9 Things You Need to Know About Widows

| January 16, 2015

Just a few days after my husband’s passing, my phone rang. For the sake of protecting the guilty, let’s say the caller represented Shady Pines Old Folks Home.  

Me: “A personal care home? Is that one of those places where they cook your meals, clean your room, and even help you with bathing?”

Shady: “It certainly is, Mrs. Clark. We can provide a wide range of services in your time of need.”

Me: “Awesome. Sign me up.”

My two college-age children wondered if grief had taken their mother’s sense of reason. It had not. Neither had it taken her sense of humor.

            Shady: “Alright Mrs. Clark, I need some more information from you, starting with your date of birth.”

            Me: “May 15, 1963.”

            Shady: “1963? Mrs. Clark, did you mean to say 63?”

            Me: “Sure did. I’m nifty at 50. . . Hello? You there?”

And so began the long list of encounters with folks who had little understanding of widows and our needs. 

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, one-third of all women who become widowed are younger than age 60, and half of those widowed become so by…

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