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Long-Term Illness

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

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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 Maggie on August 3, 2015 at 3:12pm
Again I feel so similar. MFARM I think your stats are correct. Even at only married 27 yrs,I married late (39) and he's just simply the only one I want ever. I'm more sure of that as time goes by. I have a brother an hour away who he and my SIL are pulling away big time...also a long story. And I've had two lady friends in my neighborhood turn on me ( one just recently when I had a dear friend from out of state move in with me to share my home and for us to grow old together in companionship.) why are people just plain mean sometimes? I have been under an unbelievable amount of stress lately that so adds to the normal grief process that is still ongoing. I even started with a therapist last week that I hope helps. She wants me to try antidepressants, but I'm leary, but I've got to do something or I'm not going to make it. I feel myself just being pulled under. Oh Cynthia, 57 is so very young! For those that can find love, yes I'm happy for them. I just feel too damaged for it now....sorry to be a downer
Comment by goingon (Cynthia) on August 3, 2015 at 2:14pm


54 years - wow!  Congratulations on that, but yes, you echo my sentiments.  We were married 31 years, 8 months and 12 days.  Don was only 57 when he died.  I have one family member 2 hours away but he won't talk to me... long story.

Comment by MFARM on August 3, 2015 at 11:46am

I think the stats say 70% of men remarry and only 30 % of women.  As my mind floats to my husband no matter what I'm doing or who I'm with, can't imagine that would be good for a new relationship. We were married almost 54 years. I'm a very active person and stay busy. I also have a great  family. Closest members are 50 miles, but we still do al lot of things together, even trips. However, this is wonderful but nothing fills that hole left by the missing person. He really was my  better half.  No one or activity can take his place. Probably not a second husband. Any men I know seem like good friends but not  husband  material. Yesterday would have been our 57th anniversary. Went to a class reunion two nights ago and there were three other widows at my table all feeling the same.  No one could replace that one missing love. More power  and congratulations to anyone who can find someone and make it work. I'm happy for you. Somehow they find a new place in their heart for companionship.

Comment by goingon (Cynthia) on August 3, 2015 at 11:25am

Dave55 -

I'm happy for you that you've found love again.  I know Don would have wanted me to be happy if that were to happen to me; I certainly would have wanted him to find love again if I had been the one who died.  I'm truly happy for those who have found love again; like Michele Neff Hernandez!  When I led bereavement groups for hospice, the patterns I noticed were that men who had been happily married seemed to get back into dating again sooner than women did.  That's just anecdotal; I don't have any stats to back it up.  For me personally, in the past 4 years, I've met two men I was attracted to.  For reasons such as religion (on one man's part) and distance in another situation, there was no relationship other than being friends - and having friends is good, too.  But whenever I think of being with a man other than Don, I have this visceral reaction.  And maybe there is a time when one is "ready"; but maybe it doesn't happen to everyone, either.  I've known so many widowed women who have told me they couldn't be in another relationship.  Some people just meet others and it clicks; some don't.  I'm glad you've clicked with someone.  I hope it works out for you.  

Comment by Dave55 on August 3, 2015 at 9:36am

Maggie, I'm also one who started dating and have found love after 6 months.  We all grieve in our own way and should not judge how and when others move forward after the death of our loved one.  To me I know my wife would not not be happy, and might be horrified even, if I was bitter and sad at her passing.  She wanted to experience so much of life.  So I feel I honor her memory and love be doing so and would be disrespectful of her memory if I didn't.

I suspect that in addition to keeping ourselves physically fit and active we must do the same mentally as well, or like being prone to injuries, our spirit also finds it harder to cope with life.  I went to Camp Widow and meetup groups in my area, forced myself to get out into our great cathedrals of nature and wonder.  That allowed me to open myself to others and not be as lonely.

I'm a little younger than yourself, I turn 60 next week and it's a little over a year now since my wife of 33 years died.  But I've seen others older than myself move forward thru the pain as well.

Maybe knowing that others have found it possible to live our lives after we experience such pain will help.

