Ask Alex : Dating after death of a spouse

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Hey Alex!

When is it too soon to date again? I lost the love of my life to cancer a little over a year ago. She was my everything and she was everything to our kids. I’ve dealt with the loneliness by being extra invested in my girls but my youngest is going off to college next year and I will truly be alone. I haven’t really been interested in finding someone new but being completely by myself scares me. I feel like I need to get back out there but I’m afraid it’s too soon and I don’t want my kids to feel like I am trying to rush to replace their mom.

Sincerely,

I Still Miss Her

 

Hey I Still Miss Her!

I am so sorry for your loss. Some people in our lives are truly irreplaceable and you need to first accept that you will not be replacing anyone. When the time comes to date again realize that you are building something new and not filling what is gone.

There is no time frame that is acceptable when it comes to dating after loss, whether due to death or even divorce. Everyone is different and you will know when you are ready. It sounds like you aren’t though and that is perfectly okay too.

Don’t date someone just to fill the void of loneliness. Instead go out and make friends. Find new hobbies or interests to focus on and find like minded people to do these things with. Friends and family can help rebuild you while you grieve. A relationship, if you aren’t ready, is only going to provide a band-aid for the hurt that you still need to process.

When the time is right you will know it and when the person is right you will know it then too. 

Your girls are older. Have a talk with them when the time comes and you start dating again. Let them know that you still love their mother very much and are not trying to replace her. They will want you to be happy and even though they will have to go through their own processing of the situation, eventually they will understand.

Sincerely,

Alex

 

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