Categories
Giving Support Grief/Dispair Widower Awareness

Just Show Up!

Jim Winner

I have had an interesting two weeks. Last Saturday, one of my best friend’s wife died from Glioblastoma. If you know this beast, you know it is a terrible diagnosis with a brutal prognosis. Over the past several months, we have spent a lot of time on his porch, talking, drinking wine, and sharing experiences as caregivers as well as survivors.

Last week, I had the privilege of meeting with two young widowers for lunch and coffee. Both men are raising young children, have important jobs and have lost their wives in their 30’s and 40’s. I appreciated listening to their stories of loss and discovering their new normal. We had the opportunity to talk about reinvention, renewal, rebirth, and restoration. These are young men with a lifetime of children to raise, dreams to fulfill and hopes to achieve.

Last night, I received news that my longtime friends’ wife, who has been doing well battling lymphoma, just learned that a recent PET scan shows recurring and new cancer growth. I will be on the phone with him later this morning. He was a pillar for me during my journey. His presence did and does show up daily. He even traveled from Seattle to Indianapolis for Joyce’s celebration of life service.

I have shared before about how grateful I am for people who have showed up for me during my journey. I appreciate the occasional card that just says

“hey…thinking of you “ or a phone call from a friend who wants to come over, sit on the porch and eat donuts. Recently, I have been most thankful for a friend who reached out several months ago on Facebook. This person, who I have known since 1993, has become a real ray of sunshine to me. These people showed up and continue to show up.

I believe, at the end of the day, we are called to show up. We are called to just be there for each other. If there is any group of people that should be sensitive to the unspoken needs of others, it is us. We know that no one walks in our shoes but us. We also know that there are a lot of people out there who are fighting their own battles, especially in these crazy times of corona virus, politics, natural disasters, and 2020 in general.

I am going to start to try to look for places where I can show up. I want to look for opportunities to simply connect with people who need it. I want to be there to hear what my friends are going through. Thankfully, we do not have to know all the answers. That is for a professional. All we must do is encourage, support and listen.

I have learned that my load is considerably lighter when I help someone else lift theirs. It’s a tender and fulfilling part of life. I hope you look for opportunities to be there for people who just need a sounding board or listening post. It is good stuff.

Be well, brothers. Choose Joy Today.

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Jim Winner’s thoughts appear every other Thursday. You can write to him by Private Messenger.

Categories
Giving Support Widower Awareness

Widower’s Need to Lean Upon Others

Each day, millions of people wake up and start their day the same way they do every other day. Their life is a routine, their life has normalcy, and their presence is taken for granted. However, there is another group of people that have an adverse perspective of life. These people take nothing for granted. These are also people that yearn for normality and the previously mentioned routine that so many do without thought. These are the millions of widowers who wake up daily and do things that they once did without much effort.

There was a time in my life that I did these everyday tasks without much thought. I had a routine, and it was great. Coincidentally I took this routine for granted; there was no immunity to that mentality. The first few days and weeks and months of learning to be a widower is difficult. I could write pages of why it’s difficult, but that’s not the mission of this column. I am here to tell you about why it’s essential to get up each day and put one foot in front of the other and work your way towards being the new you. For some, it may be using positive affirmations in front of the mirror each morning. For others, it may be getting dressed and conquering the task of feeling like you are happy with who you see in the mirror after some personal grooming.

It’s important to remember that even though there are days that you may feel alone, you are not alone. Many, many other widowers are experiencing similar feelings to what you are feeling. There are also just as many widowers that want to and are willing to talk about those feelings. Everyone has days that are better than others, and by banding together, we can hold each other up. There’s nothing wrong or suspicious about a bad day. We all have them, and they are a part of the healing process. One mistake some of us make is to try to go through this alone when there are people and resources available.

We are a band of brothers with something in common. It’s a group we don’t want to be a part of, but here we are. Stay strong my brothers and hang in there, the sun will rise tomorrow.

Chris Brandt

Chris can be contacted at brandt5@hotmail.com

Categories
Giving Support Moving Forward Widower Awareness

Where Can I Get Help?

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WSN-MO: Widower to Widower with Fred Colby

If you are a widower looking for help, ideas, or support, this blog is for you!

While there are very few good books out there specifically for widowers, there are several organizations around the country that can provide help or direct you to the help that you need. 

Here are a few of the key ones that I have compiled to share with my fellow widowers.

Cancer Support Community: located in many communities to help families deal with the challenges of dealing with cancer and its consequences.

