Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Subject That No One ......

                                                   source

...... talks about.

Yes, I read your comments from Monday's post.
And many of you stated that no one talks about ...... well, you know.  That thing no one wants to talk about.
Except for some of you.
Some of you really do want to talk about it.

As one of the writers on this blog ...... I kind of took that as a "dare".  You know, as in "I dare you to write about it".
And unfortunately (or fortunately, for those of you who want to talk about it), I'm the kind of stubborn person who hates to turn down a "dare".

And so here we are.
Getting ready to talk about "it".
Hopefully you'll all jump in and comment ...... and talk about it.

The subject of the day is ..... S.  E.  X.
Or actually, the lack thereof.

Widowhood ...... and the lack of sex.
Not something that most of us thought about in the first few days on this journey.  Or maybe even the first few months.
I didn't.  I don't know why, but it's not something that popped into my head for a while.
It wasn't that sex wasn't a vital part of our marriage.  It was.  Regularly.
(I sincerely hope that none of my children decide to read this post.)
I guess it was just part of the shock of being thrust into this new reality so suddenly.  And maybe it was also due to the fact that I was just trying to make it from one minute to the next, one breath at a time, that I didn't have the energy, time, or capacity to think about sex.
Or the lack thereof.

But one day, I'm not sure exactly when, it did pop into my head.
And I realized that I missed it.
I missed it a lot.

At first, it wasn't actually sex that I missed.  It was just physical touch.
I had never before realized how important touch is.  I know they've done studies of infant orphans
who've been left in their cribs, with very little warm physical touch, for the first year or so of their lives.
The outcome is not good.
Someone should do a study on widowed people and the lack of warm physical touch in their lives.
Except maybe I don't want to know the outcome.

I didn't realized how important touch had been to me, how much it had been a part of my life.
A warm hand holding mine (we held hands all of the time).
A loving touch on the shoulder, back or arm.
A fun pat on the rear (which made any and all of our children recoil in horror, and some utter the words, "Gross!  Get a room!", which of course meant that they secretly were glad that their parents enjoyed each other).
I longed to just be touched.  I needed to be touched.  I missed being touched.

But mostly ...... mostly I missed the hugs.
Oh my word, how I missed being enfolded fully in Jim's arms and hugged.  Hugged hard.
I missed it so much that I even asked some of my girl friends to tell their husbands to hug me whenever they saw me.
Some did.
But I didn't see them all that often.
I still miss those hugs.

One day it wasn't just the hugs that I missed.
And it wasn't what some people call "sex".
I missed making love.
Which is totally different from "sex".
In my opinion.

And it was more than just missing it.
I started to feel like an addict going through withdrawal.
I felt like I was going to crawl out of my skin.
I hope that makes sense.
I don't know how else to describe it.
The need to be that close to someone.
The need to feel like a woman again, not a widow.
A need that was suddenly with me almost all day.
And all night.

Yes, there are ways to work around some needs.
There might be "friends with benefits".
Or occasional "one night stands".
There are "toys" that can be purchased (yes, I saw that episode of "Sex in the City").
But all of those are for the need of sex.
Not for the need of making love.
That's a need that nothing, and no one, can fulfill.
No one except for someone who loves you deeply ...... and whom you love deeply.
In my opinion.

I am almost at the 5 year mark (a fact that seems unbelievable and almost obscene).
I still miss making love.
I try to not think about it.
It doesn't affect me like it did when it first hit.
It doesn't occupy a lot of my thoughts.
Most of the time.

I seem to go through phases.
A few months may go by and I don't really think about it.
But then another month comes ...... and it becomes a need again.
A need that, at this point in my life, cannot be fulfilled.
Which makes for a very long month.

I hope that I will find love again.
And I hope that it finds me.
I hope that I am loved as deeply and as fully as Jim loved me.
I hope that I will again have a fulfilling sex life.
(I still hope that my kids aren't reading this!)
I hope that my days of making love are not over.
And I hope that I am able to be that close, that intimate, that "as one" with a man again.

But that's all I have.
Hope.
No guarantees.  No promises.  No one in my sights.
Just hope.

So hope will have to do.
Hope, and staying very busy.
And exercise.  Lots of exercise.
During those months when I think about sex.

Or the lack thereof.




69 comments:

  1. Thank you so much. I was one of those "comments" post on the previous post. You hit the nail on the head. So, so difficult. At times, excruciating.

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    1. Mjay,
      Thank YOU for commenting Monday and broaching the subject. You helped a lot of people by doing that.
      It just goes to show that you never know how much of an impact your comments can make. They bring hope to many, and sometimes bring out a new blog post.
      :)

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    2. i am a widow hitting second year soon. such a true true thing you have mentioned.now i know that i am not insane.

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    3. THANK YOU Janine for posting this unmentionable subject. I too, am approaching the 5 year angelversary of my husbands death. No, sex was not foremost in my thoughts when first becoming widowed, however, my marriage was filled with affection and I did miss the intimacy of "touch". It has been difficult at times to quell the emotions that deal with identifying myself as a woman. I have come to realize that my husbands death did not take my sexuality to the grave with him. No, I do not flaunt it but for my own psychological health, I now do things for myself that make me feel like a woman (from having a stuffed bear made from his clothing to hug to most recently I had a boudoir session that was amazing at giving me ).
      One day I hope to be able to give my love to someone and be loved by someone special too . . . until then, it is up to me to take care of me!

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    4. it is two years yesterday jan 3, and i know how you feel because i feel the same, i pray i will meet someone who loves me with all his heart again, i miss the hugs , kisses and talks , that someone special in my life again, all my friends still have their husbands and don't include me anymore, and it is so lonely most of the times in my life, it gets so hard/

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  2. This is such a big subject and frankly Im surprised that it is hardly mentioned in all the widow media I had seen since my husbands sudden death.

    Unlike some here who had idyllic marriages, mine was a mixed bag...he could be a wonderful person but he had a huge anger problem and he could turn (in a split second with little provocation, likely none of which had anything to do with me) into a cruel ass-bastard. This terribly destructive side eroded our emotional intimacy so that even when sex was good, I might very well me a thousand miles from him in my mind at the time because he was not a safe person to love. There were times I cried during sex because I wished that he could show me love in normal moments with kind patience the same way he was able to be generous sexually.

    I now feel very conflicted about sex...I lived my long marriage very committed to my (Catholic) Church's teaching on sexuality and I found it edifying, healthy and ultimately fulfilling (as fulfilling as it could possibly ever be under the circumstances I was living with anyway) but because my marriage was hard and I have huge trust issues (and a few other reasons that dont need elaboration) Im not inclined to remarry and would (should I decide to continue to live my Church's teaching on sex) shut myself off from any healthy sexual life.

