"No words can explain how it feels."

Lynne Dalgleish

In her films, Lynne discusses the various reactions she had when she first found her father collapsed in his flat and her ongoing feelings about not commencing CPR for fear of doing more harm than good. She talks about the resuscitation attempts made by emergency services and how she felt about these taking place ‘behind closed doors’.

Her father’s sudden death meant that Lynne had practical issues to consider and she reflects on what happened after her father was declared dead. Lynne talks about the help she received from various professionals and from her husband but still feels that she did not talk about things enough at the time. It is several years since her father’s death and Lynne now recognises the importance of seeking information and support to help her deal with her bereavement.

In this film, Lynne talks about what happened when her father had an OHCA and died. He had recently been in hospital and had undergone some tests on his heart but Lynne did not know what these were for. After discharging himself from hospital, her dad became very unwell. On the day that he died, Lynne went to visit him and take him some shopping. She found her brother snoozing on the couch and her father lying in his bedroom. Lynne tells us of her shock at finding her father and of her reaction to it. At first she didn’t want to accept that he had suffered a cardiac arrest and carried on with what she was doing. Her brother commenced CPR, which Lynne did not want as she had been told that resuscitating when you don’t know what you are doing can cause more harm than good. She admits that she panicked totally but she did manage to phone the emergency services. Lynne eventually collapsed with shock.

Lynne finds it difficult to express in words what it felt like when her father died. The family gathered at the flat and Lynne got a lot of support from her husband. She describes this time as being a whirlwind. The paramedics arrived and started to work on her father. As he still had a pulse, a further emergency team was called out. All the time, they were trying to resuscitate Lynne’s dad behind closed doors and she found not knowing what was happening very upsetting. In addition to the paramedics, there were police officers in the flat and it became very claustrophobic. Eventually, a member of the ambulance team came through and told the family that their father was dead. The police family liaison officer was very helpful and offered Lynne, as the main contact for the family, practical advice on what would happen following the death. Lynne took the opportunity to say good-bye to her father and give him a final kiss. She is glad that she did this and feels that it was ‘the best thing she ever did.’

In this short film, Lynne shares her advice for those who might find themselves going through the same experience. She regrets not asking more questions at the time, to help her understand why her father had his OHCA. She was not aware of any support that was available and advises people to ask what is out there to help them at what is a very difficult time. Lynne thinks it is very important that people are told where they can access information and support.

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