Lessons From the 27 Club

Ed Green | Posted 27.11.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Ed Green

Ok, so I'm no musician. And clearly still alive. But I got as near to an insider view of this Club as you can get, because my twin sister Jenny died just days away from our 28th birthday.

Talking Openly About Children's Grief

Benjamin Brooks-Dutton | Posted 19.11.2015 | UK Parents
Benjamin Brooks-Dutton

When my wife was killed my son had just turned two. For the three years that followed I often worried about how he would fit in at school. What would the other children say when they found out his mum had died? How would the teachers handle his loss? What would it be like to be the 'odd one out'?

Why We Need to Talk About Bereavement: The Importance of Kevin Wells and Grief Encounter

Lydia Suffield | Posted 13.11.2015 | UK Universities & Education
Lydia Suffield

When I think of the people we grieve for, I'm always reminded of a quote from John Green's novel, Looking For Alaska, that seems to sum up my feelings on the subject: "Thomas Edison's last words were "It's very beautiful over there." I don't know where there is, but I believe it's somewhere, and I hope it's beautiful."

Google Can't Tell You How to Grieve

Dawn Vance | Posted 10.11.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Dawn Vance

When she only had a few hours left I desperately Googled the dying process so that I'd be prepared for what was happening to her. I'm not sure anyone could be prepared for that.

Goodnight Dad: The Call That Changes Your Life

Alison Bloomer | Posted 06.11.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Alison Bloomer

The tears came then. Along with the first of many gut blows that left my abdomen searing with pain, yet feeling hollow at the same time. It was like my stomach was a thousand steps ahead of my brain. Preparing me for the psychological pain to come - a pain nothing physical has ever come close to.

Slow Down, Your Mum Died Last Week

Naomi Barrow | Posted 05.11.2015 | UK Universities & Education
Naomi Barrow

Last week, I sat down with someone and was airing some of my frustrations, they looked at me and basically said "Naomi, your Mum died last week". Mum died and my body is grieving. It's why some days feel like sludge. It's why I'm so tired all the time no matter how much I sleep. It's frustrating and annoying but it's how my life is.

The First Days of Grief

Naomi Barrow | Posted 28.10.2015 | UK Universities & Education
Naomi Barrow

Mum died on Friday. She had a 'good death'. Those in palliative medicine define a 'good death' as one where the dying person is symptom free, in the place they want to be, with the people they want to be with. Mum died symptom free, in our lounge, with Dad by her side. Saying 'Mum died' might seem blunt to some, but that's what happened. Mum worked in palliative medicine all of her life and as a family we've always spoken about death and end of life care openly and honestly, so it seems only appropriate that we continue that when discussing Mum's death.

Three Months on and Some Magical Thinking

Julia Bryson | Posted 20.10.2015 | UK Parents
Julia Bryson

Yesterday was some strange kind of anniversary. It marked three months since my husband died. Three months - where has that gone? Who would have thought I would have survived three months without him. Well I have, I am here, and although I'm getting by I'm certainly carrying round a huge, huge sadness that Roger isn't here too...

Prince William Reveals What His Mother And Children Have Taught Him About Grief

The Huffington Post UK | Ellen Wallwork | Posted 16.10.2015 | UK Parents

Prince William, has said "grief is the most painful experience that any child or parent can endure." The Duke of Cambridge, who was 15 when his mo...

Thinking Out Loud

Naomi Barrow | Posted 18.09.2015 | UK Universities & Education
Naomi Barrow

Somebody asked me last week if each time I said goodbye to my Mum I thought about whether or not it would be our last. The very quick answer to that question would be 'no'. When Mum was first diagnosed, I did for a while, but not anymore.

Where Have the Past Five Years Since Jack Died Gone?

Lucy Herd | Posted 17.09.2015 | UK Parents
Lucy Herd

I often look back to the day it all started for me, the day I decided I had to find a positive way to honour Jack's memory, I can honestly say if I hadn't started my petition just six months after his death, I have no idea what I would be doing.

What I Learned About Parenting When My Son Started School

Benjamin Brooks-Dutton | Posted 16.09.2015 | UK Parents
Benjamin Brooks-Dutton

A lesson I learned a long time ago was that the build up to what one might classify as a challenging calendar date, tends to be far more challenging than the calendar date itself. Christmas, anniversaries, birthdays, each seeming to grow a little less painful as the years go by. I asked myself, Why would this be any different? It really was, though.

