A Subject That I’ve Been Avoiding

A reader made a comment and it contains a request for advice and information on a topic that I can’t really address. This is due to simple ignorance on my part. I have done no research nor do I have any experience in this area.

So, read the comment to see what the issue is and perhaps one of my outstandingly brilliant readers can address it with a comment.  And it gets complicated… she’s 35. Thanks in advance.

I only recently found your website and I must say, it is really refreshing to read guys opinions on dating/understanding women etc – world only knows how many similar articles there are by women on how to understand men.

Let me just mention to you that I, for one, am the person who doesn’t believe in dating rules. I believe in being yourself and natural. I am not here for looking for the dating advice, as I’m not ready for this kind of thing – not yet anyway.

But what I would like to ask you is to point me out to an article that would talk about,  widows – meaning, what do you think one should talk about to another when there’s been 2 years of an awful black hole of recovery and when you have spent lovely and respectful years with your partner.

I know that at this stage, having the near perfect relationship (yes near to perfect and yes, there have been disagreement as anyone would in a normal relationship), the requirements get higher.

Partly because now I know what makes me happy and know what made/ did not make him happy. If you have something you wrote down before or would be interested in investigating it, it would be great. It would be nice to see what guys/men think of that or how have you/they come out it.

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  1. #1 by Vicomte on December 19, 2012 - 7:34 PM

    Might I suggest a more lucid and simplified presentation (of the question). This is a bit convoluted.

    And maybe ask Athol.

  2. #2 by Dr. Illusion on December 19, 2012 - 7:43 PM

    The grammar/phrasing of the question is slightly confusing, but as far as I can tell this person is asking either how to date a widow or how to date when you are a widow?

    As far as dating a widow (I do have experience) my best advice is not to get butt-hurt or offended when they talk about their deceased loved one. Understand that the relationship ended do to no ones fault and they will feel like they are betraying their lost love by seeing you. Be supportive and don’t push things. Widows lacked closure in their relationship and it’s like they were reading a great book that was stolen before they got to the end. This is one situation where a man has to bow to the woman’s frame, at least some of the time.

    As far as dating as a widow goes, it’s a bit tricky. First off, any man who cannot handle the fact that you lost the most important thing in your life is not worth your time. If he cannot deal with you keeping pictures of your lost love on the walls or you talking about him ocassionaly, screw him. The hardest part is not comparing every man to your lost love. And I realize this is extremely difficult. But you should not disqualify a man just because your lost love liked football and the new man likes basketball. That’s a shallow analogy, but it’s only an example. The man you lost is impossible to compete with because he is a perfect memory. You may have had a complaint or two when he was alive. He may have done things that bothered you. But now that he is gone, all the negatives are erased and he is now the perfect memory. Don’t put a man through the meat grinder of having to live up to perfection. A man cannot compete with a ghost. If you are religious/spiritual, ask your lost man’s permission and ask his acceptance. It does help.

    My experience: A fellow Marine invited me to his New Year’s party. When I arrived he informed me that he and his wife were getting a divorce. He told me he had cheated on her multiple times and he was a total dick to her, becauase she had a job and he called her a whore all the time and accused her of cheating. This girl was a 9, of not 9.5. She was really feminine and sweet and knew about him cheating and dealt with it. She only divorced him because he started calling her a whore.

    Well, she and I wound up sleeping together a few days later. We couldn’t get enough of each other. He found out and invited me over to discuss it. We had a few beers and he pulled out a pistol and blew his brains all over me.

    Talk about difficulty dating a widow? It lasted about a month before she broke it off.

    • #3 by Vicomte on December 19, 2012 - 8:22 PM

      ‘I don’t always date widows, but when I do, it lasts about a month.’

      -The most interesting comment in the thread

      • #4 by Dr. Illusion on December 19, 2012 - 8:29 PM

        You just made me choke on my beer. Alcohol abuser.

    • #5 by ar10308 on December 19, 2012 - 8:33 PM

      “We had a few beers and he pulled out a pistol and blew his brains all over me.”

      Talk about poisoning the well…

      • #6 by Dr. Illusion on December 19, 2012 - 8:41 PM

        I may have to do a blog post and tell the whole story, since you fellows seem interested.

        But yes, definitely poisoned the well. Main reason being that her family and his considered his death a direct result of our relationship. So they made her feel horrible about seeing me. His sister even tried to kill her at the funeral. Cops had to pull her off.

