I am not sure whether or not I "qualify" for this group but it has been almost impossible to find any support group on-line(or out in the real world either) for those who have lost an ex-spouse through death. So, I thought I would give this site a try and hopefully there are others who have experienced the same thing and could offer some guidance,emotional support and advice maybe. To begin with, I was married for approximately thirteen and a half years. We had been separated for about nineteen years when he passed away...this past week. We still had contact with each other occasionally but there were still a lot of unresolved issues. In spite of the fact that I could no longer live with him, due to some of those issues, I know that I never stopped loving him completely. I never expected to be trying to deal with the grief that I have felt- and still feel- these past several days. I'm just not sure how to cope with it. It would have been difficult enough to deal with his death had we still been together, I know. But then at least there would have been support from family and friends, not to mention society in general. I feel very conflicted....deeply saddened-for my children,grandchildren, and because things couldn't have been different for us. I feel grieved because I didn't try harder to make our relationship work, because I didn't contact him more often, because of the finality of it all.And I don't know how to deal with this and to be a support to my children.

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Who am I to say who "qualifies" for this site but for me you belong if you lost the love of your life.  I am new to this site also.  My husband died 2 months ago yesterday and am really glad I found this site.  First of all, I am so sorry for your loss.  I can not even begin to imagine what it would be like to have lost my husband and not have had the "recognition" of being his love.  By that I mean, having the support of his family and mine.  I would guess that your loss is not recognized by many as being such because you were no longer married.  Just because a piece of paper says you are no longer married does not mean the bond is no longer there.   My husband died of nonhodgkin's lymphoma.  He was 46.  We have 2 beautiful children who are 8 and 6.  They are what carry me through.  As I am realizing, there are so many reasons that guilt hits us after our love dies.  I have felt that guilt for things that happened while he was alive and also for feelings I have had since his death.  Recently, I have had the most morbid of thoughts, just wishing that I was with him, thinking ofways to accomplish this feat--then the guilt comes because I know those thoughts would have majorly disappointed him.  Anyway, welcome to this site.  Being new to it myself, it definitely has helped me through so thoughts I was having.  I know that I am not alone in these thoughts and it helps to know that.  These people on here, though we have never met, are a family, just in the fact that we share this horrible, unimaginable loss.  I wish you didn't have a need for us but, welcome to the family. 

 

Thank you so very much for your kind words, Tess. I am so sorry for your loss, also... It is hard for me to feel justified in my feelings of grief because I know that others are likely experiencing their grief due to the loss of someone whom they were still in a loving relationship with...and like yourself, have young ones at home.I barely know how I "should" be feeling...I only know how I do feel...and it not only surprises me, because I thought my ex had sufficiently destroyed any feelings of love I had for him long ago, but many in my extended family are also surprised and don't know whether I need their support or not. So they say nothing... I am very grateful for your reply! It helps to know that I don't have to deal with this alone.

Tess said:

Who am I to say who "qualifies" for this site but for me you belong if you lost the love of your life.  I am new to this site also.  My husband died 2 months ago yesterday and am really glad I found this site.  First of all, I am so sorry for your loss.  I can not even begin to imagine what it would be like to have lost my husband and not have had the "recognition" of being his love.  By that I mean, having the support of his family and mine.  I would guess that your loss is not recognized by many as being such because you were no longer married.  Just because a piece of paper says you are no longer married does not mean the bond is no longer there.   My husband died of nonhodgkin's lymphoma.  He was 46.  We have 2 beautiful children who are 8 and 6.  They are what carry me through.  As I am realizing, there are so many reasons that guilt hits us after our love dies.  I have felt that guilt for things that happened while he was alive and also for feelings I have had since his death.  Recently, I have had the most morbid of thoughts, just wishing that I was with him, thinking ofways to accomplish this feat--then the guilt comes because I know those thoughts would have majorly disappointed him.  Anyway, welcome to this site.  Being new to it myself, it definitely has helped me through so thoughts I was having.  I know that I am not alone in these thoughts and it helps to know that.  These people on here, though we have never met, are a family, just in the fact that we share this horrible, unimaginable loss.  I wish you didn't have a need for us but, welcome to the family. 

 

I have had 2 ex's die and luckily I didn't like them so that wasn't a problem but I hurt for their daughters. My first husband (I had 4) and I are still very good friends (my daughters father) and he just lost his father. My father-in-law was a wonderful man and I feel so bad for the family and for my daughter losing her grandfather. This is a strange place to be in when you are no longer "family". I don't mean to compare this exactly. I know I will feel very dispondant when my first huband passes. He was a wonderful loving man and is a terrific father to my daughter. (we were just very young when we married and I was abit too wild for him). You will always have the tie with the children and see him in them just as everyone who has lost current spouses. Feelings don't change with a piece of paper. We have some on here who were not married (legally) and they have the issue of society and some family not understanding. It doesn't make the feelings and hurts any less genuine. We do understand and yes you are in the right place
My mother and father got a divorce and remained friends through the years. When my father was dying of cancer, my mother spent time visiting him, cooking foods he liked, ac/dc just being there for him. She went through the grieving process too. It was somewhat different because she had developed a life without him when they divorced.
if reading the comments and taking part in discussions help you, than why not?
Thank you, Maggie and Kathy, for your encouragement. I wish I could say that I always liked my ex but I guess if there hadn't been some dislike on my part towards him I wouldn't have sought a divorce. I kept trying to make it work but after thirteen years of trying and some serious issues, I was beyond trying any longer and just wanted a stable life for my then young children. Strangely enough, lately I have told myself and others that I should have kept trying... I am amazed at the depths of grief and regret I have felt this past week! I truly never expected to feel this way. It is like the grief I felt after the divorce...only more final! Then I might have been able to seek reconciliation...now there is no chance! Sometimes I stop and ask myself why am I letting myself grieve so... we were not even speaking very frequently. But then it hits me, the opportunity to ever talk to him again is lost...forever!  He was a part of my life, if only through my children, for forty-plus years... and I loved him.
Wecome Janis. Your input will be just as important as any of ours. I hope that you can take away something positive from our posts. Hugs, Ed

Hello Janis, there is no 'qualification' to be here, sharing feelings that we sometimes don't even understand.  Your ex was in your life for all those years and you must have seen and appreciated redeeming qualities in him, even though they were being viewed through a foggy lense.  Perhaps if you did something to honor his life, for you and your children and grandchildren, it may help to gain some closure.  It doesn't have to be something big, perhaps if he had something special he liked to do, donate to a charity, plant a tree maybe and have a gathering of the kids just to say goodbye.  It may help.

 

Take care, God Bless,

Carol

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