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Hello everyone!

My beloved father, rip, passed away suddenly exactly last month.  Ever since he passed,  I have been weird. I cycle between periods of crying,  sobbing,  getting just teary eyed,  or plain not feeling anything.  The latter bothers me the most because it lasts the longest  and makes me feel like I am betraying my father.  We were close, lived together,  have made great memories together.  He had been a fantastic father and  has sacrificed a lot for me.  So, why am I not feeling the pain,or anything? I was by his side when he died, for two days and nights,  without sleep,  I was glued to his hospital bed.  I begged him to wake up,  I held hope even when his death was staring me in the face. When his heart stopped,  I just quietly stared at him.  My father did not deserve this. I should be crying all the time.  I should be feeling the pain of this great loss. Yet,  I feel blocked.  Like something switched off and won't let me feel.  It's one of the most horrible things.  Worse yet, sometimes people make me laugh. I don't want to laugh. I want to truly mourn him. My father deserved at least that much.  

The only feeling that seems to be there is guilt and feeling horrible that I am responding to his death like this.  

What is wrong with me?

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Amela, my dear, I'm so sorry for your loss ~ but don't think there is anything wrong with you. Grief is unique to the person involved, even though certain aspects are the same for many of us. There can be many reasons why you're reacting as you are: your basic personality, your past experience with loss and what you were taught as a child about expressing sorrow, your relationship with your father, whatever support you have around you, and on and on. You don't say if you're working or in a situation where you feel compelled to "keep a lid on" your feelings or if you feel free to express whatever you may be feeling. It's also possible that you're still in somewhat of a state of shock and disbelief, finding it difficult to imagine a world without your father in it. Rather than passing judgment on yourself, you'd be wise to do some reading about the normal grief process, so you'll have a better idea of what tp expect in the weeks and months ahead and learn what you might try to better manage your own reactions. See, for example, In Grief: Feeling Disconnected From Feeling Bad and note the additional readings included there. 

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Marty T, thank you.  I will definitely check out the links and readings.  I have had my share of losses in the past,  but no experience where I am unable to grieve/feel my loss. Our relationship,  as far as I remember,  have been good, we we are close, and loved each other so much as father and daughter.  Perhaps it is something subconscious,  or my brain is not ready for the sadness to come. I really don't know.  😢 but I will read the articles you mentioned.  Thank you. 

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I agree with Marty, I've had grief support groups with people that also didn't feel anything or cry.  So long as you aren't purposely suppressing it, please don't worry about it, our timetables are all unique as well as how it comes out or affects us.   Sometimes it helps to memorialize them in some way, but the greatest honor we can pay our parents is how we live our lives. ;)

http://www.griefhealingblog.com/2013/02/parent-loss-continuing-their-song.html

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  • 2 months later...

Sorry for your loss, Amela.

 

Maybe your dad would not want you to cry and mourn his death but to feel happy for the life he lived and time you spent together. If it was you that died and he was fine, what would You want him to do? Mourn you 24/7 till he dies or continue with life being himself and doing what he likes to do? Would you be mad, if you saw your dad happy, laughing, enjoying something? What about if he leaned back stretching and said to someone, ahhh life is good? 

I bet Amela that you would instead be happy to see him happy, because you would know that his happiness does not mean he does not miss you or is not sad that you died. It simply means he is living the best life he can despite circumstances. 

I bet that throughout your life, if your dad saw you sad, he felt bad. He probably tried in various ways to cheer you up. I bet if some kind of misunderstanding happened and he accidentally made you feel sad, he felt really bad. 

So wherever your dad is now, I bet he would be happy to see you happy. He's your dad, you ain't gonna forget him!!!! He and his story in life and in death will always be part of your story. 

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I lost my dad less than a week ago. My grief is quite immense. I wake up in the middle of the night to have an anxiety attack. Part of me just wants to runaway. But I know I cannot runaway from the knowledge that my dad is gone. I’m lost.

