After Mom’s Death, Daughter Struggles With Dad’s Girlfriend

Heather asks for advice: In November, it will be two years since my mother died after a prolonged illness. My father started dating a woman this summer. I supported him finding companionship. He and Mom were together for 35 years, so it had been a long time since he was alone. Unfortunately, I have not dealt well with the reality of his girlfriend. He wants to include her in all of our family gatherings and has told me that he expects me to become friends with her. My mom and I were very close before she got sick and got even closer during her illness, so this feels like a violation to me in so many ways. I have tried to explain to Dad that I am not comfortable with this but he seems to not care. I feel like I am alone in this, and it is very hard for me to be a grown up about it. Ever since we lost Mom, I have felt like I no longer belong in my family, and this just makes it worse. How do I deal with my father’s need to include his new girlfriend in all of our family activities?

John Pete, certified grief counselor and founder of MyGriefSpace.Net, responds: Hello Heather: Please accept my sincere condolences for the loss for your mother. What you are going through is understandably painful and confusing to you right now. While you want your father to find happiness and companionship, it also feels threatening to the memory of your mother, and an intrusion to your family unit as it was. It’s not unusual for unintended resentments to arise in situations such as yours, and it may be helpful to know that you do have some control over this situation.

You can continue to struggle against the choice your father has made, or you can seek ways to help yourself accept this new situation. First, it’s important not to view this new person as a replacement for your mother, because she is not now, nor will she ever be. So it’s important not to get caught up in a trap of constantly comparing the two or making them a nemesis of one another when one is living and one is not.

Your mother will always be your mother no matter what, and no matter who else comes into your life or your father’s life.

One way to help yourself adjust to this situation is to spend some one-on-one time with your father’s new girlfriend to get to know her better for who she is. Try to establish a friendship with her for her own qualities and so you can feel comfortable talking to her about the loss of your mother and your grief. This can open new lines of communication and reduce the threat you feel that she is somehow replacing your mother.

Two years is not nearly as long as many people might think when it relates to the loss of a loved one. So, please continue to allow yourself your grief, but also proactively seek the healing support from others and also through new experiences. If you can find it in your heart to open yourself up to get to know your father’s new girlfriend better and strive to establish a real friendship with her, then you will also open the opportunity to accept her as the individual she is, and not a replacement for your mother.

John Pete, GC-C

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  • Susan Musselwhite says:

    It has been just a little over 1 year since my mother passed. She was sick for just a short time. Within weeks, my father “took up” with a mutual friend of theirs. My parents had been married for 63 years. He and his lady friend caught me completely off guard within weeks of my mother’s death when they attempted to solicit my blessings on an “intimate” relationship they stated they wanted to pursue. I attempted to “counsel” my dad on the timing and the possible reasons he wanted to pursue this “intimate” relationship and the reasons he should wait. I remind myself daily that he doesn’t want to be alone and that he is insecure. I don’t want him to “sit around being a lonely old grieving man” as he has accused me …..but since he asked for my opinion of this relationship so soon (and really wanted my blessing)…I stated to him and his lady friend….that I felt he owed my mother more respect than this. I find myself totally devastated over this but because I love him very much & understand his loneliness, I now stay silent in how I truly feel. I resent this woman very much & truly don’t want her in my life but at the same time, I feel she gives him a reason to keep living. How bazaar!

    I am torn. I feel his “intimate friend” is a traitor to my mother and if I could ever accept her, I would be a traitor to my mother. I could have accepted a “new” relationship for him after a respectful period of time MUCH better than this relationship. My brother accepted this woman with open arms immediately. I feel that I am considered an “outcast” within the family because I can’t accept it.

    I understand totally how this young woman feels like an outcast.
    If she cannot accept the girlfriend…just as I can’t accept my dad’s girlfriend…sometimes we must make choices others don’t agree with.
    We are “who we are” and we feel “the way we feel”. I have dealt with my dad by having “my time” with him – we have a set luncheon date once a week and we have a set day once a week to spend with each other. I have told him I understand he wants this relationship and I accept that and actually understand it….but at the same time, I am not ready (nor can I promise I ever will be) to particiate in a relationship with her. I tell him frequently that I love him very much but cannot make any commitment of an acceptance of this “friend”. It hurts, but we all must take a stand for what we truly believe is acceptable.

    • Gaynor says:

      Hello Susan

      This has just happened to me I am bereft. If you read this could you message me in the hope that we can help each other ? I realise it is a long time ago for you. I feel exactly as you have written. I do hope you have found some peace ? Kind regards Gaynor

      • JoAnn says:

        I am in the same situation, I am the oldest of 5 children, the other 4 have diffrent views but basically they dont want to piss daddy off because they might get the treatment I am getting. On March 27 my father asked what my problem was and I told him, I was hysterical oh and by the way he came to my office. he threw his arms up and said he prays things will heal themselves. left and never turned back, he took her to Florida for a month when he got back never contacted me and when he sees me he ignores me and snuggles her or holds her hand , like he is rubbing my face in it, siblings say get over it and let him be happy, I just cant, I am so hurt and he has also made comments to me THAT i FEEL WERE IN APPROPRIATE ” she has the womans touch, and you dont know how i lived… very hurtful things… anyone else having issues like this

  • Jamie says:

    I totally understand both of you. I lost my mother to illness a year ago and my father started dating just 3 months after she passed. It was and is extremely hard to cope with. My father has now moved in with his girlfriend and lives in her house. He now expects me, his daughter to participate in holidays there. I am just not comfortable with that nor will I ever be. I have tried to explain to him how I feel and I think he just gets upset and really doesn’t understand. The only people that truly understand us are people that have experienced this like us. I agree that we just feel the way we feel. I can’t lie to my dad about my feelings so I just tell him how it is. Which I am sure hurts him but I am hurting too. I feel like it will NEVER get better…………

  • Castle says:


    I am in the same exact boat. My mom died Nov. 22, 2008 and one of her friends that gave remarks at the funeral is now pursuing my Dad. They talk on the phone often and I believe he gave her a really nice Christmas gift! Although, I support him having a new life with a new lady friend, but not this soon. We haven’t had time to really adjust to Mom being gone and this only adds to the already devastating heartache. The friend has been a widow for a year, so it seems like she was waiting on my Mom to die. Although I don’t really believe that, but the appearance of it sickens me and I feel the gossip that will stir from this will dishonor my Mother’s memory and I can’t even bear to think of that.

