Being an adult orphan (Loss of both Parents)


Hi All,

A few months ago I lost my father to cancer. My mom died of cancer in 2004 so now I'm a 30 year old orphan. It's been three months and I find it hard to carry out regular tasks. I feel like Thor took his hammer and slammed it down on my soul. I have no energy. I have virtually no support since my family are just dicks to me. I have an outlet via 1 younger cousin but I need to talk to someone who's been in my shoes and can guide me through everything....I mean is this normal? to have no energy and feeling like the grief is just messing up my everyday life? and I know it takes time before I'll feel better but I was wondering how long it took some of you to move on after losing BOTH PARENTS....I want to be able to do regular tasks and wake up feeling okay..every day I wake up feeling dead...please help!

Comments (3)
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm so sorry.

Yes, I think it's normal to feel like you've been hit with a sledgehammer/run over by a truck/body-slammed by a sumo wrestler.

& especially when you've lost your parents;
this changes your very identity, & it doesn't matter how young or old you are.

My 86-year-old friend told me one day, after we went Christmas shopping, that her parents always gave her a doll for Christmas;
seeing people buying dolls for their children made her realize all over again that she was nobody's little girl any more.

I do urge you, though, based on some of my own experience, to make some actual, face-to-face contact with more than one person.

It's so easy to become isolated, & isolation does make things worse, & it prolongs the grieving time.

One key to making contact is to set yourself the task of getting out of the house & doing one specific thing every day, & make is flexible so that you can do it even on a bad day.

(One of my 'daily requirements' was to initiate contact with a real-life person every day.

Some days I would drop by a friend's home or office to say hello or to bring her a grocery coupon or a paperback book or some such, & some days all I could manage was to tell the grocery check-out person that her nails looked nice.

so even on a bad day, I accomplished my task).

Please take care of yourself, & be good to yourself.

I wish you the very best.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am so sorry! I wish I could help, but I am looking for the same answers. I'm a 29 year old orphan, so the same age, I lost my Mum to cancer in 2004 and my Dad just last week to leukemia after being his carer for two years. I have no brothers or sisters, no grandparents. No aunts and an uncle who lives on the other side of the world. No boyfriend either. I feel so alone, and like the grief is going to kill me. None of my friends understand, they've never been through anything remotely like this.
So I'll add my plea to yours, does anyone know how long until I can get out of bed in the morning?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hi KathAus and DeanVIk44 !

You are not alone. I Lost both parents while in my 20's. also. The fatigue, grief, loneliness, and obsessive thinking about the losses were nearly incapacitating at the time.

Your feelings are absolutely normal. You will NEVER forget, but with time, the pain does fade. For me it was about 10 months before I felt semi-normal again.

Herewith are some suggestions, but there is no shortcut through grief.

Get out a notebook and start writing down your thoughts and feelings. Nail to paper what you are going through.

Yoga class was helpful in keeping fit without expending a lot of energy.

Don't make any big decisions. If you are in school...try to make it work. If you are working...try to stick with your schedule.

I abruptly dropped out of college (Harvard no less) when my mother suddenly died, and never did get back in. It was a huge mistake. But, rational thought is going to be tough right now.

Be patient with yourself. Our culture is all about instant gratification and fast living. Your feelings have their own timetable. Honor them. It took me many years to get past the jealousy I had for others that had an intact family.

Browse Gardening and Landscaping Stories on Houzz See all Stories
Houzz Tours My Houzz: Parents-to-Be Whip Up an Apartment Overhaul, Hold the Color
Scandinavian style mixes with a minimalist palette to create a soothing, clutter-free interior for this new family's Netherlands rental
Full Story
Pets How to Help Your Dog Be a Good Neighbor
Good fences certainly help, but be sure to introduce your pup to the neighbors and check in from time to time
Full Story
Life Tell Us: Do You Know How to Live With Your Parents?
If you've tried multigenerational living under one roof, we'd love to hear the details
Full Story
Inspiration for some backyard chats
Inspiration for a warm welcome
Inspiration for dinner time under the stars
Inspiration for a little quality time
Inspiration for making that best pizza ever
Step into a Ferguson Showroom and you'll be surrounded by the latest styles in kitchen, bath and lighting design... Read More