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A place to learn, mingle, and share

This room is for those who have lost a spouse and need support or who can provide support to those who have.

Saint Paula is the patron saint of widows and Saint Stephen is the patron saint of deacons
Learn More: Saint Stephen and Saint Paula

It has been 17 months since I lost my Phil. I went on one date a year ago. I wasn't ready to let anyone touch me. As I contemplate another military move (civil service) back to the states in 29 days, I am considering the next chapter. Is it that hard to meet people in person? Is it realistic to think it is possible to find a fairy tale again? Is anyone having success on this site in terms of people my age? I am curious. I never played the game well before and I really do not believe in social kissing or dating just to date. If I know that a person does not carry the same values and lifestyle I have, then I keep them in the friendship zone, but I find that now that I am 50, there are so few options and the ones that there are are usually carrying a ton of baggage.

So, realistically, where do people my age even begin to look? Then, when the dating does start, how does one weed out the ones looking for a free ride, a Friday night special, or the weirdo-s. This was much easier at 21. There were options and bad behavior could be blaimed on age.

Sep 22nd 2012 new

Linda, It took me about a year and a half before I even started to feel alive again after my husband died. Then the lonliness started to take over for the grief. I have an adventuresome spirit so I took a cruise with my sister in law and brother in law and a cousin. I had a wonderful time just sightseeing and being around people. I would talk to someone next to me or ask a question. I joined this site and another and am corresponding with a few. I also talk to people at church and join in some group activities and talk to people at work. I have met some friends that way. I haven't met anyone special yet but I'm open to the possibility.


I guess my advice would be just to continue to do things, maybe stretch your comfort zone a bit and make friends. One word of caution though, beware of scammers. I learned from experience. Some are very good and can suck you in quickly. Check out some scammer sites and learn what to look for. It is pretty obvious when you know. I havn't seen any of that at this site but some sites are full of it.


Have fun and enjoy your new friends, male and female. Everyone is special in God's eyes so give people a chance. My daughter once said in an essay that life would be pretty boring and colorless if everyone thought the same, talked the same, did the same. I believe our differences are what gives the world it's sparkle. The Holy Spirit will help you know if and when you find the right one. Trust him. Anything is possible with God.



Oct 22nd 2012 new

(Quote) Judith-852712 said: Linda, It took me about a year and a half before I even started to feel alive again after my hus...
(Quote) Judith-852712 said:

Linda, It took me about a year and a half before I even started to feel alive again after my husband died. Then the lonliness started to take over for the grief. I have an adventuresome spirit so I took a cruise with my sister in law and brother in law and a cousin. I had a wonderful time just sightseeing and being around people. I would talk to someone next to me or ask a question. I joined this site and another and am corresponding with a few. I also talk to people at church and join in some group activities and talk to people at work. I have met some friends that way. I haven't met anyone special yet but I'm open to the possibility.


I guess my advice would be just to continue to do things, maybe stretch your comfort zone a bit and make friends. One word of caution though, beware of scammers. I learned from experience. Some are very good and can suck you in quickly. Check out some scammer sites and learn what to look for. It is pretty obvious when you know. I havn't seen any of that at this site but some sites are full of it.


Have fun and enjoy your new friends, male and female. Everyone is special in God's eyes so give people a chance. My daughter once said in an essay that life would be pretty boring and colorless if everyone thought the same, talked the same, did the same. I believe our differences are what gives the world it's sparkle. The Holy Spirit will help you know if and when you find the right one. Trust him. Anything is possible with God.



--hide--


I'm with you, Linda. And I've waited 2 years, it was still hard to make that leap to saying, "OK, I am ready, I'm going to do it." Somewhere, somehow, sometimes it still doesn't feel right and my grown up children (33 and 27) were the least supportive, which really surprised me.


Realistically yes, it is very difficult to just meet someone. Sometimes I think we ought to have some old fashioned "socials" in the churches, for singles of all ages to come have some punch, some dancing and just an opportunity to meet each other. I haven't dated in almost 40 years and I have no idea where to find available men my age. When I was young, they all just found me, but now, nobody's is finding me.

Oct 22nd 2012 new

Linda, everything was a lot easier at 21. ha, ha.

