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Thread: Dating a young widow

  1. #1
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    Dating a young widow

    Not quite sure where to start with this, but I met a young lady through an online dating app in January and we hit it off straight away, seeing each other about 4 times in the first week and then a few more times over the following weeks.

    Bit of background... I'm 53 and she's 47 and lost her husband about 3 years ago, who she had been with for 9-10 years, but didn't manage to get to their first wedding anniversary before he sadly passed away. She then met another man 2 years later, who then also died suddenly after knowing each other for less than a year, really very tragic circumstances and heartbreaking for her. She had been on her own again for almost a year when we met.

    The dating with her didn't last very long in January, as there were several birthday/death anniversaries for her to cope with, so I left it for a while. We then reconnected in mid-March and through April, mostly by phone / FaceTime, due to the lockdown and everything was going really well with daily chats, etc. until a few weeks before what would have been her fourth wedding anniversary, at which point she needed some time out to deal with this. I have given space but kept in touch via messages just to see how she was and always received a response. During this time, she has also said that she doesn't think that she can do the 'whole relationship thing' and just wants friendship. During the last week or so, I have had more contact with her, but obviously not to the extent as before (where I really did feel like I was an important part of her life and we were both working towards having a relationship). We have not had any physical intimacy to this point and that is not a concern for me.

    I am a very compassionate, patient and understanding person and I honestly have not met anyone quite like her before - I feel so happy when we just speak, let alone meet in person. I feel like I've fallen for her in a big way and obviously want her in my life. I also understand that she will always love her previous partners and I absolutely respect that. Not surprisingly, her biggest fear is that someone else will also leave her by passing away, so for her perhaps the way to avoid this is not to enter into a relationship at all?

    However, she has said that she doesn't want to be on her own forever and I do truly believe that she will be able to love again and when she does, there will be one very lucky guy - I would love for that to me.

    I'd really love to hear from anyone who has either:
    - been in a similar situation to me and patiently waited for someone to be ready to fall in love again;
    - been widowed and found someone new to be romantically involved with; how did this develop and does this feel now?

    Also, any views on how grieving comes and goes for a widow, particularly around anniversaries and what is the best approach for the other person to take.

    This could be a very long road for me to take, but one I'm willing to do for a happy ending for both of us.

    Many thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    Listen to her. That is my best advice and please don't make it all about you and what you want out of it. If she's not ready and just wants friendship, that's what it should be. I'd remain respectful and mindful of that.

    That's where the road ends for you. It would be damaging to go down the path and think about a future together if there is none or if she's being realistic with you and you're not willing to face the facts. Be more realistic about the circumstances.

    It sounds to me like she is still crippled by grief and is in a state of mourning for the losses in her life. It's understandable to grieve and take a time out to do so on those days but to be so explicitly clear with you already and for you not to take the hint is alarming.

    I think your best approach is to be respectful, listen and be a friend. If you can't do that and just want to make her your romantic partner, this isn't going to work. You're forcing the situation and she may not want to be around you or build up a lot resentment over time.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Lambert's Avatar
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    It's important to not waste time waiting on another person.

    You wait around in the friend zone. She heals and meets someone else. That will be very hard to deal with.

    The best thing you can do is let go. leave it up to God (or whatever you believe in) to figure it out in the future. Live for you, date, be a single guy. you never know who you will meet

    There's also the other scenerio. She may never heal and be ready. This is ALL ON HER. And you can't wait... your life is about you.

    I'm not saying be rude or even say anything to her about this. Let her come to you. You live for you. There is no down side to this. No one ever lost interest in someone because they being their own strong, independent person.

    But all kinds of interest is lost when some sad sack waits on you, hangs on your every move and you aren't even a couple. (sorry. but think about it... I'm right)

    Continue to date others.... keep on building your life....

  4. #4
    Platinum Member Andrina's Avatar
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    If she's telling the truth about grieving-dates, both in January and April, she made a mistake by going into the dating world again. A potential dating partner shouldn't be put on ice every time she needs space. If she's not ready, then leave her alone to go through those stages by herself. She's a mere stranger to you. Let her lean on her longtime friends and family for that.

    There's a possibility she's using it as an excuse, and just isn't that into you.

    In either situation, I wouldn't remain friends. You were on a dating site, and so obviously want a girlfriend. Nobody will date you when you're remaining friends with a woman you briefly dated and wanted more from. Never stay with someone when you're hoping for change, because what you see is what you get in the present. Waiting and hoping is usually a waste of your precious time.

