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             23 May, 2022
 

    
Category:  Articles » Self Improvement » Grief-Loss

 

Widowed Persons And Some Stigma They Suffer

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2007-05-14 10:01:18     
Article by Patricia Hubbard

When I became a widow, I thought I had the grieving thing already whipped. We both knew my husband was dieing and would not be around for long once he was put into the Hospice Program. He had been hospitalized 12 different times during his 8 years on oxygen. His lung disease, diabetes and heart disease all had an equal chance of taking him away. We had talks about how much we loved each other and how we did not want to be separated by death. We also had come to the realization that Death is in charge. We accepted the possibilities and the probabilities.

Still, when the time came and he actually passed on I put on a brave front. Two weeks later it hit me in the middle of church services. The grieving process began, the crying, the loneliness, the financial concerns, and all that goes with becoming single again. But, I never thought one of my own church people would turn on me. Well, not really, but her distrust of me was not warranted, and it hurt! I had tried to work through most of the hard times after his death and had planned to move on by volunteering. I offered to be a sponsor for a student who was entering the process of Confirmation.

While in an organizational meeting, I met up with an old high school friend. We exchanged pleasantries and began a conversation about some of our old mutual friends. We were laughing and having a good old time, when his wife walked up and gave me the “fish eye.” He introduced us and told her how we knew each other. She looked at me, not smiling and said in her most disinterested tone, “Hello.”

I was surprised everyone else did not feel the chill in the air. I knew exactly what was going through her mind. She thought I was after her husband. With years of being on the receiving end of infidelity I of all people, would not even think of engaging in such thoughts with a married man. I was highly insulted and hurt. I was stigmatized by her attitude I hadn’t done anything but talk to the man.

All this taught me to learn not to worry what others think of me. I know who I am and what I think and what I will do. It certainly is not to bring pain to others. I remember how badly infidelity against me felt.

I learned that widowed people can expect to be judged, but should not let that influence who they are.

Terry Cole-Whittaker author of WHAT YOU THINK OF ME IS NONE OF MY BUSINESS says, “Self-reliance depends on knowing deep within yourself that no matter what’s going on in your life others are not your source. Its knowing that while you do need other people and do choose to react with them, they are not responsible for your happiness.”

Hang on to all the self-respect you have worked so hard to rebuild and never succumb to someone else’s opinion of you. Their insecurity is their choice, not yours. Feel compassion that they have to live in fear, but that is a self-imposed burden. Rebuilding your own life is a full time undertaking. Love yourself!

Specialized in: Widowed Persons - Stigma - Suffer
URL: http://www.butterflyintonewlife.blogspot.com
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