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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

02/12/2013 new

(Quote) Al-939544 said: Linda I liked your comments on the timing of when to date. Geri had a chronic illness throughout our...
(Quote) Al-939544 said:

Linda I liked your comments on the timing of when to date. Geri had a chronic illness throughout our marriage. The last 15 months were particularly hard with physical separation, assisted living facility, hospital stays and eventually hospice. I feel like I belong to a subgroup called "Well Spouse Widowed".

One other comment I like to share is that I have learned from you Linda and others on CM already is to say “Geri” vs my old habit of my wife. I wished I knew that earlier as I learned too late to not say my wife in a response to a question in a emotigram.

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Guess I will need to learn that as well, I still say my husband instead of Pete. . .its hard I can remember when we were first married I was so proud to be a wife and I loved the way "my husband" sounded and felt to say it. . .silly maybe.

02/12/2013 new

Lauren yeah I used to like my wife but it is clumsy especially on CM. I was not going to say my deceased wife, ex-wife or former wife and I than I notice what Linda and others do when they post and it make sense to me. It does not deny Geri's existence but it also informs others that I am acknowledging that I am not married anymore. I can tell you from experience it did not go well when I responded to a question from a “never married” person via emotigram and I included the phrase “my wife”.

02/12/2013 new

I kept my ring on for four years afterwards. If finally took it off when I moved up a level in ref'n kids soccer games. The referee administrator highly recommended that we not wear any jewelery during the games for our own safety and the safety of the players. It took a few weeks to get use to the new feeling of no ring. The ring has been off for a year now and I don't think about it any more. I feel fortunate to have stumbled across a reason to remove my ring, otherwise I would still probably be wearing it (at least on my right hand).

02/13/2013 new

I lost my husband in Feb 2011 after a two year battle with cancer. Our kids were then 11 and 9. I kept my ring for about 6 months and took it off but my girls got very upset, so I put it back on. However after 18 months of his death, I realised I missed companionship and prayed and decided that I would be open to dating. This was when I decided to take my ring off and I put it on a chain close to my heart. 2 months ago, I started getting a rash and my older girl told me to take it off, telling me perhaps it was sign for me to move on. I know I will always love my beloved husband, he will always be a part of me, but I also know I can love again. It's like loving my two children, the heart expands. I still miss my wedding ring and God willing will wear another one in my life. rose



02/15/2013 new

(Quote) Cynthia-838348 said: To quote my local priest, and an awesome advisor "I find the deep grieving takes 2 years, ...
(Quote) Cynthia-838348 said:

To quote my local priest, and an awesome advisor "I find the deep grieving takes 2 years, more for some, but never less."

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I took my ring off about a month after my wife died. It began bothering me...I was NOT married, and the ring was a constant reminder of what no longer was.

I have to disagree with your priest. Numerous studies show that there is wide variability in the grieving process, and to say categorically that you can't recover from the death of a spouse in less than two years is to put yourself in a box. What's the point? My wife, before she died, encouraged me to marry and told me specifically she did not want me "stuck" in grief. So I have honored her wishes. Do I miss her? Of course I do, and will all my life. But I'm not moping around either.

02/15/2013 new

(Quote) Mary-251045 said:nna single person meeting a widowed person should show understanding and I cannot see why it should matter...
(Quote) Mary-251045 said:nna single person meeting a widowed person should show understanding and I cannot see why it should matter whether the ring is on or off. I think a widowed person should take as long as necessary before taking the ring off, if ever.
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To me, as a (now) single woman, a man who is still wearing a ring indicates to me that he is still tied to the first spouse too deeply to be ready to give a new woman what she needs and deserves as a potential spouse.

A second spouse deserves the wholehearted "giving" that the first spouse got. Until we're ready to provide that, we've got no business courting...and I think the presence of the ring is one of many indicators of readiness.

02/15/2013 new

(Quote) Ray-566531 said: We can't hope to have successful dates if we bring our lost spouses with us. .... Indeed...
(Quote) Ray-566531 said:

We can't hope to have successful dates if we bring our lost spouses with us. ....

Indeed -- "know thyself", as I previously stated. ....Who are we? What are we doing here? Where are we headed? Where do we want to be?

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EXACTLY.

In a new relationship, I don't want to hear about anybody's lost love. I want to hear about ME -- and us. heart

02/17/2013 new

Everybody is different - I had my ring on and off for a year or so, then round my neck with his crucifix, now it just sits in my jewellery box. Everybody is different. My mother never took hers off (she had no wish to meet someone else after dad died). The "not married" thing is very very hard to get one's head round. Early on, I even started having crazy thoughts like "if there is no marriage in heaven, does that mean he doesn't care about me any more? (I never had any doubt he is with God - better Catholic than I ever was!). I have often wished there was some kind of widow's ring we could wear. I hate the thought that when I'm out with my kids and no ring people will just assume I'm divorced or an unmarried mother (very snobbish of me). But wearing the ring doesn't feel right either. It's almost 8 years now and from time to time these thoughts still run rings round my head (sorry about the pun!)

02/17/2013 new

(Quote) Ray-566531 said: Marge -- you've echoed my thoughts. There comes a time when we think we're ready to go out ...
(Quote) Ray-566531 said:

Marge -- you've echoed my thoughts. There comes a time when we think we're ready to go out and conquer the world again. NOT. Not only do we have to get past the grieving stage, we find ourselves undergoing major renovations -- re-inventing ourselves. That is another process, and it takes time. Jumping back into the dating pool too soon can be conterproductive if we are hoping for a serious relationship. It is probably helpful to start dating for social companionship and to keep ourselves involved.

Comparing one's self a year after the loss of a spouse, then 2 years and so on can be quite revealing. Many changes will have taken place -- some subtle, others major. We need to be capable of standing on our own two feet otherwise we will find it dfficult to be supportive of someone else.

I'm not trying to discourage people from dating, but am emphasizing a healthy perspective on it. Too soon can become too bad. Companionship is helpful and certainly can lead to a meaningful, serious relationship later on.

A key element is to "know thyself."

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Ray I appreciate your informative and thoughtful responses in the forums. Craving campanionship is not surprising, but the first year is full of so many first and not the time to go beyond friendships for the sake of both parties. I have to wonder if the old tradition of a year of mourning is one of great wisdom protecting two hearts. The wedding ring however should be tucked away when the heart is ready and there isn't a time frame for that. Just my experience speaking as one who has been the date.

02/18/2013 new

(Quote) Marion-824292 said: Everybody is different - I had my ring on and off for a year or so, then round my neck with his ...
(Quote) Marion-824292 said:

Everybody is different - I had my ring on and off for a year or so, then round my neck with his crucifix, now it just sits in my jewellery box. Everybody is different. My mother never took hers off (she had no wish to meet someone else after dad died). The "not married" thing is very very hard to get one's head round. Early on, I even started having crazy thoughts like "if there is no marriage in heaven, does that mean he doesn't care about me any more? (I never had any doubt he is with God - better Catholic than I ever was!). I have often wished there was some kind of widow's ring we could wear. I hate the thought that when I'm out with my kids and no ring people will just assume I'm divorced or an unmarried mother (very snobbish of me). But wearing the ring doesn't feel right either. It's almost 8 years now and from time to time these thoughts still run rings round my head (sorry about the pun!)

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HI Marion,

You know since this thread started I have thought a great deal about my ring and Pete's which I wear on my right hand. Your comment about the widow's ring brings up something I have considered -- changing it for a Claddaugh ring, worn in different ways to signify different states of attachment or lack of attachment. I've even looked at several. I think I might think on it a bit harder. . .

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