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Red flags when dating a widower

These brave souls seem to share one issue in common: struggling to overcome the “fits and starts” initiated by their previously widowed boyfriends who emotionally withdraw from the relationship when grief is triggered. Insights From One Woman’s Journey As The Wife Of A Widower” primarily addresses women married to widowers, I do occasionally receive e-mails from women who are in serious committed premarital relationships with widowers as well.

After six months of dating, he withdrew and said he had to work out in his mind issues that were about him and his wife, and he wasn't ready to discuss them with me.

He is very close to his late wife’s family and they celebrate her birthday and death every year.

As such, you deserve to be heard.3.) HONOR his late wife by allowing his children their feelings. DO NOT talk negatively about their mother in their presence.4.) DO NOT question your boyfriend’s love for you or compare it to his love for his late wife.

You can "own" your insecurities without allowing them to become a wedge between you.5.) TALK TO your boyfriend's former in-laws.

In-laws such as these may also be motivated by their concern for their grandchild(ren).

They are afraid that the widower, in his loneliness, will latch onto anyone in a skirt and forget about his child(ren)'s feelings, thereby putting the child(ren) at risk for yet another roller coaster of emotional upheaval.

At this time, he feels guilty for a variety of reasons, such as the simple acts of:1.) Living ("Why do *I* deserve to live when “she” (late spouse/girlfriend/fiancée) didn't? ")2.) Being happy ("How can I be - or how do I deserve to be - happy when "she" is gone? ")3.) Moving on ("Shouldn't life just STOP because “she” is gone?

Wouldn't it be more of a memorial in her honor for me to remain celibate/single/miserable? ")Widowers such as this typically:1.) Have no one to talk to about their confusing feelings, so they stuff these emotions deep inside until an event (such as another funeral he attends, or the death/wedding/birthday anniversary of his late significant other) brings these feelings to the surface).2.) Have no idea how or where to find someone to validate their feelings and discover that they are a perfectly normal (but temporary) part of the emotional grief cycle.3.) Have family/friends holding them back and prodding their guilt.

They use guilt tactics by preying on the widower's obligatory feelings. We should all be together." What they don't realize is that everyone who has lost a loved one (including "Bill") deals with grief in their own way and needs to be able to work it out WITHOUT outside interference.

Some in-laws feel that by including the widower in their celebrations, they are doing "the right thing": helping him with his grief - "We don't want Bill to be alone today. It should be "Bill's" choice about how to handle those special grief occasions when they occur, not theirs.

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