GriefNet.org: an online support group that offers specific online groups for loss of spouse or partner.

GriefJourney.com: offers online grief support and resources.

Griefshare.org: offers a listing of church-based grief groups in your area.

Grief Healing: a variety of articles, discussion groups, blogs, and more to help you through the grieving process.

Grief Support Services.org: provides a wide array of online services for fees.

Hospice Foundation of America: provides information about many hospices around the country and access to online articles about end-of-life and grief.

Meetup.com: provides access to many group activities in most areas, including grief groups.

Mygriefangels.org: lists hundreds of resources, including many specific to certain types of losses (e.g., due to cancer).

Modern Loss: provides articles written by people like you and me who have gone through the grief process and have something to share.

National Widowers Association: Lists widower support groups around the country as well as various resources that are helpful such as articles and blogs.

Online Grief Support: offers online support, including online groups, information about grieving, and even After Death Experiences.

Open to Hope: offers articles and talks on grief by real people who have experienced the loss of a loved one. They have sections specific to the loss of a spouse.

Pathways: offers hospice, palliative care, and grief & loss counseling services for all ages in northern Colorado.

Soaring Spirits International: provides a variety of online resources to assist widowed people in helping each other.

The Grief Toolbox: A resource for books, articles, and resources needed to educate ourselves and our loved ones on what is happening and how to best keep going forward.

Widower to Widower: offers free blogs, resources, podcasts, and links to many other organizations.

Widowers Support Network: provides “Widowers Support Network – Members Only,” a free and private online Facebook page for widowers where hundreds of widowers from around the world provide mutual support, humor, and ideas to help fellow widowers through this experience.

If you need help during this strange and crazy time, don’t hesitate to reach out to these groups or your brothers in grieving. To go it alone is not healthy for you or others. We were not made to be isolated and alone, and that is not what our wives would want for us either. So, honor your wives by reaching out to others for help when you need it, and to help others when they need it.

© Copyright 2020 Fred Colby

All rights reserved

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Fred Colby is the author of Widower to Widower, which is available on Amazon.com. You can find Fred’s column appearing here on WSN-MO every other Tuesday. Widower to Widower is available through your local bookstore, my website, and Amazon. Buy Widower to Widower through Amazon. (If living in Canada go to Widower to Widower – Amazon-Canada) See Testimonies and Reviews of Widower to Widower. Website: Fred Colby, Author

Categories
Camaraderie Giving Support Grief/Dispair Widower Awareness

Reaching for Help

An Excerpt from The Widower’s Journey (Taken from Chapter 2)

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As I said at the beginning of this chapter, grief means we’ve been cut off from a relationship that brought us all kinds of emotional benefits. Part of our recovery is finding sources of emotional support that will help assuage the sting of that loss.

For us men, that’s often a tough thing to do. This was driven home to me in the spring of 2014 when a friend of mine, retired minister Paul Hubley, arranged for me to meet with a group of widowers, each a resident of the Elim Park facility in Cheshire, Connecticut. After speaking to the gathering of widowers about my loss and trials, I was amazed how engaged the men became. The men shared stories, and tears flowed as each man recounted his loss and the pain he had carried—for many of these men, it was the first time they had spoken of their feelings, and it was obvious they felt better for sharing them with other widowers. It was one of the most moving experiences I had while working on this book.

On my trip home, it hit me that widowers need permission to grieve and to share.Today, most do not feel they have permission, or they fear that others will think less of them as a man if they expose their grief. For that single reason, one widower I spoke with decided not to participate in this book. He was afraid that once he revealed his story and his emotions, others would see him as weak.

I admit that I didn’t reach out as soon as I should have for all the support and fellowship I needed. I recall one day, as I worked at my desk at the bank, one of the employees from the bank’s call center entered my office with her brow furrowed by concern. She quietly told me how “everyone on the floor misses your laughter.” That helped me see myself from a different vantage, and thanks to that caring soul I began to realize that I was not in a good place physically or emotionally. I realized I needed help, and I resolved to find it.

Men don’t need to go it alone. Those who have friends and family should reach out to them. For those who don’t have loved ones nearby or who don’t feel comfortable asking friends and family for assistance, there are other services available. Hospice, which provides comfort care and support to dying patients, also can be an important source of support and empathy for care giving husbands and widowers. For instance, hospice offered widower Rod Hagen counseling for one year following the loss of his partner, Larry. Every ten days or so, the same man would call Rod, so he had someone to speak with—someone who understood what he was going through. Rod added, “The hospice volunteer ended up calling me for nearly two years. I wasn’t asked to come to some meeting and sit with a group of strangers and talk about my loss. Hospice was great. I also had a couple of close friends who were there when I needed to talk, and even when I didn’t need to talk but I didn’t want to be alone.”

