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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."


Long-Term Illness

For those widowed by cancer and other illnesses or long term conditions that required caregiving.

Check the 'Help' tab for more guidance or send questions to

Patience (Diane) is your group greeter.

Members: 655
Latest Activity: Nov 19

Discussion Forum

Looking to Put Together Resources for soon-to-be-widowed

Started by Mozzie. Last reply by sueprnova Nov 19. 33 Replies

I found being the spouse of a terminal person very frustrating.  We were getting care at a prominent hospital, and there were social workers, but I didn't feel like anyone ever gave me useful…Continue

Grief and release at the same time?

Started by Germaine. Last reply by Bonnie Oct 23. 44 Replies

I am aware of two different forces acting from within me.  One is the downward weight of grief. The other is an upward energy that comes from the release from caregiving.  After 16 years of part time…Continue


Started by katjames. Last reply by katjames Jan 18. 12 Replies

Has anyone been to any retreats in the last few years that were especially meaningful and good????   I know there is Camp Widow, but I'm wondering if anyone has any organization they can recommend.…Continue

I'm Lost

Started by MickeysLove (Sandi). Last reply by my roses Dec 9, 2014. 19 Replies

So, 4 days ago marked the 2 month period.  I had joined a support "group" where you go and sit with other people and talk about whats bothering you. I had went 2 times, I'm not going anymore - I…Continue

Comment Wall


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Comment by goingon (Cynthia) on November 19, 2015 at 7:44pm

Bonnie - thank you for the kind words and good wishes.  I'm a little anxious about if I need help and don't have anyone here; I'm sure I can call someone if I really need it; and I'm a little anxious about make the time go by as I won't have the use of my right hand.  My first hand surgery was in 1991; my right thumb joint was fused.  I was in a cast for several weeks, and I was teaching school then, so I had the surgery the week of Thanksgiving so I wouldn't miss too much school.  I was an avid knitter and I managed to knit even with a cast on my right hand.  now I can barely knit without any injury or cast; my hands are just too painful with too much use.  So I'll see.. maybe I can get some reading done!  I don't want to be here sitting and watching t.v. all day... 

I hope  you get through this time okay.  I'm going to CA Thanksgiving day to see my mom; my brother was going to make Thanksgiving dinner early in the day, but not he won't be in town; I told him not to street - I'm going to see my mom; even though she won't know who I am most of the time, if at all.  But I know who she is, and I want to see her so that's okay.  Then I'm going to Texas to see my daughter and meet my newest grandson!  I can't wait to get there and see them, and my grandson who just turned 2!  My son in law has to go out of town for work so she'll need the help, and I'm anxious to see them.  I haven't see her since August...It's hard living far from family - especially my kids.  So it will be a nice trip overall.  

Comment by Bonnie on November 19, 2015 at 5:25pm
Thanks, Diane. I certainly need the encouragement. But I let my sister-in-laws do Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's for three years and just attended and this year I felt that I had to do more to pull my share of the load. My sister-in-law is also a widow and has had other heavy losses and she still carries on. I probably won't do much decorating--just the table for Christmas day. And the rest of the time I will just try to do whatever I feel I can. It's just haard to escape the holiday moods when I just feel like crying all the time. And maybe I am putting pressure on myself because I am fighting that and telling myself it's time to stop. I will work on not doing that! I will get away with friends for a week in early December and it will have nothing at all to do with traditional holiday things and I am looking forward to that.

Comment by Dianne in Nevada on November 19, 2015 at 3:06pm

I forgot to sign in as myself for my earlier post (under Soaring Spirits) - sorry for any confusion. 

Bonnie - We put so much pressure on ourselves to meet certain expectations ... sometimes those of others, but more often what we expect of ourselves.  Once widowed I think we need to give ourselves a break when we can. It's ok if others handle the holidays for a while ... it's ok to make new traditions or to do nothing at all. I ran away that first year too and it was the best thing I could have done for myself. The next year I was home but just didn't feel like putting up decorations. I talked to my adult son about it and learned he understood and was perfectly ok with me not decorating. So maybe have an honest conversation with your family about how you're feeling and you may learn that you don't have to do these things with your heavy heart. This season truly is not about all of those 'things' anyway.

