Beginning a New Chapter as a Widow or Widower

Dating After Becoming a Widow or Widower

Recently, we were pleased to be interviewed by, where we talked about our extensive Dating Advice section.

This section answers questions that are typically asked by widows and widowers as they venture back into the world of dating.

Negotiating life’s journey alone can hold little allure. Looking on at other couples whose relationships have stood the test of time and who enter middle age with the prospect of retirement together, can be hard. For many, the idea of dating after becoming a widow can seem an unlikely scenario. However, you can improve your potential for future happiness.

Some of us will use this time to travel, if we have the resources to do so. Taking ourselves off to previously unvisited countries and landscapes can be uplifting and beneficial in so many ways. Planning such a trip can be a useful distraction from post-bereavement blues. Being away from home can also help us reflect upon the positive aspects of our lives, and the people around us, that we take for granted.

Others will be satisfied to throw themselves into the peak of their career or family life.

Inevitably, there will be those who find themselves becoming withdrawn and experiencing loneliness and feelings of frustration, but it doesn’t have to be like this.

You Don’t Have To Be Lonely

How long it takes to come to terms with being single will be different for everyone. When it happened to me I still had two relatively young children to raise. Whilst this seemed a daunting responsibility at the time, it meant that I had focus and good reason to want to keep my head above water.

Some time on your own can be beneficial, but it is equally important to seek out friends and family to support you as you make this transition. As time passed, I was encouraged to explore the possibility of meeting someone new. Dating after becoming a widow, however, remained something that was far from my mind. My friends and family came to respect this.

Developing New Interests And Making New Friends

Developing new interests can be inspiring and will help you to come to terms with your situation. I went on a creative writing course, which I really enjoyed. I met some great people who shared my enthusiasm for poetry and literature. It gave me a huge sense of release to go out and mix with entirely new people and at the end of the course I had met some kindred spirits. Introducing new people into your life can be an advantage and will show those around you that you’re endeavouring to move forward.

However, this isn’t always a smooth process.

From their book ‘The Essential Guide to Life After Bereavement – Beyond Tomorrow’, Judy Carole Kauffmann and Mary Jordan, say:<

‘Many people hope and long for the day when they will be able to move ‘beyond tomorrow’ and away from the darkness and depression that seems to engulf them after the death of someone close. Often, especially in the early days following a death, it will seem that such a time can never come. Some people may actually not want to consider that they will ever recover from their grief because recovery seems a kind of disloyalty to the person who has died.’

It can be easy to resist opening your heart to new horizons, but choosing to explore something that could restore a sense of optimism can give you the boost you may need.

Decide What You Want From The Next Stage Of Your Life

Eventually, it is hoped you will be able to confront your future with renewed enthusiasm. Making plans that will fit with your lifestyle and resources will be the next step. Asking yourself what you want from the next stage of your life will hopefully set you on a path to feeling complete again.

Having moved into the 21st century, it is becoming increasingly common practice for people to switch careers halfway through their working lives. Setting up office space at home and working remotely, enables more people to follow a path based on creative or practical ideas they would like to develop.

Study and trying new skills could eventually help you to explore an avenue of work/business that interests you. Extra curricular study with universities is readily available and could offer the job satisfaction you had not previously enjoyed.

All these can help you to discover or rediscover aspects of yourself that you had not previously had time to explore. This will stand you in good stead for the weeks and months ahead as you develop a new outlook and perspective on life.

Finding Someone Else To Share Your Life With

There may come a time, regardless of your age, when you feel you would like to start dating again. If you’re keen to meet someone who has also lost a life partner, this is a good starting point for the basis of a future relationship. What’s more, it also means you don’t have to explain away any awkward background history. Something that can prove difficult to share with someone who might not be able to relate to your situation.

Finding a potential partner should not make you feel guilty. Enjoy it as a sense of fulfilment. This doesn’t mean you have forgotten your previous spouse; it’s more a case that you’re moving on, but cherishing your memories as you go.

As you enter this new chapter in your life, see it as an opportunity to grow and expand your vison for the future, building upon the experiences you’ve had so far and the possibility of dreams yet to be fulfilled.