Young Widow Forum

Young Widow Forum => General Discussion => Topic started by: 2ManyQuestions on June 27, 2017, 12:24:16 PM

Title: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: 2ManyQuestions on June 27, 2017, 12:24:16 PM
Hi,

I have heard different points of views from males and females, whether females are more inclined to stay single when widowed but men seem a need for a partner because of X….

I am curious of your thoughts and reasoning.

thx

Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Portside on June 27, 2017, 03:45:02 PM
Interesting.

I don't think I'd say I 'needed' a partner after I was widowed. But, I did know I wanted to remarry at some point. I liked being married previously even though my experience wasn't ideal. Therefore, I actively sought out a woman who was like-minded after my grieving was finished.

But, having said that, I did think it was important for my young children to be loved and nurtured by a woman that would, to the best of her ability, fulfill the role of a Mom. A new marriage would provide that for them. A woman/mother adds richness to a child's life that no father could on his own so, maybe unconsciously I felt that 'need' - don't know. 

I wouldn't presume to speak for widows but for both sexes, I imagine there are many factors and influences in play. For example, US censuses have shown for many decades that after age 45 (roughly), the number of available men and women begins to diverge and only becomes greater over time.

Perhaps that has some impact on likelihood of each sex remarrying. Or not. Who knows? 

Best wishes - Mike

Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Metv on June 27, 2017, 05:09:25 PM
Staying single, have been widowed a good part of 10 years. To me, the reasoning is I just never met anyone who made me want to say I do. Honestly, several who convinced me of "I don't". I have become pretty independent, by now. I'm a guy. I kind of like not having to answer to anyone. Not that the future rules anything out, but for now it just not in the cards. Interesting forum question.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: fairlanegirl on June 27, 2017, 09:32:35 PM
I think it may be more individual, and depends on age/generation perhaps? Maybe older women of an earlier might have spent 50 years or more doing the traditional role of running round after a bloke, and not want to do it again, and they are most likely, if anything, to end up with someone their own age. They may not like the idea of possibly nursing a sick old fellow. I guess it depends on your experience of marriage. i never felt I had to compromise myself / answer to anyone in any way being married to my husband, so being by myself was not 'freedom' as it can be for some I suppose.

Younger people--I'd say judging by those on here, many of both sexes do repartner. I did after a year, though we don't live together / haven't married and actually I'm fine with that at this stage of life (I am 50 and was widowed at 44). We've talked about it but logistically, it will be a long time. I don't want to uproot my children either, they've been through too much. He's their stepdad, just only here three nights a week! This way I have also had to be more independent, but with the backup of knowing I'm loved, if you know what I mean, which yes, does make a huge difference, I don't kid myself about that.
Statistics can be misleading, I suspect, because they only count 'remarriage after widowhood' rates. There are doubtless a lot of people, especially in this day and age, including older women, who have love lives, they are just not married.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Captains wife on June 28, 2017, 06:12:28 AM
Interestingly - 2 of my closer widower friends(both with young kids) recoupled within a year and remarried. Most of the  widows I personally know are not remarried several years out- myself included. Im not sure what the statistics show but personally I haven't wanted to recouple while I still had a lot of healing to do - and now I'm getting more and more used to my single parent status (as I've always been pretty independent). I am inclined to think men may marry more quickly to rebuild a more complete family unit for their children. I know if the tables had been turned my husband would have re-married very quickly. I wonder if many females are willing to hold out for longer for what they perceive as the "right" match?
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Sugarbell on June 28, 2017, 07:13:55 AM
Reasons men tend to remarry quicker (just ny opinion only)

Mother figure for kids
Someone to help with kids/chauffeur/house
Don't like being alone
Men tend to have less "guy friends/buddies" as they age than women. Women usually are better at maintaining friendships  (people to lean on, hang out with).: Outside of work men feel more isolation.