Widowers need a support network. I refer to them as a widower’s Personal Advisory Board. They could be a team hailing from your collection of lifelong friends, neighbors, a fellow congregant from your religious community, relatives, or a select group of professionals (doctor, lawyer, financial planner, life-coach, etc.). Your Personal Advisory Board represents your go-to team, the ones you should make familiar with your life situation and allow them to advise you as needed. Forming a Personal Advisory Board is a great way to allow another person who is also grieving over the loss of your wife to offer their support. You could even say it would be therapeutic for both of you.

Fellowship with other widowers through a widower group, or even with just a single widower, can be a valuable part of your Personal Advisory Board. Widower Chris Sweet tells us how he reached out and found one of his old high school buddies who had also lost his wife. “He and I used to play basketball together but lost touch after graduation. When his wife died, I felt horrible for him. I remember how I didn’t know what to say to him. After some time, I found myself thinking how, given his loss, he was aware of what I was going through, and might be able to help me make sense out of what was going on with me. We spoke on the phone and exchanged e-mails. That was what I needed to keep me going.”

Check for widower support groups at local churches, hospitals, and hospices. Or you may want to check out groups through www.nationalwidowers.org. Let me also recommend you register with the Widower’s Support Network’s FREE private Facebook page for widowers, caregivers and men experiencing a loss. We also invite good nature men who wish to offer their encouragement to those we serve.  At the Widowers Support Network, our mission is to comfort and assist widowers by offering free services. See “Widowers Support Network – Members Only” on Facebook.  We also offer a public Facebook page for all others to enjoy.  See “Widowers Support Network” on Facebook.

Other resources that might be of help to widowers include www.onetoanother.org, a service that enables men and women who have experienced loss to meet, and www.widowedvillage.org, which connects widows and widowers for friendship and sharing.

In my research, I also discovered that a pet can be a great source of comfort during a time of grief. After personally witnessing the effect that animals can have, I became a believer. But rather than go into that here—I know pets are not for everyone—I’ve written up my research in Appendix III.

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The Widower’s Journey is available at Amazon.com, Barnes & Nobles and elsewhere in paperback ($14.95)  and all digital formats. Members of WSN-MO enjoy 15% off if purchased directly from the WSN. To do so, write herb@widowerssupportnetwork.com

Categories
Camaraderie Finding Purpose Widower Awareness

Learning From Each Other

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All widowers… you, me, the guy down the street… we all have something in common… we are going, or have gone, through hell on earth. We may have different experiences on this journey, but we also have many commonalities… especially if we were fortunate enough to have a good loving marriage.

We can support each other by sharing that which was common in our experience, as well as by sharing that which was unique to us. By seeing the different ways in which we meet our challenges, we learn that we don’t all have to do it the same way. We also learn there are many different paths to healing and to feeling whole again.

My situation was unique because of my background, culture, family, style of meeting challenges, faith, and circle of friends and acquaintances. Each of us has all of these in some unique combination, so what works for me may not work for you.

BUT, we all feel, we all loved our wives, we all go through deep and painful grieving, and we all feel like we are alone in our pain during this period. And we all come out of the experience with more empathy than we had before it. These commonalities, together with our shared experience help us to identify with and learn from each other’s experience.

We all feel as if a huge part of us has been torn away as if our very being is now incomplete. We have pain, we cry, we feel disoriented, and we have lost all sense of our place in the world. We feel lonely like we have never felt lonely before. We are desperate to have our wife back in our lives and to feel her presence again. We wander around our home lost and not knowing what to do next.

Most of us worked hard for decades to build a nest egg so that we could retire together and enjoy the fruits of our labor. We expected to outlive our wives and that our hard work would provide for her later years. Instead, we now find ourselves alone with no place to go, and in a very unfamiliar role.

It helps each to focus on gratitude for this wonderful woman who was in our lives, for the lessons we learned from her, and for the love she shared with us. As we struggle with redefining who we are we must hold on to what she instilled into us and honor how she made us a better person.

And finally, we need to discover our new purpose in life now that she is gone. That means becoming a better father, grandfather, neighbor, community member, and person. We need to learn how to turn away from negative, angry, and helpless thoughts, and turn to gratitude for the good in our lives while celebrating the wonderful memories of our past lives with our wives.

