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This site is run by widowed people, for widowed people

Widowed Village connects peers with each other for friendship and sharing. The moderators, administrators, and others involved in running this site are not professionals.

Please don't interpret anything you read here as medical, legal, or otherwise expert advice. Don't disregard any expert's advice or take any action as a result of what you read here.

We're friends, not doctors, financial or legal professionals, and we're not "grief experts." But we are here, and we've been "there."

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Born in the 50s

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Comment by riet on October 28, 2018 at 10:51am

Dear friends, 

Suzan,  Melissa, Shelley, LP, Carlady, and John and everyone of this community, your friendship makes this sad time so much more bearable.

So many bright spots in this dark tunnel.  Thanks to all of you.

Comment by chef (John) on October 28, 2018 at 10:16am

Riet,

Sorry for your pain. Hugs from the southern shore of Lake Erie.

John

Comment by Patience on October 28, 2018 at 5:22am

Shelley, what a great idea about the mobile home community. And how wonderfully supportive your has been. Jan, I hope you can find the support you need. It must be very difficult to feel so vulnerable. Susan, I imagine it's hard to believe sometimes that it's been 5 years. I know I literally can't believe it's 6 years since I lost my LH. I feel like I should be making more "progress" in my life... but I guess I'm doing the best I can...

Shelley, yes, I imagine Wayne is with me too sometimes... John, I still talk to Wayne too... 

Comment by CarLady on October 27, 2018 at 12:15pm

Dear Riet, the first 2 years are most difficult because grief is so deep for us and others can’t possibly understand unless they have experienced same.  Even some family members still avoid me after 5 years and I assume they just don’t know how to communicate or want to make the effort. I hear about outings and events after the fact that I would have been invited to if Bill were still alive but now I am the odd person out.  It’s hurtful but I joined social groups in the last couple of years so I don’t feel I am missing out as much, to meet new people and to build a new identity alone. It helps. 

Comment by LP on October 27, 2018 at 11:52am

Ríete, I’m sorry that you had to experience this. Unfortunately, it’s very common. I find that even some close friends refrainfrom mentioning my husband, so I always bring him up. I refuse to allow him to be forgotten or to be “excluded” - as far as I’m concerned, our lost loved ones live on in a sense if we keep talking about them, and I will not let Chris go “again”. 

Comment by shelley on October 27, 2018 at 11:05am

I recently went to a birthday party for a friend's 70th.  Attendees were all couples that my husband and I hung out with.  No one mentioned John's name.  It felt like everyone was deliberately avoiding any mention of him, like he didn't exist.  But.....   don't know if I've shared this before-  Twenty years ago, a good friend of mine lost her son.  He was murdered.  And in the following days and weeks I supported her (sort of)- didn't know what to say or do but  I showed up, went to his funeral.  And then several years later I was planning my son & daughter-in-law's baby shower (my son and her son were the same age and friends) and I decided not to invite this friend.  I actually thought about it and decided that I should not invite her and should not talk to her about it-  because it might upset her.  She knew about the shower, our mutual friends were invited.  I didn't even try to talk to her about it.  Just assumed.  She called me before the shower and told me that she understood why I did not invite her and that she hoped it was a joyous occasion.  I think of that now when friends behave awkwardly.  It's easier to forgive their behavior having done the same thing myself.  It's still hard, painful being in the presence of silence and avoidance.  But I get it.    

Comment by Melissa on October 27, 2018 at 10:47am

Riet, I've had good friends tell me, finally, that they avoided me after Gilbert died because they didn't know what to say. They didn't want to upset me.

I told them all they have to say is hello. The rest will follow naturally. I understand how they feel, but at the same time, it makes me feel like a freak of nature. I'm not insane or breakable. Just be my friend and say hi.

I'm so sorry you had this happen, but I am so very, very proud of you for going.

Lots of love~

Comment by riet on October 27, 2018 at 9:48am

Dear Suzan, 

Thank you so much for your kind words. They make me feel warm again.

Hugs to you too.

Riet

Comment by Barzan on October 27, 2018 at 8:19am

Dear Riet,  So sorry this has happened to you.  I've had to adjust (painfully) to this behavior by friends and people who were just acquaintances.   They just have no idea of what to say or how to give you the right words that will show sympathy but not be committed to feeling your pain.  One friend told me years ago that she was afraid of saying something because she didn't want to make me cry or remind me.  I told her that I still cry but not in public as in the beginning of my grief and there is no reminding me because he lives within me always.  So, as awful as it makes us feel, we need to let go of others perception.  They just don't understand and won't until it happens to them.

I'm sending you a virtual hug across the sea.  Be kind to yourself.

Suzan

Comment by riet on October 27, 2018 at 7:50am

Coming back this afternoon from a wedding reception, I feel  completely mixed up and sad. Although most people there knew my husband very well, they avoided any conversation about him. I don't talk about my husband all the time. But I can't act as if he never existed. He is still my husband and will be forever.

I even had the impression some people tried to avoid me. 

I had heard about this behaviour, but it is the first time I experienced it myself so obvious.  

Rather hard to bear. 

 

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