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I have been dating a widower for 2 years.  His wife of 40 years passed away 3 years ago after a 7 year illness.  We are now planning to move in together.  He has three adult children who visit him often.  There are family photos everywhere, and I mean everywhere, bedroom, bathroom, walls, tables mantle, (you get the drift).  I respect the family dynamic that was and I want to honor his deceased wife's memory.  With all due respect for him, his children and the memory of his passed wife, I do not know how to approach the issue of the photos, (and I'm sure there will be many more but the photos are the first).  I'm thinking of suggesting a collage of family memories.  I would love to hear from anyone who has been here or who has thoughts PLEASE. 

   

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Hello Thin Ice,

      Thank you for opening up and telling us about this.  While I have not been in your exact shoes, I can tell you that communication on something of this nature is essential. There is no reason why you should have to feel as if you are moving into "his home" when you both are trying to have a life together. However, that being said, we don't want your significant other to feel as if you are trying to 'get rid' of his late wife, the mother of his children. I think that your idea of a collage is a beautiful way of combining the past and the present. If there is any way that you can get the children involved (maybe even the grandchildren?) you can turn this into a celebration of your new family, holistically, instead of the resolution of an issue. Laughter and happiness, the creation of a new memory will go a long way in showing him and his family that you want to be a part of their lives without dismissing their late mother.  

     I wish you the best of luck with such a tricky situation. Let us all know how it turned out.  :) 

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