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Too soon to start dating?

(15 Posts)
georginamartin Wed 05-Jun-19 13:51:59

My partner and I got together only 6 months after his wife’s death. I was reassured that he had had counselling and was prepared to move on. But 3 years later, I am beginning to sense an undercurrent of grieving which hasn't been resolved. I feel I am a distraction and a replacement. Apart from more counselling, any ideas?

Bridgeit Wed 05-Jun-19 15:35:25

Well three years later may indicate other reasons , but if it is delayed grieving etc, then you really need to have a proper discussion ,perhaps over a meal or out on a walk to make it more relaxed, best wishes

chelseababy Wed 05-Jun-19 15:45:34

I think bereaved men tend to move on/start dating quite soon as a rule. What makes you think there are unresolved issues?

jaylucy Thu 06-Jun-19 10:49:12

Yes , I too have noticed that many men begin dating after a relatively brief time of widowhood - for several it is the companionship that they miss and unless they belong to social clubs or associations to give them some kind of a social life, rather than sitting at home alone - in fact, one chap I know is on his 4th relationship since his wife died, the two ladies in between also passed away and he always seems to have another lady waiting in the wings!
Grief is a very personal thing that we all deal with in different ways and maybe something has happened to spring open that door that he has kept locked. All you can do, is be there for him - is there a Cruse group near you that may have a men's support group?

trueblue22 Thu 06-Jun-19 12:16:58

I feel I dated too soon after my DH suddenly died in 2017. I was dating after 10 months. It was a passionate but, in the end, not a healing relationship.

I wanted the physical closeness but wasn't ready to deal with the flaky behaviour, which made me miss DH even more.

It's true that men find replacements very quickly. There are more single older women around for them to choose from, and are sometimes less discerning.

A widower I know has had 2 relationships since his wife died late 2017, both widows.

In my case, I have changed in 2 years; are becoming more my own person and developing a taste for art and politics. I became a local councillor after 1 year and meeting lots of different people.

Georgina, don't expect too much from your partner, give him space and understand his ongoing grief. I wouldn't press him too much, just say you understand if he feels the loss and needs to talk about her.

Legs55 Thu 06-Jun-19 18:35:17

I don't think it's possible to say it's too soon as we are all different. I know men who have to have a lady in their lives, I also know men who haven't started a relationship several years after a bereavement.

I've been widowed over 6 years, no relationships but that's only because I haven't met any-one I want a relationship with just loads of male friends. I met DH when he was in the final stages of Divorce proceedings, I had been single for 3 years, we were together almost 23 years & marred for almost 21 yearssmile

agnurse Thu 06-Jun-19 18:37:25

I don't know if six months is "too soon"; it would depend on the individual person.

What I would suggest is that someone not consider a permanent partnership for at least year. This is simply because the loss of a spouse is considered to be one of the most stressful events that can occur in a person's life, and it is encouraged that someone not make any big decisions for at least a year after being widowed.

Tillybelle Thu 06-Jun-19 20:31:30

chelseababy. I noticed how quickly bereaved men moved on too. I was still in shock, kind of numb, three years after my husband's death. It was suicide so that can be very difficult. Then along came "Fred" whose wife had died about 5 months previously and he was very dapper, older than I, had it all worked out for our union and where we would live etc. I was horrified! I hardly knew him! He was very difficult to shift too. Would you believe it? Soon after him came "Fred @2" ! Same story - late wife buried about six months, he hd "seen" me at the choir for years "knew" we were "exactly right" for each other...
I actually got into a panic! I really did not want to be with anybody until I was ready and if that took forever I did not care!

I am sorry georginamartin, I think your getting together has nothing whatsoever wrong with it, but you must be prepared that it's not just grief that takes a long time, it's the whole effect of having lived your life with another person for so many years. You may be just right together, but give it time to go through all the ups and downs that happen in the time after the death of a spouse. If you can do this together, it will make you closer.

I simply could not take on anyone else after what I had been through. I had children too and was only 42 at the time so I really needed time to recover. This was just me and the particular circumstance I was in.

When we are retirement age, we know we don't have so long, so I don't blame your man for wanting you even though his wife had not been dead all that long. Also, I notice that if a death was from an illness such as cancer, people are prepared for the passing and have started to think about how they will go on after they lose the loved one.
I wish you both every happiness. I would say, keep talking. Do not get upset, be honest with each other, let him work it through. He wanted you and is with you, support him. If you think it will help, ask for couples counselling.

With best wishes for a long and happy future together, Elle x

Tangerine Thu 06-Jun-19 22:50:17

I think you should just ask him. Whether or not the answer is favourable, at least you will know.

I hope things turn out well.

Daisymae Fri 07-Jun-19 08:36:39

Grief is a process not an event. It would be quite normal to feel sad at various events and times. You have been together for a number of years now so presumably have a good relationship. However perhaps you are picking up other vibes? The only way forward is to discuss with your partner.

Luckygirl Fri 07-Jun-19 09:08:38

In what way doe this "undercurrent" manifest itself? And is this troublesome in some way to you?

I think most second partners in the this situation have to accept that there is residual grief after a long life together with the first partner. It would be a strange person who did not carry this with them for the rest of their life. And indicates someone capable of commitment and love - which may be an asset for you.

Theranos Sun 09-Jun-19 07:57:14

Message deleted by Gransnet. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

mcem Sun 09-Jun-19 08:43:05

What prompted that last post I wonder.
"Unless their (sic) gay".

EllanVannin Sun 09-Jun-19 09:44:20

Testing the waters to see if they're still fanciable in later years is what I'd have said about the rushed dating scene. A big mistake.

Greengage Sun 16-Jun-19 23:13:07

We also have known each other for 3 years. The gentleman in question was only widowed 6 months when I first met him. I had been widowed 9 years with no thought of wanting another relationship, but for me it was love at first sight which was an awful shock to me. He was having a really rough time coming to terms with the loss of his wife. We got on from the word go and so after another 3 months started to meet up once in a while. Because of things we had in common, we felt at ease with each other and talked comfortably about our other halves. We have gradually grown very close but both dislike the expression of 'moving on'. Neither of us will ever forget our previous loves, but we have found a space in our hearts for each other, and support each other when either of us gets upset regarding our first loves. We are lucky to have found a very very special relationship.