    Among my friends (partially based on how I exhibited such a positive witness in a challenging marriage) my friends think of my as "Mrs Catholic Marriage" and they would be shocked at my inner angst. Im ashamed to say that I ponder this as if I don't trust God at all to work this out as if He doesn't know my heart or what is best for me and that is the antithesis of how I have lived my life for a long time. LIke I said, Im ashamed of my doubt.

    Lastly, the thing that I would never speak aloud to anyone is the reality of the changes that occurred in my body with childbirth...I pushed out a 10 pound baby and that left me with damage that never fixed itself and surgical repairs are an imperfect science of which Im really afraid...even though Im slim and probably attractive, Im embarrassed at a new man perhaps not being fully satisfied with what my body has to offer in its post-maternal state.

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    1. Anon,
      No one has an idyllic marriage. I had a very good one, but we were far from perfect. We also worked in our marriage and our relationship. Even then, we had moments (& days) of anger and fault-finding.
      I know it sometimes sounds as if some think their spouses were angels, but we all know that humans are just that: human.
      I'm so sorry for all the sadness and pain you experienced. I sincerely hope that God will bring real love into your life.
      And I wish I could say, "Please don't feel guilty any longer about your thoughts.", and that you would. But I know better.
      God has very large shoulders. He can take your thoughts, your anger, and your pain. And He's ok.with it. All of it. He created you and knows how you feel, so just dump it all on Him. And hopefully take it off of yourself. You don't deserve it.
      Sending warm thoughts and prayers.

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  3. Janine - thanks for having the guts to write about this (I still remember when you wrote the "Bad widow" post)
    My husband and I always had an incredible sex life, we were physical, touched, hugged, held hands, kissed, dated, striped off our clothes and made love on the floor (yes our kids were no longer living at home).
    We had a love affair that was passionate up until three weeks before he died. It was a joy that we both honoured and truly believed was vital to a good marriage.
    Before he died my husband told me to find love again,
    Like many widows posting here I thought - I will be dead before i could ever let anyone love me - let alone touch me.
    But deep in my heart I knew I would not be able to live without love or making love again. Human touch is essential to who we are. Even babies not touched will fail to thrive, they may even die.
    Why do we feel we should? What is so moral about being asexual? Where did we get the fucked up notion that not being loved is how you stay a "good widow" .

    I was not seeking love. In the two years since he died, I was surviving. However, because I believe sexuality is an important part of a full life, I refused to just let it go. Yes (cover your eyes) I masturbated. Frequently. Sometimes I ended up sobbing afterwards (how is that for complicated) Sometimes it was so I could go to sleep. At other times because I woke up and couldn't get back to sleep and at others to make sure I hadn't lost the ability.
    It helped. But as Janine said it wasn't another body, the embrace, the romance, the love and feeling of being with another making love.

    Then someone came along. Someone wonderful, funny, kind, smart, and very much attracted to me. Shock! What do I do with this. I was scared. It had been over 35 years since I had made love to anyone else. We took it very slow. Very slow.

    I don't want to marry again (age and stage of life at present) but I don't want to live without love.
    So - I have a lover.
    They are single, they have a busy career and family life too. They understand I am still grieving and will always grieve. My husband was and will always be my greatest love.

    There are no promises of forever.
    There are no plans to live together.
    We are very good friends and enjoy each others company.
    We are lovers and kind and gentle with each other.
    It is enough.

    Everyone will do it there own way but to the ones who say "never!" I say - please leave space for love to sneak in and find you. Please let yourself hope and believe that you are worthy of being loved again. Please DO NOT feed yourself the stories that if you were a good widow you will wear black, cover the windows and never be in a relationship again. Janine talked about exercise - and we know when your widowed you really have to take care of yourself, sleep enough, eat well, exercise - why don't we see our sexuality in the same light. Take care of yourself. Keep your libido alive like a flame because some day someone is going to along and the two of you will set it to flame.

    It is a cold world out there.
    Thanks Janine - you always give me hope!
    Your bravery shines through your blog entries. So glad you took the dare.

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    1. Anon,
      Thank you so very much for your honesty and compassion. I believe that today YOU gave a lot of people hope. You rock!

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    2. OMG Thank you!! I thought I was just weird!! It has only been a year for me and I keep thinking there will be no one who could love me as he did but I do miss the touching, pat on the ass, etc. Anon does rock!!! Hope is a powerful gift to give. I am 61 thinking my life is over. Thank you, again.

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    3. Donna,
      I'm so glad that you came here today and read all of the comments. And yes, hope is indeed a powerful thing to give. A lot of people have given a lot of hope today.
      Widowed people rock!!
      :)

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    4. Thank you, Anon for being so open. I am so glad I decided to go through and read these comments. Yours really stood out to me.

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  4. Well - at the risk of being blocked - I will make a comment from my perspective/please frogive me if I offend anyone. You see I am a man that has been reading these blogs for awhile as I feel you are the only ones that can understand my loss. I lost my same sex partner awhile ago and I miss him terribly and do get comfort in the discussions that occur here. Ladies, it is true, most men cannot express their feelings and are uncomfortable around anyone that does (especially another man), and as I do express my feelings and can cry at the drop of a hat (even if the family refers to me as the strong one), I had to find a site that somewhat understood my feelings of loss.

    Now, as for the topic at hand (and talk about an issue most people don't want to discuss - same sex SEX), I will offer a couple of comments. I totally understand what you are missing in the comfort of the touch. My partner and I knew the meaning of the difference between "making love" and gratification sex. I so miss the touch of his hand caressing me lightly, the feel of his breath on my shoulder, the passion in our embraces and kisses, "the look" across the room (crowded or not) of unspoken but deeply devoted love you can see in eath other's eyes, just the comfort and warmth of having each other side-by-side as you fall aspleep, etc. We were a very "macho" couple - no one knew except those that needed to - so we didn't hold hands or embrace in public or share "puppy dog" stares - but it is surprising the number of people that have told me since my loss that they knew what we had and were so envious. I won't go on - you know the feeling that you miss so.

    Now to the core of the issue - we all have needs, and after the initial shock of losing someone (and my loss occurred very suddently and unexpectedly), those needs will arise - it may be months, it may be years, but be assured - they will reoccur. A lesson learned I will pass on - if and when you act on them, and you will/should, then be prepared for the GUILT. My first sexual trys ended with me in tears (luckily my partner understood) and overcome with guilt - the feeling of cheating - the whole nine yards. It is something that will take time to work through - and I thought I would pass it on so that any that are contemplating acting on their needs, can be better prepared. However, don't let it deter you from resuming an important part of adult living...and good luck in your pursuit of finding the passion, etc. to set the stage for "making love" again in your life. It will be different...but that is OK...

