Dating as a Widow or Widower
The period immediately following bereavement is inevitably taken up with getting the business end of our lives in order. I was fortunate enough to have plenty of help with this and I had good support from friends and family to help me come to terms with my new life. During this period I had very little time to think too much about what it really meant to be single again.
However, life gradually took on a different perspective and I found myself spending longer periods of time on my own than I had previously been used to. It’s not unusual to experience feelings of awkwardness at this time; dinner parties were no longer the convivial occasions they once were and weddings and other major events became something I dreaded rather than looked forward to. So what should I do?
No one has ever said that taking the initial steps to meet other singles following the death of a partner is easy, and understandably, should be taken with a degree of forethought and caution.
For me, the prospect of dating again brought with it feelings of guilt and uncertainty. Of course, this is understandable, however, having decided that I would like to be part of a couple again, I gradually came to terms with the idea and my confidence grew.
Joining a dating website specifically for widows and widowers seemed to be the best way to open up these possibilities. And acknowledging that I was looking to change my status and wanting to be part of a couple again was a healthy sign that I was moving on.
Meeting other widows and widowers is a good option as they would have a first-hand understanding of how I felt, and more likely to be empathetic to the inevitable emotional struggle that may occur in the early stages of friendship.
The first few dates I experienced were interesting, but not wholly satisfying as I found I was sublimely making comparisons with my late husband. However, I was determined to keep trying and eventually did meet some widowers with whom I felt I could connect. Whilst I have yet to meet the next ‘love of my life’, I have made some very good friends and my empty evenings are empty no more.
Making my mind up to change my circumstances was the best thing I have done. These days when I’m invited out, I can always find a friend to go with me (if it suits the occasion), and likewise I’m happy to go along if a friend invites me to an event where it would be more comfortable to go as a couple. Finding the right ‘long-term’ relationship would of course be ideal and I’m sure this will happen when the time is right.
If you’re happy being single, then there is no reason to ever feel that you should be otherwise. The most important thing is to know that you’re growing in confidence and living a life that you enjoy and feel comfortable with.