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15 hours ago, Caleb said:

I lost my dad less than a week ago. My grief is quite immense. I wake up in the middle of the night to have an anxiety attack. Part of me just wants to runaway. But I know I cannot runaway from the knowledge that my dad is gone. I’m lost.

Sorry for your loss, Caleb. There are some very good caring and compassionate people on this forum whose posts you may find interesting and helpful to read. I'd encourage you to read different threads, even if their story is not quite like yours, we are all here due to the grief of losing someone we love so much. 

If you have time and feel comfortable with it, please share details about your dad and his passing. It's helpful for us to get a clear full picture of what you are going through. 

Edit: about panic attacks. I understand, I have had them caused by grief too, it's like the shock of it hitting you. I would personally and not professionally recommend trying to 'deal' with these naturally and not resorting to medication unless you simply cannot stop them at all yourself. I think we need to set time aside to let our minds wander at a relaxed pace reflecting on the death and the loss and the overall meaning of it all, as well as memories of life in younger healthier days. You are right saying you cannot run away from this knowledge now. It has happened. I still cannot believe it in my own situation, I can't believe this is my reality now. I'm sure you feel that too, like how did this happen, how did this come about? It is normal to think of all these things. You may find people in your regular life are sympathetic but you don't feel comfortable truly opening up and saying all you'd like to day. I recommend you try that here on the forum, writing about it will help you process it all. You won't be bothering us with your story, we will read it with care and sensitive to your situation. What I find is that reading other stories helps me contextualize mine in the overall bigger picture of life. At first it feels so personal like you're the only one suffering and maybe that no one cares, but then you find there's many people in similar situations and it's one of those deep difficult life lessons. 

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Thank you. Reading other people’s stories indeed help. In due time, I’ll tell my dad’s story. He was buried today. I’m still searching for the right time to tell his story. Thank you again.

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On 4/23/2021 at 9:40 PM, Caleb said:

I lost my dad less than a week ago. My grief is quite immense. I wake up in the middle of the night to have an anxiety attack. Part of me just wants to runaway. But I know I cannot runaway from the knowledge that my dad is gone. I’m lost.

I am so sorry, Caleb.  You don't say how old you are, I was in my 20s when my dad died, that was hard, I was a Daddy's girl.  He missed meeting my daughter by two months.

Back then there was no internet, I'm so glad for sites like this one!  Grief is often not well addressed in our society and we're left floundering.

We're here, when you are ready to talk about your dad.  I hope the burial was cathartic.  It can be hard as the finality begins to set in.

Anxiety can be part of grief.  I hope something in this is of help to you...
Anxiety Attacks in Grief: Tools for Coping
Anxiety and Grief After Losing a Loved One

Coping with Anxiety in Grief
 

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(((hugs)))

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Not sure if this is true for most people. Night time is hardest time of the day for me. I can function quite “normal” during the day but once the sun goes down, I get a knot in my stomach. 🥲😢

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I think it's pretty understandable.  I remember feeling like the night was closing in on me, knowing that a restless night was ahead and dreading having to try to go to bed.  It's really an unpleasant sensation.  You are not alone in this, not a bit.

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12 hours ago, Caleb said:

Not sure if this is true for most people. Night time is hardest time of the day for me. I can function quite “normal” during the day but once the sun goes down, I get a knot in my stomach. 🥲😢

Night time has always been the hardest to me too, when it started affecting me in the daytime with full blown anxiety attacks, that's when I sought help from my doctor (2008), I've been on Buspar (Buspirone) every since, it's a gentle anxiety drug, not an SSRI, doesn't leave me robotic or numb or alter my brain, not addictive, it just takes the edge off so I can cope better, I still feel anxiety, just not as much, easier to deal with.  I haven't had an anxiety attack since.  But then I had GAD to start with, grief exacerbated it!  I've learned to tell myself in the middle of the night that things will look better in the morning, and you know what (for me), it does!

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