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Old 01-06-2016, 04:20 PM
 
Location: Whereever we have our RV parked
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Why would the term widow be outdated?
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Old 01-06-2016, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Ohio
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Widow and widower is a hot term in Florida and those people would be hit on by married, divorced and anything else people call themselves. Widowers especially are in great demand because there are fewer of them. If people call themselves "single" how will other people know that they are marriage-friendly or that they have been in a monogamous relationship and therefore less likely to have STD's.

Widow does sound a bit old-fashioned but there isn't another word to describe it in English.
French widow=veuve widower=veuf
Spanish widow=viuda widower=viudo
Italian widow=vedova widower=vidovo

BTW the word widow is from the Old English word widewe meaning "empty". Yeah, not a good word.
But widows have many historical benefits that carrot over to modern times.
Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.
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Old 01-08-2016, 08:01 AM
 
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Maybe OP is wondering if "widow" is outdated as "spinster" is, but it's not. It clearly describes the person's position vis a vis marriage. Also, "single" is accurate if one chooses not to identify with a marriage ended by death, especially if it was brief, or very early, etc.
I have a gay friend who was with his partner for 35 years in a country that didn't allow marriage. His partner died two years ago, and he considers himself "widowed".
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Old 01-08-2016, 09:27 AM
 
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Think historically when it was seen in many cultures as some sort of moral failing if a woman never married, widow is preferred over single. The former clearly means one had at least been married and by extension one's children were legitimate. Single OTOH opens or would have opened up a large can of worms. It means first the woman couldn't get or hold a man and if there were children......


It wasn't that long ago that single mothers would wear wedding rings and try to pass themselves off as "widows" in order to hide unwed motherhood (remember Peyton Place?).


Being as all this may widow conjures up images of some deceased man's relict going around in deep weeds.


Think the word started to lose favour and or punch post WWII. Many women including a good number of them still quite young lost their husbands during the war. However going through life known as a "widow" seemed medieval I shouldn't wonder.
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Old 01-08-2016, 09:29 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
Maybe OP is wondering if "widow" is outdated as "spinster" is, but it's not. It clearly describes the person's position vis a vis marriage. Also, "single" is accurate if one chooses not to identify with a marriage ended by death, especially if it was brief, or very early, etc.
I have a gay friend who was with his partner for 35 years in a country that didn't allow marriage. His partner died two years ago, and he considers himself "widowed".

Believe it or not spinster was just removed from UK marriage license forms just ten years ago.


BBC NEWS | UK | Magazine | R.I.P Bachelors and Spinsters
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Old 01-08-2016, 09:32 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Coronaria View Post
I was legally separated, but not yet divorced, when my "former" died. It had not been an amicable process and as far as I was concerned I couldn't wait to put that part of my life behind me (or at least as much as one can, when there are offspring.) But in legal terms I am a widow; certainly that's how Social Security sees things, which literally saved me financially. (I have no idea whether I'd have gotten the full survivor's benefit if we'd already been divorced when he died.)

However, when filling out any sort of paperwork I always designate myself as single because in emotional terms that's what I am. I want no connection to my former married life, and even went so far as to legally resume my maiden name (which I did not originally want to change when I married but stupidly succumbed to pressure from him and his family, which should have been a red flag even then for me, lol) as soon as all the probate mumbo-jumbo was done with.

On whatever occasions I need to refer to my childrens' father, I call him the "late ex" which could be interpreted variously as deceased ex-husband, deceased ex-boyfriend/partner, or deceased ex-whatever. Certainly doesn't matter at this point. :-)

So long as one is legally still married you become a widow or widower upon one's spouses death. OTOH since divorce dissolves a marriage, that would be a different story.
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Old 01-08-2016, 09:51 AM
 
Location: Florida
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No it is not. Use the term if you like.
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