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How do people react when a loved one is terminally ill?

Often, people feel anticipatory grief when they know someone they care about is seriously ill. Just as with grief after a death, family and friends may feel a multitude of different emotions, including sorrow, anxiety, anger, acceptance, depression, and denial, as they adjust to the new landscape of their lives. Depending on the type of illness and the relationship you share, you may feel closer and determined to make the time you have left count. Perhaps you are terribly anxious about what's to come or so firmly focused on last-resort treatments that you continue to push away any thoughts of the end. Possibly you long for release or feel guilty and conflicted. Although not everyone experiences anticipatory grief, all of these feelings are normal for those who do.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.