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  5. Thanks for broaching the subject Janine. I have to agree wholeheartedly with Anonymous number 2 (1 up from me here) I had very similar experiences, great sex life with my wife/ unfulfilled masturbation after, feelings of guilt, etc etc. And for a while I was one of those "Never, ever" ones but somehow it happened and I've been lucky enough (blessed really) to find a lover (and more)recently and although my relationship is more serious than a "friends with benefits" arrangement. I have to strongly encourage everyone that there is no point in being miserable (I know my wife would not have wanted me to be) and feeling guilty, do what feels right in your heart, there are 7 billion people in this world so there is very likely someone else out there who can make you happy again (and whom you can make happy as well) reagrdless of the capacity (friend, lover, spouse etc)

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    1. Thank you for posting, Anon #4. I also appreciate your honesty and the sharing of what you've experienced.
      There's hope out there.
      A lot of hope.
      :)

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  6. Anon,
    Thank you for sharing your feelings and experience with us. There's no reason whatsoever to block you or for anyone to be offended. You're widowed just like the rest of us. I see no difference and I appreciate your honesty with us. We all learn from each other's experiences and we encourage each other, just the way you did today.
    Thank you for that. :)

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    1. THe above comment is in reply to Anon #3.
      Somehow my cell phone doesn't work as well as a computer. It didn't immediately post my reply so it got in line behind the next commenter.
      Commenter .... is that even a word?

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    2. i am 66 and married 37 years. my husband is physically unable to have sex for the last 20 years. he is also older than me and has no sexual desires. we are more roomates. my faith is important to me so i spoke to my pastor and decided it is better to masturbate than committ adultery or fornication

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  7. Thank You Anon Number one.
    I am a bisexual person. I was blissfully married in a straight and monogamous relationship for over 30 years when my spouse got cancer and passed away.
    It has been a very long, long time.
    The hunger for love is great. Like you the first time I made love to my current lover. I sobbed so hard I was sure I would never see them again. It was beautiful, it was sad, it was moving and I felt guilty as hell. As if I was cheating.
    A good friend said to me "you know the to death do you part-part? Well you kept your promise. You lived your vows, now you have to keep living."
    So my current lover is same sex. It is just the way it happened. In some ways it is easier for me because I am not making love to a man. So, those similarities of body etc are not there. I have a lover not a "friends with benefits". It is love, it is mutual and caring and kind. I don't know where it is going. I no longer ask myself that. I too feel blessed to have someone to love and whom I can give all the love I still have.
    Do I miss my husband? Every single day of my life since he died.
    I always will.
    Always.

    As both Anons have said before me it will be different and that will be okay.
    Give yourself the time and openness, Be honest with yourselves about your own needs. Be honest with the person you share your heart and body with. If they are the right one, they will understand.

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    1. Thanks so much, Anon #5. I just love all of the commenting and the sharing of yourselves. You do so many people such a huge service when you share open and honestly.
      Yes, loving someone else will be different. And that's a good thing. I don't want the same experience with a man who's just like Jim because then I'd definitely be comparing the two of them.
      I'd love a man who has some of the same great qualities, but I also want him to be different. He will be, as will our relationship.
      If I ever meet that man. If I don't, I'll be ok.
      But I'll also be disappointed ...... I'm not going to lie.
      But I'll definitely be ok.
      :)

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  8. Thank you all for your posts, you give me hope that there is a life with love out there again. Just have to be open to it, and I'm slowly getting there, hoping that there *must* be someone else out there for me again. I found love once, I have to be open to the possibility again.

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    1. Hi Cathy,
      Thanks for commenting, and telling everyone that they gave you hope. I know how wonderful it makes them feel.
      It doesn't seem like you're doing a big thing when you comment, but passing on hope is a huge thing!
      We all need it.
      Very much.

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  9. I feel like you expressed how I feel so very well. It comes and goes. Sometimes it's the only thing that occupies my mind and then other times it's not a huge deal. Sex was not a huge part of our marriage. He had a terminal illness (cystic fibrosis) and physically couldn't a lot of the time. Doesn't mean that we didn't try and we didn't do it -- but we had to find ways around actually having sex. This led to a lot, A LOT of cuddling and being close in different ways... So yes, I do miss sex (more so, as you put it, making love), but I also miss intimacy in general. The touch. Like you said, I didn't fully realize how important the human touch and embrace is. The closeness that you get from another human being that you care so deeply about.

    I'm a 21 (nearly 22) year old widow and I'm sure that I will find love again... I want to so badly when the time is right. If I'm going to live 70-80 more years, I want to have a man I care deeply about by my side. And on every level it sounds like a fantastic idea, aside from when I think about sex and being intimate. i cannot for the life of me imagine sharing that with someone else. Obviously that means I'm not ready for that, but I just know, and fear, that it won't be the same. That I will never love and care about and feel as comfortable as I did around Spencer when we're intimate.... With time this will get worked out. But that's always the part that catches me, you know? Catches me off guard when I think about my future... Anyway....

    You're completely right... it's a topic that no one talks about. It's that taboo subject that is never mentioned. Sometimes that elephant in the room that you want to talk about, but it never has a way of just 'coming up'. So thank you for taking on this "dare" and writing about this. It's a personal subject, but when brought up unleashes so many responses and so many people can relate. We WANT to talk about it. And I'm so thankful that we have a "safe place" (so to speak..) to do so :)

    Thank you =)

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    1. Nikki,
      Thanks for commenting and for sharing your feelings. At almost 22 you have so much life ahead of you. No, you can't imagine being that close to someone else, but when the time is right, you'll know. And you'll know when you're ready. Trust me. It just occurs to you one day .... that you are. Just like you know you're ready for anything else on this path. You just know.
      And I believe that you'll love someone very deeply again, because you did before and you know what it is to love.
      I'm glad that you feel safe here ...... and that you can connect with what we write about.

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  10. When I asked about this subject on Monday, I was afraid that I was the only one who was struggling with this issue, and that my comment might even be blocked because it had the (sex) word. I felt a shock when I saw the heading to your blog today, Janine, and I am - what, relieved? heartened? - to see all the comments that followed. I am not alone; I am not, it seems, crazy. It also does my heart good to hear that some of you have found love again, with all the physical and emotional intimacy that entails. Even though it seems impossible now, it allows me to feel that I won't be starved of physical and emotional intimacy for the rest of my life. And that makes getting through another day in this desert more bearable. Thank you, Janine, and thanks to the rest of your for sharing.

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    1. Claire,
      I would've liked to have seen your face today when you read the title of the post. :)
      Thank you for asking about sex and why no one talks about it. Thanks for posting your comment on Monday. Again, you never know exactly what will happen because you took the time to comment.
      I'm glad you did and I'm also glad you feel relieved and heartened ..... and not crazy ...... or alone.
      We're all in this together.
      :)

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  11. I miss the bear hugs, back rubs and everything else that went along with a satisfying 30+ year marriage. So now I get a massage once a month. It's not a substitute at all, but it does provide human touch, it loosens up my back since hubby is not here to "crack" it for me, and I just feel really great afterward, like I'm doing something good for myself... which I am. Thank you, Janine, for this honest and forthright blog post.