Why women are slower to remarry

Many women no longer need a man for financial independence/survival
If women have young kids...taking on a new husband and his kids is like too much.
Don't want to take care of another person
More social (look on here-few men.:always more women than men at bagos) Women tend to get social fulfillment outside of marriage easier than men

Just my observations over the past 10 years...But remember each situation is unique-this certainly isn't true for all.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Bunny on June 28, 2017, 09:34:06 AM
I'm going to speak in general, simple terms. I know these things won't be true for everyone as there will always be extenuating circumstances involved, and we are all unique beings.

Women share deep emotional relationships with spouse, friends, family. Men share a deep emotional relationship with their spouse. Period. After a partner dies, women can cobble together an emotional support system to help them get by. Men have a more difficult time finding this, so they are drawn to re-coupling sooner than women. It's hard to live without emotional intimacy.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: serpico on June 28, 2017, 09:58:43 AM
I think Sugarbell and Bunny are right on the money.  Men and women are very different in many ways, not the least of which how we deal with the loss of a loved one.  Those differences aren't good or bad... they just are.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Mizpah on June 28, 2017, 10:15:01 AM
A google search gave me TONS of articles on this.  Here's the first one, which starts about Paul McCartney, but moves on to generalities about the differences in grieving and "moving on" between men and women.

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/01/fashion/thursdaystyles/01marry.html

I read this one too:

http://time.com/3584827/pew-marriage-divorce-remarriage/

On a personal level, though, a stark difference I noticed between NG (widower) and me is that I went through a long phase (about two years) of feeling very strongly that I'd never have feelings for another person again, whereas he immediately knew he wanted a wife and kids in his future.  For me, all that felt specific to DH, but for him it was about him and his life/hopes/desires. 
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Metv on June 28, 2017, 10:51:15 AM
Although I've seen some variations, to me it seems women and men differ when widowed. Most women (I've known), remarry for comfort and security, most men, from loneliness. Just an observation.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Love2fish on June 28, 2017, 01:23:20 PM
Women share deep emotional relationships with spouse, friends, family. Men share a deep emotional relationship with their spouse. Period. After a partner dies, women can cobble together an emotional support system to help them get by. Men have a more difficult time finding this, so they are drawn to re-coupling sooner than women. It's hard to live without emotional intimacy.

^^^ This says it for me.  I had over a year to grieve before DW was gone.  I knew I would recouple  I wasted no time working on it.  I have no doubt and feel no shame saying that a man, or at least this man, needs a woman more than a woman needs a man.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Sugarbell on June 28, 2017, 03:15:32 PM
One of my first post widow relationships was with a widower who was 2 months out (I was 9 months out)..He wanted a wife...I bolted. He was married within 9 months of me bolting.

I lost my best friend from high school in 2015....she actually joked with me on her death bed to marry her husband and help raise her kids. She said he couldn't be alone....He ended up moving in with her former babysitter from years ago and she helps with the kids.

I'm "in love" now (finally at almost 10 years) and can see a future with NG. (But no hurry to marry but will eventually when all the technicalities of merging lives gets worked out).. But before him...nope. (And I did have a brief 5 month marriage back about 6 years ago that got annulled)-Scared the crap outta me.

But personalities are different/situations....I had 3 tiny kids early on...and just had nothing left to give a man (or his kids/ex) ...just seemed like too much work. If my kids would've been the age my kids are now (10, 13 and 14) I may have recoupled successfully sooner.

