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So confused at the moment

(9 Posts)
thisisallnewtome8 Fri 17-Jul-15 14:31:03

I have been dating a widower for over a year. His wife died a long time ago but I'm the first woman to have been introduced to his children. There have been ups and downs but on the whole things are progressing. I just can't get his late wife out of my head. It's clear they were madly in love and I just can't live up to any part of her (or so I believe). I just want someone to tell me they've been through this and made it work.

TokenGinger Fri 17-Jul-15 14:37:07

This must be difficult. I guess in some ways, your mind must think "they didn't split up, he still loved her". And that's difficult. However, the same can be said for most break ups; there's always one who's the victim and didn't want the partner to leave and still loved them.

He's introduced you to his children. That's huge. He trusts you to be around his children. He's never introduced another woman to them. You may never live up to his wife, as you put it, but you're important enough to him to involve you in his family life.

Enjoy your happiness x

thisisallnewtome8 Fri 17-Jul-15 14:41:40

Thanks tokenginger. I guess I'm worried I'm sabotaging the whole thing by concentrating on what I perceive to be my inadequacies rather than focusing on the fact he's making efforts to move on. He mentions her frequently but has never compared us, and it's more anecdotal. There are a couple of issues that have arisen with his children but we are trying hard to work through these. I feel as though he has entered a new stage of grief, although she died some time ago this is the first full on relationship he's had since and I think he's starting to feel guilty and I don't think he expected to feel like that.

Sighing Fri 17-Jul-15 15:37:30

You won't have the same impact as his wife on his life to this point(presumably the mother of his children) as he knew her and built a life with her.
But that doesn't mean you're not having an impact (you've met his children) and of great importance to him in this new chapter.
It's good that he mentions her. He's open with his life that got him yo the here and now with you. Best wishes for this relationship.

DrMorbius Fri 17-Jul-15 15:53:15

Slightly different but not a million miles away. My uncle was married for close to 20 years to my aunt and then she sadly died. A few years later he met a fabulous lady (who also had a 20 year marriage but her husband had died). They married and we're together, totally happy for 30 odd years until their deaths. They had a fantastic marriage, but both talked openly about their previous marriages. Actually both were buried with their original partners. They were both great people smile

flashfalshflash Fri 17-Jul-15 16:15:03

Hi thisisallnewtome
Obviously we are all different in the way we deal with grief, but I just want to offer you my experience in the hope it might help.
I'm a widow and my husband died more than seven years ago. In the past year I have embarked on a new relationship. He is totally different from my late DH, who I loved very much. But I also love this new chap, and I am very happy to have found someone whom I care about and who appears to care about me, when I thought that would never happen again.
I did feel guilty at first, but not so much now, and I would be horrified if I thought my BF was feeling inadequate compared with my late DH. They are different people, and comparisons are odious, and all that. It wouldn't occur to me to compare them, to be honest.

I know that is easy to say and difficult to put out of your mind, though.

The other thing to consider is that nothing stays the same. While I don't think people "move on" or "get over", a death as such, your grief changes over time and you change as a person. I am very different to the person who was married with two kids eight years ago. I think of my DH every day, but I am very happy with my BF. Your widower loving his late wife and loving you are not mutually exclusive. I agree with others that the fact he has introduced you to his children is significant.

I hope you find that over time you feel more secure and become more confident about the relationship. Things that feel a bit awkward now will not necessarily continue to do so.

thisisallnewtome8 Fri 17-Jul-15 17:25:25

Thank you all so much for sharing your experiences with me. I have lurked on mumsnet for a while now and didn't fully appreciate how wonderful it is to have strangers take the time to read my story and offer an input. I hope our relationship will progress and realise meeting the children was a huge step in him moving on.
I guess I am having trouble coming to terms with the fact we won't have any 'firsts' together. They had children, got married and built a life together whereas we won't have children (I can't have them and he told me early on he would not be open to more children). I feel as if I would to slot into a life with him and his children that was created by them.
Oh god I know I'm rambling but I've not had this opportunity to offload all my concerns.
Also he never seems to have had the 'best' anything since we met. It's always 'I've never felt like this since.....' 'I haven't done this since....'
Am I allowed to say that I almost feel 'jealous' of the life they had but then feel massive guilt because ultimately she passed away and I'm playing a part in her children's lives that she will never have the opportunity to do.

flashfalshflash Fri 17-Jul-15 19:19:43

But you will create your own memories with happy times, won't you?
And you will create a family life together that's yours.
I must admit I am slightly nonplussed by you wanting him to say things are the "best ever", I don't think I have ever done that with anyone!

I also think people do look back with rose-tinted glasses, it's unavoidable. I loved my late husband but at times we really pissed each other off, and the relationship wasn't perfect, that isn't possible. Your widower's relationship with his late wife wasn't perfect either, I think you should avoid beating yourself over the head with it, or you might sabotage your life together before it starts.

If you are happy together, a strong relationship should build up over time, which is based on shared experiences and closeness. It's how people behave towards you rather than what they say that counts.

flashfalshflash Fri 17-Jul-15 19:32:13

I realise all these things are easy to say and hard to put into practice and you can sound off here, of course. But he is lucky to have you, don't sell ourself short by worrying all the time that you don't measure up to his former partner.

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