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Old 05-13-2008, 06:56 AM
 
48,893 posts, read 39,381,014 times
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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...)

Thankyou.
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Old 05-13-2008, 07:43 AM
 
Location: Lexington, MA
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Any specific area you want to discuss... when to start dating again, how does a single dad raise two kids by himself, how you balance work and family life, etc. ??
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Old 05-13-2008, 08:20 AM
 
48,893 posts, read 39,381,014 times
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I am looking for any advice\input that people want to give it doesn't have to be related to any one aspect.

Basically, I'm just looking for things people learned going through a similar experience that they think would be worth giving me a heads up about right now. That could be dating, schools, grandparents, relocating....anything.

Sorry, I guess I don't have any specific topics...maybe as people weigh in then we might be able to get into some of those.
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Old 05-13-2008, 08:26 AM
 
Location: Earth
3,798 posts, read 6,026,546 times
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Have you looked into grief groups?
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Old 05-13-2008, 09:23 AM
 
Location: Tucson
42,837 posts, read 77,111,830 times
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Losing your Mom at such an early age must be a devastating experience. Some fathers go into denial. Thatís their way of dealing with their own grief, but itís not good for the kids. Donít remove pictures of her, talk with them about her, visit her grave, keep in touch with her side of the family.

Itís very easy to slip into spoiling the children too much, though. Be very careful to have a father/children relationship with them, not ďfriendsĒ relationship. ďNoĒ is not a dirty word. You may be tempted to relax the rules too much because of their difficult predicament. You didnít mention the gender of your kids, but if one is a girl, do not turn her into a wife surrogate with major input into household and all kinds of other decisions. This may be fine with you, but if you want to have any prayer for a future relationship, you donít wanna do that. Trust me on this one. Speaking from experience.
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Old 05-13-2008, 10:29 AM
 
Location: Earth
3,798 posts, read 6,026,546 times
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Quote:
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...)

Thankyou.
I'm so sorry to hear about your wife's passing. Death can be a very tuff pill to swallow especially becuase she was so young with 2 young children. I send you many healing vibes to comfort you and your children at this time. Feel free to talk about it if you need someone to listen, or you can DM me if you want. You need as much support as you can get right now.
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Old 05-13-2008, 10:44 AM
 
28,906 posts, read 45,202,743 times
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I can only guess at your grief. If I lost my wife, I cannot imagine how awful it would be. So please read my advice knowing that it is constructively offered, but also with full knowledge that it may be woefully inadequate to the needs of your heart.

What I would say first, knowing others who have been the same ordeal, that your children are indeed your first priority. Even though they may be functioning normally, they still are working through a great deal of issues on their own, issues that they may not be wanting to bother you about. Kids are often reticent to talk about their own feelings, chiefly because they don't have the vocabulary and the self-awareness yet to express themselves or their needs. They need structure in their lives, because so much of it has been unfairly ripped away by the death of your wife. It's as if half of their universe has been dismantled and packed away, and it is up to you to replace it. Not just by giving them your total and absolute love in the form of hugs and your presence, but the other aspect of love in the form of the rules and foundation to help them rebuilt their own lives.

Yet, while your children are your immediate priority, please pay attention to your own emotional health. I've read some offer grief groups as a possible avenue for emotional recovery, but that may or may not be a solution for you. Some people are private in nature, and the idea of opening their hearts to a bunch of total strangers might prove painful beyond belief.

Having dealt with grief myself with the deaths of several close to me, I know that it doesn't go away after a few weeks or months, and it certainly won't go away after a few sessions of grief counseling either. You must be prepared for your loss to come flooding back when you least expect it. At a restaurant you once enjoyed together. At the holidays. At a gathering of old friends.

People will be checking in on you, people who cherish the love you and your wife shared, people who ache for you and want you to enjoy happiness again. As well-meaning as they might be, they have no idea with the issues you're grappling with. Eventually, you'll relearn how to get up in the morning, and go through your routines. You'll be competent in your daily life, and people will assume that you're okay. But the healing takes so much longer internally than people can guess, and you have to give yourself the permission to heal slowly and naturally. I guess that what I dislike about therapy. The idea of closure is facile and, ultimately, shallow. Amputees talk about limbs that continue to itch long after the arm or leg they're missing has turned to dust. Your wife, a part of your soul and your life, lives on similarly in your memory and how you respond to the world. So tolerate the people who love you and want to see you well. The healing process is mysterious to them, and they only want to hasten it because they love you.

That being said, it is important to you and your children to find ways to enjoy your life again, particularly since your wife's illness was a long and excruciating ordeal. You and your children have earned the right to find joy again. No, it is not a substitute for the happiness you knew when your wife was alive and healthy. But there is a life for your family after her death, and it is up to you to construct it.

At the same time, while you love your children, it is important to remember that you are an adult. You eventually need another adult in your life, one who is not there to help you remind you of this terrible event in your past, but one who is there to show you the future possibilities of your life. One who does not remind you of what you have lost, but one who shows you everything you now have to gain.

So give yourself permission to, once you're living life normally again, to find someone new. Your wife would approve, knowing fully that your spirit, your aspirations, and everything else that she loved about you didn't die along with her.

Best of luck. And peace to you.

Last edited by cpg35223; 05-13-2008 at 11:04 AM..
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Old 05-13-2008, 10:51 AM
 
12,431 posts, read 13,084,552 times
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Quote:
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...)

Thankyou.
I have found it helpful and supportive when being a single parent, to connect with other single parents, whether it's for dating and romance (such as that group "Parents without Partners") or for friendship and suport through the tough times, because of going through so much of the same territory with work, kids, losing a partner, people NOT in that situation just often don't understand all that it involves.

The other piece that comes to mind is some grief counseling or grief support for you, so that you can continue to heal in that area, and be with people who have been there and help you along that path.

Best wishes to you on your journey, your healing, and your family.
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Old 05-13-2008, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
3,359 posts, read 10,633,860 times
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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. This I believe would give them a center and a secret source of strength in their lives.

I am sorry for your sadness. You need to have an open line of communication with your kids about any needs they may have as a result of the loss as well as to help you through your own grief. You will build a new life in time with another woman, just make sure she appreciates your kids.
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Old 05-13-2008, 11:17 AM
 
Location: Scranton
2,937 posts, read 2,910,486 times
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I guess the best advice I can give in regard to dating in your situation is not to rush into any relationships with anyone. I have a family member who is a widower, and afterwards, due to the lack of companionship he was used to for all those years, jumped right into dating before the dirt even settled on his wife's grave. Unfortunately, he was looking to jump too soon into a serious relationship, and ended up in a really bad relationship where he let a woman move in with him only barely a month after they met...it ended very badly and he was miserable for quite some time.

Take it sloooowwwwww in regards to jumping back into the dating scene....especially with the fact that you have younger kids. By the time you're in your late 30's and older, many of the single women out there are carrying some baggage of their own.....divorces, other reasons why they are not yet married at that age, etc. Good luck...
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