How do you get over guilt feelings after your loved one dies?

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I cared for my mom for 7 years in my home. She died Nov. 4th. I feel like there is a hole in my heart. I can't get over the guilt that I didn't do enough to keep her alive. I should have made her eat more, maybe she could have gotten better care in a nursing home and she would still be here etc...I put on a happy face for my family but inside I'm falling apart. How do I go on ?

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To the three of you, I am so VERY sorry for your loss. Try to reflect on what loving people you are and what you gave of yourselves for your loved ones. We cannot not feel regrets, guilt or longing for our parents when they are not physically here but they will always be in your hearts. You are wonderful people to have been such great caregivers. Blessing and prayers to all of you.
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My dad passed 10/26/11. I beat myself up for pretty much the whole past year. I too questioned if I had done enough to keep dad alive, was I just too physically and emotionally exhausted to make good decisions, was he ready to die? Everyone around me would tell me that I had done a wonderful job taking care of dad and had I not been taking care of him, he would have died much sooner. I think I have finally realized that it was his time. He was 86 years old, had his first and only surprise birthday party at 85, had alot of very happy years with his grandchildren, was able to watch his only granddaughter get married, saw all of them graduate high school and two of them graduate college, and had spent 23 years without my mom - the love of his life. Looking at him you could see how tired he was. Most of the time he was only existing. All of his friends were gone and two of his brothers were gone. The one thing that still gives me peace is that shortly before he died, he kept saying "mom, mom, mom". So I asked him if his mom was here. He said yes, she's about 5 feet away. I asked him if anyone else was with her and he said not right now. I told him that she was probably so happy to see him since it had been such a long time. I told him it was ok to go to her, go with her and to give her a big hug for me. That was the last conversation we had. I still miss him so much but time has given me the blessing to see things a little more objectively and I sometimes wonder how he remained so cheerful and positive with all of his health issues for so long. I can now remember more of the good times instead of the dreadful day he died. I can now feel glad that I was able to give him the one thing he wanted most - to stay at home right until the end. Time will give you peace. Grief is so very difficult but when you come out on the other side, you realize that it's so worth it because it means that you truly experienced love. Good luck in your journey. Take good care of yourself, eat healthy, exercise, do the things that make you happiest. Kuli
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My heart goes out to you and the only advice I can give is to put your guilt feelings in a box (in your mind or quite literally, like I did, write them down and put them in an actual box) and only get them out when you are in the company of family or close friends. Then you can talk about them, reminisce, and realize that we all have them to a degree. Unfortunately the clock cannot be turned back - we have to live with regrets and guilt. The comfort I have gained from this is the sharing and the knowing that I am not alone in my feelings. Other people give a different perspective and often I have ended up laughing over the 'silly' (but to me very real) things I have beaten myself up over. I hope this helps
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To Oct and Dean I am so sorry for your loss. My heart was aching as I read this. October it was just yesterday you lost your Mom and I know you have these feelings but just think you got to do those things with her for Christmas. I know it must be awful this time of year for you and my heart goes out to you - both of you. I still am tending to my father and know my life will not be the same after he is gone because I am constantly reminded of these past two years the ups and downs and YES we do all we can. More than some others do for them so never feel guilty about it. You did your best and God knows it as well. Blessings to you both. You are in my prayers and thoughts today and the days ahead. Hugs.
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Thank you. My heart goes out to you. I know deep down that I did what I thought was right. I just miss my mom so much. I know you know what I'm going through. It gets harder after the services are over and you have to get on with your life. Our lives were all about them for so long. You are in my thoughts and prayers. God bless you!
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mom died 12/28/12 at 95. i was her support as she lived with and i took her everywhere prepared meals etc. i to now look back and say could i have done more.now greiving one day later i realize she was telling me that God had tapped her on the shoulder and said get ready. mom put up christmas decorations early was baking a lot and held my hand when she had little strength. i have no family other than siblings having cared for my parents for many years. it is going to be difficult for me now being alone in the house.but as a catholic i know moms is in heaven probably arguing with my father.you did every thing you could. look back i bet there are things your mom did that she knew god was calling and you cannot change that. faith is important to me. my heathache is just starting. you are not alone god bless
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