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Everything posted by tybec

  1. I was given a gift of the picture presentation put together for my late husband's funeral. It is a digital photo frame. I never got it out of the box. I could not bear to look at it as it was from his funeral. I barely put the pictures together, others did, as he died on a Friday and Sunday was the visitation. Quick. So, I got it out. After a broken relationship post my LH's death, I decided I wanted it out for my son, and maybe me, too. It has been 8 1/2 years. I took most pictures of LH down when I started to date. I decided that was not fair to my son, who was 8 at the time of LH's death, 12 when I started dating. I cried initially upon putting it out. It is a collage of pics from his baby years to our dating in HS, his military years, church youth years, wedding to many of him with our son. I think I could not put it out and that was unfair to my son to be stripped of precious photos of his father. And now it is out and my son just turned 17! I feel good about it. I decided if recoupling is to occur and I can handle all their baggage/history, they can handle a photo frame with my LH and our history. And if divorced, still managing their stuff present and future. It is a trade off I feel is worthy. For me but mostly for my son. Going on 9 years and still dealing with it all.
  2. tybec

    What am I missing here?

    Minny9, I am sorry you experienced this. Not sure of the whys. Too many possibilities. Hurtful, nevertheless. Covid - some of it likely. Your late wife's family not committed to you anymore. Maybe. My brother lost his wife to cancer and continued to reach out to his stepdaughter (18 and in college when my brother married her mother) and the extended family. The stepdaughter pretty much ended the relationship with his many attempts to engage not reciprocated. He had made her and her husband the executors of his will and for his inheritance, as he never had children. His late wife's extended family really gave all contact up when his late wife's mother passed. It is sad to be expendable. My late husband and I were the hub for family gatherings after my mother moved to our city for support. I enjoyed having Christmas, Easter, birthday celebrations and such. Well, my husband died and doing that all myself was difficult. Things changed with my siblings, even. Then my mother died. Even getting together with my siblings is seldom. It is sad to have connections lost with death. I don't understand the lack of hospitality. We have grown a bit selfish, I think, in our space and unwillingness to share, to be inconvenienced for a day or two. My father's side of the family and my father made every attempt to connect with family when driving somewhere, to stop by and sometimes stay the night. I had a favorite aunt that loved on me when I would fly into her city and stay the night on my way to see my boyfriend turned husband. She treated me like a queen! We don't do that anymore. Add a chair to the table or make the table longer when we have excess. I had college kids stay at my house when touring, singing at churches. I hosted teen youth weekends for Christian retreats. One of my brothers had foreign exchange students for a semester in his home. He and his wife also invited foreign college students over the holidays for meals at the college where he was a professor. They could not go back to their homes always for the long breaks. I miss the extension of grace, which is how I see it. My humble opinion.
  3. tybec

    My Little Rant.....

    I feel you StillWidowed. I did 3 months on Zoosk which was recommended for my age and a good site. I shared a bit here back then, and I am still incredulous. I am a Christian and mean it. I attend church, have a girls group I lead, and I go to a bible study. So, no secrets about my faith and activities. And I swear the men never read my profile. I had a dick pic sent to me while at church. 🙄 I had a guy who just talked to me casually, and we had some common folks on FB. Then he one morning text and wanted a picture and asked how I masturbated. I had the guy speak to me on the phone and then text right after how he wanted me in his bed. I had the guy I spoke to off and on a month. Never committed and no flirty stuff and I bowed out to too many red flags, and then he creeped me with 20 texts in a row. And contacted me a month later to have lunch as he was in the same city. We never went out, and he was all upset with me. I know, nothing like some of your stories or others, but I got off the site and have not jumped in again. I did Christian Mingle with my first try and met a guy that I shared about on here. Didn't work. My brother 16 yrs. my senior has all kinds of ladies. I may look into a professional site next go round. I think profile pics with hats, sunglasses, on a motorcycle or red sports car or bathroom shots shirtless are just ridiculous for us in our 50s. Waiting for my Boaz.....
  4. Hello! Still here, but more as reader than poster. Sorry you had to find us but glad you find the board comforting. IT was a life saver for years for me as I could state things here when I could not to any other folks. It is hard to be a young widow, unnatural and though you work through and move forward, some unique challenges. Definitely growth from early on grief. Please post as you may write just the thing someone needs to hear for that moment in time. And it helps to vent, too.
  5. tybec

    What's Your Playlist?

