Today Marathon Girl answers more of your questions. You can see what questions she answered last week here.
Question from Tiffani: How did you deal with Abel's "moments" where he struggled with memories, grief, or other things related to the death of his wife?
I tried to be supportive of his needs and loss by letting him talks about it (if he felt like it) and work through it. I even encouraged him to write a book about it if he felt that would be helpful since he enjoyed writing so much. (Note: Room for Two is what resulted from that suggestion.)
Even though I did everything I could to be supportive, it was hard to see Abel sad and thinking about someone that wasn't me. Don't kid yourself and think that these moments are a walk in the part because they're not. But at the same time I didn’t want Abel to bottle it up and not feel that he couldn't talk to be or be with me when those moments hit. I felt it was better to know how he was doing (even if it hurt) than pretend that everything was okay when that may not have been the case.
Question from Jessica: Who did you get support from when you needed to discuss your relationship with Abel? Friends? Family? Someone else?
Even though my family is big on communicating and talking to each other about relationships and just about anything else, it was hard to talk to my mom, sisters and others that I normally relied on for support. It wasn't that my mom and other family members didn't want to help but they really didn't know how to help me as none of them had experience with dating a widower. At least I could talk to Abel about it. It took some time but I was finally able to get him to see what it was like for me and the struggles I was dealing with even if he there wasn't anything he could really do to overcome my own insecurities and feelings about dating widower. In the end I had of had to blaze my own trail and trust my gut that I was doing the right thing and making the right choices.
Question from Anonymous: What was the hardest thing for you about dating a widower?
That no one knew exactly how hard it was to date a widower or all the issues that I had to make peace with. A lot of people thought it was like dating someone who had been divorced when it was nothing like that at all. A lot of Abel's family and friends would say or do things that made it more difficult whether it was someone on the day we got engaged saying that Krista would be okay with Abel remarrying or condolence cards that came in on the anniversary of her death after we were married. I don’t think they did it with the intention to hurt my feelings but their actions seemed focused on Abel or Krista. My thoughts and feelings usually weren't taken into consideration.
Looking back, I wish a lot of the support groups for women dating widowers that exist now would have been around eleven years ago when we were dating. I think it would have been a lot easier for me if I had someone to talk to who was experiencing similar things.