Iain Dale, left in tears by heartbreaking call, gave inspiring words on loss

21 May 2020, 14:07

By Fiona Jones

This heartbreaking call about losing your loved one left Iain Dale in tears - but grief expert Lianna Champ gave some invaluable and uplifting advice that everyone needs to hear.

Jackie from Chelsea told the tragic story of losing her husband of 40 years. She had enjoyed a wonderful day with him, going for a swim, having fish and chips, and when she returned from the theatre that evening she found he'd passed away on the sofa.

Trying desperately to revive him, she said, "I was doing everything wrong." A neighbour helped by calling the emergency services.

"I couldn't let him go and I'm still like that after nine months. " Jackie said, teling Iain and bereavement expert Lianna Champ she copes by taking three and a half hour long walks everyday along the Embankment.

"I talk to him every day, is that normal?" Jackie asked.

Lianna told Jackie it is fine to talk to her husband each day, "That will keep him close."

Jackie said it is so hard to come home each day to an empty flat and while she doesn't have any family she is supported very much by friends - "but you hate talking to them about it because they've heard enough, you know?"

Iain's mother died in 2012 and he promised caller Jackie her life will feel more normal over time
Iain's mother died in 2012 and he promised caller Jackie her life will feel more normal over time. Picture: LBC/PA

"When we are young we are often taught not to burden others with our feelings so if we come home from school and are upset, our parents don't always listen to us when we are young and might try and distract us from our sadness," said Lianna, "if you just think of a time when one of your friends needed you, you were able to help, how did it make you feel?"

Jackie said she felt glad to help and Lianna encouraged, "When we are grieving we need to share that pain."

Just like when we share good news and joy with our friends, we need to share sadness, she said, both emotions need equal expression.

Lianna told Jackie to nominate a friend who she can pour her heart out to, and also put the radio on before she leaves the house so she won't return to emptiness - she also urged Jackie not to forget the beautiful day she had had with her husband the day he died.

"You've got a wonderful lifetime of 45 years to think on and what's happening now is your pain is stopping you from enjoying those memories," Lianna said.

Iain reminded Jackie that her feelings are entirely natural and shared that he has a picture of his mum eighteen inches from the microphone who gives him inspiration every night on the show.

His mother died in 2012 and said he hates the phrase "time is a great healer" but one day her life will feel some semblance of normality.