The death of a spouse for a woman, especially senior women, can leave a devastating feeling of loneliness, depression, isolation from friends and family and a feeling of being alone in the world.
These feelings can be multiplied by many factors of non imaginable proportions with the death of long married couple.
Professional councillors have a myriad of cookie cutter solutions for a senior female who has lost a spouse after long term marriage.
As the president of a senior’s organization, I have listened to many senior women discussing their agonies of trying to come to terms with the devastation they are feeling or have been dealing with it.
Once the discussions start amongst a group of women they quickly find that they are not alone in their time of grieving and sense of loss.
I have been told after these sessions how wonderful it was to be able to open up with other women who have been or are dealing with the same feeling of devastation.
It eventually became very clear to me that just talking about their feelings with other women gave these grieving women a tremendous sense of relief and a sense of trusted companionship.
Armed with a new idea and a sense of direction, I shifted into research mode.
I went through a dozen professional therapy sites, and all seemed to be eager to have their clients jump into a structured cookie cutter program where it is assumed that every woman grieves the same way.
I then searched out several internet blogs that focused on the personal stories of grieving senior women going through their grieving process and how they found that just talking to a friend or a likewise group did far more for them than a $160 per hour therapy session.
Of course, one answer leads to another question so, off I went again to find why just talking to other women, even to strangers, was such a relief for a woman.
This I found was even more so for a grieving woman who had lost a spouse and is suddenly left alone to face a very self satisfying, self gratification world.
Where a man tends to hide his feelings and feels embarrassed to discuss his feelings, a woman’s DNA dictates that communication is a vital and intricate part of the female human species.
With this fact in mind, it is safe to say that a woman needs to be given a chance to find her own avenue of relief from grieving through a random setting that allows her to communicate her feelings. finds healing is less painful and lessens the feeling of being alone in her time of hurting and loneliness.
After reading countless blog posts by grieving women and listening to our own group how they talked, and how they dealt with the loss of their spouse’ and shared it so freely with the other women around them, I slowly clued in.
With guarded apprehension and scepticism, I broke into one of the lady’s discussions about their sharing their feelings to ask why they were so eager and willing to discuss such personal feelings with a stretching exercise group that meet only once per week.
The same response came from everyone of the seven ladies who were discussing the trauma of losing a spouse.
“Just talking to other women who are or have gone through the same grieving process themselves really does help me to feel better and to understand that I am not the only one who is suffering with the loss of a husband.”
Those near identical comments set the wheels of ideas in motion.
I had heard these conversations amongst these women previously; in fact, I had heard it several times before.
I just had not paid any particular attention to the chatter of 10 to 15 women during a nonformal gathering.
Our stretching exercise group had become a nonplanned and nonformal setting where the ladies could discuss their innermost and personal feelings openly.
With this enlightenment swirling in my mind, I asked myself, “why not focus a bit more on this nonstructured type of allowing senior women to discuss and share their personal feelings about something that they are being devastated with?”
More research: women do not always need to be herded through a one hour program where everyone is considered to have the same personality and will heal with the same healing program.
Through several more discussion with our ladies, I found that just being able to openly discuss and talk with other women and share their feelings outside of a cookie cutter program was their most satisfying and comforting relief for them.
In the end, women need to talk about their feelings and will feel uplifting comfort from just talking and verbally sharing their feelings with other likewise women or a group of women.
President: Rossland and District Seniors Association Society