Emotional & Mental Health for Widows

Widow Wisdom: When You Lost Your Spouse, What Did People Do That Helped Your Children?

MWC Community Conversation

We asked our widow sisters to share their wisdom by answering this question; When you lost your spouse, what did people do that helped your children?

Here are some of their answers:

They encouraged normalcy. Allowed their kids to come here for sleepovers, and cheered them on as if part of a team. Actually were part of several teams. But the parents let their kids hang with mine. I had been worried because my husband died by suicide. I had feared alienation or lack of trust in our family. In fact we found the opposite…warm arms and lots of trust.
– Molly

I have 2 adult daughters with families. Their friends did meal trains. Came by to visit. Called.
– Wister on Instagram

My husband died two weeks from my eldest son’s graduation. My sons girlfriend’s family combined their graduation parties because I could not plan a funeral and a graduation party at the same time. They will never know how much that truly meant to my family, to my son, the two kids are tenacious nursing students in college gonna change the world, my son through military and she through OBGYN.
– Rebecca

My daughter was 4 years old. Many people who visited me to offer condolences brought her gifts of toys, books, chocolates, etc. It cheered her a bit and made her feel special.
– Wister on Instagram

People came and discussed with them their loss and how different it would be for each one of them. Also spent time with them separately ❤️
– Wister on Instagram

My family and friends were there for my girls. I was fortunate for that. Also, they went back to school and all their activities after a week. Teachers, coaches, and peers never treated them differently. The people that surround us are such wonderful and Godly people, that they were a phone call away. I am thankful til this day that our Lord placed such wonderful angels in our path during the most painful time in our lives. May God bless you all!????????
– Leslie

They made our son (1 year old) a bear from his daddies shirts ❤️
– Wister on Instagram

It’s been 6 years, and my son (who wasnt quite 2 yet at the time) doesn’t remember his father. He loves it when people point out ways hes like his dad, though, as it keeps him feeling connected.
– Wister on Instagram

We had wonderful friends that were present in my kids lives, as time has gone on many aren’t as involved anymore or at all, but there are still some that stay constant and I definitely know who I can call for them (or myself) if needed. The best thing our friends have done is remember and share stories about their dad with them and continue to include them in activities that their dad would have done with them. Some of my closer friends support my kids by just being present, remembering their birthdays, holidays. It brightens their days that are always tinged with a little sadness❤️
– Judy

When they would pick them up and give them a break from me sometimes and let them have one on one time. My husband and I were good about making time with each one but as a solo parent that is so difficult without a good tribe.
– Wister on Instagram

My middle son was in Japan through the Sister Cities program and his classmates all met to give him a proper send-off and show their respect & compassion as they got him on the next flight home so he could be with us! The police sent a car for my oldest so he could get to the hospital and my youngest who helped me through the toughest night of my life, had friends to help him. People seem to step up when you least expect it … may you all feel the love ???? for Love remains – It’s all we take with us & all we leave behind.
– Lori

My daughter was only 4 when her daddy died. Her preschool gave her a stuffed bear with a little backpack and they filled it with dozens of gift cards for food and clothes. So thoughtful
– Wister on Instagram

My husband passed away during our son’s second week in high school. The principal took him into his office when he returned to school just to talk to him and introduce him to the outreach counselor. His teachers and academic counselor wrote letters to him. It’s a Catholic school so the entire school community offered prayers and a spiritual bouquet. His childhood friends spent time with him on the weekends. His friends took the day off from school to attend the funeral; those who could not attended the viewing the day before. Members of our family would take him out to play basketball or get something to eat. Everyone (family and friends) sends him text messages (still) to check in and see how he is doing. His principal sent him an email after Christmas (the second one without his dad) to wish him a happy new year and to let him know everyone at the school will always be there for him. I am extremely grateful for our village.
– Deidre

My husband worked for the Energy Control Center of L.A. His co-workers helped in so many ways…Definitely a “brotherhood”. One friend and his family took my 6 year old and myself to a fair. They also helped raise money to keep us going in our feet until our finances came together. So I know how much I am blessed.
– Wister on Instagram

We live far from family. A sweet lady in our church became a surrogate grandma. Once a month she came to my house after work and made dinner for my kids. She told me she would put everyone to bed and I was to go out and do whatever I pleased. Sometimes I went out alone, sometimes with a friend, sometimes for one-on-one time with individual kids. It got to the point that none of the kids wanted to go with me because they loved their time with her! This continued until my oldest was able to babysit, and it became easier for me to go out when I needed to.
– Lara

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Knowing there are women who have not only survived what I was going through, but were also thriving and moving forward in their lives.
— MSC Wister® (Widow + Sister)