    Love this. My LH died on a Friday morning vehicle accident, visitation on Sunday and funeral on Monday. Whirlwind and a walking body was me. In shock. In a course of events, my MIL picked out every song as I was dealing with something else. My LH was a classic rock DJ for a bit, and it did not fit well to have only traditional old hymns. I did, however, get our only two nephews to sing "I'll Fly Away" as they had at my father's funeral. My LH loved that and had it on his play list. IT was upbeat and people still tell me they loved it. 2 years later, a woman from church died after her 3 round of cancer. Kids my son's age and younger. They had time to plan it. They played several songs, had the most beautiful program with pictures, quotes and stories, and then led out the service with dancing to the "Oh When the Saints Go Marching In." I always wondered how much she planned her funeral.
  6. The pod cast is long. But so informative. And so helpful to me with all I went through. The author and expert, Dr. Patricia Papernow, states the divorced children will always have a loss with the new coupling, as the parent turns to the new mate. So the loyalty bind is there. And the divorced parent must respond to the child, but in so, turns away from the new mate. So, the new mate is always feeling rejected and hurt from this. The new mate is an outsider, always, to the previous family which consists of the ex, too. So, there is so much to deal with. I had so much hurt and would get so upset and now I know why. I lost my mate and the rejection and always being on the outside was intolerable on top of my loss. And I can't relate well to the divorce as death is not the same. So, anger, resentment and hurt grew, and I criticized and avoided/withdrew.😔 It truly is something incredible for families that make it work. Not impossible, but so much on the new mate, especially a stepmother, to manage being the outsider and sucking it up and needing support from the divorced parent who can't always give it right away. And the divorced parent caught in the middle and feeling a failure to the new mate, but the bond with the children is stronger and is priority. So, learning about new things to make good choices. That is my interpretation from the pod cast. Good luck with all this. Hard stuff.
  7. Yes, I am reading up. This may not apply to many of you but maybe some..... And it still applies in ways with adult children, especially if you don't have adult children who are independent. Geez, it is A-MAZING for those that work all this out. Just saying. 😉 7 Tips for Parenting, Stepparenting, and Discipline in Stepfamilies Research tells us that, for many children, becoming a stepfamily is harder and takes more time, than divorce. Stepfamilies are generally easier for children eight and under, and for boys. They are harder for girls (including, in my experience, for adult daughters of older recoupling dads). They are especially hard for young teen girls. Stepparents everywhere seem to want more limits and boundaries with their stepchildren. Parents everywhere seem to want more loving and understanding for their children. Hands down, “authoriTATIVE parenting” is best for children on every measure imaginable, including bringing children through difficult transitions like divorce and becoming a stepfamily. Authoritative parenting is both loving and firm: Loving: Authoritative parents are responsive, warm, and empathic. Firm: Authoritative parents calmly set moderately firm limits and they make developmentally appropriate demands for maturity. Until and unless stepparents have forged a caring, trusting relationship with kids, parents need to retain the disciplinary role. My guideline for stepparents is, “connection before correction.” This very often takes years, not months! Once stepparents have forged a caring relationship, they can move slowly into an authoritaTATIVE (loving and moderately firm) disciplinary role. There are many healthy, thriving stepfamilies where stepparents do not have a disciplinary role. AuthoriTARIAN parenting by stepparents is almost always toxic. Authoritarian parenting is not loving or warm. It is firm and hard. Authoritarian parenting often uses negative labels (“You’re lazy.” “You’re a slob.”), rather than positive requests (“I’d love it if you’d pick up your toys.”) Meanwhile, successful stepcouples do work as a team. Often stepparents can help parents to firm up a bit. Parents can help stepparents to understand their children. Stepparents have input. Parents have final say about their own children. Successful stepcouples face the same challenges that struggling stepcouples do. Successful stepcouples communicate frequently and constructively. They discuss their parenting differences with kindness and caring. Struggling stepcouples criticize and/or avoid.
  8. This is long but a good listen about "blending families". Made me understand some of the recent comments about doing your own thing separately for a while. And there still are "blending" challenges with adult children. So, many of us had "first families" that ended due to death. Add on recoupling with divorced folks or single folks with kids, and there are just all kinds of dynamics. Anyway..... https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-aamft-podcast/id1450828084?i=1000479815056
