thank you for your comments Therese. It means a lot to hear someone say that it is normal and that I'm not alone. I think reassurance is what I need most at the moment. The roller coaster of emotion everyday is so frightening at times and at the lowest points you think that you can't cope and then you do. I kept wondering how long this raw feeling is going to last or will it get a little bit easier? I just need some hope. He was my best friend too. I do feel at peace that he is no longer in pain or suffering but my heart is broken. I guess it is a good thing to be feeling the raw pain as they say you can't heal what isn't broken in the first place.

Jun 06, 2014
Loss of big brother
by: Therese

Hi I sorry for your loss.Yes we all cope differently with grief and I think we are numb for a few months and then we wake up to the reality of our loss.When my elderly mum died I was fine for a few weeks and like you the grief hit me like a bolt of lightening.People try to rationalise grief especially people who haven't experienced it and they will say things like she was old or he was sick or at least you got to say goodbye.There is nothing rational about losing a loved one and it is ok not to be ok of you understand what I am saying. I too find I am better around people who knew my mum and when I am around her home, when I am away from home it is worse. you will find that other people may not be fine really but sometimes it is easier to pretend that you are ok when in reality you are hurting inside. Give your grief time and more time and even when you feel you are moving on give yourself more time.i often describe grief as like having a baby a unique experience for every one so tell people you are not ok and that you need time. Be gentle with yourself, I try to give myself grief time every day when I cry and think and then I try to carry on as normal if I can.Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't. You are not alone.Thinking of you.Therese Ireland.

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