Life can be crazy and unpredictable in amazing ways. Jessica and Jordan experienced tragic losses and found love again.
Published on Jun 25, 2013
An Excerpt from Dating a Widower
Read Chapter 1
I’m including this section of the book specifically for any widowers who might be reading it. Dating again after the death of a spouse can be an awkward experience. It can bring out feelings of guilt or betrayal in the widow or widower. It can also bring out feelings of confusion and concern from friends, family, and those who were close to the deceased spouse.
For those who have lost a spouse and are looking to date again, here are ten tips to help you successfully navigate the dating waters.
Written by Todd, a remarried widower
©2008 Used with permission
It would be helpful to know from what his wife died and how long she suffered. I have learned that a surprise death is harder to cope with than a prolonged death.
It would also be important to know that he has had counseling to try to sift through his feelings.
As for me, I am still sad that Judy died, as I am (to a lesser but still profound extent) that my grandparents died. But while still sad and missing so many aspects of her and our life together, after 5-1/2 years of a roller coaster ride fighting cancer and having her attention directed away from me and toward her fight and the kids and her losing her desire for me, I grieved losses along those years and have since then wanted a new exceptional wife and mom. I never felt that I was cheating on Judy by falling in love again –but I heard a widow once say that to me, so I am sure it may sometimes be a peculiarity of being widowed.
I know there are books about dating widowed people–I would recommend that you read one. At least one of them wrote about the strangeness of almost having a ghost in the room–can you love a man who will always miss his wife, with whom he was in love and about whom he still needs to talk? (You will need to). That said, you know you are getting a man who loved his wife. The important thing is can he expand his heart and love two great women over his lifetime? (I think this is pretty cool).
I am happy for you. If you love him, take the time and effort to work through these things together. But I would be careful about his feelings of cheating–you need a Song of Solomon marriage for a change and he needs to feel great about the second great love of his life.
The widowed are vulnerable when it comes to dating. Our hearts have suffered pain beyond comprehension. In this heart-felt letter, written to Jim, I shared my heart about widows and my fierce intent to protect Christine, a young widow who lost her son and husband in one tragic moment in time.
I share this letter, with you, my friends, in hopes that you will understand the important responsibility for those dating a widow.
While the letter is written from a faith-based perspective, much of the content is applicable to all.
By Michele De Santis
2013 Used with permission
I am excited for you to meet____________________. This is an incredible opportunity. Really. Incredible.
She is more beautiful in person than in the photos you saw. Her heart and soul are reflected in her eyes. I believe that people who have experienced the brokenness that comes from losing a spouse have amazing inner beauty and it reflects through their eyes… I have seen it before.
The circumstances of how she lost her husband are tragic. It was an accident. She also lost her only child. She was a stay-at-home mother – loving her family and her life. Her world as she knew it ended almost three years ago… She will eventually confide in you and tell you all the details, if she feels safe and if she feels you are worthy.
She, like many of us, is working to re-build her life – developing new goals and dreams. It is okay not to have traditional goals and dreams – to which you might be accustomed. You see, she knows that God can have other plans. Life has not been an orderly process and she has seen the best laid plans removed from her life in an instant.
Both of you will need patience. The payoff for your patience will be more than worth it, I promise.
We widows are quite different than divorcees. Scripture tells us to protect and care for the widow… in all ways. You will have an awesome responsibility.
She has only gratitude and love for the opportunity to have been married to her husband and to have had such an amazing son.
I believe that she is emotionally healthy enough for an exceptional relationship.
I recommend reading a book on dating a widow. The good news is that a widow or widower can expand their hearts to love more than one great person in a lifetime. If you always remember this, it will help. She will want to talk about her husband and son, at times, and you will need to be able to listen and allow her to speak of them – without feeling threatened or needing to solve a problem. You will need to listen and provide comfort.
There is more good news: You will have someone in your life that will speak highly of you and appreciate you more than you can imagine. This is an amazing gift – one that you would find one in a million times. I am sincere in this.
If you can love her unconditionally, encourage her, treat her like a lady at all times etc. this relationship could be your greatest gift in your life. Of course, I am assuming that there will be mutual chemistry, common beliefs, values, etc…
If you need advice, ever, on dating a widow, I can put you in contact with a friend – a man from Minnesota. He is a strong Christian and widowed. He married a widow and has valuable insight.
From my perspective, to have found you is a gift – and to have listened to my intuition and connected you two is God’s work.
I am praying for you both. I really hope this works. She is an amazing woman.
My expectations are high. I trust and I am hopeful that you are caring, compassionate, kind, loyal, monogamous – a gentleman of gargantuan magnitude. She deserves to have a spectacular life; as do you.
If you are controlling, abusive, have an addiction, or have a history of infidelity / playing women, etc… it would be wise to back out of this immediately. She cannot be hurt – it would set her back in her healing and it would be wrong on so many levels. I say this to underscore the importance I feel in helping her find a worthy partner.
My intent is not to scare you or insult you – I am just working to be very clear and to insure that she is respected and protected.
So please, go forward with this information and be the man God intended you to be. I wish you well and hope that this connection is a beautiful one that nurtures both of you.
*Jim and Christine are now married!
Are you thinking about dating a widower? Your new relationship will have unique challenges you won’t find when dating single or divorced men. For it to work, the widower will have to put his feelings for his late wife to the side and focus on you. But how do you know if he’s ready to take this step?
Drawing on his own experience as a widower who’s remarried, Abel Keogh gives you unique insight into the hearts and minds of widowers, including:
Dating a Widower is your 101 guide to having a relationship with a man who’s starting over. It also contains over a dozen real life stories from women who have gone down the same road you’re traveling. It’s the perfect book to help you decide if the man you’re seeing is ready for a new relationship—and whether or not dating a widower is right for you.
What You Need to Know Before Tying the Knot
Are you in a serious relationship with a widower? Are you considering tying the knot? Any lasting relationship takes a lot of work, but a successful marriage to a widower requires the ability for both of you to work through unique issues that most couples don’t face. Are you up to the challenge?
Drawing on a decade of experience as a remarried widower, Abel Keogh gives you unique insight into what it takes to make any long-term relationship with a widower successful, including:
Marrying a Widower will help you decide whether or not the widower you’re dating is prepared to make the ultimate commitment. More importantly, the book will walk you through many of the challenging circumstances that come with tying the knot and help you decide if taking this step is right for you.