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Dating a Widow - Crash & Burn


RunnerGrlX
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Ok folks - I apologize in advance, this is long winded

 

So I decided finally to try out a dating website to meet hopefully a man with the potential for a LTR/marriage & the prospect to have children. Yes it sounds like a lot, but I was being upfront & honest about what my intentions are, being I am 37 I am not looking to date someone for years on end. After about a month and a half of failed attempts I received an email from a 40 y/o man. He was cute, read his profile, we seemed to be on the same page. Turns out he has been widowed for a year and has two small children (2 & 5). After some digging, I came to see that he emailed me the day after his late wife's' bday (was that a red flag?!). We exchanged a couple of emails back and forth & hit it off immediately. I, for one, have never hit it off with any man that easily before. He even agreed that the feeling was mutual. Then we took it a step up to talking on the phone. Our conversations pursued even longer & still just as great, so we made plans to meet. He drove down to meet me at a fancy restaurant near my beach home which is over an hour away (my other home is located 5 minutes from where he lives). When we met all I could think was wow I hit the jackpot. We closed out the restaurant with our 4 hour meal of laughter & talking. He walked me to my car where I gave him a quick peck goodnight – I was officially sold on him. The next day he called me to plan our next date, which due to travel & work schedules, was set for Valentine's Day. He picked me up, and again date #2 was another great night. I thought wow, this may really have the potential to go somewhere, and how did I get so lucky. After that our interaction was limited to talk’s every single night. While it bothered me that we had not seen one another, I understood being he has children & sometimes our schedules aren’t exactly compatible. Then, towards the last two weeks our communication went south. I couldn't understand what the issue was, so I called him. He just kept apologizing, so I asked him for what? - his response "I’m not ready, you're soo great, I am so sorry but I still love her & need to be there for my children. Right now I just need some space" I told him that I know he still loves her and he always will, which I understand. All he did was apologize & tell me how I am so great, he didn't think he would meet someone like me, how I am beyond beautiful & he feels awful" So the end result, he needs space & we should take it slow. I NEVER saw this coming. I am crushed. In all of the dating I have done, I have never met someone like him. We had the same values, traditions, dreams, children, spousal roles, interests, religious values, needs & expectations, ideals, literally we were on the same wavelength with one another in all of the areas where it counts in a spouse/marriage. To me, this man is more than worth it, he has met my mom, I have photos and videos he sent me of his children. Also his child had a virus & I sent a text to say that I hope he feels better, fully assuming that would be the last communication. A day later he gets back to me and we were texting about the child and their plans for the day... I have not heard anything since (ok granted it has only been 3 days) but I am not sure he will reach out to me again & since he said he needs space, I feel I cannot reach out to him for a good 2-3 weeks, if at all. My friend feels that he may have started to fall for me or started to notice feelings like when he was married & it scared the heck out of him.. I am, well, devastated to put it mildly... Do I give him space, or do I just leave the situation alone & move on?

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Call me skeptical, but I'm not buying his excuse about needing space because he still loves his ex. He knew he still loved his wife when he put himself on a dating site.

 

I think he probably met someone else on his dating site who he thinks has more potential than you, and he's just making up BS excuses.

 

He knows your phone number. I say DO NOT contact him again.

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I am not making excuses for him with the following but with talking every single night, I am not sure where or when he would even have time to realistically meet someone. Also we both deleted our accounts together. I now have a new profile & he is not on. I also flat out asked him if it was someone else, and he said no. I do not peg him as a liar either, not by any means.

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Sometimes «I’m not ready» is a line people use to mean «I’m not interested». Sometimes «I’m not ready» really means «I’m not ready». I think this guy really means «I’m not ready».

 

Given the way you started your thread about your age and wanting kids - you are not just «normal» levels of ready, but also ready for the «fast track».

 

This, unfortunately, makes you incompatible.