Who knows?
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: faye on June 30, 2017, 07:49:21 AM
At my age (late 50s) the demographics aren't in my favor. Women my age can end up without partners because there are fewer men than women.  And the men looking for love can hold out for someone younger. I can't tell you how discouraging it was to read profiles of men my age and older who desired a woman no older than mid-forties.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: soloact on June 30, 2017, 11:43:32 AM
I don't want to complicate my life.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Adley on June 30, 2017, 02:04:46 PM
Thanks for bringing this up, good topic. I've actually been thinking along a similar thread lately, since my brother asked if I was seeing anyone. He got a laugh and a hell no. DW and I had a great marriage. Almost twelve months out I started seeing someone. In hindsight and on reading this board, I realize that my mind, heart, and body were not nearly on the same page. My heart was for my kids, I wanted them to see a loving relationship. My mind was still overwhelmed and numb. My body kept manufacturing pesky hormones. It was all one big train wreck recipe. I'm over a year out from an awful four month marriage. Now it's like my heart and mind have teamed up on my body. Now whenever a lady smiles at me my heart and mind pull the reins back really hard.
   I suppose we men are more likely to have a simplistic view of marriage and family, and at first the prospect of raising three small children was quite daunting. But they get older and now it's not scary at all. I certainly can't speak for all men, but I did miss my best friend, the intimacy, the complete family, etc. What we had was good, and I wanted it back. I wasn't under the illusion I'd get her back, but I was under the illusion that by the time we hit our thirties most everyone is mature enough to treat others with mutual respect and to meet their partner halfway. Then I got hit with the realization that, after all my thinking on maturity, my worldview was quite naive.
   So I started out thinking about it "like a man", but after a good hard burn maybe I'm thinking about it more like a woman. I see the potential for danger more clearly and it might just be too much work. The sexes definitely have their own brands of toughness.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: JeanGenie on July 02, 2017, 07:21:29 AM
This is an interesting topic and there are parts of what each of you have stated that I can relate to.

"Women share deep emotional relationships with spouse, friends, family. Men share a deep emotional relationship with their spouse. Period. After a partner dies, women can cobble together an emotional support system to help them get by. Men have a more difficult time finding this, so they are drawn to re-coupling sooner than women. It's hard to live without emotional intimacy."

My DH was my best friend and that only person I shared a deep emotional relationship with so in the past four years I've now formed new emotional relationships with friends (both male and female) to help fill this void.

I've also gotten used to my independence and see the "good" part of this.

And as Faye said: "...the demographics aren't in my favor. Women my age can end up without partners because there are fewer men than women.  And the men looking for love can hold out for someone younger."

So from the female perspective, early on, yes, I had no interest in recoupling. Now? Not sure. As Soloact says, it will complicate my life, but if it's worth it... :)


Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Bunny on July 09, 2017, 08:17:41 PM
Made me think of this thread:

https://ericaroman.me/2017/07/07/a-widows-rage-defense-of-patton-oswalts-engagement/
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Metv on July 09, 2017, 08:59:21 PM
^^ actually the best and most responsive article I've read to date in 10 years. A definitive answer to other's opinions. Like shut the ***k up.
Love It !

I remember early out it was the first thing I wanted to do (recouple). I felt that  I had to answer for some sort of guilt for wanting to find someone again, and have to say the worst was family. Mostly in laws who thought I should grieve forever more. My answer was about the same as this young lady's. I'm sure as shit ain't gonna wait for your approval. We only have so many days to our lives, and my intent was to not waste a single second.


Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Julester3 on July 09, 2017, 09:41:42 PM
I saw that article and it made me think of this discussion. I'm happy for him but it does reinforce we all grieve differently and the time/pace differed for many of us. I hate the negative people - no person has to be single forever when they lose their spouse if they don't want to. It's our choice and I wish people would not be so quick to judge.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: BrokenHeart2 on July 10, 2017, 04:20:54 AM
Great article Bunny, thanks!  Ah yes, all those judgy people! I don't have room in my life for that kind anymore.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: momof2obs on July 10, 2017, 07:43:58 AM
Great article Bunny, thanks!  Ah yes, all those judgy people! I don't have room in my life for that kind anymore.

Exactly!
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Love2fish on July 10, 2017, 05:06:25 PM
^^^^ What everybody said ^^^^  !

I particularly like her explanation of how the heart grows, builds another room that does not diminish anything.   
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Bear Shannon on July 19, 2017, 03:20:42 PM
I have never felt the need to re-marry or to even re-couple. I actually think it is not realistic to expect one woman to be your everything. You may connect with one woman intellectually, another emotionally, maybe another creatively. It is probably why divorce is so high. Just my thoughts.

I still love Laurie and miss her every day (no woman has made my laugh so hard) but I often felt like a trapped animal ready to chew off my own leg during our marriage. Unfortunately, my children saw this side of me and told me as adults that I probably should never had married. But they also knew I really loved their mom and would have died for her.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: jeudi on July 20, 2017, 05:31:35 AM
I had a long, glorious and satisfying marriage with John, my first husband. I knew very soon into my widowhood that I would want to re-partner. I wasn't sure how or if that could ever happen but I knew it would be beneficial to me.

