Anticipatory grief

Some carers experience anticipatory grief. This is the grief you feel when you are expecting the death of someone close to you.

You may feel sad, down and depressed or become anxious and concerned for your family member or friend. Or you may find yourself preparing for the death and beginning to think about what life might be like once they are gone. It is common to have thoughts such as: “How will it be when they are not here? How will I cope on my own?”

A long illness can give family and friends time to slowly get used to the person dying, to say what they want to say or to share memories.

Having time to grieve doesn’t necessarily make the loss of the person easier to cope with once they have died. Sometimes the experience of anticipating the death and spending a lot of time caring for the person actually makes you become closer to the person, and you feel intense grief when they die.


Listen to podcasts on Cancer Affects the Carer Too and How to Help Someone with Cancer


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Emotions and cancer
Here are some suggestions for managing the physical effects of the diagnosis, coping with the diagnosis, as well as how to get support.

Advanced care
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