My biggest fear has happened and I’ve lost my mum




I am 41 years old with 2 young children. My mum has had a very tough few years with splitting up with my dad, having to move and start life again on her own and as part of that she became very dependent on alcohol to get through day to day which has become very hard over the last few years.

I don’t know how long alcohol has been a part of mums life but I know that there have been times over the years where I have been worried, confused as to what is wrong with mum and also some confronting conversations about her drinking and trying to help her stop. I was always worried about mum injuring herself or worse.

My biggest fears have been realised as 3 weeks ago I found my mum dead at home which has been the biggest and most traumatic shock I have ever been through. I have so many emotions – What happened to her? If I got to her sooner could I have saved her? I can’t believe I’m never going to see her again? What else could I have done to stop her drinking…..The list goes on.

I guess the reason for posting is just to speak to others that perhaps understand as this is so difficult to talk about.

  • listener


    I am so so sorry to hear about your mum passing away. Losing a parent to alcohol can bring up so many complex feelings and questions. Being the person to find your mum must make this so much harder and more traumatic. I can only imagine the pain that you're going through.

    You wrote about the feelings and questions coming up; many of these surrounding how you might've been able to make the situation different. These questions are all very natural and common during bereavement, especially when your loved one has an addiction. I do want to say that you are not to blame for your mum passing away, and you are not to blame for her continued drinking. Sadly there is only so that can be done when a loved one has an alcohol dependency, and ultimately you couldn't have done more until your mum was able to accept your help.

    I appreciate that my words won't take those feelings away, but I hope that you take something from the reassurance that what you're feeling is natural and you are not alone in this experience.

    Do you have any support around you at the moment? Navigating your grief while taking care of your two young children sounds very painful, and I hope you have people to lean on.

    I hope you find these message boards helpful as well, and I wonder whether some of the personal experiences might help too? It's important to be conscious of how you are feeling and only read these if / when you feel ready, as it can be overwhelming when you can relate to others' experiences.

    Take very good care of yourself and continue reaching out when you need to. Remember that Nacoa's helpline is there for you too ( / 0800 358 3456).

    Warmest wishes.

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