      • #7 by aneroidocean on December 19, 2012 - 8:56 PM

        Dr. Illusion – that’s by far one of the most intriguing comments I’ve seen. please do make a post or elaborate.

      • #8 by Dr. Illusion on December 19, 2012 - 9:04 PM

        I’ll post the full story tomorrow as part of my “Ghosts of Relationships Past” series. I would do it now but WordPress hates my phone.

    • #9 by silverstardust on December 20, 2012 - 12:23 PM

      Thanks, I know the question was a little confusing to start with and I suppose, I could have had it phrased better. But thanks for your opinion… you explained it well.

  3. #10 by theprivateman on December 19, 2012 - 9:04 PM

    This is getting wildly interesting.

    • #11 by Dr. Illusion on December 19, 2012 - 9:09 PM

      Sorry for thread-jacking, Private Man. I’ll buy you a drink when I see you in March.

      • #12 by Vicomte on December 19, 2012 - 9:29 PM

        Hide yer widows!

        (Bowing out.)

      • #13 by Dr. Illusion on December 19, 2012 - 9:34 PM

        Vicomte: Nice. My gf thought I was going crazy when I started laughing my ass off.

        Ace and I were just talking on the phone the other night about how you should start a blog. Or you can be a contributor on my site. Register at my place and I will give you contributor status so you can write posts.

  4. #14 by ton on December 19, 2012 - 9:25 PM

    I tried to date one. She would run her dead husband down. I know that’s a small sample size but I’ll not do it again

    As for a widow talking about her husband with her new man, it’s disrespectful. If she needs to speak about him she should do so with her girlfriends and not her new lover. If that makes me an asshole or unworthy so be it but I’ve had my full of women carrying on about other men.

    • #15 by Dr. Illusion on December 19, 2012 - 9:39 PM

      No offense, but that sounds kind of narcissistic. A woman is married to a man for years and loses him tragically, and you feel she should nevr discuss him? What if they had children together? Should she not tell his kids about him when you’re around? Seems insensitive.

      • #16 by Johnny Caustic on December 19, 2012 - 10:22 PM

        I can totally understand a widow needing to talk about her dead husband occasionally.

        AND I can totally understand a man refusing to date a woman under those circumstances.

        I don’t care if it’s unfair to her. It’s unfair that some women are born ugly, too. Any man who decides he’s not going to allow that in his life has the right to do so.

      • #17 by ton on December 19, 2012 - 11:58 PM

        Don’t care. as I said, I’ve had my fill of hearing how wonderful their last man was and being disrespected by woman. I never tell them of my fond memories of other women and require the same.

        I will also have nothing long-term with women who have younger kids. I’ve yet to see that work out well for my friends and I’m not egotistical enough to think it would somehow be different for me. however she should not go on about her dead husband to her kids in front of the new man as all she is doing is setting things up for the kids to disrespect the new man

        read what I said. I have not said she should not speak about her dead husband, but that she should not do so in front of her new man out of respect. she has all kinds of other options.

  5. #18 by Laguna Beach Fogey on December 19, 2012 - 10:22 PM

    If you’ve been avoiding it, I see no reason why your readers shouldn’t avoid it, too.

    Smells like a shit test.

    FYI…I have recent experience dating a young (hot) widow.

  6. #19 by Nate on December 19, 2012 - 10:40 PM

    While I have never dated or been in a relationship with a widow (though a friend’s widowed mother did end up remarrying), in my limited opinion I find myself inclined to be more accepting / forgiving of a widow’s physical / emotional baggage (that is NOT motivated by pity on my part) compared to that of a divorcee or unwed single mom in that unlike the last two, it can be assumed that (short of any foul play) the relationship ended due to no fault of either the widow or the deceased husband.

    However speaking for myself, my concerns (along with the usual pitfalls of modern relationships / marriage / etc) with any potential relationship with a widow largely involve what both of us would expect to get out of the relationship such as her constantly comparing me to her ex and me in the long run finding myself possibly desiring a family of my own (if she’s already a mother or for some reason decides to abandon having children under the rationale of honouring her deceased ex).

    IMHO though it is far from easy and has its own unique challenges, I would have thought a widow is in a much better position compared to both the divorcee or unwed single mom in spite of the fact that it’s a given most but not all men ideally prefer younger single women to widows (due to the baggage regardless of her age), yet a feminine widow should be capable of running alongside (and possibly even besting) an unfeminine single woman.