Nov 24th 2012 new

There has to be the element of adventure and trust. When young this was I think much easier, we felt invincible, strong, lots of time to maneuver to what we wanted. With maturity we realize our limits and those seme to be closing in - when we renew prescritpion glasses, look at the scale, find a new ache or pain, etc.

My belief is that nothing ventured is nothing gained, but instead usually results in loss. I have met some really wonderful women on this site. It drew me back, even though I am too busy with my dad's cancer fight, a new hosue under construction, visitaiton/custody court actios, and other distractions.

Loss of a spouse can be very painful. In my case, my ex had a duel personality that i discovered only in the ast year of our union after many other painful discoveries such as the beatings of my children in my absence while at work. I loved the projected woman, but when I found that person was merely like a projection - and being confronted with the core, real person, it was devastating. I grieved loss for almost 2 years. FOr those who have had beloved spouses and lost them I will suggest what a visionary told a mother who lost her young son to cancer, "Do not be sad. Miguel is with you every day and he is very joyful in heaven." I do not have even that.

The good news is that I hope to meet someone that will love me and that I can love. The rest is similar to other people I have read in their profiles, chemistry, common interests, etc. This effort shall necessarily include many rejections, indeed I expect everybody but a few to reject me. So, remaining open and vulnerable is a consciencious effort, that runs counter to what I could have naturally and easily done regarding all women. I am searching the world for the woman of my dreams in a certain sense, but I know any marriage MUST include certian elements.

NOBODY wants to be a replacement. I can't and refuse to be a replacement or treat another that way. If another perosn comes into my life she shall be unique, special, and deeply loved. My past loves I do not try to suppress because authentic love is eternal - and I am ok with that. Others might not be.

Any marriage I am part of shall include God as participant and member of that marriage. I can't tell you how many hundreds of women I have seen on various websites who describe themselves as "liberal" or "very liberal" and have no relationship with God. They want to try the fairy tale movie thing repeatedly even in old age! They keep getting the same failed results! Harvard did a big study and found that couples that pray together daily have about 1 chance in 1500 of divorce, regardless their faith. Otherwise divorce is practically certain.

I expected and have found especially on this Catholic website, remarkable women. Many of them, while we don't have chemistry, have given me sound advice and prudent counsel, prayers and support. I love that capacity women have so much of and men often don't. But i especially love the heart of women and clear honesty I have seen in many profiles or in messages. Maria's comment is one clear example - so human and refreshing and so true.


Do not be discouraged. Do not discard the beautyof your relationship with your past spouse. At its best, that relationshoip was a gift of free will toward authentic love, which I think we will all find is always eternal.

Nov 24th 2012 new

(Quote) Linda-756196 said: It has been 17 months since I lost my Phil. I went on one date a year ago. I wasn't ready to ...
(Quote) Linda-756196 said:

It has been 17 months since I lost my Phil. I went on one date a year ago. I wasn't ready to let anyone touch me. As I contemplate another military move (civil service) back to the states in 29 days, I am considering the next chapter. Is it that hard to meet people in person? Is it realistic to think it is possible to find a fairy tale again? Is anyone having success on this site in terms of people my age? I am curious. I never played the game well before and I really do not believe in social kissing or dating just to date. If I know that a person does not carry the same values and lifestyle I have, then I keep them in the friendship zone, but I find that now that I am 50, there are so few options and the ones that there are are usually carrying a ton of baggage.

So, realistically, where do people my age even begin to look? Then, when the dating does start, how does one weed out the ones looking for a free ride, a Friday night special, or the weirdo-s. This was much easier at 21. There were options and bad behavior could be blaimed on age.

--hide--
This may not be what you want to hear, Linda, but have you given a lot of thought about being ready to take the plunge? We've followed your writings for some time now, and it seems you may be trying to find another Phil. The other thought is that Phil is still a constant thought in your mind. It's difficult to move forward, if that's the case. He will always be a part of your life, but, his physical presence is no longer here, and he's not coming back. This all sounds harsh, but it was something that was told to me by a close friend. She was absolutely right. Yes, Linda -- reality is sometimes very harsh.

We can't really be open to another if we're still too attached to what has been. It's not fair to you or a potential suitor to try. Friendship? Yes -- very possible. A romantic relationship? Very difficult.

Are you secluding yourself to some extent, or have you built a wall around you that needs to be torn down? Most people are open to warm displays of genuine affection, even greetings. Some people aren't so inclined, and that is their right. But....an impression is left that the person may be "cold". Most people think of warmth and affection as synonyms in human relationships. A hug can be healing, even from a stranger. My own expression is that "Hugs is good". (Excuse the grammar.)

