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‘I worry Tara will be taken from me’- John McAreavey speaks about his trauma after late wife Michaela’s murder


Remembered: John McAreavey with his late wife Michaela Harte

Remembered: John McAreavey with his late wife Michaela Harte

Remembered: John McAreavey with his late wife Michaela Harte

John McAreavey has spoken at length for the first time about his grief following the murder of his late wife, Michaela Harte.

Michaela was tragically killed at 27-years-old while the two were honeymooning in Mauritius in 2011.

John is now married to Tara Brennan and they welcomed their first child last October.

The GAA player said he would never use the term "moving on" when it comes to his late wife, and the trauma from her death leaves him worried that Tara will be "taken" from him.

Speaking to Brian Dowling on his podcast Death Becomes Him, he said: "I haven't really spoken publicly about my grief in that many settings in the past 10 years. It was a worldwide story. I think the fact that it was so tragic, that's what caught people's attention. We were only married a number of days before. At a time when you should be in the most perfect bliss of your life, your honeymoon, for something so tragic to happen, it's almost incomprehensible to people. People just felt so sorry for me and for our families."

He said "nothing can prepare you for grief" and that 10 years after the death of Michaela he would never use the term "moving on". "This concept or notion of moving on in life, always really bugged the life out of me," John said. "For me, it was always about moving forward with this being a part of my life. Trying to move forward in life, and have a place for this grief in my life, and it didn't give me the guilt that if I was trying to move forward in life, trying to have a life after the death of Michaela that I wasn't putting it into a box."

During the conversation about grief, the Co Down man spoke about the trauma of Michaela's murder on him.

"I had visions of what happened to Michaela come to me every day for a long time," he said. "They would come at the most random times, there didn't have to be something that triggered them. I could just be in class and they would come.

"Rather than trying to block them out, after a while, I said, 'I'm going to think about this for a while now that it's come into my mind. I'm going to think about it. I'm going to give it two or three minutes and then I'm going to say I'm done thinking about that now and I'm going to move forward with my day'."

He said he was a "very sad person" for a long time after Michaela's death, and that while the "wound" will always be there he is now in a place where there is "calmness, there is love, there is joy."

Belfast Telegraph