Family reaction

Heart failure involves your whole family. Everyone will be affected by this condition. Fear, guilt and anger are all possible emotions that need attention. These are normal feelings, but dealing with them can be a struggle.

You may fear loss of control and changes in family roles, or you may have financial worries.

Guilt is a common reaction, especially for your spouse or partner. "Why didn't I insist that he or she exercise every day?" "Why didn't I insist on more healthy eating?"

Anger is also a common family reaction. "Why dad?" "Why mom?" "He's too young for this!" Anger is often an emotion that comes from fear of the unknown.

It is important to have support for your emotions. Your nurses,doctors, chaplain, social worker and cardiac support groups are important resources. They will help you and your family.

Source: Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Heart Failure, fifth edition, 1-931876-31-2
First Published: 10/04/2002
Last Reviewed: 12/10/2015