Widower Problems

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2009
Widower Problems
29
Tue, 02-15-2011 - 4:42pm

I've been dating a widower for more than a year.

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Avatar for mhash
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 1:17am
You have not said how old you and he is which I think makes a difference.

I know for being alone for a while I am use to having my routine especially when it comes to family time. You did not say you are the first relationship since his loss. If so then he is not use to incorporating another person in his life beyond his family. The key is to communicate, Communicate, COMMUNICATE. Tell him what is going on with you (remember to use the "I" word not the blaming "you"). From my experience, it is not terribly useful to ask people "why" they do or do not things. You can always*ask* him what you want as well or at least on what is going on with him, how he feels, what he wants, etc.

A good start yes?

mark
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-05-2010
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 2:43am

Dabela-

Hi. You mentioned he has been widowed 3 years and been with you over one year. However, he avoids saying he loves you and shows other signs of lack of enthusiasm. As the saying goes, I just don't think he's all that into you. IMO, he's had enough time to recover from his loss and to get to know you well. I don't think things will get better here.

You are probably over 40. Being single and looking for someone after 40

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-20-2002
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 8:52am
Hi Dabela--
(did you post about the holiday thing on this board? --someone posted a similar situation, anyhow).....

Regardless---I agree with the poster who asked your ages, as that's probably somewhat germaine here....

I think (and of course I'm just basing this on your post) you're right that he primarily doesnt want to be alone, and in that respect, .....you are "companionship".

That said......there are alot worse things in this world besides this.

Obviously, .....you are GOOD companionship----or you two wouldnt still be together.......so, please dont 100% discount "companionship"... LOL...

On the other hand, I can see how you dont want to feel as though you are "disposable" and not an important enough part of his life for family celebrations....

Question: ARE you the one who posted re: the D coming to town and re arranging dad's schedule at xmas so you were (somewhat) "Uninvited" to dinner?

ANYHOW.....
My SO and I are 50;s-60's now, (that sounds so old!!) ..got together when we were 40's to 50's.....honestly, in many respects it is "companionship" and not alot of other choices available......it's funny, because I swear I had met 'his type" back when I was college age---and NOT Interested. However, at this stage of life, we are fine together. We both have similar respect for each other and, most importantly, for our relationship. The physical part is nice, and we enjoy similar vacations, meals, household arrangements, etc. Honestly, there is alot to be said for "companionship compatability"...

AS FOR FAMILY AT HOLIDAYS---
As a recent "empty nester"---I can vouch for the fact that it is VERY COMMON to put "seeing the kids" ahead of pretty well ANYTHING you can manage to put it ahead of, once they move out and you dont see them that often. It has nothing to do with anything else, other than these little folks who grew such a special place in your heart, and you miss more than anything........and they,...as typical young adults,....are busy with their own lives, so you *dont* see them that much.........................so, your times available to actually see them become precious.

I agree with whoever re: he's maybe having difficulty navigating how to integrate you into "relationship" with kids-----and probably this you'd do better to discuss with other widow/widowers who could add more insight/experience to help you figure out------plus, people are just different.

I see one issue in your post that needs to become resolved to a certain degree before you're going to feel better about things---that you feel somewhat insecure in the relationship---e.g. that you are more vested in this than he is. The "huggs" thing just reinforces this.....ugh.

To me, a year of dating and staying together is long enough to say "love" , (cause I really wouldnt stick around otherwise)......but, ....people are different.

THOUGHT:
Rather than make your discussion with him re:
I have to wonder if he wants to be with me or if he just doesn't want to be alone.

I do think you need to talk with him more, ....plus realize: he's probably slower than you at moving into deeper stage of new relationship....as you start talking re: how you ARE moving into deeper feelings, it may well help him "recognize" that he is also...................???

BEST WISHES-----
Keep us posted!!

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-23-2009
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 11:32am

I agree with all of the other posters. I would like to add one piece of advice. Why don't you try pulling back a bit? Don't phone him as much as you usually do. If he leaves a voicemail, wait a little longer than usual to call him back. Occasionally, if he asks you to dinner, tell him you already made plans with a girlfriend. I don't believe in playing games, but in instances like this, you need to guage what's going on. If he sees that he is not the center of your universe anymore, then maybe he'll start asking what he's doing or not doing that is instigating a change in your behavior. He may see that his lack of effort is taking a toll on the relationship and he needs to step up to the plate. If he lets your behavior slide and you don't see any change in his behavior, then I would chalk it up to not being as invested in the relationship as you are, and I would move on.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 11:35am

I don't think you can rely on the fact that he hasn't said ILY as meaning that he doesn't.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2009
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 1:00pm
We are both in our 50s. This is the first "serious" relationship for each of us since our marriages ended. He is a sort of quiet person, so it's hard to get him to talk about his feelings. We do, however, communicate, and he has always been sensitive to my feelings when I express them. I just don't want to find myself in a situation where he is doing things just because I asked him to.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2009
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 1:20pm
TRENNER2 wrote:

Dabela-

Hi. You mentioned he has been widowed 3 years and been with you over one year. However, he avoids saying he loves you and shows other signs of lack of enthusiasm. As the saying goes, I just don't think he's all that into you. IMO, he's had enough time to recover from his loss and to get to know you well. I don't think things will get better here.

You are probably over 40. Being single and looking for someone after 40

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2009
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 1:34pm
musiclover12 wrote:

I don't think you can rely on the fact that he hasn't said ILY as meaning that he doesn't.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 4:41pm

I just think you have to have a balance between your needs & his.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2009
Wed, 02-16-2011 - 8:38pm

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