Many hugs

Comment by booktime (Susan) on August 2, 2015 at 5:59pm

I am thinking of selling this house. We moved into it in 1997 and the work and dreams we had! But those were ours, not mine. Sometimes it is just so sad to be here. Other times, I feel lucky to have such a nice home in such a nice place. But then I look about. The neighbors on one side have hardly interacted with me. She has but I haven't seen the husband to talk to since before Ed died. The neighbors on the other side were Ed's friends and they have pretty much dropped me. Haven't talked to them really since the new year. The neighbors across the street have been great. We aren't friends but we interact. A quick how are you etc. The wife Cathy and I just looked for a new cleaning person together and that was kind of fun.

But I feel like I want a new start. I'm just beginning to think of it. I will have a realtor I know come and look at the house to tell me what I really need to do to get it in sell-worthy shape.

Totally daunted by the idea of moving but I am hoping to really down-size. Already have in a way.

Sorry to keep rambling but all of what  you all are thinking about I am too.


Comment by Maggie on August 2, 2015 at 5:20pm
Cynthia and Feelinglonely....I understand about moving...this winter I visited a close divorced friend (actually my ex SIL) in Fla and was seriously thinking of moving down there and sharing a home with her and I'm from Fla. originally. But when there, two things came to my, I didn't like Fla at all and two, the thought of moving and packing all by myself was too much. So she moved instead up here. She had less to pack, but she is physically stronger than me and not dealing with depression as I do from time to time. Right now we are both in good health and my house is one level for me, but she has stairs to her own area in the basement. So in time a move may be at hand. By then the downsizing would have to be extreme in that we would both have a lot of stuff to get rid of. I'm 68, she's 70. And I'd like a 55+ community at that point to be with the same age folks to be around with activities and all that. I would hope this would keep the loneliness at bay, although it never goes away even with friends or family. Not for me anyway. And again no children or grands and I feel the same way about couples. I use to go to visit my brother who is now with a lady who he met after she had only been a widow for 6 months! They are so happy and I always felt a sting of resentment when I was there. I questioned her love for her husband as to how she could move on so quickly, but there were issues and my brother always had the luck in his life. I heard neighbors BBQ ing last night and laughing and it made me sad as its was of course, couples and our age. And then the "why me, why us". It is unfair and I don't understand how that works . And five years!! Three more years til I reach that and too many more after that. I have every imaginable emotion, but sometimes the overriding one is simply tired of dealing with ALL of it. Mentally weary...and the pointlessness of it all now....
Comment by goingon (Cynthia) on August 2, 2015 at 4:48pm

feelinglonely - I hear you!  3 levels... no way I could do that.  I have trouble visiting my daughter and going up and down one set of stairs.  But damn, I'm so lonely.  That's the worst of it right now.  

Comment by feelinglonely on August 2, 2015 at 4:13pm

Cynthia--I remember when we moved in l993 from our house to the townhouse that I am currently living in--we had 147 boxes, not counting all his tools from his shed,plus all the oversized stuff like bikes, ladders, etc.  We did it all together--I packed and he sealed up all the boxes--it went quite smooth and we were so happy to be entering a different phase of our lives.  The thought of doing it all on my own--I dont know, but I will have to eventually.  I am on three levels and it is getting harder to be going up and down all the time--I have very bad hips so I will have to get into a one level condo or something.  I think I have twice the amount of stuff now. 

There are a few over 55 places, but they just dont feel quite right.  I wont rush into anything, but am trying to keep an open mind.  Everything in this area is expensive--I am in northern NJ--so for me, it would be a lateral move--taxes will be the same and property expensive.  With luck, I'll croak first and wont have to worry about it.  LOL!

Comment by goingon (Cynthia) on August 2, 2015 at 3:29pm

feelinglonely - 

Moving to a 55+ community may not be a bad idea.  I thought about it, but there aren't any good ones where I live, and I'm not ready to leave this little town where I moved to 2 years ago.  A lot of widows have enjoyed the 55+ communities however.  You can hire people to pack for you, if you can afford it.  But I remember moving out of our house and 31+ years of accumulation is indeed overwhelming!  


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