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  12. Thanks for commenting, Anon. You reminded me that I, too, decided to get regular massages when the hunger for physical touch hit. It helped immensely. I need to remember that .... and get them again when those long months pop up.
    Thanks for the reminder.
    :)

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    1. I too, have used regular massages - initially once a month for 60 minutes bc I didn't want to be too "indulgent"......then I found out a 90 minute massage was only $10 more....so I began 90 minutes every three weeks; this has now become every other week for 90 minutes. It's a luxury I cannot live without. And I do believe it helps some with the deep pressure touch that I so crave. It's a drop in the bucket compared to what I used to have, but I'll receive it. Massages have definitely been part of my "return to life", whatever that will look like.

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  13. Thanks for "breaking the seal" on this topic, Janine! ;-)
    I remember just days after Dave died I had the sudden thought bubble up out the murk of my foggy shock..."who will I have sex with?". And I didn't just mean sex. I meant make love with, be affectionate with, touch, etc. That thought alone made me feel incredibly lost. I've found that it's easier for me now than before he died to find gratification (with others) without believing there HAS to be strings attached and without suffering from TOO much guilt, but an actual love affair (love being the operative word) still seems far off, and for good reason. I have much to do. I'm rebuilding my life and learning to care for myself. However, the fact still remains that until I find another love, I will have unmet needs. I can meet ALL my own needs EXCEPT that of intimacy with another human and THAT is what I miss so damn much. Sometimes it's a dull ache and sometimes it's a jagged tear in my heart that makes me feel crazy. We're not cut out for living without it. Or at least I'm not.
    But I have to for now and that is something I'm still learning to manage without going insane!

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  14. A great post Janine, and other than the few workshops at Camp the past two times, something I have not seen brought up very often, an occasional reference in a book maybe. Although my therapist does make me talk about it some, and not sure all therapists are even that willing to approach it. Sadly right now however I can't really think this one out too much. I went from wishing his arms were around me to protect me in the hurricane, to know thinking, damn, I miss him and the physical intimacy too. Too much for my brain/heart to wrap around right now. will have to come back here and re read all the comments as well as your post when I can better handle it. But, thanks for bringing up a very important, if never talked about topic!

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  15. Hi Cassie!
    You're right .... we are NOT cut out for living without it. I know I'm not. I'd hate to think that I'll never have it again, and so I don't. I have hope that I will. I think that the more hope we have, the more likely we are to find another love. We'll be more open to it.
    Until then, I'm right there with you .... trying to not go insane!
    :)

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  16. So true what you write. I do not want friends with benefits, I was a virgin when I met my husband. He is the only one I wanted to be with! So sex with somene else will be very strange, but I too hold out hope!

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  17. Thank you! Reading this was like putting my own thoughts and feelings to paper. I miss the love I shared with my husband in every way. A random one night stand or "special friends" will never fill the void of what you share when you feel the touch of the one who holds your heart.

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  18. Thanks for this! I thought I'd share my 'story' as I know when I was first widowed I found comfort in reading others stories.
    I'm 2 1/2 years out. Was married for 26 years, and was 17 & a virgin when I met my husband. And I was completely faithful to him. He was the only man I'd been with my entire life. We had our ups and downs, but the last 5 years of our marriage it seemed like we had finally gotten our act together and were on the same page. And we had great sex and we had it often those last 5 years. (Then came the terminal cancer diagnosis and he died 6 months later.)
    Although I craved his touch, I initially didn't miss sex - until about the 1 year mark. I don't know if I was coming out of the fog or what it was, but I was almost beside myself with the desire to have sex again. I knew I still wasn't emotionally ready for the real deal, so lets just say I made a discreet online purchase and took care of the problem. :-)
    At the same time I found the Widowed Village Forum and Supa's post on "Hormonal overdrive!!! What I wish I'd known." Soooo thankful I came across that when I did, or I would have thought I was at best going crazy, and at worst, a 'bad widow'!
    Anyway fast forward 10 months and I met someone. I probably had sex with him too soon, but I felt safe with him for some reason. Amazingly, it wasn't as awkward as I thought, and unlike others, I wasn't guilt ridden afterwards. (Of course I still have regular moments of sadness & pain, but not guilt.)
    Fast forward another 8 months, and we're still together. I have no idea what my future holds, and I'm not entirely sure what I even want at this point as far as remarriage goes. I'm financially secure and don't need a partner but I certainly am loving the regular companionship and just somebody to share my day to day thoughts and life with. I love our times together and have shared with girlfriends and sister how funny it is what you find attractive in somebody. There was instant chemistry but I was amazed at how attracted I was to other things - like he enjoys puttering and repairing all his own stuff. (Home, car, boat, regripping his own golf clubs, etc... He just DOES it.) My late husband was more than capable to do all these things as well, but chose not to for various reasons - mainly procrastination and his love of all things sports. (It drove me crazy at the time but of course I would give anything to have him back with those 'flaws' and all. And I'm very thankful now that he did the things he loved given that he had such a short life.)
    So, my new love is nothing like my late husband, and I actually like it that way!
    As far as the future goes, all of us here know there's no guarantees for of any us. Even though I'm a Christian and it should be against my religious beliefs to have sex outside of marriage, I feel I honoured my husband 'til death did us part. I refuse to feel guilty about having sex at this stage in my life with another single man. I think we'd all agree that we were dealt a shitty hand with this widow thing and God can cut me a break. There are worse sins and life is too short.

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  19. I am coming up to the 10 month anniversary. I was 40 when he died. We had only been married for 9 years. Now our relationship just feels like a dream. If I didn't have my children I would question whether it did happen. The thought of being intimate with another person is very intimidating. I was a virgin on my wedding night (my husband was a patient and wonderful man, lol). I don't think I would ever be open to just sex. For me it has to mean something. I just hope that I do find someone who was as generous and kind as my husband, someone to love. By no means was my husband perfect, but he was a good man. I miss him everyday.

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  20. I am also coming up on 5 years, and over the course of the past 5 years I have felt very much like you Janine. Thank you so much for braving this topic, it's one that doesn't get addressed, it's a very personal one. It's not about sex like you said it's about the closeness, the intimacy that comes from being with that one special person, 2 become one, the touch, holding hands and hugs. I have found that when someone does give me a pat on the back or shoulders I actually tense up now. I pull back, I'm sure it's because I have shut down in that area of touch. Sad but so true.
    One day perhaps I will find someone that will love me as much as my husband did. Until then I also stay very active physically and mentally it helps to block that empty part of my life out. I am not one to have a one night stand, or just for a good time, there has to be a strong emotional bond/connection it has to be special. I also struggle with my Christian values. For me I don't know if its possible to ever be that close to someone again. My heart longs for my husband even now close to 5 years later.

    Thank you for writing this and sharing such a difficult subject. It lets me know that my feelings are normal.

