A Cowboy's Life: 7 Things Not to Say to a Widow

7 Things Not to Say to a Widow

6:00:00 AM

It is shocking and heartbreaking to see a young mother and wife lose their spouse. Everyone around you wants to help the situation and feel as they need to say something or give advice to help. But in reality a lot of things people say are in fact cringeworthy. Sure they have the best intentions, but let me on behalf of all the widows out there share with everyone things NOT to say.
  1. I know how you feel - Really? Your spouse is standing right next to you. Whether you are trying to make a connection because you lost a parent, sibling, pet (don’t even get me started on that one) or divorce, it’s just not the same. I’m not trying to take away from the grief of your loved one, but it is simply different. 
  2. He’s in a better place - Absolutely! My husband is walking the streets of gold and finally has all his questions answered. But right now. In this moment, my son and I have just had our world shattered. This is something you to say about your 99 year old grandpa, not a 30-something who lost a spouse. 
  3. Everything happens for a reason - Ok, that’s fantastic. How is this statement in any way supposed to make me feel better or make sense of the situation? 
  4. Find your new normal - I get what you are trying to say, but it is extremely annoying. Life will never be normal again. Yes we will find a new different, but life for our family will never be normal again. It is forever changed. 
  5. God doesn’t give you what you can’t handle - Find that in the Bible for me? Because I can tell you straight up, some days I CAN’T handle this. 
  6. How does it feel to be a single mom - What?! I am not single. I didn’t divorce my husband and this certainly wasn’t my plan or have any choice in the matter. It would be more like alone parenting - we don’t get Wednesdays and every other weekend off. We do not have the other parent for financial support, words of encouragement or any kind of help for that matter. 
  7. I can help with anything you need - If you truly mean this statement go ahead and offer it. But those that say it because they don’t know what else to say - STOP. It’s hard enough to ask for help and it can be defeating to get up the courage to only find that the answer is no. 
*Please note this is not to offend or hurt anyones feelings, as I am sure many people reading this probably have said at least one of these phrases. This is just for future reference so to be more sensitive & understanding to those in this position.

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12 comments

  1. Wonderful post. So incredibly sorry for you loss but so thankful you are strong enough to put this out there and help others.

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  2. I think this post will inspire you to be real to yourself than Listening to what people have to say. Great post it's a good way to express your feelings

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  3. I never do know what to say in these situations. At all. So I usually just give a hug. No words need to be spoken. Because you're right...what can be said? *hug*

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  4. I am so sorry for your loss and these tips are great for anyone. Feel there should be a list for folks who had a miscarriage or lost a baby too

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  5. Grief is such a complicated beast, so why make it more difficult for the ones grieving. I'm sorry for your heartache. No apologies needed. Whether some one realizes their insensitivity or not, you have every right to speak up! XO

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  6. I'm so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing this post. I know I've struggled sometimes with what to say to someone who is grieving so this is helpful.

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  7. Some of these are appalling. But this is a great post. It is important to help guide people on what the impact of their good intentions may actually have.

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  8. I think most people don't understand how sensitive it is to deal with someone in sorrow and by trying to be supportive many make a mess of it. Such a great post to make sure our good intentions do not hurt by mistake.

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  9. I've not had many friends lose a spouse. I can't imagine going through that. So sorry for your loss.

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  10. So sorry. No words. Virtual hug. Oh ... and here's another one to add to the list: "You're young. You'll find someone new." That one's a real cause for screaming.

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  11. I tend not to say anything and just offer a hug.

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