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Old 12-11-2014, 02:44 PM
 
783 posts, read 2,970,666 times
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There is a great video on here!

Kindred Community for Widows | Stand in the Gap Ministries



Stand in the Gap Ministries is not a church. They are a ministry. Their goal is to get the

information, obtained by their research, into churches, in order to help widows.


I never knew what a widow needed. I'd ask what they needed and they'd always
say nothing. I knew it was so shallow to say, "Let me if there
is anything that I can do." I truly meant it...but I have since learned from friends
they were walking around not knowing what they needed and once they did they
were too embarrassed to ask.


If you are a widow or know one, after you look at the video, what are your thoughts?
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Old 12-11-2014, 03:06 PM
 
Location: NoVa
18,434 posts, read 28,608,443 times
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I am not a widow but my mom was one, and as a young person I never thought of how it may have effected her. I thought about the loss of my father.

These days, 20 years later, I know a widow. My neighbor across the street. She lost her husband this year on March 17. I visit her almost every day and spend time with her. We share stories and I bring her food.

I was there for her 90th bday on Thanksgiving. I can't begin to know how she feels and I know she has lost a part of herself. I know that this year was full of firsts for her that had to be so sad.

When her husband was living he told me the story of when their relationship first began,and that it was the best day of his life. One that he would never forget.

I think it is a good program on paper, but what about the people like her who cannot get out of the house? A lot of the widows are in that very spot.
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Old 12-11-2014, 06:58 PM
 
783 posts, read 2,970,666 times
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Thank you. That is a very good point.

I wonder if the church members would be willing or if one of the other members of the small group could pick up the lady who didn't drive.

Thank you so much for what you are doing to help your neighbor.
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Old 12-12-2014, 05:55 PM
 
Location: 2016 Clown Car...fka: Wisconsin
738 posts, read 774,631 times
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Thank you for posting the video because I believe that it addresses the unmet needs of all those that have lost their spouses and the obstacles involved when they try to return to a sense of normalcy. But...while there is certainly no debate that this concept is desperately needed, especially in rural communities, I think it would have more acceptance/participation if it was not faith/church based.

I watched what my mom went through when she suddenly became a widow and I became, pretty much, her only support system and when I needed to return to 'my' life, she suffered a major setback. We lived in different parts of the state so I would put in my 50 hour week, jump in my car on Friday, drive 2 1/2 hours to her house, stay with her, help her with projects and laundry, assist with paying bills, deal with calls, shovel her driveway, do her shopping, cook for the week and grieve with her. Then on Sunday night, I'd pack up my stuff and drive 2 1/2 hours home so I could repeat it all again the following week. It was especially tough when she ended up being hospitalized for PTSD/Depression. Talk about guilt! Eventually, she began to work through the pain and I was able to return to my life, but it was still hard for her for the next 3 years. All these years later, I still wonder whether there was more I could do.

In 2013, a 48 year childhood friend suddenly lost her husband and I have watched as she has moved through the process. I say moved through the process because her way to dealing with her grief is to put if off to the side as she goes to work and goes shopping. She doesn't like to be home by herself so she has no 'safe' place. She lives out of the city so she is pretty much alone. Her husband did everything and so she doesn't know how to do anything. She didn't even know which side of the car the gas cap was located on. Now she is questioning why she is working at 60. I almost dread the day she quits because she will have to start the grieving process from scratch because she put it off for so long and because I will be facing widowhood next year (DH in end-stage home hospice), even as her oldest and closest friend, I'm not sure I will have the energy to be her support system too.

Although it may be a good outreach program, I know that if several strangers from the church down the street knocked on my door and looked at me with pity in their eyes and a casserole in their hands trying to explain how this program could benefit me as a widow, I would thank them for their time, tell them I wasn't interested and never give them a second thought. And if they did a follow up visit, I probably wouldn't answer the door. In my case, I will seek out what I feel I need when the time is right.

Everyone grieves differently. I think that if one is an active member of a church, this program would be a welcome benefit. But for those that have no need for what the church represents, it would simply be an unwelcome intrusion into a very private time...no matter how lonely that person was. In the latter instance, having it available through the community might be more beneficial. Still...especially for those isolated in rural communities, something is definitely needed.

