My Mum had been ill for two years when she died. I didn't know she was going to die, I had been sheltered from the harsh truth, although I knew she was very poorly.
When Mum died, there was a general feeling amongst the family of relief. As an adult I can see why. Everyone had watched my Mum suffering and in pain with terminal cancer. She was no longer suffering.
I on the other hand was confused. I cried, most evenings, and we all talked about my Mum, but the families relief turned into a lets get on with it attitude and that's what we did. I suppose I just got carried along with everyone else.
I felt a bit silly when I first contacted Cruse 21 years after Mum had died, but they assured me that is never too late to get help. They put me in touch with a local bereavement charity and I was put on their waiting list. 4 weeks later I was matched with a counselor, Emily.
Emily and I would meet once a week and I would talk and cry. After 21 years I had a lot to talk about and a lot of tears! I would go home after each session feeling, somehow, lighter.
Our sessions ended when Christmas came along and a series of events meant that we were unable to meet. It was then that I decided I was alright and didn't need to go anymore. I think I was probably wrong about that and should have continued. I am looking into going back to counseling.
Here are a couple of charities that I believe could have helped me and my family if they had been around when I'd suffered my loss;
Winston's Wish, the leading children's bereavement charity believes that the right support at the right time can help young people to live with their grief and build positive futures.The Way Foundation offers friendship and support to young bereaved people. They help widows and widowers rebuild their lives after the death of a partner.
I would advise anyone in a similar situation to go for counseling and get help sooner rather than later. I think it could have made a big difference to my life.