Ten Things You Need To Know Before You Get Old

Suzi Godson | Posted 08.09.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Suzi Godson

Although retirement is viewed as an individual experience, it has an enormous impact on marital relationships. In the initial stages of retirement there is a kind of honeymoon period where couples rate their marriages more favorably, they have better sex lives, and feel their relationships have actually improved. It doesn't last.

Things I Learned From My Parents' Deaths

Gill Paul | Posted 03.09.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Gill Paul

No one loves you like a mother. One of the things that preyed on my mind after Mum's death was that I'd lost the person who loved me most, but then it came to me in a powerful flash of insight that I still have her love and always will do.

An Open Letter to a Recently-Bereaved Mother

Leigh Kendall | Posted 28.07.2015 | UK Parents
Leigh Kendall

I am not going to tell you what to do, how to grieve. I cannot do those things, because while we may share a similar experience in common our individual journeys are so very personal. I felt so alone after my son died, and I hope this letter offers even a tiny bit of comfort to you.

The Emotional Pain of Words

Vic Lennard | Posted 15.07.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Vic Lennard

As children, many of us were taught the old adage that "sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me." But while broken bones heal, the damage done by hastily spoken words rarely does and the pain can be multiplied manyfold when words are left unsaid.

Why We Need to Reconsider How We Engage With Bereaved People

Leigh Kendall | Posted 05.07.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Leigh Kendall

Losing someone you love is difficult enough, living without someone you love is heartbreaking enough, living day by day is exhausting enough without the added frustrations and torments contributed by those who exclude and patronise those living with grief. The patronising comments and exclusion are usually unintended, I know. That knowledge does not make the sting any less, though.

Sex, Love and Death... Only One of Which Is a Certainty in Life

Alison Powell | Posted 01.07.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Alison Powell

When someone dies we are often shocked. Even if that person is ill and therefore their passing is expected to be imminent, I am still yet to lose a loved one to an illness and not be a bit surprised. I am taken aback, maybe slightly affronted.

In the End, There Is Only Room for Love

Poorna Bell | Posted 07.10.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Poorna Bell

There is a lot I have discovered since you took your own life. Firstly, while there is no hierarchy of death where one is better than the other, it's safe to say that living a long life is at the top while a short one is at the bottom. I don't know where suicide sits, but it's safe to say, it makes other people REALLY uncomfortable. I was advised against telling people how you died. And in the initial bizarreness of picking your burial plot and coffin (and being asked whether Robert was an eco-friendly man), I erred on the side of caution. But by this 30th day, I have realised when the worst, most devastating thing possible happens, you lose the energy to maintain any artifice.

Be Kind to Yourself

Libby Martin | Posted 03.06.2015 | UK Parents
Libby Martin

We are very lucky to be surrounded by such a large network of wonderful people who support us fabulously - unfortunately not everyone is so lucky - but, even so, it is a very lonely time. People offer support, condolence, hugs.

I Had to Walk the Great Wall of China Before I Could Face My Mother's Death

Linzi Marks | Posted 21.05.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Linzi Marks

Looking back I realised that if I hadn't joined the challenge and stood there at that point in time, I might never have addressed all of the built-up pain and emotion that was eating away inside me. It gave me the safe space I needed to open up and really start healing.

Why I Changed My Mind About 'Attention Seeking' RIP Facebook Statuses

Rachel Moss | Posted 29.05.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Rachel Moss

Dying Matters Awareness Week aims to get people talking about death and bereavement because, unfortunately, death is a part of life. In my experience, talking about death really does make bereavement easier - that includes posting statuses about loved-ones you've lost on Facebook.

Talking About Bereavement

David Ramsden | Posted 20.05.2015 | UK
David Ramsden

The loss of a parent, sister or brother is a devastating event in any child's life. The impact of bereavement can have consequences that last a lifetime, which is why it is vital that the young people affected get the right support at the right time.

Change or Die

Carrie Armstrong | Posted 18.05.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Carrie Armstrong

I don't remember whether this tattoo was Hebrew or Chinese. And I wouldn't be able to recall it again if l saw it now. I asked him what I meant. He replied. "Change or die". To this day it's the single most accurate sentence I've ever heard regarding recovery. Any type of recovery.

You Only Die Once - Why Dying Matters

Joe Levenson | Posted 18.05.2015 | UK
Joe Levenson

Whether it's through writing a will, making financial plans, planning for our future care and support including through making a Lasting Power of Attorney, or deciding whether we want to join the organ donor, all of us can increase the likelihood of getting our wishes met and reduce the chances of life after our death becoming even more difficult for the people we care about.