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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

May 16th 2013 new
thankyou I guess I really don't know how to start I just know im lonely and I was married for 30 years everything Is new
you did help me a lot to understand thank you
May 16th 2013 new
I thought I might add something about crying in front of others. I absolutely hate to cry in front of someone else and will do anything I can to keep from doing so. This grief thing didn't seem to care. I was in the store one day and a friend I hadn't seen yet saw me and came over. She gave me a hug and the next thing I know I was bawling like a baby in the middle of the store, with people all around. I lost it in mass more than once. I lost it at work. And, I hated it, every time it was like a slap in the face lol. I cried in front of the doctor and made her cry. I cried in the counseling sessions and when we moved to the group it was my one big fear. I dreaded it and then it happened. One guy handed me tissues, another moved his chair a little closer and patted my arm. And, when I looked up, they were all crying too. The important thing though -- I survived it with my dignity in tact. Tears are a gift. I used to tell Pete that all the time. It was time for me to put that belief into action.
May 16th 2013 new
Another resource I used was Hospice of the Valley Grief Healing Discussion Groups. It is online support for many types of loss and filled with the most wonderful, helpful, compassionate individuals. They get it and for a long time, I didn't think anyone else did.
May 16th 2013 new
May I ask...how old were your children then, and how/where did they fit into all this?
May 16th 2013 new
My BIL's wife dropped dead one night at age 42. He attended group counseling but said it was horrible, because while everyone there had lost a loved one, some had died of old age, some of lingering disease, some of violence, and some by suicide. He said the experiences were so different that he found no common ground with any one.

Add to that the fact that he was only 40 and had young kids, and it's like one of the ladies said -- you feel out of place.
May 16th 2013 new
I appreciate everyone's thoughts and comments on this difficult and personal subject.

I was widowed at 42, with five kids under age 14 (two in diapers). I didn't have time for counseling, even if I had had any notion of where to find it. And if I had known, I would have been most interested in counseling for the older children.

I never really have talked to a "professional"...and sometimes I wonder if it delayed the mourning process. I found year 4 much tougher than year 2...and year 10 was pretty bad, too.

Thanks, everyone!
May 16th 2013 new
My children are all grown. My son is 26 and in the Marine Corps, stationed in North Carolina. My daughter Tori is 24 and married for almost six years now, she lives near me. Brianna is 23 also out on her own and lives near me. Our youngest Samantha is 21 and learned she was expecting the week after Pete was killed. She is the one I worry the most about, she and her dad were at loggerheads a lot. But, she seems to be managing fairly well and I think the baby helps. She lives with me currently. While the kiddos miss their dad tremendously, they have returned to their lives, which I wanted, but for a bit there they treated me like I had lost my faculties lol. They have a lot of friends and family, so they've had a good support base. And, we talk about Pete a lot.
May 16th 2013 new
I know losing a parent at any age is not good, and it breaks my heart when little ones lose their parent, but there were days when I had almost wished mine were still small and at home, because I would have had them to take care of. I don't know whether that would have helped or made it harder. But, the evenings can be so difficult and reexamining all the plans we had been making that will never be. . .excited that it was just us as a couple now, and not always with a kiddo or two in tow.
May 17th 2013 new
Marge,

How are your kids now? I wanted counseling, too, when mine were younger and maybe it would have made the process easier because at times it was just so very tough. After six years, It seems both my children found their own ways to deal with the hurt and loss. My daughter as been actively involved in her youth group and helping others that she sees as far worse off than her own situation. My son has poured his heart and soul into playing sports. I find both of these areas to be a positive place for them to grow and/let off steam. (Though they would have liked having their dad at home as much as I last night to help with my computer issues.)

For any widowed moms with younger children, I found the Moms in Touch prayer group to be an incredible place. To have other moms listen and pray out loud for your child's struggles is a true blessing. I spent many times sitting in a puddle because of it, but I have no doubt that wrapped so much protection around my kids and I at a very critical time. It also allowed me to praise God in a way I had never done before.
May 17th 2013 new
Thanks for your explanations.

I think that having to care for the little ones prevented me from mourning except for a few minutes here and there over the years. ("Okay, you can cry just a little bit, but only for 15 minutes and then you have to make dinner.") I think it wasn't until the youngest entered high school and I no longer had to drive, or to supervise Scouts, etc., that I had the "leisure" to address it. And with so much time having past, sometimes it seems like I have to try to remember what it is that I am mourning!

As for the older ones...my son was hit hardest by his dad's death, I think, and flailed around aimless and unhappy for a long time. But he met and married a nice girl who seems to be able to help him through anything. His sister (in the military, like yours) was tense and unhappy for years, but has met a man whose father committed suicide when the boy was 17, so they both understand grief.
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