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Old 05-13-2008, 01:12 PM
Location: West Texas
2,441 posts, read 5,255,585 times
Reputation: 3099


Originally Posted by Sgoldie View Post
I would let the kids have their very own individual scrapbooks with pictures of their mom and maybe a few personal items of hers that they could keep to themselves.
I think this is a great idea, Sgoldie. Not only because it will keep the kids memories of their mother alive, but if/when Mathguy dates again, he knows that the memory of his ex-wife will be maintained with the children instead of leaving the house as a living shrine to her.

Don't get me wrong.. I'm not saying tear all the stuff down, but as time passes (that's a given) things will change. And as Mathguy may meet someone, although I'm sure the person would be understanding and sympothetic, it could still be awkward if there are lots of pictures and remnants of the wife around (things in the bathroom only she used, etc.).

Mathguy, to you the best advice I can give is twofold. First, take care of yourself. I know that many will say the kids come first, but if you don't give yourself time to grieve, and deal with the loss of your wife, you will not be able to give the full attention to the kids they need to get through this. I'm not saying neglect them while you're picking up your own pieces of your heart and life, but make sure you're not neglecting yourself. That's the second part of my advice, is to be there for your kids. Watching you learn to deal with it will help them. Kids are more resilient than many people give them credit for.

Take care of yourself, and take care of your kids. The rest, life will sort out and you have no control over that. The two things you do have control over (yourself and your kids) are your focus now.

I hope you success as you refind your way in life. Take care.

~ Rath
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Old 05-13-2008, 04:40 PM
Location: Earth
3,798 posts, read 6,035,557 times
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Originally Posted by MrKrabs View Post
Take it sloooowwwwww in regards to jumping back into the dating scene....especially with the fact that you have younger kids.
Ditto that, I've seen both men and women date too soon and it has disasterous consequences. It doesn't sound to me that Mathguy is interested in dating though, it sounds like he's looking for help with the transition into single parenting and coping with the grief.
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Old 05-13-2008, 04:52 PM
Location: Fort Mill, SC
1,105 posts, read 4,102,991 times
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Well, I am 34 and have been widowed for just over five years now. I lost my husband at 29 in an automobile accident. My son was only 10 months old at the time.

My first piece of advice: Don't let anyone tell you what you should do or how you should feel. Everyone is different. If people rush you to give away her clothes or put up all her pictures, don't let them. If you want to keep them around forever that is OK. After a few years I moved my wedding pictures into my sons room. I gradually gave away is clothes. I boxed up a few things for my son.

My second piece of advice is not to rush into a relationship or dating. When I was about a year after his death, I felt like I should be dating so I started going out a little. I was speaking to a friend and I said it felt weird, I still felt married and he said, well then you probably aren't ready yet and boy did that make sense. I wasn't ready. I felt like I should be dating but I wasn't ready. Now five years into it I don't feel married anymore (don't get me wrong, I still think about him but it just doesn't hurt so bad). I don't feel the least bit guilty about dating or being excited about dating.

My third piece of advice, don't introduce your kids to your new girlfriend until you are sure she is going to be around for a while. I have a friend that brings home her new boyfriends after only going out for a few weeks. THen her boys get to know this new person in her life and then they get attached and then a few weeks down the road they break up. Since she has been widowed, she has had about five different men get to know her boys. I don't think that is fair on the kids. It makes it harder to see the new girlfriend because unlike a divorced person we don't have every other weekend free but I feel strongly that it is better for the kids. I made a committment that I would never let a new guy be around my son until I knew it was a very serious relationship. you don't have to be as strict as me but for heavens sake don't be bringing home a new woman every other week. And I am not just talking about spending the night, I am talking about just getting to know your kids.

It is a hard row to hoe, that is for sure. How long has it been since your wife died? So sorry for your loss.
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Old 05-13-2008, 05:22 PM
Location: Branson, Missouri
7,269 posts, read 16,876,421 times
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I am so sorry to hear about your wifes passing. I think one of the toughest things to deal with in life is losing a spouse. My late husband has been gone for 7 years now and I've been in a new relationship now for a little over 3 years.
No small kids so I cannot say anything about that except anytime your kids need you and need to talk to you about there mom, listen to them.
I agree with what some of the others have said about dating. It's a lonely time but emotionally, you're not ready or available to give yet what it takes to go into a relationship and when it's time, you'll know. Let yourself grieve. Don't let someone tell you it's time to move on. It's time to move on when you're ready and only when you're ready.
I made the mistake of listening to a 'friend' of his and gave all his clothes,etc. away too early. I regretted it later.
Don't make any major decisions for at least a year. Take good care of yourself, not only for yourself but for your kids.
Talk to your kids, friends, family, etc. about the good times and laugh about it. It helps so much to laugh as well as cry. Don't get angry about the feelings you're having. It's normal.
Hope this has helped. Good vibes being sent your way.
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Old 05-13-2008, 05:32 PM
Location: Tucson
42,837 posts, read 77,248,325 times
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Originally Posted by songinthewind7 View Post
Don't make any major decisions for at least a year.
That's a very good advice!
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Old 05-16-2008, 08:36 AM
49,073 posts, read 39,528,949 times
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I would like to thank you all for your posts.
A lot of good advice in there and I read all of it.