I loved the deep connection I had with John. I loved knowing another with such intimacy. I loved the trust, the comfort, the companionship, the sharing. When I lost him I had no idea how much I would grow to despise loneliness. I  guess I had the idea that it wouldn't be so bad and that I could adjust and adapt to the condition.

I lived in a rural area and worked from home. Due to life situations I no longer had much social interaction- I had friends but none lived close by. I would literally go weeks without having a face to face conversation with anyone but my mailman. There were moments when I felt uncomfortable with what isolation was doing to my psyche. Very uncomfortable.

 I did much, really all I could, to build my life into something that worked to enrich my soul. I did this because I knew there was not a certainty that I would ever fall in love again and I didn't want to end up sad and alone if I was going to end up alone. The end result felt like stitches and band-aids. I felt better and  happier but it was a far cry from feeling like I was living with even a fraction of the soul-satisfaction that I had lived with John.

After more than two years of working my way through widowhood, building on what I had and adding some lovely new people to my world I was lucky enough to meet someone with whom I believed I could fall in love. He lived 1000 miles away and was a widower. He was very recently widowed and I strongly felt the need to encourage him to work his way through those earlier stages of being widowed without me in the same town. That being said, he didn't argue with me about my staying put where I lived because he felt like I knew what I was talking about because I had been widowed for a longer period of time. However, today, as when we had our beginnings, he feels like he was ready to start a new relationship without the stretch of solitary mourning in between.

We started living together a bit past my four year mark, him after his two year mark. It was not easy at first but we  committed to each other and we worked at it until we melded. We've been married for four years, together for 12.

Each of us is different with different needs.

 I'm not the most social person in the world. If I go to a party I am the person who seeks out someone interesting with whom to have a deep conversation. I can hang and mix and present myself in an amiable way but light conversation just doesn't do it for me. Even when I had more proximal friends and a bigger social life with more activities, I still felt like I was missing something essential. If I had not re-married I would do the very best for myself that I could. Being with someone in a committed relationship was fundamental to feeling fulfilled.

I'm thankful that things worked out this way.
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Bunny on July 20, 2017, 10:45:29 AM
I don't want to complicate my life.

This reminds me of my second year of widowhood when men started hitting on me and I would just wryly tell them: 'I'm not lookin' for another project.'
Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Guaruj on July 31, 2017, 08:09:26 PM
Tuning in one month late here...

Just last night, my mother-in-law and her partner (1x and 2x widowed, respectively) urged me to "get out there" now that I've been widowed for three years.

I'm used to loneliness; perhaps even too comfortable with it. I'm 57 now and I didn't marry until I was 45. I don't have any children. At this point, I'd prefer to be alone than to commit to an less-than-happy relationship. That may sound like an obvious sentiment, but I see plenty of unhappy marriages out there.

I would be very happy to find someone to love again. Once in a while, I have the experience of feeling like a boyfriend again - just doing something friendly for a woman I like. That feeling suggests to me that it's worth risking the relatively small disappointments we all get when dating. It has not yet motivated me to try online dating, though.

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Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Love2fish on August 01, 2017, 11:15:35 AM
.... I'd prefer to be alone than to commit to an less-than-happy relationship. That may sound like an obvious sentiment, but I see plenty of unhappy marriages out there......

That may sound obvious but it's an easy thing to ignore when the loneliness is too intense. 

One part "anything is better than what I feel now" arrogantly stirred with "I know how love works" baked in self deception is a recipe for disaster.  Don't ask me how I know this.

Title: Re: Opinion / Widowed Females/Males
Post by: Guaruj on August 01, 2017, 04:47:48 PM
That may sound obvious but it's an easy thing to ignore when the loneliness is too intense. 

One part "anything is better than what I feel now" arrogantly stirred with "I know how love works" baked in self deception is a recipe for disaster.  Don't ask me how I know this.

That's a rather astute summary, and I won't need to ask how you know this. I have deceived myself that way at least once.

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