Meeting people? There are numerous venues -- online dating sites; for you, running events; Church and/or volunteer organizations, and so on. The problem most people have is that they overlook possible opportunities. There are even "by chance" opportunities that arise, and if they aren't seized at that very moment, they are forever lost. Chance encounters can result in the most fascinating "How did you meet him?" stories ever told.

Be open to these possibilities. It's not a big secret: be open.

While the past will leave countless joyful memories (and some sad, tragic ones in your case), the past is just that -- it's gone. There will not be a replacement. During the interim, you've been collecting your thoughts, gathering your wits, and re-inventing yourself -- all necessary steps to move forward. If you're truly not ready, what you want isn't going to happen.

A date with one CM lady bore this out. As we spoke, it became apparent -- to both of us -- that she just was not ready. She was not past her grieving process. It's something that can't be rushed, but it must be done. It's a rough period of time to endure, but it's really necessary to be truly ready to accept another in one's life.

People of all ages manage to connect. You're still young. There are countless examples of people in their 70's and 80's who get married. If they can do it, so can us younger "kids".

Nov 24th 2012 new

(Quote) Linda-756196 said: It has been 17 months since I lost my Phil. I went on one date a year ago. I wasn't ready to ...
(Quote) Linda-756196 said:

It has been 17 months since I lost my Phil. I went on one date a year ago. I wasn't ready to let anyone touch me. As I contemplate another military move (civil service) back to the states in 29 days, I am considering the next chapter. Is it that hard to meet people in person? Is it realistic to think it is possible to find a fairy tale again? Is anyone having success on this site in terms of people my age? I am curious. I never played the game well before and I really do not believe in social kissing or dating just to date. If I know that a person does not carry the same values and lifestyle I have, then I keep them in the friendship zone, but I find that now that I am 50, there are so few options and the ones that there are are usually carrying a ton of baggage.

So, realistically, where do people my age even begin to look? Then, when the dating does start, how does one weed out the ones looking for a free ride, a Friday night special, or the weirdo-s. This was much easier at 21. There were options and bad behavior could be blaimed on age.

--hide--


We all heal differently, on different time tables. For me, it took about 4 1/2 years before I felt single. Just the word "single" made me sick at my stomach until that surprising morning when I woke up and felt a balance in my mind and my heart. Until that time, just the thought of some man other than David hugging me made me nauseated.


Since that morning, I have seriously considered the possibility of remarriage. It has been almost fun to people/man watch. I have had a few dates and the gentlemen acted like gentlemen. I met all three on CM. I've gone out with peers who were single men and never really considered those outings as dates.

One of my daughters told me she had read somewhere that it takes one year for every eight years of marriage to find balance after the death of a spouse. I'm not so sure that is across the board correct, but for me it was. One of the surprises for me on CM is I have seen that all of us who are left alone are experiencing a loss, not just the widows and widowers. I once heard the reason we search out a mate is to experience God in marriage. It took me a while to wrap my head around that, but I have come to believe the deacon who spoke about this was right. I remember what loving and being loved felt like in a Christian marriage and I am hopeful God has that in mind for all of us who seek the love of a new spouse.


My best advice that I give myself constantly is to seek God in all things, be patient, and trust that He really does have it all under control.


Wishing you all the blessings God has to offer, Linda.


- Elizabeth

Nov 24th 2012 new
Ray,

We all love Linda. We have "watched her grow" through her time with us. I remember her very first post. I remember writing her about a year ago congratulating her on her growth. She has come a long way. She is ready to breath again.

From what I understand, and from what I know about Linda, she is just now beginning to WANT to date. I think that she is just now becoming "comfortable" with the thought of another man holding her hand and her heart.

I am a widow as well. It has been 4 and a half years. It took about 9 months for me do be "comfortable" with the idea of allowing another man to enter my life in any way. Like Linda, I had been married for over 10 years. We had a 22 year relationship, including a long courtship. The dating world completely changed since I had been "realistically" a part of the dating environment.