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  21. Good post...thanks for bringing it up. I was a 44 year old virgin when I met my husband. Before then I did masterbate. My husband was a hugger. We hugged every day of the 8+ years we were together...every single day. Now - nothing. I miss those arms around me. I miss my head on his shoulder as we lay in bed almost every night..just talking and touching hands. My hand on his chest. I think he would agree that our sex life was more than just the act...it was touching. I miss that, like all of you.

    I have a 70+ widower neighbor I could probably screw...but it would be just that and nothing else. He's hard of hearing and he doesn't listen, so I can't imagine it as enjoyable. In fact I can't imagine it with anyone else but my husband. He was "the one".

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  22. Wow, thank you all for commenting about this taboo subject for widows.

    I said many times "I'll never let a man put his tongue in my mouth, EVER". Then I met a man so different from my late husband. We met online, talked & emailed for a while, then met for dinner. What followed was 2 1/2 months of almost constant connection. We live over an hour apart so we actually lived together every weekend. He adored me and treated me like I've never been treated before. So different from my husband, no comparisons were being made by me. I soaked up all the attention and was beaming with joy! The sex was mind-blowing! The hugging, hand-holding, snuggling and togetherness was beyond wonderful. He stated "I expect and respect that you will always be in love with your husband, and that's okay with me. I don't feel threatened by it."

    He gave me exactly what I needed, exactly when I needed it and then some! I was so happy and excited to be alive, once again.

    We broke up last weekend and I know in my deepest heart and soul, that our relationship was a gift. He filled my needs, desires and helped me to overcome my FEARS of being in a relationship with anyone other than my husband.

    It's been a very tough week for me! I have returned to an earlier stage of deep grief and depression. I miss the connection, the plans to be together, and the sex. I feel lonely!
    I have no regrets. I will say it again, I HAVE NO REGRETS! What a gift I allowed myself to feel! I will recover and maybe some day (but not too soon) I will open myself fully to another man and enjoy the experience.
    Thank you all for sharing this journey. WIthout your support I would surly go insane.
    I love you all!

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  23. Thanks, all, for your posts. I am 8-1/2 years out from losing my husband suddenly, after 14 years of a good marriage filled with great sex - it was what held us together even during the times when other parts of our relationship were difficult.

    A couple of months ago, I reconnected with a friend from many years ago, who had also known my husband. He made a point to let me know when his divorce finalized. I so want to broach the friends-with-benefits topic with him, but I'm scared to death. I don't really want a full relationship at this point - I'm just way too busy, and want to finish raising my son without that complication. Even so, it would probably work out fine because my friend lives thousands of miles away. Keep the excitement alive, compartmentalize it, what have you. I can only deal with one step at a time.

    But, I just know I'm going to be a big puddle of tears the first time I have sex with someone else. I've been my own best friend, kept the toys in good use, massages every month, etc. I keep thinking that even if I do end up sobbing, it would be OK if I was with someone I already know, trust and care for as a friend. I'm not really in it for love at the moment. Touch and sex would be fine, in the context of an old friendship. But, I think I want to keep it light and light-hearted. As I said, I am a very busy person, and doubt I even have time for a serious relationship right now.

    If you knew me, you'd know that this represents a huge departure from my previous approach to relationships. Sex used to be what sealed it. Now it's perhaps prelude. How very strange. But, I feel I'm entitled, at this point in my life, late 40's (that looks so much better in print than pushing 50...!), and given what I've been through. I also know my husband would certainly approve (and that's important).

    Anyway, I'm rambling here, but wanted to say that all your stories are bolstering my courage to give my friend a call, maybe make a trip to see him, or invite him to come see me, and be really straight-forward about what I want and don't want. Even saying this here, I know I'm going to crumble, but it's nice to imagine that I could be brave... :)

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  24. Janine,
    Thanks so much for posting this extremely important topic for all of us!! And I appreciate all the honest replies. I've thought a lot about missing my husband's touch, the kissing, the holding, the making love. There is no one - not one friend - that I can talk to about this. Even those widows that I've become acquainted with - nobody says it. But it makes sense why some people seek companionship quicker than you would expect. I can't imagine ever becoming intimate with someone else, but then never say never. My husband was a wonderful man, a caring lover and I can't believe it will ever be as good - even the thought of kissing someone else makes me feel weird and guilty. So the loneliness continues.

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  25. Thank you so much for posting this! I am 11 months out and this Hurricane Sandy and Nor-estern Athena made me crave for my husband's touch and hugs. Periodically I thought about it but now it is in the forefront of my mind. I really miss my husband! This post has really helped me realize that I am not insane with all these feelings.

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  26. Oh boy! Is this timely and thanks for naming the elephant in the room. It has been nearly 5 years that my husband died, he was sick for 11 months prior. So do the math, nearly 6 years celebate. Like so many have said, I missed his touch, the cuddling but never the SEX part UNTIL this week. Yikes, what the heck happened...I really thought I'd never have sex, I mean there hasn't been any desire. I have been grieving so intensely all this time. Tow months ago a widower started showing WAY too much interest which initially turned me even more off. (Is that possible?) But last week, something sure changed. He is out of town now and while I'm glad for that I've got some real concerns about his coming back. I feel like a teenage-boy crazy girl that might be out of control. And the strange thing is, I'm not attracted to HIM. None of this makes sense to me. HELP!!
    This might not be good...I am taking up jogging tomorrow!! Janine, you'd better be ready for the sequel next Wednesday since you have opened up Pandora's box, my dear.

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    1. Anon - I just saw your comment tonight. And now I'm wondering what you did, if anything, to adress this new attention from this widower????
      And a Pandora's box?! Oh my! Maybe I should write a post asking everyone to catch me/us up on anything that may have happened after this post!!

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  27. Perhaps I intrude but, as a widower, who has a new relationship with a deceased friend's widow I ask for your thoughts and guidance. My wife died 7 years ago and I've been father and mother to my two daughters since then but now adult graduates. Supporting my friends widow as a friend over the past 2 years we realised over the last year that our relationship was becoming more than that but I naturally allowed her to decide when and how it might progress. We both respect and care for our adult children but slowly began to break news to them and to friends. In the Spring we became intimate and discovered a wonderful new life. She was only ever so with her late husband; married for over 30 years. We spent weekends together generally agreed that marriage or living together were not to be considered as such thoughts were too soon for her and perhaps me too. In September we spent 10 wonderful days on holiday. When we returned she had her business to catch up on and the imminent arrival of her grandchild. She seemed distant the following week we met for dinner and she told me she was afraid of a relationship; that I had told her I loved her and that seemed too much to take; could we just be friends. We agreed to take time to think and meet in a month (tonight!)and now I don't know what to expect. Is it a natural sense that she might be betraying her late husband, particularly as his grandchild has just arrived or a sense of loyalty to her children or is she afraid of how her emotions grew with me while we were away. She told me that I made her alive again. I just hope she is not being influenced by family and friends to shut me out; to protect her emotions. I just hope she isn't so tough that she can close down a relationship almost overnight. Can someone offer guidance?