  7. #20 by Titanium on December 20, 2012 - 12:28 AM

    What the heck is she asking? Widows and black holes? I have no experience in that either.

  8. #21 by insideawomansmind on December 20, 2012 - 3:48 AM

    I’m thinking there’s no topics off limits because the woman is a widow, compared to when a man and a woman meet and have those initial getting to know you-talks? I wouldn’t treat a (and this is where me not having English as native tongue gets me in hot waters, bear with me), man who’se wife died, differently. I’d be prepared for him to tell me about her at some point, but I wouldnt shy away from certain topics or shuffle-foot around him. I’d just be myself.

  9. #22 by tj on December 20, 2012 - 11:26 AM

    Interesting topic.

    Think, as usual, there are no concrete answers – it “depends”.

    I dated a widow for a while, not long after my divorce. We both enjoyed the “rebound” aspect of things and both realized we were still processing our losses. In fact, we often talked about them and compared – she had an interesting point in that her loss was “final” while I still had/got to interact with my ex on a regular basis. IOW, she perceived my divorce as being more difficult in many regards b/c I had to live the death over and over and over again whereas she had finaltiy to the nth degree.

    At first, I treated her with kid gloves – too much so. She flat out told me one day that being too cognizant of her loss was insulting in some manner – that I wasn’t giving her credit for being with me by her choice (and my great aftershave).

    Neat lady with some interesting perspectives.

    To address the original question – there are no limits. We’ve all suffered losses in some form or another, we’ve all had trauma in our lives – and this isn’t really that much different than any other situation. A strong and centered woman will share the good parts of her prior relationship in a positive manner – one you wouldn’t want to be involved with will play the comparison shit test game – and this is no different than women who are divorced/single with prior boyfriend issues.

    • #23 by silverstardust on December 20, 2012 - 12:32 PM

      Thanks for that. I do agree with you in this a lot.

  10. #24 by Dr. Illusion on December 20, 2012 - 1:00 PM

    Ok, I posted the whole story on my blog is anyone is interested.

  11. #25 by Gorbachev on December 20, 2012 - 1:49 PM

    The truth is that this is going to be extremely difficult no matter what you do. Pretending there’s a cure is irresponsible.

    Muddle through and try as best you can; realize that all things end. You will, too. Understand this, and develop yourself into the new you you’re going to be. You don’t need to give up what you lost; it will always be part of you. Just consider others as well as yourself. And do your best.

    Don’t think the pain will ever really go away. It won’t. This is now part of you. Cope as best you can.

  12. #26 by AnonWriter on December 20, 2012 - 2:33 PM

    I really wonder whether dating a divorcee is all that different from dating a widow.

    Actually, dating a widow might be better than a divorcee. First, she didn’t go off and end her marriage. Second, she has positive memories that she can tap into, rather than negative.

    Then there’s the process of moving on, which both widows and divorcees have to do before they’re ready to date.

    If a widow is ready to date, then she’s dealt with her loss in a reasonably sufficient manner. Same thing with a divorcee. Unfortunately, a lot of divorcees don’t really process their divorce properly, instead they embrace their anger. In many cases, I think this is a way for them to avoid the real and painful feelings of loss from losing their marriage and life partner. This cannot be so easily avoided when you are a widow.

    I have seen divorcees who do this. She spends every moment convincing herself that divorce is empowering and the path to happiness. The husband becomes the root of everything wrong in her life. When she starts feeling those uncomfortable feelings of loss, she taps more deeply into her anger to make these feelings go away. She never really deals with the reality of divorce. Embracing anger often starts way before the marriage ends, as a way to help her move toward divorce, but she continues to embrace that anger even years after the divorce is over.

  13. #27 by Georgia Boy on December 20, 2012 - 3:39 PM

    My only thought in addition to what’s already here, is to be careful not to give her a free pass on evaluating her personality. Just because her husband died instead of her kicking him out, doesn’t mean it was a good marriage or that she’s any better wife material than a divorcee. I’ve never dated a widow but don’t feel like I would approach it a whole lot differently than I always do.

  1. A Subject That I’ve Been Avoiding « PUA Central
  2. Ghosts of Relationships Past: The Widow | Illusion of Sanity

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