 

Given the age of his kids, I’m going to guess they may have been together 10 years and his wife has been gone maybe a year? He might be lonely but not truly ready for another 3 or 4 years (but everyone is different).

 

The rest comes down to your philosophy of dating. If you get along that well, there is nothing wrong with staying casual friends - but don’t pin any romantic hopes on him. He will likely unintentionally, from s place of pain, jerk you around a bit. But... i mean... I’ve made some cherished friends from online dating that way... a lot of the things we look for in romantic partners and friends are the same.

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So many people assume that since some people lie and blow you off that EVERYONE does the same thing. There has to be a certain amount of faith or you will get nowhere fast.

 

He has seemed genuine and honest thus far so why not take him at his word. He may very well thought he was ready to date until he met you and it went so well. He probably thought he would start dating and get jerked around, blown off and have a hard time meeting someone special and then you came along.

 

Reading what he told you it sounds really long winded for a blow off.

 

He didn't ask you to wait for him did he? Then you can continue to meet new people while he has his space. I would give him a call and ask him what "take it slow" means. See how he wants to move forward and then decide if you are okay with that. Say he wants to go on two dates a month and talk on the phone a few times a week are you fine with that? What about intimacy?

 

One question: Is he still active on the dating app? Just saw that you answered this question.

 

Lost

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I don't know. Getting over the death of a loved one can take a very long time and even if you think you're ready you may have conflicted feelings which tell you that in fact you're not. I once dated a guy a year after he lost his wife to cancer and he was still in bits, but didn't realise how much until he started seeing new women.

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He didn't ask you to wait for him did he? no, just he needs space, we should take it slow Then you can continue to meet new people while he has his space. I would give him a call and ask him what "take it slow" means. See how he wants to move forward and then decide if you are okay with that. valid point. I still will wait a week or 2, as I am still a bit of a mess from it all & do not want to start babbling & crying. Say he wants to go on two dates a month and talk on the phone a few times a week are you fine with that? honestly yes, he is more than worth it to me What about intimacy? one day at a time

 

 

Lost

 

i think i replied to the messages in this (I wrote in italics)

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Sometimes «I’m not ready» is a line people use to mean «I’m not interested». Sometimes «I’m not ready» really means «I’m not ready». I think this guy really means «I’m not ready».

 

Given the way you started your thread about your age and wanting kids - you are not just «normal» levels of ready, but also ready for the «fast track».

 

This, unfortunately, makes you incompatible.

 

Given the age of his kids, I’m going to guess they may have been together 10 years and his wife has been gone maybe a year? He might be lonely but not truly ready for another 3 or 4 years (but everyone is different).

 

The rest comes down to your philosophy of dating. If you get along that well, there is nothing wrong with staying casual friends - but don’t pin any romantic hopes on him. He will likely unintentionally, from s place of pain, jerk you around a bit. But... i mean... I’ve made some cherished friends from online dating that way... a lot of the things we look for in romantic partners and friends are the same.

 

He just finished having a custom 5 bedroom home built. 1 is the master bedroom, bedroom 2 & 3 are for the current children, & bedroom 4 & 5 are for his future children that he want's to have. I mean sure he could wait another 5 to 10 years to date and have children, but does he want age gaps in his children to be hedging on 10+ years? I know that he does not want huge age gaps like that. It is just a crappy situation for me. But you are correct, if we remain in the friend zone, he would be one heck of a great friend to have, that is for sure.

