Question: My husband is on hospice for esophageal cancer. I have been home since December caring for him. A part of me feels like I am waiting to die with him. I see no brighter tomorrows. Each day I hold on for him. What will be my purpose then? I need to connect to others that feel this terrible loss in their lives. I need a reason to want to live again. Is there a group for me?
Dr. Amy: It sounds like you love your husband very much, and that, of course, means you are one very difficult path. I encourage you to ask the hospice center for help. As well as taking care of the physical and emotional needs of people who have a terminal illness, their role is also to provide support to the patient’s family. They may offer counselling and support groups, and they can also refer you to resources in the community. The hallmark of hospice care is that it is designed to help the whole family and not just the person who is dying.
Life is a great gift. I encourage you to get the support you need to help you work through your grief so that, when the time is right, you can once again create for yourself a meaningful and fulfilling life. We never get over the loss of someone we love. However, in time and with the proper support, the intensity of the grief will lessen and you will be able to create a 'new normal' in your life where you once again can experience happiness. I know that hospice will be a wonderful resource for helping you through this very difficult time.
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