Our time left on this earth is now less than before, so the importance of making good use of our remaining years becomes even more crucial. So, I challenge all of us to ask ourselves, “What will I do with my remaining time on this earth to make it better for my children, grandchildren, community, and world? What can I do that would make my wife proud of me and what I accomplished after she was gone?”

I hope you will join me and many of our fellow widowers on this journey to healing.

Inquires can be directed to Fred Colby at colby3687@gmail.com.

Categories
Camaraderie Faith/Religion Giving Support Widower Awareness

Winning Thursday Thoughts from Jim Winner

Jim Winner

Today, WSN-MO welcomes fellow brother Jim Winner as the newest member of our editorial team. Welcome Jim. We are all looking forward to reading your insights.

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Today marks day 214 since my Joyce died. Even though she was sick for seven months, and we knew for a month, she was going to lose her battle with cancer, I had no idea of what real grief would be like. For the first three months, I seriously questioned not how I would make it through, but IF I would ever make it through. At the three month mark of her passing, I took a stack of grief books and got away for a week. Through the reading of many books, followed the prescribed journaling exercises, I came to realize I needed to stop asking the question

“WHY” and start asking the question “HOW.” None of us will ever know why our beloved wives died. That’s one of the great mysteries of life. Once I realized that things began to change for me. I began to ask myself HOW I will live the rest of my life. What will my legacy be? What will I do to live a life that honors God and honors her legacy and wishes?

The only right answer to the above question is the answer that is right for you. We’re all going down this road together, but everyone’s story is different.

In my case, the answer came in one word, service. I needed to identify and serve causes that would not only help me heal but would help others. In my case, I have discovered an avenue of service that is both important and purposeful.

Last fall, I became involved with a local food pantry in Indianapolis. It’s a pretty busy place, serving nearly 2000 clients every month. I help people shop; I empty trash, I do whatever is needed. It feels good. It feels good to know you’re putting food on people’s tables. It feels good to know you’re helping to address food insecurity issues. Every time I serve there, I come home feeling blessed at the opportunity to help others who are facing their own set of difficulties. I’ve had the chance to connect with people going through circumstances similar to mine. I’ve been able to offer and receive encouragement from many new friends. It makes me realize that as dark and challenging as my journey has been, there is an opportunity to grow and be better from it.

I’ve appreciated the many stories I’ve read on this forum. Well, I haven’t met any of you face-to-face, I believe many of our wives share the same values. I believe our wives want us to continue living our lives. I believe our wives want us to do things that matter.

Is it hard? You bet it’s hard. Nothing worth doing is that easy, is it? If you’re looking for something new to do this year, something to make you feel better, think about volunteering for a cause you respect, or something she liked. It will honor her, and it will help you as you move forward in your journey.

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Jim Winner’s Winning Thursday Thoughts will appear every other Thursday.  Jim is a member of WSN-MO and a former stockbroker and business owner. He resides in Carmel, IN and Naples, FL. You can write Jim at: jbw0802@gmail.com

Categories
Camaraderie Giving Support Grief/Dispair Widower Awareness

Why Widowed Men Are Different from Widows

Nyle Kardatzke

We widowed men have much in common with widows, our sisters in grief. Like widows, we have lost our spouses, the loves of our lives. They have had experiences of loss like ours: shock, disorientation, grief, and loneliness. We have much in common with female widows, and we can be more empathetic now. But our experiences are likely to differ from those of widows.

One reason for difference between widow-men and widows is that we are outnumbered. Because men tend to die at a younger age, there are far more widows than widow-men. I have seen estimates as high as an 8 to 1 ratio of widows to widow-men. One effect of this difference is that widows get far more attention than widow-men in books, organizations, and public understanding. The Widowers’ Support Network is one of the few resources addressed specifically to the needs of widowed men.

Perhaps it’s a result of the difference in numbers, or maybe it’s a difference in the behavior of men vs. women, but widowers seem to disappear into the woodwork soon after their wives’ funerals. I know a few widowers in my church, but their status as widowers is nearly invisible. They seem to blend in socially, almost as though they haven’t had this great loss. The presence of widows is far easier to detect.

Women tend to be more social than men, though there are many exceptions. Within marriages, wives are often the more active socialites. They make social contacts more often than men in many marriages. When a husband dies, a woman finds immediate consolation from other women, and this may become a long-term pattern. In my own church there is an ongoing monthly meeting of widows. It’s called “Lydia’s Ladies” for the woman who sold purple dye in the book of Acts. They enjoy each other’s company, grieve with new widows, support each other emotionally, and enjoy enlightening talks.

