Beware When Dating a Widower

You meet a widower who's interested in dating you. Should you be cautious?

Judy Anderson of Hacienda Heights, California, a widow, thinks so. "Dating will not heal wounds; time will. A widower needs family and friends if he is still in that place of hurt and depression.

"I've met some wonderful men online, but the healing factor kept me from getting involved. They weren't mentally available, therefore they were unable to put the energy into a relationship. Alone time is healthy, too," said Judy.

Any person who has suffered a loss needs time to heal and should avoid dating too soon.

From St. Paul, Minnesota., C.J. Turenne e-mailed, "I've been on the dating scene for three years and have found most men haven't healed from the loss of their partner, aren't ready for dating, and are trying to find the same lady as their partner."

Phyl Brumfield of Anaheim Hills, California, wrote, "Before saying 'hello' to someone new, you have to say 'goodbye' to that person who has been your best friend, companion, and lover for many years."

From Sharon, Massachusetts, Ellen Abelson said, "Dating before you're ready isn't fair to you or the person you date. I've been seeing a widower who is still madly in love with his wife. She died two years ago and he can't let me in. I have to start looking for another close friend."

A widow of four years, Shell Jenkins, 47, of Dover, Ohio, e-mailed. "I've been dating a 52-year-old widower of only one year. In the bedroom there is a giant picture of he and his wife on their wedding day. Plus, on her side of the bed, the nightstand is like this little shrine that has been set up."Shell enjoys the widower but is concerned because he wants her to move in. She says she's not jealous but adds, "I don't want to live with a ghost."After dating a widower for two years, Lauren Pallini of Rosyln, New York, shared, "He wanted everything in the beginning, was moving very fast, and then it all fell apart as he went back to grieving her. I shall stay away from a widower if it has been under four years since the passing of his loved one."These women aren't being critical of widowers as people. They are simply stating that attempting to date one too soon after his loss isn't wise.Some widowers begin dating within months after losing their spouses, but not Rick Michel, 67, of Modesto, California. Rick was married 32 years and he believes the quality of the marriage determines the depth of the hurt. "My wife and I were best friends and did everything together. We had a plan and now my life has taken a 180-degree turn.
"People grieve in their own time and way. After 10 months, I still spend Saturdays on a bench at the cemetery and can't stop crying. I'll never get over this; just maybe through it."A couple of women have called and asked me out. I wouldn't feel comfortable," said Rick. Bottom line: Women should proceed with caution when becoming involved with a widower. If he hasn't healed, there likely will be trouble down the road. Tom Blake is a syndicated columnist in Southern California and the author of Finding Love After 50: How to Begin. Where to Go. What to Do (Tooter's, 2003).
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Source: Relationships & Love

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