Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dear Widows: an apology

Dear widows,

On behalf of all of us “friends” I would like to say I’m sorry. We don’t know what we are doing. We don’t always know how to be there for you. Often times we feel overwhelmed and afraid that we will do the wrong thing so we do nothing at all. We forget that doing nothing is “doing something” to you, and it is definitely the wrong thing to do.

Forgive us as we try to say nice things and say things that hurt instead.

Forgive us as we may for a moment forget that day that changed your world forever.

Forgive us when we don’t know what to say and so we say nothing.

Forgive us for the times when you needed a hug and we didn’t give you one.

Forgive us for the times when you needed us to call and we forgot.

Forgive us for the times when we expect you to act like nothing happened.

Forgive us for trying to tell you or teach you how you should grieve.

Forgive us for all the times we have not been good friends.

I am sorry. I have not always been the friend I should be to my widowed friend. I know that many others have not been good friends to you.

I am trying. I am failing a lot, but I am trying to be a better friend.

Know that even in our silence, we have not forgotten you. We may not know how to show it, but we love you, and we are trying….

A friend

Introduction: the inspiration & reasons for this blog

I have a dear friend who is a widow. Her widowhood, not surprisingly, has changed her and in turn has changed our friendship. I have searched high and low on the internet and was surprised to find little to no resources for friends of widows.

Endeavoring to understand what she is going through as much as possible I have taken to reading the blogs of many other young widowed ladies. Hearing their stories has helped me to understand a little bit more how to reach out to my friend in new ways but I still feel like something is missing.

Many of the widow blogs I have found are filled with tears and rants about how the widows’ old friends have forsaken her. This is so saddening to me.
Being the friend of a widow, I feel I understand a bit why friends would find it easier to stop being friends. It is hard to know what to do. It is hard to know how to support a friend as she walks the path of grief. But this is no excuse!

I began searching for was a place where widows would share with non widows how to help them, and where non widows could ask widows questions and get advice from them on how to be a better friend their widowed friends. Unfortunately I could not find a site like this.

So this is my attempt to make one. Comments are always welcome from any one, just please try to remain kind to one another. Rants from widows about what not to do are most welcome. I have found I need to be told what not to do about as much as I need told what to do.

I will be  linking this blog to face book, and people can post/answer questions there as well. I’m hoping this will be a helpful resource for widows and non widows alike. For widows; to have a site they can point their clueless non-widowed friends to, so they don’t have to try and explain so much when they are having a rough day. And for non-widows; to have a place where they can go and read comments and posts from widows to greater understand what their widowed friends are going through and how they can help, as well as ask questions like “is it offensive to do/say_____”, or even “why was ____ offensive?”

I am hoping this site can be a bridge between widows and their non widowed friends, and can help save many friendship that are shaking in an already heart wrenching time.

A friend