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Ok folks - I apologize in advance, this is long winded

 

So I decided finally to try out a dating website to meet hopefully a man with the potential for a LTR/marriage & the prospect to have children. Yes it sounds like a lot, but I was being upfront & honest about what my intentions are, being I am 37 I am not looking to date someone for years on end. After about a month and a half of failed attempts I received an email from a 40 y/o man. He was cute, read his profile, we seemed to be on the same page. Turns out he has been widowed for a year and has two small children (2 & 5). After some digging, I came to see that he emailed me the day after his late wife's' bday (was that a red flag?!). We exchanged a couple of emails back and forth & hit it off immediately. I, for one, have never hit it off with any man that easily before. He even agreed that the feeling was mutual. Then we took it a step up to talking on the phone. Our conversations pursued even longer & still just as great, so we made plans to meet. He drove down to meet me at a fancy restaurant near my beach home which is over an hour away (my other home is located 5 minutes from where he lives). When we met all I could think was wow I hit the jackpot. We closed out the restaurant with our 4 hour meal of laughter & talking. He walked me to my car where I gave him a quick peck goodnight – I was officially sold on him. The next day he called me to plan our next date, which due to travel & work schedules, was set for Valentine's Day. He picked me up, and again date #2 was another great night. I thought wow, this may really have the potential to go somewhere, and how did I get so lucky. After that our interaction was limited to talk’s every single night. While it bothered me that we had not seen one another, I understood being he has children & sometimes our schedules aren’t exactly compatible. Then, towards the last two weeks our communication went south. I couldn't understand what the issue was, so I called him. He just kept apologizing, so I asked him for what? - his response "I’m not ready, you're soo great, I am so sorry but I still love her & need to be there for my children. Right now I just need some space" I told him that I know he still loves her and he always will, which I understand. All he did was apologize & tell me how I am so great, he didn't think he would meet someone like me, how I am beyond beautiful & he feels awful" So the end result, he needs space & we should take it slow. I NEVER saw this coming. I am crushed. In all of the dating I have done, I have never met someone like him. We had the same values, traditions, dreams, children, spousal roles, interests, religious values, needs & expectations, ideals, literally we were on the same wavelength with one another in all of the areas where it counts in a spouse/marriage. To me, this man is more than worth it, he has met my mom, I have photos and videos he sent me of his children. Also his child had a virus & I sent a text to say that I hope he feels better, fully assuming that would be the last communication. A day later he gets back to me and we were texting about the child and their plans for the day... I have not heard anything since (ok granted it has only been 3 days) but I am not sure he will reach out to me again & since he said he needs space, I feel I cannot reach out to him for a good 2-3 weeks, if at all. My friend feels that he may have started to fall for me or started to notice feelings like when he was married & it scared the heck out of him.. I am, well, devastated to put it mildly... Do I give him space, or do I just leave the situation alone & move on?

 

Welcome, RunnerGrlX. For future, could you please break up your posts into smaller paragraphs, with spaces, to make them easier to read?

 

I bolded a few things from your post, so here are my questions:

 

It looks like you only went on 2 actual dates: the first night you met, and Valentine's Day. Is that correct?

 

How did he meet your mom? Do you live with her?

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He just finished having a custom 5 bedroom home built. 1 is the master bedroom, bedroom 2 & 3 are for the current children, & bedroom 4 & 5 are for his future children that he want's to have. .

 

Custom homes take a long time to build. Are you sure those weren’t the plans he had with his late wife? That it wasn’t under construction or something when she passed?

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I think that he is being honest. I have widowers/widows in the family and they think they are ready - they are even excited about the prospect, but once they go out on a few dates, they realize they are not. Grief of a lost spouse is different than "being ready to date" after a broken relationship. Im my observation, some widowers are ready to date -- to have a plus one for an event, maybe go for coffee or have an activity partner here and there but they are not always ready to meet someone with whom they fall in love with yet. He didn't deceive you. Grief is weird and not linear. Also, something could have happened to make him realize his children are not ready for him to date either. They *are* tiny and i could understand also that after driving an hour to meet you, dealing with childcare he realizes he may also not be ready, even if he feels that way "on paper"

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Custom homes take a long time to build. Are you sure those weren’t the plans he had with his late wife? That it wasn’t under construction or something when she passed?

 

Actually, depending on the builder, some of them hustle up pretty quick -- but if she only died a year ago -- i bet they already committed to it before she died.