  9. I don't have any great answer. I agree with Maureen. I did not have a strained relationship but boundaries were problematic with my MIL and my husband set them between our family and her. After his death, I held her only grandson, so treading those waters was hard. I was not always graceful doing so. It has been 8 yrs. I now reach out to her on his birthday. I believe the birth of her son was the most precious day for her, and I give special acknowledgement to her on that date. It took a while to get there but thankfully, I am here. Wish you the best on whatever you decide.
  10. Beautiful pics! Brokenheart2 - this 🙏 It hurts but not like it did. I hurt for my son. Those are the great tears I shed, at every event his father should have been there for him. And the truth is, he may not really know what he missed, ya know? It's not his reality. But mine as I had a dad for all those events. Aw, we were so fortunate and perhaps, we will continue to find joy in all kinds of way.
  11. HI Bunny! Thanks for sharing. I am the memory and story holder for my dead husband. I share on FB. Yes, strange with dating. I post on his birthday "happy birthday in heaven." I post the day he died. And I have posted on our anniversary but not the last couple years. It has changed. I feel different. It is memories now. 8 years. So strange how your brain can detach over time. I guess out of necessity. I shared a picture two days ago of my maid of honor and me in high school from a high school dance. We have been friends since age 4. And she commented how much she loved me and my LH and we were an amazing couple. She stated she was so happy she was the one who told me he loved me (in high school). I didn't bring that up, but there it is. I get remarks from others often. For a man to date me, they have to handle my old life. I don't put it in his face but I grew up with my LH and my identity was a couple, not a single person. I am changing. I know part of the reason the man I dated so long loved me IS because of who I was because of my marriage and LH, specifically. Our wedding photo. 30 yrs ago this year.
  12. THIS is from a post on FB. I have been home for 6 weeks, working part time, and it is slow going. And I have accomplished some things at home, but not anything compared to what I think I "should" have given the time I have. But I am a mental health clinician. I work with folks struggling. And I have a teen at home. We are all dealing with things we never would have considered. Unprecedented. I have had to reframe my work I do with kids on telehealth as it is not clear cut with meeting the goals and objectives we define, mostly for insurance, right? Some sessions are a tour of the backyard and their rooms. It's the best we can do in the circumstances. I thought this was a valuable thing for me to remind myself of, and likely, others. I’ve been seeing so many friends seriously beating themselves up because they aren’t “maximizing” their time in quarantine by organizing their closets, repainting, developing a side hustle, becoming a piano virtuoso, exercising themselves into a lucrative career as a swimsuit model, etc. Everybody! Seriously. Stop. And breathe. If you’re feeling adrift, there’s a reason. I’m about to drop some first semester nursing school on y’all. It’s Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Humans have basic requirements (the bottom of the pyramid) like food, water, air, shelter, sleep, etc. The biological basics. If those are met, then the next rung of the ladder is Safety and Security. If we feel safe and secure, then we can climb up and start on our Love and Belonging needs and on up the ladder we go until finally at the very tippy-top is SELF-ACTUALIZATION which would entail all of the cool aforementioned activities. The catch is, you cannot level up until the needs at the current level are fulfilled. If the needs remain unfulfilled, we remain stuck on our current level until the situation changes. Friends, in the midst of a pandemic, we are dwelling in the basement of Maslow’s pyramid. How in the heck do you think you’re going to kick ass at the highest levels when we can’t even find toilet paper for Pete’s sake. You physiologically and psychologically aren’t built to live your “best life” right now. Your only job is to live “a life” right now. A luxury that is being denied many which increases the pressure to really make every day count. But listen. Every day you are here counts. Every breath you take counts. Are you eating, drinking water, and sleeping at all these days? If so, that is a triumph right now. Cut yourself ALL THE SLACK. Focus on the bottom level. Are you showering? Eating a vegetable once in a while? Getting some sunshine and fresh air? Keeping some semblance of a sleep schedule? Start there. And be extra gentle and abundantly gracious with yourself. We’ll get through this. And right now, getting through is absolutely enough. I love you all. Hang in there. ❤️ XXOO, Rachel
  13. tybec

