Widower Wednesday: The 6-Week Drop-Off Curve

Thanks to all those who responded to my questions about starting an independent discussion form on my website. For lots of reasons I’ve decided not to put one on my site right now. I might start one in the future but for now I encourage everyone to use the DAW Facebook group and/or the comments threads on the Widower Wednesday posts. For those members of the FB group, please keep in mind there are many women dating a widower who don’t have Facebook accounts and just use the comment threads in the Widower Wednesday columns for advice. I encourage everyone to browse through the comments on these posts and, if so inclined, give your insight to those who are asking for help.

Now on to today’s column. . . .


Recently I’ve seen a lot of emails and FB posts from women who are in the early stages of dating a widower only to have the widower unexpectedly stop communicating or just call things off about a month into the relationship. Generally these relationships got off to a great start so most women are a little stunned when they suddenly come to a screeching halt.

In the dating world there’s something that’s known as the six-week drop-off curve.* In a nutshell the six-week drop-off curve is the length of time it takes for someone to get bored with the relationship and realize it’s not for them. In a relationship with a non-widowed man, most women would realize that the man simply wasn’t interested and move on. With widowers, however, women think that if the widower just has time to grieve, the relationship will get back on track. As a result, they wait around hoping the widower will eventually come to his senses and come back to them.

The six-week drop-off curve is why I advice women to approach the initial month or two of dating a widower slowly and with their eyes wide open. Widowers (and non-widowed men) can only fake interest in a woman or a relationship for so long. If they’re just looking for companionship, sex, or to fill a hole in their heart, it usually comes out in the first six to eight weeks of a relationship. Taking things slowly can help you avoid giving to much of yourself or your heart to a widower who doesn’t want the same kind of relationships as you.

For women who find themselves on the short end of the six-week drop-off curve, my advice is simple: Don’t wait around for the widower because odds are, he’s not coming back. And those who do return are generally interested only in sex.

The first thing you have to remember is that you’re dating a man not a widower. It doesn’t matter if the man is single, divorced, or widowed—the six-week drop-off curve applies to everyone. It doesn’t matter how well the first date went or how great your first time in the sack together was. If the widower gets bored or simply decides there’s no long-term potential for the relationship, he’ll end it.

Second, keep in mind that most widower who use the grief excuse for ending things are doing it because it makes breaking up super easy. Most widowers have learned if they say they’re still grieving, most women will give them a free pass. Yes, there are some widowers who are really grieving most widowers are to wussy to just tell you that he’s simply not interested in you anymore.

Third, once men end a relationship they generally go on with their lives. They don’t spend a lot, if any, time wondering if you’re still available, what you’re doing, or if you’re thinking about them. They get involved with work, watch a football game, or work on being a father to his kids. If you’re waiting around for him to come crawling back to you, odds are you’re wasting your time.

Fourth, widower who do contact you again after breaking things off after six weeks are generally lonely and are looking for sex or someone to pass the time with. Odds are they aren’t that interested in you or a long-term relationship. Getting involved with them simply opens you up for more heartache.

Remember, if a relationship is meant to work out, it will. Don’t get sucked into a widower’s mind or relationship games. Widowers are serious about starting a new life won’t play games with your heart. Instead, they’ll treat you like a queen.

* Length of time varies but most dating experts peg the drop off curve at 3-8 weeks.