Moving on with a new partner soon after losing my wife

I list my wife three months ago to cancer. We knew it was terminal for 22 months.My wife always said that I should move on. I’ve met someone who is so kind and caring and fully understands my situation and talks about my late wife. However, my grown up children cant accept this yet. They know about my new partner but dont want to meet her. I want my new partner to visit my house now and again - for comfort and support. Hoe can I get them to understand?

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Hi David,

I expect your children, however old they are, are grieving the loss of your wife as well.
Meeting somebody else so soon may help you and be what your wife said she wanted, however, to them it must seem like a betrayal of your wife, as if she didn’t matter.
3 months is such a short time.
I take it she was their mother?
I can totally understand your children’s feelings.

They have had a tragic loss as well.
Maybe it would help if you could possibly understand how they feel ?

My father died quite young and I would have been horrified if my mother had found somebody else in such a short time.

It would be a shame to fall out with your children at this sad time. J

Hi. David. I don’t think anyone can judge because we are not in your position. If you find comfort in your new friend then that’s you and how you want to be. Because other’s don’t ‘understand’ does not mean it’s wrong. This subject does come up now and then and opinions vary so much. My personal view is that by finding comfort with another person so soon does not mean you had no respect for your wife. Not at all.
If your family don’t understand then accept that and give them time. Your welfare must surely be at the top of their concerns. Yes, they too are grieving, but you finding comfort elsewhere need not stop them grieving. This comes up here from time to time and opinions vary so much. But it’s YOUR grief we are talking about. This is such a deep personal
issue that it must be so difficult for you.
I doubt you will get your family to understand yet. It will take time. I do hope eventually they do. Take care.


I understand your need for company etc. But please don’t expect the children to meet her. Whatever their age. That’s terribly unfair. My mum died two months ago. And I would be devasted if my dad met someone. I’m 45. That would actually add to my grief. However you also need to do what’s right for you as you are the one left alone without companionship. But just don’t expect your children to be on board for a very long time.

This is such a difficult subject. When my Mum died of course we were all devastated my Dad couldn’t live in the home anymore without my mum so he stayed with my sister as I had children & didn’t have a spare room. My dad gradually came to terms with losing mum & did meet a lady & my sister & I were happy for him as we had husbands & children & jobs & a good life , what did dad have ? I think you should try & understand loneliness is terrible as we all understand . Try not judge him he still loves your mum & always will he just needs company. Sorry if I have spoken out of turn as I don’t know the ages. I at the moment could never imagine another man in my life but if my husband was the one left behind I would want him to be happy .


I completely understand his need for company. I just don’t think his children need to meet her just yet. He’s asking too much from them.

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My father died in his forties and my mother went away to get over it. When she returned nearly a year later she had another man with her but he dared to sit in Dads chair and my mother decided that it wasn’t right. (This did make me smile though). She continued to meet other men for a couple of years and I didn’t have a problem with it although one was totally unsuitable but then she married again, no problem as far as I was concerned.
However three months. This seems a bit quick, I can’t imagine being the slightest bit interested in another man in that time or in fact since my husband passed away nearly a year ago. My husband gave me his blessing to meet someone else as I had been such a good wife (his words, not mine).
I suppose children must accept that we have a life and it’s exactly that, our life and not theirs. I hope that in time they will come to accept your new situation. Just take it steady for your sake as well as theirs. Good luck

Hi David, We’ve had another post recently from a user called John12 who is also starting a new relationship after losing his partner. Perhaps you might find it helpful to talk to him? You can read and reply to his post here:

None of us knows how another feels. We all share this awful burden of grief, but it’s a very individual affair when it comes to what comforts us and how long we grieve. I wonder why we find is so difficult to understand that one can still grieve but still find comfort in another’s company. Do social norms apply any more in this awful experience? What we are expected to do may not be what we want, or may not be good for us anyway. Going against the norm can cause guilt. Society expects so much of us, and if we don’t conform we are often ostracised by friends and family, which happens too often.
We are brought up to believe certain things about living, rights and wrongs. This used to apply to Gay relationships. Thank God it no longer does. Whatever anyone chooses to do to get some relief from the pain has to be right for them.
I think Pat is right. It’s our life and not our children’s. But compassion and forgiveness in all things.


But I don’t see why he has to want his children to meet her. If she is just a friend that’s absolutely fine. But if it’s a romantic involvement then it’s not fair to ask the children to meet her. And that is what he is complaining about. They surely need more time. Of course He Can continue his involvement with her it’s his life. But she doesn’t need to be involved in their lives. That’s their life. Their choice.

Thank you for your replies. I accept that my children, 33 and 30 years old (both married with their own children)dont want to meet my new ‘friend’ yet. I’m not asking that. I’m just wanting them to acknowledge that I’m lonely and company helps. I’m totally not forgetting my wonderful wife and I’m grieving awfully at the moment. My wife is in my thoughts everyday and my friend speaks very respectfully of her and encourages me to talk about her. My friends and my parents agree that it is good that I’m finding comfort in a friend. I find that female widows seem to take longer to move on. I dont know the reason for this? I do find that society want to do things the ‘traditional’ way. I’m 57, do I wait until I’m 67 when I cant probably share experiences. Or do I die a lonely, sad old man??


David absolutely not. You have explained the situation in a bit more detail and it sounds much more acceptable. I did think it sounded as if you had met someone and wanted your children to meet her and be on board with it all already so my apologies. Absolutely nothing wrong with companionship. And it’s your life. And you are the one as you say alone and in pain. Just go easy with your children though. They need a bit more time. I agree women do take much longer of it at all. Men do seem to need that comfort at an earlier time.


I totally agree with Jonathan on several points. The main point to remember is it is your grief and you need to do what you need to do, to move forward. My husband died in an accident and 3 months later I met someone else and I’m so happy which I never thought possible. Life is for living and in time your children may come round. I hope this helps and you will hear lots of opinions all of them will be valid.


I understand what you are saying Jooles, I agree with you. x x