    If i were you, I'd tell her you're sorry the romance didn't work out and wish her well, but that you're seeking a gf, and that won't happen if you two remain friends. You sound like a catch. I know you're a caring person, but you have to care about yourself and do what's best for you in the present, because it's better to bet on that than an unknown future event that might or might not occur.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Guard your heart. She is. Being in the friend zone may seem like a good idea but since you want more, you may get hurt investing in this high risk situation

  7. #6
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    Unfortunately, she has already told you everything you need to know - she just wants to be friends with you.

    Her past might indeed be a significant factor in this (I too lost a boyfriend to an accident, many years ago, and can attest how difficult it is) but she might also not be that into you and doesn't quite know how to tell you directly.

    She sounds like a kind person but she already knows she doesn't see this moving forward. I would heed that and step out of the race, so to speak. Hanging around and hoping she changes her mind is likely to bring more heartache than reward for you.

  8. #7
    Platinum Member lostandhurt's Avatar
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    I agree she should have not been on a dating site if she was looking for friendship. Also, and I know this is from watching to many movies but 2 husbands dying so soon after marriage would give me pause and wonder if I was going to be number 3. Black widow??? Just saying...

    So you want to be in a relationship with her and you are thinking you will hang around and be a shoulder to cry on until she is ready right? Ask the ladies here the odds of that working out. Then ask them how they would react if you said "I really like you and would like to see where things go as far as a romantic relationship with you but you clearly are not ready for that in your life right now. Since I am looking for more than just friendship it is best that I move on and keep looking for that special person for me" "Look me up some time when you are ready, who knows I might be single"

    If you hang around she knows you are just a text away but if you disappear she will think about you and wonder what you are up to and if someone else has snatched you up.

    In the end you want a relationship and she doesn't for whatever reason. That makes her a non option right now.

    Start messaging new women and continue your search.

    Lost

  9. #8
    Platinum Member DancingFool's Avatar
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    At its core this is a very simple issue - you've been friend zoned and once a woman does that, you don't get upgraded to boyfriend zone.
    You both have interacted enough for her to make that judgment that you are a pal, but not a romantic interest. It's not a mistake, it's not fear, it's not whatever excuse you want to make, it's just that she is not that into you. That simple.

    The rest, her past, her story - it's just you trying to find softer reasons to stick around hoping. Don't. Just don't. While you are falling in love and thinking future, she only sees you as a pal that's nice to talk to. Since you are getting in so deep emotionally, please do yourself a favor and walk away now. Don't loiter hoping she'll change her mind about you because how that story ends is in her gushing to you one day how she met a great guy and she is over the moon. It's not healthy or good for you and life is too short to play these kinds of games.

    You'll get over the temporary disappointment, but you'll never get back the time you invest in a dead end. Best that you start investing your time in finding a woman who actually wants what you want - a relationship with you, someone who is over the moon about you.

  10. #9
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    Thank you all for taking the time to reply to me... very much appreciated.

    There is clearly a common theme of opinion here, which is that it's not good for me to hang around just on the off chance that she may suddenly change her mind. Also interesting to note a few people saying that she may just not be that into me, which is a fair point and one which I can accept - if fact, if she said that to my face, it would actually make it easier to deal with. But maybe she doesn't need to... I guess her actions speak louder than words.

    I am realistic about the circumstances and its not all about me, as I get pleasure from making others happy too. But you're all right, I have to put myself first and I honestly don't think I'd cope well if I remained in friend zone and then she met someone else, so I suppose it has to be all or nothing, which is what Andrina is recommending I do. Such a shame though, but as Lambert says I don't want to be a 'sad sack' either, just waiting on her every move.

    Great advice too from 'lostandhurt' and DancingFool too, thank you, I will try to withdraw slowly and move forward. I will miss her though.

  11. #10
    Platinum Member SherrySher's Avatar
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    Wow, I can't even imagine why she would want to date anyone right now after such huge losses. No way can she be in a good place mentally to be able to be a partner to anyone else... at least not anytime soon.
    She needs lots of healing to do still.

    I think she was very honest with you and for both your sakes, let it go. She knows how to get a hold of you if she wants to. Other than that, you should move forward, don't wait around for her and get on with your life.

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