    3 things I did today

    1. Called to get repair person out again for air conditioning. 2. Called to see when my teen may get to take his driver's test. Delayed to April 6. Nothing since then. 3. No client's scheduled which is a downer. So, clear out case load and text folks to see if they will return now and try telehealth since is is not just ending in April as originally planned. Pandemic life - Meh.. But on it.
  14. tybec

    3 things I did today

    1. Did volunteer work on line. Miss seeing folks, though. 2. Paid bills 3. Went for a walk though I was tired. Glad I did. Got my steps up to 7000. After a hard winter of illness, this is pretty good.
  15. Virgo, I so wish I could keep busy like you. I started out strong and did some projects and then fizzled out. I think 6 weeks with another 4 or more predicted is when I hit the wall. Maybe I'll get back some motivation. Until then, this writing hit home and likely, to many. Keep up the projects, as it is a good stress relief.
  16. tybec

    Social Isolation and the Rabbit Hole

    Dragontears, I hear you. I am doing well a lot of the time, but there are times, days, even a few weeks where I still say "WHAT Happened to my life?" I believe whole heartedly I have my son to give me purpose many days. We were married 13 yrs when we had him. And I do wonder about wids without anyone at home. He is my inspiration to keep going. And as I am a Christian, if I am to truly to believe in my faith, I have to show our son life is meant to continue and have joy. I fully understand how hard it can be some days and especially being alone. My son has 2 more years and I wonder what I will do when I am in this too big of house with myself all the time. I get the depression and needing to do lots of things to get better, coping skills. I am a kid therapist. But I also understand the deep emotions of loss and hopelessness I truly never got until my husband died suddenly. AND sometimes you just need to be heard. Keep posting. There are others not posting and reading it and getting it. I get it.
  17. tybec

    Wedding day

    Congratulations 🍾🎈🎉! Oh what a happy announcement! I think if you are fortunate to find another love and you want to marry again, you do it your way! No regrets! It’s fresh and a new life. The traditional wedding seems to be that. A first time marriage. We are all so changed from life experiences and wisdom. We know what really matters now. You do what you choose. Your father is 85. Can’t imagine he would be all wrapped up in traditions, too. Is he really giving you away? That is where that came from, right? You can honor him at the wedding in other ways if want. Listed in the program. A special song. A thank you read. Maybe even more meaningful than an aisle walk. Good luck in what ever you decide. But what a blessing all the way around.
  18. tybec