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Welcome, RunnerGrlX. For future, could you please break up your posts into smaller paragraphs, with spaces, to make them easier to read?

 

I bolded a few things from your post, so here are my questions:

 

It looks like you only went on 2 actual dates: the first night you met, and Valentine's Day. Is that correct?

 

How did he meet your mom? Do you live with her?

 

Yes two dates due to me being in another state, then finally when I was back up where he lives, things were hectic, but we spoke every night between 9 & 11, until it faded...

When I am at my other place, my mom was in. Since he picked me up, he came to the door to get me & came in while I got my coat. He knew she would be there, even brought her a box of chocolates :-/

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Custom homes take a long time to build. Are you sure those weren’t the plans he had with his late wife? That it wasn’t under construction or something when she passed?

 

No I know the development, it is 2 miles from my other place. He revealed to me that when she was alive they planned to renovate their current home, but then she got sick so everything went on the back burner. After she passed, he ditched those plans to start fresh, which encompassed building a new home.

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Actually, depending on the builder, some of them hustle up pretty quick -- but if she only died a year ago -- i bet they already committed to it before she died.

 

Yeah... I guess they can be quick - but I’m just having a hard time envisionning someone who just lost their wife, and all the grief (and paperwork!) that goes along with that, suddenly finding himself a single dad and adjusting to that, working, cooking, daycare, etc. excitedly running off to build a custom home (and move!) for a future woman he had not yet met and the kids he hopes to have one day with her. Before he started dating.

 

I would also bet that these were the plans he had with his late wife.

 

He may not have even started to envision what his life will be like now... and he’s kind of trying to pop another woman in those pre-existing plans, and that (understandably) feels weird and wrong.

 

Edit: Hmmm... we posted at the same time. Ok, then. Maybe that was his plan then.

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So you really only saw each other in person twice.

 

Once was the first meet, which really should have just been a coffee for an hour, closer to where you both live.

 

There was a lot of fantasy build-up here. The fact that he drove an hour, and you two turned it into a 4-hour night, on the first meet, led to some idealization and some projections of perfection, which simply didn't exist.

 

The 2nd date was just that: a 2nd date. A normal, few more hours spent together.

 

But after this, you declared yourselves a "couple" removing your profiles. This is unrealistic.

 

My guess is, it's a combination of a lot of things, but bottom line, he just wasn't into it as much as you are.

 

As much as he says he's not ready to date, he misses his wife, etc., don't be surprised to see him pop back up on the dating site.

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I think that he is being honest. I have widowers/widows in the family and they think they are ready - they are even excited about the prospect, but once they go out on a few dates, they realize they are not. Grief of a lost spouse is different than "being ready to date" after a broken relationship. Im my observation, some widowers are ready to date -- to have a plus one for an event, maybe go for coffee or have an activity partner here and there but they are not always ready to meet someone with whom they fall in love with yet. He didn't deceive you. Grief is weird and not linear. Also, something could have happened to make him realize his children are not ready for him to date either. They *are* tiny and i could understand also that after driving an hour to meet you, dealing with childcare he realizes he may also not be ready, even if he feels that way "on paper"

 

I could go into that with you... the youngest doesn't know who mommy is, the eldest remembers and lately was asking about mommy & having crying fits for her. So he decided to go to the cemetery& while he was there he lost it, all of the emotions for her came back & he realized he was still in love with her etc & feels guilty... & that was pretty much what killed it for us...

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The 2nd date was just that: a 2nd date. A normal, few more hours spent together.

 

But after this, you declared yourselves a "couple" removing your profiles. This is unrealistic.

 

 

Second date was another 4 & 1/2 hour date - I know it sounds totally bizarre to have marathon dates like that, but it only felt like an hour had lapsed, the conversation & laughter seemed to flow seamlessly without pause .

We did not label as being a couple, just that we were done with searching & would solely focus on seeing where this would go between us.