RVcook
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Old 12-12-2014, 06:33 PM
 
783 posts, read 2,970,666 times
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Thank you all for your feedback. I am trying to learn how I can help widows.


While there may be some groups like this, outside of the churches it is my understanding that because it is scriptural for the church to take care of the widows, this ministry is providing the findings of their research to help supplement the church’s current outreach to widows.

Widows say they feel forgotten and it saddens them on their husbands birthday and the day of his passing that no one remembers...no one even mentions his name anymore. They say they feel like a third wheel when they are around couples (even in their own family)...they are scared to be in the house alone....and no matter how much they would love to spend time with friends some evening, if it means they must return to an empty house they just can't do it. Some simply need to know the name of an honest mechanic or where to buy tires or when to have the oil changed.) They don't suggest that anyone go knocking on doors of non-church members with casseroles or pity.

I know I have been guilty of saying (and meaning it when I say it) "Let me know what I can do to help you". Many widows are in a fog and don't know what they need...then when they know what they need they are too timid/embarrassed to ask. They feel like since the rest of the world has moved on then they are expected to....but their whole world has changed.

The idea is to help interested widows within the church get together, so the ladies can talk freely to others who have been there. Some are ashamed that they are still grieving after 20 years and won't tell anyone else. They can be reassured by other widows that it is normal.

Edited to add this link:
When my grandmother became a widow

Last edited by OneDayAttaTime; 12-12-2014 at 06:37 PM.. Reason: Meant to post a link at the bottom.
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Old 12-12-2014, 07:14 PM
 
Location: 2016 Clown Car...fka: Wisconsin
738 posts, read 774,631 times
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Sorry I misinterpreted your post. I thought you really wanted feedback about the idea of providing this much needed service to widows in general, not just church members.

I think it's a wonderful idea for the church to support their membership this way. Too bad there aren't equally supportive resources out there for widows who don't belong to a church. Oh well...

RVcook
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Old 12-12-2014, 08:06 PM
 
Location: NoVa
18,434 posts, read 28,608,443 times
Reputation: 19578
Quote:
Originally Posted by RVcook View Post
Sorry I misinterpreted your post. I thought you really wanted feedback about the idea of providing this much needed service to widows in general, not just church members.

I think it's a wonderful idea for the church to support their membership this way. Too bad there aren't equally supportive resources out there for widows who don't belong to a church. Oh well...

RVcook
.....That's what people like me do, outside of church.

I think it would be a good idea for communities to do this.
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Old 12-12-2014, 08:33 PM
 
16,785 posts, read 19,726,272 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneDayAttaTime View Post
Thank you. That is a very good point.

I wonder if the church members would be willing or if one of the other members of the small group could pick up the lady who didn't drive.

Thank you so much for what you are doing to help your neighbor.
What about widowers? Kind of thoughtless to only think about women who have lost their husbands, how about men who have lost their wives?

I took a look at your article to make sure I wasn't jumping the gun, I find it sad and again thoughtless to not have something for widowers.
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Old 12-12-2014, 10:48 PM
 
Location: MA
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I'm a widow, mom is a widow and my grandmother is a widow. Three generations of widows...
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Old 12-13-2014, 01:06 AM
 
Location: 2016 Clown Car...fka: Wisconsin
738 posts, read 774,631 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seain dublin View Post
What about widowers? Kind of thoughtless to only think about women who have lost their husbands, how about men who have lost their wives?

I took a look at your article to make sure I wasn't jumping the gun, I find it sad and again thoughtless to not have something for widowers.
Could it be that most widowers can function well or at the very least fare a bit better than widows? A widow may still be able to whip up a pot roast dinner but doesn't know how to (or where) to pump gas, or handle the finances while a widower may know that something sounds 'off' with the car and takes it in for repair and handles the bills just fine, but can only make himself eggs and toast for dinner. Yes, there are trade-offs both ways.

Widows may form informal groups and if comfortable, in time may begin to talk about what they're feeling about losing a mate and draw strength from the interaction. I'm not sure widowers would feel comfortable in that type of situation nor talk about their feelings for fear that they may appear weak. I'm not saying widowers are incapable of such interaction, just that it doesn't seem likely.

FWIW, I agree that it is indeed sad and thoughtless not to have something for widowers, but it is equally sad and thoughtless not to have something for those who don't belong to a church.

RVcook
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