Rochester Community and Support Group for Widows

Our Mission for Widows

We serve to empower widows to 
lean into life, build resilience and 
make a positive difference in society.

Modern Widows Club is designed to create a safe and private environment for widows to lean into life together through the journey.

We are the club no one wants to be in because you only get in by virtue of experiencing a great loss. Yet what I hope you find once you’re here is that you’re surrounded by a community of really amazing women that you can lean on and learn from. We’re widows helping widows to live– to go upward and onward. Sometimes we cry and sometimes we laugh. We talk about how to tackle challenges without our husbands’ help and cheer each other on. We often share food as we do this, because who doesn’t like to eat?

When a woman loses her husband she tends to feel very alone. Regardless of her age or circumstances, she can use other women in her life who understand the unique challenges she is now faced with. She needs women who will build her up and encourage her in this new life she walks. We are stronger together. No woman is an island. We need each other.

Meet Our Community Advocates

Kay V.

I am 72 years old, widowed on August, 22, 2018. Paul, the love of my life, died of bladder cancer that had metastasized to his bones and brain, Paul is inscribed in my body. I think of him as part of my DNA. I miss him every day, sometimes with great intensity,

Since Paul died I have struggled with health issues.  For example, I had a right knee replacement. But I am very fortunate not to have faced financial challenges. For that I am grateful. It is also important to know that I do not have children.

I retired from full-time teaching (sociology and women’s studies) at Nazareth College over ten years ago, post-retirement I had two book projects and lots of travel to occupy my time and attention. The book projects ended when Paul died. In addition, travel, has been on hold due to my health issues.

I view MWC as a way to forge meaningful relationships with women who have the lived experience of losing their love and grappling with grief. I look forward to networking with other widows and moving toward a more balanced life.

Victoria C.

My name is Victoria. My husband, James, died September 18, 2016, from multiple myeloma. We were married 40 years and worked together for 31 — very independently interdependent. I have two sons, one across the country and the other across the world. 

Grief knocked me for a loop, the rug pulled out from my feet. He fought his illness for two years with incredible strength, we did international travel, kept the business going as long as feasible. I was in charge of keeping things going and did not take time for myself to reflect on the inevitable.

I have gained insight into my feelings, my options, the work that needs to be done…and I am grateful to be finding the pathway to create a fulfilling life for myself.

If there is a way to help another widow, it would be my honor.

Emily B.

I am Emily, a 65-year-old widow (65? I can’t be that old. Just last year I was…). Colin died July 26, 2017. We had been married 34 years, no children. We were living in Nashville, TN when he died of cascading issues associated with diabetes. We had plans and dreams as everyone does, but they died with him. I moved to Rochester to be near family. I consider myself a lucky widow in many ways. I was left with a pension, few debts, a decent life insurance policy and in a position where I could make choices for my future and I was only responsible to myself. Though I attended and was helped by some grief groups, I did not sync with any of them. Support during grief is important. Support going beyond the grief is essential. We widows, who share what it is like to lose your partner, your wind or your wings, are starting down a new path. It is the one many have tread before us, but also uniquely our own. I became interested in this group because I was ready to move forward in my next phase of life, but didn’t want to go alone.

Thank You to Our Amazing Sponsor