If you are thinking about dating a widower, it’s wise to take things slowly. This will stop everyone from getting hurt. It’s important to remember that most widows and widowers never expected to be dating someone new again. This means finding themselves single once more can be a huge shock to the system. It can take a while for someone who has lost their spouse to be ready to commit to someone else.
Some people start dating after a few weeks or months, but others wait years, with others never seeking to meet anyone new. What’s right for one person isn’t always great for another, and it’s wise to remember that everyone is different. Try not to rush a widow or widower into anything and be prepared to wait a substantial amount of time between dates.
As everyone is different, there are no set rules for how long a bereaved person should wait before they date again. Generally, people should avoid dating again until they are sure they are emotionally ready to start again. Once someone starts thinking more about their present and future than their past, the time may be right for them to start dipping their toes into the dating waters. Not everyone is looking for something serious when they start dating again, and it’s common for people to enjoy a string of short-term casual relationships before they find someone they want to settle down with or marry. If you are dating a bereaved single, don’t stop them talking about their past. Chances are they were with their late spouse for a long time, so it’s natural that they will come up in conversations. However, it is good to encourage them to discuss other matters.
If your date spends a great deal of time crying and reminiscing about their ex, they are probably not ready to start dating again. If they start talking about future plans such as going on holiday, buying a house, visiting family and friends and so on, they may be ready to date. Even if things are going well and your new partner seems happy, there will still be many obstacles to overcome. One big challenge for couples dating after a death is that their friends and family members may disapprove of their new relationship. It’s only natural that sons, daughters and other relatives may wish to protect them, but if you are met with continued hostility over a long period, it’s best to stand your ground. Your bereaved partner does not need to spend the rest of your lives apologising for meeting someone new.
Some widows and widowers start dating soon after losing their spouses, but others wait years. One thing you should avoid doing when dating a widow or widower is leading them on. If you do not want a long-term relationship, don’t let them think that you do. They will have already been through enough heartache, so it’s important to be clear with them and treat them with respect. If you have been out on a few dates but don’t want to take things further, let them know rather than dragging things out to protect their feelings.
If your date spends much of your time together crying and talking about their former partner, they probably haven’t completed the grieving process. Even if they say they are ready to move on, the evidence that you see might suggest otherwise. Try not to replace their former partner – it’s best to be yourself rather than aiming to emulate the person that has passed away. This also applies if they have children – don’t try to be a replacement for their mother or father. It may take a while for their children to warm to you, but you may be pleasantly surprised. There’s also a chance you could have a great relationship from the outset. You must show them you truly care for their parent and have their best interests at heart. Most widows and widowers aren’t looking for someone to replace their late spouse. If you have also lost a spouse, you may be able to empathise with the way they feel but it is essential to remember that everyone responds to grief and bereavement differently. If you were ready to move on after a year or so, this doesn’t mean everyone else feels this way.
Again, there are no set rules on how long someone should wait to remarry following a death. However, it is common for couples to wait a couple of years before they say ‘I do’. Although many people assume most widows and widowers are eager to remarry as quickly as possible, this simply isn’t true. They may be looking for love and companionship but have no intention of remarrying. You don’t need to walk on eggshells all the time, but you must remember to be sensitive. Avoid making inappropriate comments that could be linked to the way their spouse died.
This is another area which has no set rules. Some people remove their wedding rings as soon as they become bereaved, whilst others keep them on forever. It’s also common for people to add the ring to a chain when they meet someone new or to pass it to one of their children for when they marry. Opt for whichever approach makes you happy. Dating someone who has lost their spouse is rarely easy, but few things in life are. If you are considering dating a widow or widower, try not to rush things, remember to be sensitive and don’t shut the conversation down when they mention their former partner. Look for signs that someone is truly ready to start dating again and be honest about what your intentions are. If you follow this advice, there’s every chance your relationship will be a successful one. More and more widows and widowers are starting profiles on our online dating site.