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What You Should Not Say to a Widow

Although at a certain point in life most married women will remain widows, our society doesn’t seem to be able to accept that fact. Widowhood is almost never discussed in the media, and many people find it difficult to even talk to a widow without sounding  insensitive or impatient.

So I compiled a  list of what you should never say to a widow, and  another, shorter one, of what you could say and do

I hope you will find it helpful

What you should never say to a widow

Don’t tell her to be strong

Don’t tell that time heals all wounds

Don’t tell her that life is stronger than death

Don’t tell her that you understand what she is going through

Don’t tell her that the year of mourning has passed and it’s time to get back on track

Don’t tell her that at least he is no longer suffering

Don’t tell her that at least he didn’t suffer

Don’t tell her, “You are still young you will find someone else”

Don’t tell her, “At least you enjoyed a long happy life together”

But  do tell her:

“It’s good to see you”

“Your children look great”

“You are amazing”

What you could do

You can call and ask her over,  “Please come over this weekend” (Because weekends are long and  hard for widows).

You can suggest to meet her, and set a date in the coming week, You can invite her for a meal or to go to the movies.

You can let her know that you are there by keeping in touch.

Now is not the time to ask yourself why does she never call?  just pick up the phone and call her again, or send her a text. Because when a woman loses her husband she really needs her friends by her side, don’t stay away because it is inconvenient or even hard

About the Author
I hold a PhD in English Literature from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, specializing in writing about issues related to women, literature, culture, and society. Having lived in the US for 15 years (between 1979-1994), I bring a diverse perspective to my work. As a widow, in March 2016, I initiated a support and growth-oriented Facebook group for widows named "Widows Move On." The group has now grown to over 2000 members, providing a valuable space for mutual support and understanding.
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