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    1. Anon - First of all .... you do NOT intrude. This site is for both widows and widowers. And my post was for both. We both long for physical touch, especially from our loved ones. So thank you for commenting.
      As for any advice for you .... I have none. I guess that your friend felt some amount of guilt after the two of you became intimate and now she's questioning herself and her actions.
      Give her some space, but also, don't let her just decide to end this on her own, if that's what she tries to do. Talk to her about it. Explain that what she is feeling is normal. We all feel that certain amount of guilt once we turn to someone else for what we once received from our spouse.
      I hope that she can look at this realistically and not panic about what has happened. I would think she'd come around before long .... or at least I would hope so. It's so difficult to find someone again .... I hope she thinks twice (or 100 times) before she decides to dump all of this because of guilt.
      Be open and honest with her .... and ask her to be the same. Especially open. It would be great if you could give us an update.
      Good luck. :)

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  28. It is Dec 20. My husband died suddenly on Dec 28 six years ago. I'm so glad I have somewhere to voice what I'm going through. I have been on Zoloft which squelches the urge but I've recently stopped taking it. I've had the sexual urges and have taken care of that myself. The first time doing that, I cried. I've gotten used to that but now the urge for touch, bear hugs, just holding me safe in his arms is something I am now craving. My husband was a wonderful husband and was veey affectionate. We held hands a lot. We madw love and he never wanted to call it anything but that.

    I think what is making that so difficult right now is that my boss, who is a very caring person and does care about me has been giving me affectionate touches, hugs, kisses on the cheek, which is common for him to do to others and me as just a friendly kiss - nothing more. So haven't thought much about it until now. I am NOT physically attracted to him...never have been. He's not that handsome.

    I find myself wanting him to hug me, I have fantasized some aboiut more, but again, I am not attracted to him. I would love for him to just hold me. I can't go there. I want to tell him how vulnerable I am and it would be best not to touch me but I'm afraid he might want to more, knowing I like it, but I think he would respect my wishes. He's a good man and probably doesn't know what effect it's having on me because I pull away. Oh yea, haven't mentioned that he's married. We are both mature adults. I'm mid to late 50's and he's mid 60's. I think part of the attraction is knowing he cares about me. He has been playfully flirting and it's getting harder to resist. I could never imagine having an affair with a married man. He may be lonely too. Not sure what kind of intimate relationship they have.

    I'm just having a very difficult time right now. Not sure whethet to tell him how I'm feeling or not. I just would like to be able to ask him to refrain ... for both of our sakes. I am literally aching for his arms around me...but dont want him to think I want a relationship with him. It's like having my needs fulfilled is so close but so far away.

    Any ideas on how to handle this dilemma from either gender are welcomed.

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    1. Anon ... This is a really hard situation. You are staving for some physical touch, but you really don't want it to come from this man. This very married man.
      I have no experience with this but I do have experience with the craving for physical touch.
      My solution was to get massages. Every. Single. Week.
      The first time I had one I think I cried through it. But the person who did my massage has experienced that before. So she was OK with it.
      That would be my suggestion to you: go get a massage ASAP. And then get another one next week. And the week after. And the week after that.
      It's not the same thing, but it does help, trust me. And it's better than no touch at all.
      Be open and honest when you go in the first time .... tell her/him what your going through and that you just need physical touch.
      Again, it's not as intimate and it's not sex .... but it is being touched .... like no one else ever touches you. Give it a try.
      It couldn't hurt.
      Good luck.
      :)

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  29. Janine -- it is a relief to know I haven't become some sort of sex-crazed madwoman. My husband died after almost 50 years of monogamous marriage -- not idyllic but with plenty of joyous sex. For four years I never really thought about sex or the lack thereof. I just assumed at my age I'd never again experience or want the kind of passion we had when we married. My longing was for companionship -- someone to have fun with, share stories with, talk with over dinner, hang out with. There were a few tentative dates with nice men around my age, but they seemed more intent on intimacy and I quickly ended those relationships.
    Then, after five years, boom! Out of nowhere I'm electrically connected to a man I had only thought of as a friend. He is also widowed, but much more recently. It was obsessive. I wanted to be with him every minute --feel his touch, hear his voice, laugh, talk, and yes, have sex. It was as if an explosion had taken place inside of me and there was no way to contain the fallout. I really didn't know what hit me and I am sure he felt the same.
    How did I go from feeling repulsed at even the thought of being touched by a man other than my husband to wanting to spend all my free time in bed with this guy?
    It sent him reeling back into his grief, full of guilt and pain. He cut the relationship like a sharp knife and left me staggering around wondering what the H had happened.
    For a couple of months, the sexual drive was overwhelming. It was Christmas and I can't tell you anything about the holidays -- there were a blur. Nothing helped get him and it off my mind. I cursed my body and its needs. Just having fabric rub across my breasts set me off. It was maddening, even painful. How did I ever get myself in this fix? And the big question -- how could I get out of it?
    As the others have said, exercise helps some and I did it with a vengance. Walked, swam, hiked, worked out on machines -- dropped a full size and had to invest in new clothes. I embraced every activity open to me, spent time with friends and family and threw myself into my work.
    Now, five months later, I find there are days, weeks and even nights when I forget about it -- or at least it is not foremost in my mind. But what I want is not intercourse -- if that's all I needed, its available. It was the intimacy, the touch, the comfort of feeling oneness again, of losing one's self in the moment and letting everything else slip away. The joy of knowing I actually could care about someone again and want someone to care about me.
    I can relate to all the responses you've had -- and feel for them and their need for closeness. It wasn't intentional when it happened to me, but it is now and that makes me very vulnerable and a bit scared.
    I saw the following on Doug's Blog on The Care Community and it made some sense, so I'm sharing it:

    "A woman's sexuality changes when she marries. Before marriage she is turned on by the need to be loved and the need to find a mate. After marriage she is turned on or off by whether or not she likes her mate and the relationship they share. When a mate dies, she may well shift back to the before marriage mode.

    In the animal world, if a male lion takes over the pride the first thing he does is kill off all of the cubs sired by the lion he replaced. He does so because the lioness will then go into heat and he can sire his own offspring. I hate to compare women with some animal and to use the term "going into heat" but to some degree that may be what happens. The need to be loved, and the need to find a mate can become an overwhelming drive. This can happen even if finding a mate is the last thing on earth the woman has in mind at the time."

    I guess I've shifted back into the "before marriage mode" -- a scary place to be at 76! At least having a place to talk about it helps, so thanks. Guess I'll go book a massage (or is that why I've been seeing the chiropracter so often. . .)!

