Telegraph e-paper

‘Becoming a midlife orphan made me feel anchorless’

Losing your last parent brings with it an intense sense of grief – but when you’re an adult, the significance of that milestone is often downplayed. Lauren Libbert explores why becoming an orphan at this age is loaded with complexity


LOSING YOUR LAST surviving parent unearths the very singular grief of being an orphan, of no longer being somebody’s daughter or son. It brings into sharp focus your own mortality now you’re ‘top of the tree’, which then permeates every aspect of your life, from your friendships and parenting to your relationship and career. What kind of legacy do I want to leave behind? Who do I want to spend the most time with? How can I make my life and time here on earth matter?

With 150,000 UK deaths during the pandemic, many midlife men and women have lost their surviving parent and now find themselves navigating life as an orphan and

In My Own Words




Daily Telegraph