This is a collaborative post
Dating following the death of a partner can be tricky. A lot of people shy away from dating a widow for many reasons
When I was 24 I lost my partner to an accident at work. The circumstances surrounding his death were very traumatic and I honestly didn’t think I would ever meet, or even want to meet, anyone else. Dealing with his loss I felt I was betraying his memory. I don’t think I was alone in feeling that way but, to quote the saying “time is a great healer” or at least your life continues and everyone deserves happiness.
I live in a fairly small town. Most people of my age knew what had happened to my partner and it was difficult to go anywhere without people crossing the road to avoid me or receiving sympathetic looks. I understand people just don’t know what to say, that’s fine but when it comes to looking for love after bereavement a lot of potential partners can be put off.
The benefits of dating a fellow widow
Back then internet dating was in its infancy. I wish it had been around as I think a widows dating site would have been beneficial for me. I can certainly understand why someone would want to date a fellow widow. For a start you have been through a similar experience so have a general understanding of what the other has been through.
You can support each other
You never get over the loss of a partner, you don’t, it just gets easier to live with. Having someone who understands that sort of loss is invaluable. Even close family and friends don’t really understand what you are going through, they can support you, of course, but you don’t have a real understanding unless you have been through it yourself.
You know that you aren’t competing with the memory of their lost loved one
I found that the partners I had following the death of my partner would almost feel jealous of his memory. I guess a lot of people feel that you have a rose-tinted view of your lost loved one, maybe that is the case but it doesn’t mean that you are always comparing them to your past love. Dating someone who is going through the same as you means you understand the complicated emotions you’re going through.
You can move forward together
While you will always have the memories of your previous partner there comes a time when you want to move on with your life. You can take it as slowly as each of you wishes. You might both want to test the water of dating, or even just friendship, with someone else in the same position. Trips to the cinema, dinner and days out with a person who feels the same way as you takes the pressure off.
So, what have you got to lose?
Why not give another widow a chance? At least you can offer each other some companionship and an understanding ear.
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