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  30. Well, I'm glad I'm not the only one thinking about this subject. I am a 45 year old widow, 2 kids ages 15 and 11, my husband passed away just 4 months ago after a long illness with many factors, several years, so sex was just really not a part of our regular life for quite some time. We tried every now and then but most of the time, it just didn't work. Now I find myself actively pursuing a "friends with benefits" arrangement with an acquaintance from the town in which I grew up. Started as just a couple friendly games of "Words with Friends"...well if any of you play it, you know there's a little chat box...so, the chats have become X-Rated in the last couple weeks and I am now dying to hook up with this man! I called him at work (hey, he told me where he works!) and basically offered, told him exactly what I needed...no commitments, no expectations, just sex. Of course he did not turn down the offer, although we are trying to find a time and place to actually "hook up". I know it must sound crazy, but I really feel this is what I need right now (me, myself, and I are just not cutting it anymore!) Any and all comments welcome!

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  31. I'm a young widow and my husband hasn't been gone but 6 months. We were married for 7 years and have a young son together, his death was sudden and unexpected but afterwords I didn't feel anything sexually for anyone until I started talking to one guy. He was one of my husbands friends from work. I had only talked to him a handful of times. One day I decided to message him, after talking to him a couple of times I started to feel a "pull" towards him and a strong sexual attraction towards him but I have no clue how he feels about me, plus I'm to shy to ask. What do I do???

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  32. I am 53 years old and lost my husband of 27 years about 14 months ago. He was disabled and it has probably been more than 5 years since we had sex. I was faithful to my husband, but the sex was rare due to his disability. About at the year point after he died I started wanting to have a man in my life. So on a lonely Memorial Day weekend I decided to go on an online dating site and started chatting with a man immediately. We connected so well that we decided to meet about 1 week later. We had an immediate connection and have now had about 6 very long dates and talk everyday. I was uncomfortable at the first 2 dates, but by the 3rd date his touch felt amazing. Every date since then we have not been able to keep our hands off each other. The fact that he has been a gentleman has kept us from having sex, but it is getting more difficult every time. We both have been acting like teenagers and are so happy.

    Until this past weekend. He had made plans to visit his 3 children which he has not seen for many months. He also spent some time with his children with his ex-wife and time with old friends. As a result we have not spoken as much over the last two days and is leaving me feeling scared. I have not been able to sleep due to this overwhelming fear. I am afraid that I have fallen very hard for him and may end up getting hurt.

    He will be coming home tomorrow his 50th Birthday and I have planned a nice dinner for him. Prior to this weekend I was thinking we may have sex in the very near future; something I have been longing to do with this amazing man. But, now I am very apprehensive by the prospect of being hurt so close to the grief of my husband. I honestly do not know if I could handle this at this time. More importantly, we have been very honest about our feelings and I do not know if I share any of these thoughts I may make matters worse.

    Any thoughts that may help would be so appreciated.

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  33. Great post, my first time to your blog. I am not a widow yet but I have anticipatory grief and have spent the past ten months dealing with daily losses as I caregive for my terminally ill life partner in a foriegn country. My partner and I were always a very passionate couple and the loss of that physicality in all its forms is very deep. Even the hugging is impossible for my beloved as his body is so frail and it is painful for him. I plan to write a book about the journey and you have given me courage to address the intimacy issues with honesty as I think what all of us are going through will help others to get through it, too.

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  34. I have been dating a widower for a little over a year now, we enjoy each others company and enjoy the closeness of making love. Only one thing has now gotten in the way. He has 5 children, 2 adopted when he married his wife of 37 years, their dad did not want them and gladly gave them up. Three children born to them during their marriage, so 5 all together. 2 girls and 3 boys. Eldest son and middle son have accepted dad's "dating" and include me in family events. One lives in Arizona as does my daughter and we have met there and had a good time together with his partner and my daughter and son in law. The problem stems with his daughter, his wife's child from her first marriage. She is not accepting the fact that he has grieved the loss of his wife of 37 years and has now decided to make a new life with me. She excludes me from family gatherings, such as her kids birthdays and then text's her father to ask if I am upset about not being invited. This would not bother me except for the fact she is using her son as the excuse for not inviting me, he just turned 4, so his grandmother died when he was around 2, his mother decided to bring out family photo albums days before the party and discuss grandpa and grandma not being at the party together. Of course the 4 year old has now asked who I am and who grandpa is not with grandma. Apparently his mother did not explain her dying to him and just decided to tell my partner not to bring me to the party. This is impacting our intimacy as he is uncomfortable that his daughter does not accept me and he doesn't want to "confuse" his grandson with my presence. I really don't care what his daughter thinks, I feel she is playing games as he has told all his kids he is happy with me and wants a long lived relationship that may include marriage. Any thoughts on how not to let this interfere with our love making? We don't just have sex, that was in the beginning, now we truly have deep feelings for each other, and make love, but lately it has become and uncomfortable time between us. Any ideas as to how to get his daughter, for lack of a better phrase "out of our bedroom"?

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  35. I am a man married almost 39 years, most of which were absolutely marvelous. God gave me a perfect matched companion, but I was not always the best husband. My wife was diagnosed with ALS just over 3 years ago.. She is now in dementia. If she gets sick again , I am ashamed to admit I wish they would not treat her and let her go.

    I just wanted to say that I really related to the comments about missing the touch of someone that loves you. That cannot be replaced. I have had a divorced friends of my wife offer to come into my life - very upfront - but that definitely will not happen until after my wife passes. Its not the way I feel but it I am going off what I read to go slow. I realize I am probably not thinking clearly about this. I guess after my wife passes, then my feelings for my wife will be stronger and the conflict will be easier to manage until a decent interval goes by to start dating again..

    At this point in my life, I am worn out and I just want to get past this. I have sat down and written out 1 year and 5 year plans for my life after she passes. I know it seems very cold but it is my way of getting control of the situation.

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  36. I am a 64 year old widower. I lost my wife over 5 years ago and because of her illness we didn't make love for the 12 months before her passing. I agree wit most of the comments made in so much as I like most of the others had no sexual feelings or desires for ages, but there does come a time when you can look back and not see your wife/partner suffering in pain but only in a loving way and you suddenly find that you have an urge. An urge that you regularly had satisfied by your wife/partner as and when it arose either by manual,oral or penetration means or all but now you only had one. solo sex. it doesn't come anyway near to holding and cuddling somebody while you make love to them. how I miss my dear departed wife. I find that I hardly get an erection now as it's not used

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  37. Thank you so much for this...I am a widow for 7 years. I still miss my husband, he was my first love. Sadly, I have not been interested in anyone else since. I still feel like I'm cheating or something. But, you said everything I've went thru. I do miss his touch, and always will, til we meet again...

