Have you discovered, as I have, that our emotions upon becoming a widow have an intensity we never experienced before? Grief, loneliness, anger, disappointment—these are not new emotions to us. What took me by surprise was the power, the all consuming grip, the sudden shock of an emotion rolling over me literally rendering me functionless for a moment or sometimes longer. As I searched for help, I discovered many books on grief, some helpful, some not. There were fewer resources on our other emotions that were specifically relevant to widows. While these emotions are similar for people who experience other losses, somehow ours is different.

While I want to offer some insights and resources on several emotions, I do recognize that these emotions cannot be neatly sorted out: loneliness, anger, grief, depression, each in its separate compartment. At times they clump together like army intent on taking us out. At other times we experience one ‘solo.’ We know some facts about our emotions as widows. Its comforting to know that, while we don’t like the feelings, they are common, to be expected, and indeed normal considering our loss.

Facts we know about emotions:

Our emotions are intense. Why? Two became one and now half of us is ripped away. Every aspect of our life changes like it or not, ready or not.

Our emotions must be acknowledged. Denial is not a healthy permanent option. Admitting what we feel is the beginning of moving forward and being able to make changes in our new life.

Our emotions can become empowering and energizing and a positive force as we create a new life.

Read on my dear sister. I trust you find comfort and healing here.