There is no equivalent to “Lydia’s Ladies” in my church, but there is a weekly meeting of widowers at a larger church nearby. The men in that group function much like the widows at my church, but it’s a much smaller group, usually a dozen or so compared to more than twenty women at Lydia’s Ladies.

Widowers are far more likely to remarry. This is partly due to numbers, but it’s probably also a matter of temperament and previous life experience. Widows seem to handle their lives alone more comfortably then widowed men. For some, this may be a grim acceptance of a lonely life; for others, remaining single may be the happiest, most gratifying form of widowed life. This is true for many widowers, of course, but we’re more likely to remarry. Even when widows participate in online dating, they often want someone to go out with rather than someone to come home to.

Cooking, cleaning, and doing laundry are differences in life experience that have equipped men and women differently for the loss of their spouses. Even in our society of gender equality, women tend to do more cooking and household upkeep than their husbands. Some widowers have done so little cooking that they are lost in the kitchen. This alone is not a good reason to hurry into a new marriage. In most American cities there is a plethora of restaurants, fast food places, and grocery stores filled with nutritious fruit, vegetables, and quick meals.

Even widows who are good cooks often say they don’t like to cook for only one. I’m convinced they feel the loneliness of eating alone but haven’t lost their ability to cook. There’s no easy remedy for this except to seek some variety in what we cook at home and how often we eat there. Eating out with a friend or inviting someone over, even for a simple meal, can inspire you to enjoy your kitchen more.

These differences between us and the female widows around us mean we live in a somewhat different world than our sisters in grief. We have to learn our own ways of living with our loss, sometimes from widows, but sometimes from our fellow widow-men here in the Widowers’ Support Network.

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Look for Dr. Kardatzke’s insights to appear in his column named after his book, “WIDOW-MAN,” every other Wednesday beginning today. You can write Dr. Kardatzke c/o herb@widowerssupportnetwork.com

Categories
Camaraderie Giving Support Manful Emotions Widower Awareness

I Am A Widow-man

Nyle Kardatzke

When I became a widowed man, I wondered what to call myself. “Widow” is usually applied only to women, but why can’t a man be a widow? Why accept the implied accusation when you are called a “widower?” Long before I lost my wife, I rankled quietly at the term “widower,” and it still sounds like an accusation to me. If a painter is one who paints and a builder is one who builds, what is a widower? Is it someone who “widows?” Does that not sound like an accusation or a judgment? You didn’t cause your wife’s death. “Widowed” is a better term, but of course, she didn’t do this to you; it wasn’t her choice.

I know widower is the standard term for widowed men, but I’m enough of a Grammar Nazi to be bothered by it. I like to call myself merely a widow or widowed, or maybe better, a “widow-man.” Being a widow-man implies that my situation is different from that of a female widow, as I will explain in future messages here. “Widow-man” reminds me of “macho-man,” a hearty, masculine title. I hope it doesn’t resemble “girlie man” to you!

Now that I have had this little rant with you to introduce myself, I’ll calm down and accept the standard terminology. I may sneak in the “widow-man” term sometimes, and I’m asking your forgiveness in advance.

Men, we have entered a new kind of life. We are alone after a short time or perhaps after a lifetime with the woman to whom we were supernaturally bonded in marriage. Even those of us who lost our wives later in life were not prepared for this new life. Death itself is always sudden, even after a protracted illness, because it is such a complete, irreversible change. And being alone as widowed men in a world of married couples and widows is a new thing for all of us.

In future essays, I’ll explore some aspects of this new world of male widowhood. I’ve been here for nearly ten years. Perhaps I can share some things of value with you.

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Look for Dr. Kardatzke’s insights to appear in his column named after his book, “WIDOW-MAN,” every other Wednesday beginning today. You can write Dr. Kardatzke c/o herb@widowerssupportnetwork.com

Categories
Widower Awareness

Widowers – Forced to Live in the Shadows

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By Herb Knoll, Author: The Widower’s Journey

When asked, few people can name even one man who has been widowed.  But given a few moments for additional consideration, many are likely to say, “Oh wait a minute, I do know one.  He lives down the street or works with me at my office.” When I presented this same question to a friend of mine, he failed to recall how his own father was widowed. I find this stunning.