Good point about the no major decisions....I've had this urge to buy something like a new car etc. lately but I've decided not to because it's just not needed and I think it's a psychological response that doing something like that would make me feel like I'm more in control of my life. (Nothing like a death to shatter the illusion that you are in control and I'm reminded of the saying "But for the grace of god go I.")

At this point I'm trying to relax, complete all of my "must do's" like a will, after school care etc....and exercise \ trying to take better care of myself so I'm around longer for my kids and am generally healthier.

Relationship? Yeah, not ready. In fact, down the road I'm not sure where I'd get the time with 2 kids to do much beyond the occasional date....but I do miss the affection as my wife was ill for quite a while before her passing. <sigh>

I think I know the feeling though....I'd gone through college with NO desire to have a steady girlfriend but when I hit 23 or so....I really wanted a relationship, met my wife and got married about age 25. Married almost 13 years and now a relationship has all the attraction of working a second job.

I will leave you with a lighter note and a laugh (what else can you do?) for the weekend.
10 year old or so kid came to the door selling something for band etc. and my 9 year old answers. "Can I talk to your mom?"....my 9yo responds "Well, she's kinda dead." OMG....the kid looked like he wanted to spontaneously combust to escape and I was just coming around the corner and had to bite my toungue not to start laughing as it just hit me funny how it was said and the expressions....hey, you have to have a sense of humor. (Sorry if it didn't translate...but it was funny)
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Old 05-16-2008, 12:29 PM
Location: Between Philadelphia and Allentown, PA
5,077 posts, read 12,733,525 times
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I'm going to attempt to give you my advice / thoughts based on how I felt when my Dad died when I was 9 and how I felt about me and just my Mom, maybe it will give you a little insight from a kids point of view, I have a feeling you are very concerned over how to handle life in general now that their Mom has passed. Please first accept my condolences. I have been there and know how you feel to lose a big part of your life.
When my father passed, it was just me and my mom, we moved to Florida immediately and it wasn't long before she moved on, started dating, etc.. I have to tell you because she wasn't an open, loving type of person she never spoke about my father with me, never talked about him at all. I had a diary I would write in all the time and for your kids, you should give them a journal, kids can be very creative in writing when they have an outlet. That's where I would start, I would sit with them and talk to them about their Mother, let them remember her, show pictures, talk about it. Don't date any time soon. When my mom did, I became very, very resentful, I would try and break up her boyfriends and her and it wasn't good. It really left me feeling very angry and without an outlet. Just be you, be honest, don't be afraid to show emotion around the kids and remember that they lost someone too but make sure they know you have lost someone as well and don't be afraid to talk about it. Those kids have only you at this point and it's going to be very critical timing over the next couple of years for all of you. I wish you the best....
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Old 06-04-2008, 06:50 PM
13,773 posts, read 33,066,820 times
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We have started a Grief social group for those who have lost a spouse, parent or child. I lost my DH 5 years ago.. I do OK most days, but I still miss him especially during the holidays and on our anniversary. This year my grandson graduated from HS, a happy time, yet sad as I know how proud pawpaw would have been.
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Old 06-04-2008, 07:23 PM
Location: Whoville....
25,393 posts, read 29,779,913 times
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Originally Posted by Mathguy View Post
Ok, my wife of >12 years passed from cancer after a long illness and I have 2 kids around the age of 10 and I'm in my later 30's.

I wasn't sure where to even put this topic but I'm just looking for some general advice or maybe just a conversation from people that have seen this before about what this new uncharted territory brings.

Sorry for being so general but just looking for some people that have been in or seen similar circumstances that might have some thoughtful comments or advice that I could weigh. (Kids are probably my main focus but I'm open to hearing anything related to this type of situation...)

I have no advice to offer but I just wanted to say how sorry I am for your loss. My dad was a widower with four kids ranging in age from 8-18 when mom died. It's not easy.

God Bless
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Old 06-04-2008, 07:48 PM
Location: Dallas TX
14,355 posts, read 20,632,395 times
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My best friend passed away leaving three small children; it was devastating. We put together a memory book for the children with funny stories from her friends and family and every picture we could find.

As time goes on we add different things, a new story that reminds us of her or places we go that make us think of her. It is so important for the children to keep her memory alive.

As for time when you are ready to move on, do so when you feel it; not when everyone else says you should be ready. You will know in your heart.
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