Widower Wednesday: Widowers, Children, and Blending Families

Lately it seems like the biggest issue in my inbox from GOWs and WOWs have to do with children. In some cases problems have do with the complexity of blending families. Sometimes it’s the widower’s adult or minor children or the GOW’s children that are the problem. Other times it’s the widower who uses his grief (or his children’s grief) as an excuse not to be a parent anymore.

Widower relationships when children are involved is a topic I’ve only addressed occasionally in these columns as Marathon Girl and myself didn’t bring any (living) children into the relationship. However, as a father of six now, I’m seeing a lot of themes and patterns in my inbox and discovering that a lot of the issues aren’t really widower or grief problems but due to a lack of parenting. As a result, I’m ready to write more about these topics.

In order to meet the needs of as many readers as possible, here’s what I’d like you to do: In the comment section below, list the top three issues you’ve had to deal with if you, the widower, or both of you have children. It doesn’t matter if the children are young and still live at home or grown up with families of their own—I want to know what have been the pain points of blending families, parenting, and moving forward when you and/or the widower have brought kids to the relationship. If you don’t feel comfortable posting these in public, you can send me an email with the information.

In a couple of weeks, I’ll post the results from the comments, my email, and the Dating a Widower Facebook group and, at the very least, write a series of columns about the top issues. Maybe something more will come out of it but it’s an issue I’m not going to sidestep anymore.

Leave your top 3 issues below. And if you have successfully navigated the problem, please include some information on how you solved it.

Thanks and looking forward to hearing what you have to say.