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Is it too soon to meet someone else yet?

(12 Posts)
redwiner Sun 30-Aug-09 18:40:48

I lost my husband,who I had been with for 7 years and was happily married, in an accident last year. I was devastated and never imagined being with anyone else. However I have become close to someone at work, just dinner and drinks so far, but I am worried about the reaction I am going to get from my mother in law-who thinks her son was a saint. We didn't have children together but I have a child from a previous relationship and my child looks upon my mother in law as her grandma. I am realy worried that mother in law will want nothing to do with me and my child in anger at what she will probably view as a betrayal of her son by me.
SHe knows that we were totally happy and I would never have looked at another man if he were still here, but I am not sure how to play this.
Any advice please?

Portofino Sun 30-Aug-09 18:55:01

Slowly and gently I guess. Does she have to know anything until you know it is more "serious"?

I've seen this from the other side. My mum died when i was small and we were brought up by my maternal GPs. After a time my dad had GFs and my GM seemed to accept it quite well as long as my dad kept up his level of involvement with us. She didn't cope so well when he remarried, but i think it didn't help that he came round less, and seemed to make more effort with the new wife's family. Then there was a big falling out.

Maybe a quiet chat is in order. Explain that you loved her ds and miss him dreadfully but you obviously get lonely and don't want to be on your own for ever. But you want to all you can to maintain your and dc's relationship with her as it so important to you.

Mamazon Sun 30-Aug-09 19:03:53

take things slowly. when theres something to tell then speak to her. she was his mother but she is also a woman and im sure she knows how much you loved him.

be honest and open with her. even if she is upset at first im sure she would come round.

its a difficult situation for you all.
good luck with it all

redwiner Sun 30-Aug-09 19:07:13

That was really helpful, thanks. I was torn between waiting until I know it's going to go somewhere or being totally upfront and telling her that I have someone in the background. I think your advice to wait and see if it develops into something is the way forward, otherwise it may have caused a rift for no reason. Thank you for clearing my head!!

Portofino Sun 30-Aug-09 19:32:58

I've just been thinking about this a bit more. I think my GM coped with my dad being "single" and having GFs as he was still considered to be a big part of the (her) family. We even went on holiday with GPS and dad and GF. No problems.

When he remarried my SM had 2 younger girls. He still took us out, had us to stay etc as much as ever, but the emphasis moved from "her" family to "their" family IFYSWIM- it was GM who got left out. Maybe like being "dumped" by a "son" who she had made personal sacrifices to help out. She took it very personally. I think my dad could have handled it much more sensitively.

FabBakerGirlIsBack Sun 30-Aug-09 19:36:24

I think the fact you feel able to consider having another relationship speaks volumes about how happy you were with your husband.

I am sorry for your loss.

redwiner Sun 30-Aug-09 19:44:08

Yeah, I see what you mean. Trouble is, when he was alive hubby and mum in law hardly ever saw each other -no arguments or anything but other stuff got in the way, work etc. Ma in law really took to my daughter so it was really him meeting us that got him and his mum together again. Now though, you'd think he was a saint. No one can say a word about him, he is like a God to her. Sometimes I feel like saying 'why didn't you pay more attention to him when he was alive instead of spending all your time crying about him now?' I wouldn't actually say it but I do feel it. This is why I think that when I do have to say to her that I have met someone she will see it as 'the ultimate betrayal' of her son. It's definitely something I'm going to have to play very carefully, especially as both my parents are dead so she is my daughters only grand parent figure that she sees, ( her fathers parents live in Cornwall so she rarely sees them). I do really appreciate the thought you are giving to this. x

Portofino Sun 30-Aug-09 19:54:50

I totally understand about the "saint" thing. My GM when she talks about my mum does this hushed voice thing which makes me really uncomfortable, and of course she was the most wonderful person ever.

But from accumulated conversations over the years, my mum appeared to be completely unsaintly wink. I LOVE to hear about what she was really like, but wouldn't discuss this with my nan.

After 35 years she has still never fully got over it. And I'm sure that losing a child must be the hardest thing in the world - I think it is too much to expect her to be totally rational about it.

redwiner Sun 30-Aug-09 20:03:01

I think one of the problems is that with a son or brother etc they can never be replaced -but partners are routinely replaced by divorce etc so we are never going to feel the same way. I always loved him passionately, just as a husband and wife should, but a parents love is totally different and I suppose that ultimately we are both going to have to accept that while he was here we both loved him dearly, just differently, and that while she will never have another son I am entitled to have another partner. In time!
Thanks Portofino, you're clearly very wise.
BTW, your nickname is the name of a really nice restaurant near where I live!

cathcat Sun 30-Aug-09 22:06:21

I agree that her relationship with her son is different to your relationship with him and deep down she know that it is reasonable that you should meet someone else. But she may feel resentful that you can have another partner but she can never have another son.
I wish you the best of luck and I am also sorry for your loss.

Portofino Sun 30-Aug-09 22:11:01

D't know about the wise, but you're quite right about dMIL. It is very sad that you have lost a much loved DH, but when you feel ready I think it is quite appropriate to move on. You deserve to be happy after all!

dooit Sun 30-Aug-09 22:31:17

I met my second husband less than 12 months after my first DHs death. We waited a year until we began a relationship (somehow it felt the decent thing to do as I was certain everyone would be shocked that I'd got involved so soon after his death)but it quickly became clear that we were serious about each other.

DD was only 22 months old when DH1 died but she missed him terribly and I was determined not to bring another man into her life unless I was sure he was there for good. MIL adored her son and DD equally and I was very worried about how she would take to the idea of another man in our lives.

I was sure to tread carefully with MIL but did keep her up to date with our relationship. She always was and always will be a huge part of our lives. We drove over to visit her and break it to her face to face when we got engaged even though she lives miles away as it felt the decent thing to do. She was clearly hurt and made no bones about letting DH2 know that he was a poor substitute for her son (her thoughts, not mine!)and he'd have her to answer to if he let us down but over the last 12 years she's learned to accept DH2 and I'm sure she's really quite fond of him now.

As I've got older I've appreciated much more how the loss of MILs son, my DH1, has been such a terrible tragedy in her life. I have moved on and been happy again but for her there is no healling. She has lost her first baby and will never get over that. I miss DH1 as much now as I ever did but the rawness softened long ago. I don't think it ever has for MIL and I appreciate that more as my own children have got older.

There is no set time limit on when it's ok to move on. No one can know the lonliness of losing a soulmate unless they've been there so go with your heart. Good luck.x

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