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."


SEX! SEX! SEX! That three letter words gets attention, whether we admit it or not, regardless of where, when, or how it is used. What do we use to cope with the pain from our loss? SEX? DRUGS? ALCOHOL? FOOD? TV? SHOPPING?

I recently posted two links, one by Outlaw Widow who wrote about SKIN HUNGER which included a brutally honest poem about the desire for anonymous sex to quench that skin hunger. In the first 6-8 months after his death, I felt as if the very cells of my own skin were screaming for my husband's touch. It has been 20 months without him and I am still faithful to my husband even if my body is hungry.

The other link was to an article on the website of Psychology Today called, "Love After Death: The Widow's Romantic Predicaments" by Aaron Ben-Zeev.  A comprehensive article, it mentions "that widows feel greater hesitancy than their peers do about engaging in intimacy with new partners. These concerns about intimacy arise from the anxiety that they might lose someone again, their fear of opening up to new relationships, and their concerns about not maintaining fidelity to the deceased spouse; all these issues enhance their tendency to avoid intimacy."  I think there is a lot of truth to what this articles states as well.

A book I read titled "Saturday Night Widows" by Becky Aikman called the lack of intimacy after a spouses' death "grief induced celibacy."

Everyone here is on the same tortuous path, sharing the pain, the emptiness, the loneliness and the isolation that the death of a spouse brings.  We share stories, we commiserate, we encourage one another because it is so difficult to find genuine support and authentic understanding in our every day lives.

I keep reading articles about widows and widowers because there is a kernel of truth within each person's experience that resonates with me even if parts of their journey differ from mine or if their perspectives are different from mine. In a nutshell, there is not right or wrong way to cope with the loss of this MAGNITUDE and each person has to figure out what works for him or her in the healing process.

Which leads me to the article that I am about to share.

This article is about a 23-year-old-widow who lost her husband to cancer after just two months of marriage. In the 13 months after his death, she had slept with 27 different men, which she explains, was totally uncharacteristic of her normal self. But I have to ask, after a spouse dies, what the hell is normal?? I am amazed at her brutal honesty. All I can say that perhaps her path is a result of the brevity of her marriage or her young age- just 23 years old. The compassion I feel for her comes from being a sister in widowhood. The poem "NOW!!" by jh2 2/2005 from Outlaw Widow's article on SKIN HUNGER - has a few lines that speak volumes about this young widows experience:

make the pain in my belly

scream louder that the

pain in my soul......

just for now...

take me

take me

take me away from myself.

So here is the link to the article, "Confessions of a Scarlet Widow: How I Used Sex To Get Over My Husband's Death" by Amy Molloy.  I hope that you enjoy reading it. Peace, comfort and healing to all.

P.S. I hope the link works. This is my second attempt to try to post this. The first was unsuccessful.

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Comment by Mariposa on August 25, 2013 at 6:07am

Sorry to learn this link does not work. If you can google it, it is worth reading.

I admit to having too much wine on weekends, but I also have begun to limit myself. I don't want to become "the widow who is a wino." LOL!

Yes, may we all have softer days.

Comment by Morgana (Janet) on August 25, 2013 at 5:58am

Alcohol in the beginning but at 21 months I have begun to limit how much I drink.  No sex, drugs, food, shopping or tv.  We learn to find our way in this "new normal".  I miss the sex but more than that I miss the hand holding, the snuggling, the cuddling, the kisses, and the hugs most of all.  I think for any widow or widower that the skin hunger is the worst to try to understand and deal with. 

I couldn't get the link to work but was able to google it and read it.  May we all have softer days ahead.

Comment by widower on August 25, 2013 at 12:21am

I made the mistake of drinking more coffee, no wonder I could not sleep! I,m still trying to cut down!


Comment by oceangirl on August 24, 2013 at 3:08pm

Hmmm. Wine, journaling, work, screaming therapy (behind closed doors while blasting Led Zep), smoking, Xanax....did I miss anything? Sexually, I fell (literally) into full menopause after Joe died (I was 52). I didn't want anyone near me. And, oh, yeah, I did the multiple partners thing in my 20's. Been there, done that, and it's harsh. That's just me, though - if I were in my 20's or 30's and widowed, I know I would feel differently. Not that I'm dead yet, just sayin'.

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