Comment by Bonnie on November 19, 2015 at 2:15pm
Cynthis, I hope the hand surgery goes smoothly and your visit with your mother works out without too much emotional stress. It sounds like you are going to be busy all through Decmeber and that would be good for me and I hope will for you. I like to think of January aa a time for a new page and a fresh start. I'll be sending you best wishes and warm thoughts until we both get there.
Comment by Bonnie on November 19, 2015 at 2:11pm
I am dreading the holidays. I have always found them hard, but my husband was wonderful in finding ways of making them better. I have three children with December birthdays and my former husband's birthday was also just after Christmas. December was always grueling for me, as I tried to make everything story-book perfect for everyone and just ended up exhausted. After remarrying, my new husband helped take the pressure off and made the holidays nice for me. Last year was the first since he died and I got through by leaving Christmas day and going away for a month with a friend. I can't do that again this year and feel I have to pick up my part of the family responsiblity for Christmas after letting everyone else do it through the last years of my husband's illness and then last year after his death. So I will host Christmas dinner, and I will attend Thanksgiving at my sister-in-law's. But it will only be with a heavy heart.

Comment by Soaring Spirits on November 19, 2015 at 1:38pm

I appreciate your offer to help out in the chat room. I've set up 'events' here in WV so others who maybe haven't tried chat will know it's a place they can pop into on those holiday dates (Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, New Years Eve).  You can comment within those events any time you can spend in the chat room to help us cover it. I'll be around most of the time, except for Thanksgiving afternoon.

My son and I created a new tradition for our first Thanksgiving. It was just 2 months after Vern died and with no other family here and just the two of us, we decided to go to a restaurant. Jer made the selection - a Mexican restaurant at Sam's Town that my husband loved - and we've done that every year since. (And we share memories and toast Vern with our margaritas!)  One year he invited a friend who was alone to join us; this year my regional group co-leader will be joining us. It's been a really good thing for us and something we look forward to.

Christmas is casual for us - and we did that even before Vern became ill. I'll have things in the frig that we can grab and make a plate whenever hungry (worked well for them to fit in during football game time-outs). 

Comment by goingon (Cynthia) on November 19, 2015 at 10:00am

Terry, I'm not doing anything special on Christmas, but I'll be recovering from hand surgery.  I can be in the chatroom if I can type with one hand... or maybe I can figure out how to use my dictation thingy on the computer... I want to do what I can if it helps.  

Comment by Terry on November 19, 2015 at 9:57am

goingon....I have a feeling the chatroom is going to be a valuable resource to many of us this Christmas.  Although my stepkids, grandchildren and I are going out for brunch on the big day, I have already volunteered to work Christmas Eve and Boxing Day (Canadian holiday day after Christmas).  When I'm not at work I know I will be relying on the support of everyone here.

Comment by goingon (Cynthia) on November 19, 2015 at 9:42am

Oh - I can be in the Chatroom on Christmas, or Hanukkah I meant...

Comment by goingon (Cynthia) on November 19, 2015 at 9:41am

Dianne -

Hi.  Glad you jumped in to ask!  Don died Nov. 12, 2010; We obviously didn't do Thanksgiving; I wasn't feeling very thankful.  I didn't do Christmas that year; in fact, I don't think I've had anything for the holidays since he died, but last year and the year before I did light the Hanukkah candles; He was raised Catholic and I was raised Jewish, but he was the one who liked lighting the candles, and I was the one who wanted a tree!  I'm going to CA this Thanksgiving to see my mom.  Her Alzheimer's has gotten bad enough that the facility where she lived wanted her moved "upstairs" to the locked unit, but it was so depressing, we moved her to a board and care where she seems happier.  Anyway... then I'm going to Texas to meet my new grandson, and see his big brother and my daughter, etc. The "holidays" have come to be just another day to me.  

That's me; how are others here doing?  Dianne, I can be in the chat room for a few hours if you need anyone to just be there.  Let me know.


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