Recently widowed man with young children in london

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  • #29523 Report


    New to this forum. I am 51 year old man with children aged 11 and 8. My wife died 4 months ago from cancer, a month after being diagnosed. I haven’t spoken or had therapy as such yet and neither have my kids. I am holding in all my grief on top of fighting for support for my kids, running a house, dealing with their changing needs, loads of other issues. I am looking advice, support from anyone who is in a similar position but further down the road

    Possibly to meet up to talk, widows or widowers but especially any men in this situation. I have good friends but they can help to a point.


    Thanks for reading



    #29550 Report


    Hi Paul,

    I’m one of the forum moderators at Gingerbread. I’m sorry to read about what you’re going through, it sounds like it’s been a really difficult few months. Hopefully others on the forum here will be able to help. You could also give our advice helpline a call. Our helpline advisers will be able to give you practical advice and support on how to cope with your situation. Please follow this link for the helpline number and opening hours:

    Best wishes,


    #29570 Report


    Just wanted to reply too sometimes a voice any voice can help a little how’s your day

    #29571 Report


    Just wanted to reply

    #29579 Report


    I can’t remotely imagine what you are going through and I am so sorry for your loss and everything else you and your kids are going through. I can say that therapy has been my absolute saviour in the midst of my crisis. I’m incredibly lucky as I have private healthcare through my job and so had quick access to therapy.

    My husband decided he didn’t want to fight for our marriage and moved out 6 months ago. It was an incredible shock. We’d been together 20 years, married for 12 of them. Two kids aged 6 & 2. I thought we were a team set up to battle the world through all the challenges thrown at us. And then he left and moved away.

    I don’t think you can ever be prepared for the challenges thrown at you being a single parent. Especially when you don’t live anywhere near family – I have no family close by. But I’ve grown to realise, if we are all dressed / fed / where we need to be each day and my kids know I love them, that’s a pretty good day.

    I completely agree with your comment that friends can only help so much – no-one truly can relate to you unless they have experienced what you have. My friends try so hard to empathise but many of them just don’t understand. Are there any support groups for families that have lost a parent? A close friend of mine lost a baby to SIDS and The Lullaby Trust was an incredible support to her and her family, they were able to connect with other families who had experienced something similar. Is there an equivalent you could connect with?

    I wish you all the best. Am very happy to chat. Take care of yourself and your kids.

    #30018 Report


    Hello Pumpkin 62,


    i just got this as we have been on holiday and preparing for school this week. Thanks for your thoughtful response. Your situation has parallels and is indeed a type of bereavement as well. there is no hierarchy of grief.


    Ive spent quite a bit of time and energy looking for support. Either we aren’t in the catchment, its a helpline or they signpost me elsewhere to another resource I know about already. We have nothing locally. The 3 month wait for child bereavement counselling has turned into a 6 month wait. I have only had one session of psychotherapy. So I am struggling with my grief while still doing the day to day, trying to be there for my kids and figure out what life is going to look like moving forward. thankfully I work in the NHS and so I have some time to be off work without losing my job.


    We have an assessment this weekend with Grief Encounter, for family away days for bereaved children, but their offices are over an hour away – we live in south London.

    Thanks for the solid advice about what is important right now. I am beating myself up a bit that I’m not the fun dad I was, but kids need consistency and to know the basics will be done as much, or even more than, the trimmings of being a parent.


    Take care yourself.



    #30174 Report


    Hi Paul,

    I lost my wife in December last year so I am a little further on than you. In have a 14 year  old son. She passed away suddenly and was abroad at the  time  so the first few months were tough, with lots of issues to sort out. I never had any formal counselling and neither did my son. I did join an online support group called WAY, which is specifically for widows and widowers under 50, but I do believe they have an offshoot group for those just above 50. They also have good Facebook groups for those with children.

    I have been to a couple of meets but have struggled to go to most of them a lot of them meet during the day and I work full time.

    I am not sure I am close to ok yet but I am getting there, my main issue is loneliness and finding people who understand my situation, this is why I joined his site to meet like minded people who understand. I have good friends and family around me and my mum has been great and knows to some extent what I am going through having lost my dad 7 years ago.

    Anyway, if you want to talk just message me.


    #37773 Report


    Hi Paul, same thing happened to me last month, my husband died of pancreatic cancer 4 weeks after diagnosis and a chaotic battle. How is it going now? I live in NW London with my 5 year old daughter, I have found myself moving through the grief quite rapidly as a survival method. With house, business and school to manage I have no choice. I think acceptance is something you need to strive for, also time for yourself to mull over things.

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