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I would give him the benefit of the doubt that he thought he was ready and realized he is not. For whatever reason. And please please do not assume the 2 year old doesn’t know mommy. My son knew me from well right away and in infancy he would stare at me and he knew me. And around then if daddy came home he went crazy with delight. He knew him too. Will he remember his mom? Likely not as he is two. But I’m sure he’ll see photos and videos and he will know. I mention all this because please don’t minimize in any way what they are going through and by extension their father.

I was close with my late cousin’s husband. He was in his mid 30s when she died. No kids. At first he swore he’d never marry again. He loved her so much. I supported him in however he chose to grieve and fully believed he’d marry again. But did not say this to him. He was ready within about a year. He met his wife through a singles organization and they married about two years later and now have kids. She was very marriage and kids driven but by that point he was too. And he was over the moon about her from the beginning. Never doubted or dated anyone else. I do not think they went at the speed of light though. They were both busy professionals and she had an scif e social life and many friends. I think taking it at a reasonable pace was right for both of them. She was a little younger than he was and single never married.

I’d move on and not over think this since you only met him twice. I’m sorry you’re disappointed. I also went on a few dates with widows when I was on dating sites. It was kind of awkward.

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And please please do not assume the 2 year old doesn’t know mommy. My son knew me from well right away and in infancy he would stare at me and he knew me. And around then if daddy came home he went crazy with delight. He knew him too. Will he remember his mom? Likely not as he is two. But I’m sure he’ll see photos and videos and he will know. I mention all this because please don’t minimize in any way what they are going through and by extension their father.

 

Oh no, I am fully aware that the youngest knew who mom was, just that she will not remember mom. On the same token, & now this is solely my opinion, whomever he does bring around those children when he is ready to do so, must remember that those children have a mother who will honor and cherish her memory whether it be through photographs, videos etc & should support them to do so. The youngest is not having rough nights crying about mom, whereas the eldest is. All I meant was I do not think that the daughter remembers mom, or ever will, but obviously the son does & has been affected by the loss of her. It was just that as soon as the eldest started with crying for mommy, is when everything started to decline & the visit to the cemetery was the straw that broke the camels back so to speak.

 

I kind of feel like we just met at the wrong time in one another's lives perhaps. The first question I asked him when we spoke on the phone was "are you sure you are ready to date, because if we are truly on the same page as discussed, I do not want to find out 6 months down the road you're not yet ready to date"

He vehemently assured me that he was ready.

& guess what, now he isn't :upset:

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Oh no, I am fully aware that the youngest knew who mom was, just that she will not remember mom. On the same token, & now this is solely my opinion, whomever he does bring around those children when he is ready to do so, must remember that those children have a mother who will honor and cherish her memory whether it be through photographs, videos etc & should support them to do so. The youngest is not having rough nights crying about mom, whereas the eldest is. All I meant was I do not think that the daughter remembers mom, or ever will, but obviously the son does & has been affected by the loss of her. It was just that as soon as the eldest started with crying for mommy, is when everything started to decline & the visit to the cemetery was the straw that broke the camels back so to speak.

 

I kind of feel like we just met at the wrong time in one another's lives perhaps. The first question I asked him when we spoke on the phone was "are you sure you are ready to date, because if we are truly on the same page as discussed, I do not want to find out 6 months down the road you're not yet ready to date"

He vehemently assured me that he was ready.

& guess what, now he isn't :upset:

 

Oh my heart goes out to that family... and to you OP.. while I do think you would clearly honor and cherish the memory of his wife and their mom, at the end of the day this is a horrible thing they are dealing with and it's no surprise that he has pulled back, particularly if his eldest kiddo is still having such strong feelings about his mom.

 

I think you are right that it's the right person and wrong time... sometimes this happens and we just have to let it go and accept the situation for what it is. I am sure you will find someone that is as ready for a relationship as you are.

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