Few Americans can name more than one U.S. president who was widowed, yet over one-third of the Presidents of the United States have experienced the loss of a spouse (sixteen in total).  This lack of awareness of the mere existence of widowers among us validates how they seemingly live in the shadows of society and our communities.

Want more proof?  Americans love movies – yet few can recall how actor Mel Gibson practically built his action-hero career on exacting vengeance from being a widower—not exactly a healthy way to deal with loss. He did it in the Middle Ages in Braveheart, during the Revolutionary War in The Patriot, and as a cop in Lethal Weapon, including 3 sequels.

Look around you.  While you may not know a widower today, you will soon, for one in five men you know will eventually be widowed. And unless things change – including the behaviors of those reading this article – they too will soon be forgotten. Sadly, this failure by society to recognize the plight of our widowed population, not to mention their needs has become an international norm.

This view was crystallized by the actions of the United Nations when on December 22, 2010, the United Nations 65th General Assembly unanimously adopted a resolution establishing June 23rd as International Widows Day.  To be celebrated annually, this global day of action was intended to raise awareness about the cultural discrimination of widows. We all should applaud the passage of this resolution by the United Nations as the need for heightened awareness about the needs of widows around the world are indeed critical.  But the way I see it, the United Nation’s only got it half right.  What of the needs of widowed men? In my view, the time for everyone’s proactive support for widowers is way overdue.

Not to diminish the pain and suffering of the countless widows on all seven continents, the actions of the United Nations mirrors the efforts – or lack thereof – of societies around the world; Men are held to a different set of standards compared to women following the loss of a spouse.  Women are more likely to be comforted by others while widowed men are expected to “get over it.”

Couple the prevailing view that men are tough and don’t need grief support with the fact that few resources are ever explicitly crafted to comfort and assist widowed males, it’s no wonder widowers have such difficulty in dealing with so many significant challenges.  Challenges most are ill-prepared to engage including substance abuse or career self-destruction, from difficulty reconciling with their higher-power to their financial ruin, isolation, grief and severe health concerns. In addition to an increased rate of diabetes and hypertension, widowers have a suicide rate that is 3-4 times greater than that of married men.

In spite of all of these facts and more, widowed men are left primarily to their own resources.  I personally experienced this phenomenon following the death of my fifty-two-year-old wife in 2008, when I entered my local large box bookstore.  As I approached the customer service counter, I inquired what they may have available that could help me – a new widower – deal with my grief.  The clerk politely entered the word “widower” into his computer’s search engine and then looked up at me saying, “Mister, I don’t have a damn thing for you.” Can you imagine my disappointment?

It was at that precise moment I decided someone needed to write a relevant book for widowed men and that person was me. After nine years of research, my breakout book, The Widowers Journey – Helping Men Rebuild After Their Loss (Amazon.com) was released in 2017.  When my literary agent shopped the manuscript around to over thirty New York publishing houses, she was repeatedly told that “Men don’t buy books.”  As a result, the publishing community doesn’t accept manuscripts written for widowed men.  Once again, I confirmed how the needs of the widower next door are repeatedly ignored.  This apathy towards the needs of widowed men was not something I was willing to accept, hence my decision to self-publish The Widower’s Journey.

While the United Nations and New York’s publishers have failed widowers globally, they are not alone.  With 2.7 million widowers in the United States alone, and 420,000 new widowers each year, our houses of worship, as well as our employers, have also failed them. The medical community and our local, state and federal governments are equally up to the task of disappointing our widowers, as are many of our friends, families, and neighbors.  Each segment of society is culpable in their neglect of men who are desperately dealing with emotional pain during repeated dark days and tear-filled nights. The absence of meaningful resources being provided, not to mention some semblance of awareness about the pain and suffering widowers endure is heart-wrenching, perhaps even sinful.

Even if those who are in a position to act elect not to do so for humanitarian reasons, they should do so because it is in the best interest of all parties to ensure widowed men are healthy, functional and contributing to society.

Correcting this unfair treatment of widowers begins when all interested parties – including you – start doing their part beginning today. To that end, I am calling upon the United Nations General Assembly to join us by passing a resolution declaring the International Day of the Widower to be celebrated annually on March 7th.

So let me ask you a question… Do you know a widower?

Herb Knoll is an advocate for Widowers, a professional speaker and author of the breakout book, The Widower’s Journey.  Available at Amazon.com in paperback and all digital formats.  

Email: herb@WidowersSupportNetwork.com   Web: WidowersSupportNetwork.com

Facebook: Widowers Support Network Members Only and at Widowers Support Network