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  38. Am so happy about this post. As I read tears keeps flowing my cheeks. I thought am alone but thank God am able to access this blog. Am a 33 year old widow , lost my heart 9 years ago. Its bn so lonely without him, still asking myself can I love again. Missed d rubbish atimes, his jokes , his name callings, his touch and most of all his love making. Can't stop crying anytime I thinks about him.
    I hardly sits amidst married couples because I don't want to be reminded of him. I've been seen as a threat among some of my married friends as though I have never been married before. I wish to b cuddled again in the night, I wish to be hugged as if my life depends on it, I wish to be told do this or that for me, I wish to rush home knowing that somebody is expecting me. I have my two boys, yes but they don't feel this gaps. I miss u my steph.
    Thank u so much Janine for this post. My hope to love again is lifted

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  39. Hi I am glad I got to read all the comments, I have been a widow for 2 years and finally I met someone that gave me back my smiles, I did miss the hugs, the kisses and the feeling is so mutual and honestly speaking I have never been loved like this before not even my husband of 18 years with all the respect I gave him he did not appreciate at all. But what I have now it's amazingly beautiful I do wake up with a smile on my face and sleep with the same smile on my face. I don't know where we are going he is a divorcee and I am a widow and feel so much 18 or 20 years old. what is more nice is the exchanging of messages and music clips he sends me the guy is so romantic please let open the doors and not look closely to the closed ones there is life out there we are both adults late 40's and very much in love. Yesterday he asked that we go to his place for love making but I just could not let go I wanted him so much but I just could not I am simply scared hey very much. please I do enjoy the new man in my life very much and hope I will let go. I never thought I will have a relationship with anyone else again but truly it happened naturally and we both in love we chat until early hours of the night. I AM IN LOVE

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  40. I wonder if most of you are younger widows. I am 63 and have the sexual appetite of a woman much younger. It didn't come to me until I turned 50. I now feel sexually what I should have felt younger and didn't. My husband died two years ago and I started feeling things again two or three months ago. I was content to just think about my husband and wait till the day I could join him in Heaven. I wasn't going to be one of those widows who remarried. No sir; not me. Then after the two year mark; wham! I suddenly longed for romance, intimacy and love-making again. I am torn between wanting this life again with a new husband and feeling of guilt like I am being unfaithful to my husband. Any older widows in the 58-65 age group who are young chicks at heart like me? Thanks, Mary

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    1. Yes. 61 in great health with lots if desires. Just over 2 years a widow. Loved him with every fiber of my being. Would really like to be loved again besides/in addition to the sexual part. What a mess. Why did he need to due?

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  41. My husband of 32 years died of cancer in February. We met when I was 15 and he was 18. Married two years later. He was my one and only. Now just over five months have passed since he died and I miss his tough and sex/love making. I am only 49 years old. Our four children are all grown and on their own. I am alone, but I am not lonely. I miss having my other half. My partner. My love. Being able to tell him anything. My friends say, "oh, I will come over and we will do this or that". Hear this loud and clear, I appreciate that but you cannot fill this void. I want a husband, friend, lover. No friend or child can fill the place of a husband. Friends and relatives say that I am "just lonely" Bull! I know how I feel. I am not lonely. I miss my other half, my best friend. I want that kind of a relationship again. I don't want to be a widow. When other widows invite me to their groups, I just want to scream, "but I don't wanna be a widow!" (Like not going to their group will change that, at least in my mind...) I miss sex, I miss holding hands, I miss touch, a lovers touch. Not something I feel like I can say to my kids or family. I don't know when or if I will meet someone to fill this need, this void, only God knows and I am relying on Him to help me to discern when my next husband will come along and who he will be. Looking forward to it. And if God should say no, then I know He will give me the grace to live with that answer. He knows my heart better than I do.

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    1. The Widow's Voice blogs have moved over to the new Soaring Spirits website. Here's where you can find the current blog posts, along with all of the old ones, too. They are now tagged, so you can search by topic. Here's a link to the blog page: http://www.soaringspirits.org/blog

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  42. Thank you for helping me realize that what I feel is normal for a widow. If you haven't experienced losing someone you love, you can't understand the feeling of physical contact. Just a touch on the shoulder, a hug, a kiss are things you know you will never have again and when you need them most, they aren't there. I agree it's a form of insanity, but its a part of moving forward and healing insanity. We all need physical contact to be whole and sometimes your mind just says go and you accept someone else's kisses and hugs. Afterwards you may feel shocked or stupid like I did at first then you realize thats what you needed. Thanks for helping me know Im not insane completely.

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    1. The Widow's Voice blogs have moved over to the new Soaring Spirits website. Here's where you can find the current blog posts, along with all of the old ones, too. They are now tagged, so you can search by topic. Here's a link to the blog page: http://www.soaringspirits.org/blog

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  43. I very recently lost my wife street a long illness. She began having mini strokes ( many of them) early 2014, that affected her short term memory. Then on 12.27.2014, she fainted, fell straight back, and her head hit the ceramic tile floor first. I was only 5 feet away, but she was down before I could move. She suffered subdural hematoma and began having seizures within an hour of the fall. She'd never had seizures before. She spent all except 3 weeks in 2015 in hospitals, rehabs. On 5.31.15, she had bad seizures, and wad in a coma for 6 months, till she started having more seizures, and I divided it was time to let her go. It took her a month to pass away after taking her off all meds, etc. I spent months with her. By her side, until I finally want back to work part time. She had to be in a specialty misusing home 2 hours away. In still spent at least 3 nights a week with her in her room. I said all that to discuss that for2 years we weren't intiment,, and for 75% of 2015, she wasnt able to hug or hold me. I can't describe how lonely I felt, even though she was still with me. She's only been gone a few weeks, and I miss her terribly, and have no desire for any kind of relationship, and expect it'll be a long long time. But I miss being held so badly. And I feel guilty that I even think about it. I still haven't figured out how to survive day to day, yet I still have thoughts of intimacy. And I'm scared I'll "meds up". I would like to have someone to hold hands with, and hug, but a am scared of going further, even though I have sexual desire. The more I think about what I've written, the crazier I think I am.

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    1. The Widow's Voice blogs have moved over to the new Soaring Spirits website. Here's a link to the blog page: http://www.soaringspirits.org/blog

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  44. Two and a half years and counting, I'm 37. Was married 5.5 years. I'm glad for the topic and honesty. Most don't want to talk about it and as some gave mentioned my Christian beliefs also at times make me feel so guilty and shamed for having these feelings. In may of last year out if the blue this guy expressed interest. Immediately the attraction was there...just recently we have been sexually active. I notice that it wasn't the sex but as others said the hugs, cuddles, touch etc that I crave. Sometimes I feel like I'm using him now because I'll call him just to come over to be intimate. The sex is AMAZING, but I also find that I desire for him to stay. Circumstances right now prevent overnight stays. I have even considered getting a hotel for the weekend just so we can be together uninterrupted...yet I think its heightened because I miss my late husband. Never thought I would be in this position. IT SUCKS!!

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  45. PLEASE NOTE: We've moved our blog platform to our parent organization's (Soaring Spirits) website. You will find all the writers you love, as well as an archive of over 2,300 posts written by our team of widowed men and women, here:

    http://www.soaringspirits.org/blog

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