‘My family and friends have blasted me for dating a month after my wife’s death’

Friends and family have stopped talking to me because I have just started dating again.

They feel it’s too soon after my wife’s death. Admittedly, she only passed away in February, but she was ill for ages.

I nursed her myself and she always said that she wanted me to love again. The last time we had sex was in 2017 and she felt terribly guilty about “neglecting” me as she put it.

She was a wonderful woman and a terrific mother to our children. I never blamed her or resented the lack of physical affection because she was loving to the end.

It was just her cruel illness that made her incapable of intimacy.

But try telling that to her three sisters, oldest friends and several on my side. I have been called everything from insensitive and selfish to twisted and weird.

My cousin can’t understand how I can even look at another woman when my wife is “barely cold in the ground”.

Her sisters accuse me of spending her money on cheap hookers and gold-diggers.

Nothing could be further from the truth. I’m seeing a widow who has suffered as much as I have. We meet for meals and drinks, but haven’t had sex yet. What’s wrong with that? Why do I have to justify myself to anyone?

  • 'My partner wants us to romp with strangers to perk up our sex life'

We’re just back from a weekend away. We had separate rooms and paid our own bills. I pecked her on the cheek to say “goodnight” but nothing more.

Now I’ve had three people on the phone telling me that I’m disgusting. Am I?

My late wife’s sisters barely visited her when she was alive, yet they’re up in arms now that she’s dead. How does that work?

JANE SAYS:

You know in your heart you did everything possible for your late wife. You loved her, soothed her and sat with her during her darkest times.

  • 'We don't trust mum's smarmy new lover…she seems to pay a lot for him'

She appreciated your dedication and urged you to find love again – that’s all you need to know. Everyone else can mind their own business.

At the moment you are enjoying the company of someone new. You and she may go the distance, but only time will tell and it’s not for family or friends to stick their noses in.

They cherished your late wife too, but they weren’t married to her. Only you can know what was discussed and what went on between the pair of you.

  • 'My lover has employed a beautiful young assistant – and I feel threatened'

I suspect her untimely death has made you even more determined to grab life by the throat and enjoy every new day.

There is no right time to move on and you mustn’t feel guilty or pressured to behave a certain way.

Go to Cruse Bereavement Care (cruse.org.uk) if you need support. Encourage your family to do the same.

Hold your head high, trust your instincts and do your late wife’s memory proud.

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