    3 things I did today

    1. Worked four hours. Baby steps 2. Walked (6 out of 7 days) 3. Cleaned bedroom well, including windows and blinds which I hate
  19. Well, I had my birthday with just me and my son. It wasn’t the worst one ever but blah for sure. I tried to focus on the positive. Sunny day, ordered an ice cream pie. It was national beer day, so had a Cheers as it was a full pink moon tonight, too. Easter at home this weekend . Weirdest ever. Having to truly accept my little family of two now. Providing telehealth therapy which is not easy with kids. Discovered work at home is too isolating despite the perks. I like to be with the kids I see and use sensory items. Lucky to work I know. But limited hours comparable- small pay check. Keep swimming. To another year! Cheers!
  20. Tybec here. Was on the former board. Did one Widdabago in STL. 42 yrs. old when my husband of 21 yrs. died in a car accident driving to work on a Friday morning. We had been together since I was 14, 28 yrs. total. It has now been 8 years. Went through his cancer, infertility and my dad's alzheimers disease early 30s. Thought we had our full share of stuff. Was wrong. The board was/is helpful in so many ways. Sharing things I could not with others is so good. Finally dated and was in a relationship for 3.5 years. It did not work. Dealing with dating and new relationships here was helpful, too, as I had no one else to turn to, never dated in adult life. My life was surrounded with coupled people like my former self. That connection is great. My son was 8 when his dad/ LH died. He is now 16, driving, and we are talking about his college choices. It is a whole new world. I miss my husband every day. I will always love him. Our marriage is over, though, as it is not a living and breathing relationship. It took me years to get to that. That is me and my thoughts. I will always be his widow. But I can be someone's girlfriend or wife, too. I do well most of the time, except when it comes to my health. I am terrified of not being able to raise my son to independence. I also get scared still of not having help for myself. My parents are now both dead, too. I am the youngest in the family and my much older siblings have their own challenges. I am 50 now. I am a Christian and can share about my faith. I can hear others' beliefs and not get into some debate. The board opened up a world wide view of folks outside my view. I don't have to agree with others about all that, and I don't have to try to convince you otherwise. We all come from different experiences and backgrounds, so our perceptions of all is skewed to that. Things typed here are small snapshots, so try not to get bent out of shape here with different views, opinions. That is growth, also. Rambling now. Welcome to the board!
  21. tybec

    On line dating vents and laughs......

    Told a friend of the short experiences. She said to watch "Dirty John"? Well, saw interview yesterday of the woman and her daughter. UGGH. What world have I entered? Still on a break.
  22. tybec

    A Return To Car Crying

    Bunny, My heart dropped when I read this. I am beyond words. I lift you up and your loved one. I have come to realize being a widow does not give us a "get out of jail free" card for more trials, tragedies, and loss. But DAMN, it sure is unfair. I get the crying while you drive, and add in the shower, too. ♥️ to you.
  23. tybec

    Growing up

    My teen shaved this week for the first time. Trimming when he got his haircut was not enough anymore. And he tied his own tie for a band performance. It makes me smile. Makes me miss his dad from being the one to teach him. But we keep going 😊
  24. tybec

    Valentine's wishes

    Made it through another one single. Still Widowed. I had 5 alone after my LH died in Jan. Coupled up for 3 but alone again. It was easier. Still lonely, but easier. And I can remember all the good ones I had, 27 together. I made Sat. plans to take my son to see Blue Man Group. Eat out. It made the weekend more doable, too. It is so up and down with the emotions, still, but not as long or intense. Getting there all the time. I bet making chocolates special for her was quite an exceptional gift, rifatheroffour.
  25. Was not sure where to put this, honestly, but this was the common category, so.... Thanks for your input and support with my first post LH relationship. Although it did not end how I wanted, I read through my posts here and your responses, and I know it is/was the right thing to end it and move forward. It was not easy but honestly, nothing like the level of losing my mate of 28 yrs. You gave me support, some straight up advice or critical observations I needed to read. I am now 4 months out of that relationship and can say it is getting easier. I am letting go and becoming neutral to him, what I have hoped and prayed for. It was not healthy. Crazy how you can lose yourself, but thankfully, I was never truly lost forever. Just had to be reminded of who I am. On the eve eve of my sadiversary, I am thankful for my life with LH and stronger with the trials. Lots of love to my cyber community. PS. I do have IRL friends, and they are right there with you in the observations and support, now.
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