Over 3 years ago, I posted a thread asking everyone whether or not they felt that a young gentleman ((a classmate)) had "asked me out." He was 17 years younger than me. I had grown very fond of him. It was because of him that I realized that I was ready to move past the grieving stage and allow another man to hold my hand and my heart. We never dated. But, I am very thankful for him being in my life at that time. ((I have been in 2 relationships since my husband passed away. I am not currently in a relationship.))

I believe that Linda has done much to be able to give of herself in other areas of her life. Using that as a stepping stone, I believe that she will be ready to give her hand and her heart to another man.

Another part of her post concerned being a Gold Star Wife. She did not spell that out. Being the sister of a Gold Star Wife, who had her own "fairy tale marriage," and who has given of herself to everyone (many in her situation) that she meets, I have faith that Linda is well on her way to being able to be the survivor that she is, WHILE thriving in a new chapter in her life. Both CM Linda and my sister have many strengths in common. They have spent their widowhood enriching the lives of others. They have used their Gold Star status in a positive manner to improve the lives of men and women that they have never met.

My sister has dated many men who have used her because of her Gold Star status. ((It would not be proper for me to go into any detail about this.)) I know that Linda will appreciate that.

If Linda believes that she is ready to break through the cocoon, who are we to suggest that she stay in it a moment longer?

The story of the bumble bee:

Aerodynamically, the bumble bee should not be able to fly. Its body is too big and too heavy to be able to be lifted for any period of time by its tiny, unassuming wings. The bumble bee does not know this. No part of nature has ever told the bumble bee this theory. So, the bumble bee flutters its wings and flies anyway. Imagine a life without bumble bees!
Nov 25th 2012 new

OK, Linda, I've shared this before in the same room, but I want to give you hope and comfort. crossfingers hug

I must have molasses in my veins, instead of blood, because I have been widowed almost 14 years, and my re-entry to the dating world has come only in the last 5 years. duck Yes, I needed a LOT of time to grieve and to grow! At 46, I still had enough youth, beauty, and fitness to attract eligible men, but I had two young children to raise, and I wanted to focus all my efforts on them, and to safeguard their homelife in a sometimes perverted world. I went on two dates and nearly vomited each time, then told my friends to quit "fixing me up"! wide eyed You have adult children, so of course, you have been "available" to date again much more quickly after being widowed, than I was...Grief takes time, though...

Fast-forward 10 years...I'd kept myself busy all those years with my "choleric" independent/persevering/driven lifestyle of work, work, work, and my children were now getting ready to leave the nest--and I began to think "At last! I can date freely! Have a life! Enjoy a new love! I'm free!" clap hyper However, although I'd done the bulk of my grieving and crying and making adjustments to live as an independent woman, I had never really dis-associated my heart from my husband in my head. How could I? He will always have a place in my heart and memories, and I am better for that part of my life shared with him. Those first few dates felt very surreal, and I just knew I needed to let go more. I met a man from my distant past, and as friends, we spent some time talking. Little by little, friendships with men were made again, and finally the dating started slowly. The best advice I received from a girl friend was "Just practice being a woman in a man's company. You don't have to have a romantic involvement, just get used to laughing and discussing things with different men, and become comfortable in your own skin again, not as a part of a couple, and certainly not as someone else's wife". It's taken time and lots of practice (those poor guys!), but just this evening, I did not even think once of my late-husband, as I laughed and even cried a few tears at the end of the movie, Lincoln, with my date. We sat and chatted over coffee afterwards, and had an enjoyable time. Even the embrace at my front porch did not send me into a frantic, angst/guilt filled panic--rather, I thought to myself, "Oh yeah, so I remember how this goes...just like riding a bike!" laughing

Linda, it just takes TIME...and there is NO RUSH. You are 51, lonely, and in need of a mate again. DON'T FORCE IT. It is better to heal from the inside-out, and be ready for your next love, than to wrap up in bandages, and try to date unhealed. You'll meet many men in a variety of places, whether online, "in line" as at the store, or through work, recreation, volunteering, clubs, or family/friends/faith.

I know I have the capacity to be infatuated-- laughing --and Heaven knows that there have been a couple of men here on CM that I've had the pleasure of making a fuss over, Battling eyelashes as well as a couple in my own home town... Still, I don't know if I will ever be blessed to "fall in love" again, or share the beauty of a loving, sacramental marriage. I can only hope and pray that I will, but that is for God to determine. All I can do, all any of us can do, really, is pray, "Let it be done to me". hug

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