  • Susan Musselwhite says:

    Well guys, I made it through Christmas and now into the New Year and hope you were able to cope with your Dad’s during the holidays. My dad had a Christmas “decorating the tree” party a couple weeks before Christmas for all his
    grandchildren and great-grandchildren at his house. We all brought pizzas over and his girlfriend brought cookies & fudge, etc. Since my mother died, this is the first time she had attended one of our family gatherings. I was polite to her and to my dad. Someone had given my husband & me tickets to a Christmas symphony orchestra performance a week or so after dad’s decorating party …tickets for 4. I decided that I would invite them to go with us…I really struggled with this….when I called Dad, he said he needed to talk to her first & he did …she declined because she had other plans. I WAS SO RELIEVED!! I realize that I still am not ready to accept this & quite honestly don’t think I ever will – because – I don’t have to accept her into my life & I really don’t want to.
    She reciprocated the invitation through my Dad a week or so later to spend an evening out ….but I declined this time. I’m really not trying to discourage anyone from accepting your own situation (in time) . But from your comments, I believe we each feel pretty much the same. Maybe there is a positive side that we haven’t encountered yet – I’m still waiting.

    • Louise says:

      Dear Susan Musselwhite, I hear you and I get it. My dad died 18 months ago and Mum has just joined a dating agency. But the way that she did it was deceitful. The way she broke the news to me shocking, although I put two and two together before she actually told me. My take on it is this: Get on with it if it will make you happy. Don’t expect me to be part of your relationship. From being a very close knit family to being estranged is quite something. Not like my dad would have wanted it, but that’s how it will have to be. You were saying: Maybe there is a positive side that we haven’t encountered yet – I’m still waiting.
      I see it like this. If I become estranged when she move on, it will be easier to deal with the death of that parent as we have already parted in the living years.
      I do know that I took my Dad’s death much harder than my mother did. He was very sick for a long time before he died with cancer. She didn’t shed one tear at his death bed or funeral and has been out with one of his friends who carried the coffin within weeks of Dad’s death (only on occasional basis as he has a complicated relationship with someone else “whatever”) and I have not stopped her. I’m surprised she even waited 18 months before she joined the dating agency. Good luck and goodbye Mother Dear! The obligation I had to keep her entertained and out and about (which was every weekend without fail although I have my own family) is now over! I choose to see it in a positive light.

  • Lisa says:

    All I can say is I am so glad that I came across this website. I lost my mother almost a year ago (Feb. 2008) and my father started “spending time” with an old friend from his past, 8 months later.

    I was completely taken aback mostly because my mom told him repeatedly how she felt if he were to do such a thing. At the time I told him I thought it was too soon, but he kept going on about time and would it make a difference if it were a year or two.

    I feel that he is not in the right frame of mind right now to even be thinking about a relationship. We not only lost my mom this year, but we lost my grandma (his mother), my brother in law, and my aunt (his sister). Not to mention a cancer scare for him and other illnesses that have had him hospitalized. I feel that he needs to take time and adjust to his new life before he brings someone else into it. I mean after all he’s not just bringing her into his life, but mine as well. I know I for one am still trying to adjust to life without my mom and don’t need this added to my plate.

    I had a big talk with him over the holidays and told him how I felt. He knew that I wasn’t happy, but had no idea that it bothered me so much. I live in a different city than my dad, so I think it hit home for him when he could see how physically upset I was. At one point he said he was going to end the relationship to make me happy, but I know that isn’t the solution either. From what he tells me she has helped him through a difficult time and how can I be happy knowing that he is not. I told him there is no solution and it’s something we are going to have to deal with as issues arise.

    As someone stated below, I too feel as if it is never going to get better. I just wanted to say thanks for posting your experiences because it’s nice to know that I am not alone.

  • Carolyn Imrie says:

    My mother died in Aug. 2006 and my Dad just started dating a women a month ago. He said just for companionship and a friend. Then I just found out after only 4 weeks of dating he went and bought a new queen bed for her so she could sleep comforable with my dad. I just met her last night in the hospital as he is waiting to see what is wrong with his heart. I told him I wasn’t ready to meet her so he set it up that when I came to visit him last night in the hospital she was there. In front of me he found it necessary to call her angel, and feels he should talk mushie to her when I am around. My stomach was sick the whole hour I was there and when I left I cried for a long time. I love my dad but this is not fitting well with me, as he never once called my Mom angel or anything like that. They were married for 52 years. How do I cope with this?

  • Susan says:


    As women, we certainly know that men and women think & act totally different from one another. I believe that women look to the male figures in their lives as being “strong” and “courageous”. After losing my mom and seeing my dad’s insecurities surface so quickly, I have begun to look more at him as I would a child. – needing someone to soothe his hurts. Perhaps the longer the marriage, the greater their need to have another companion – someone to soothe their hurt. It appears to me that your dad has been extremely lonely since your mom passed and he feels this woman has given him life again. It also seems that he loves, respects, and wants your approval in the biggest way. He absolutely is seeking your approval for his happiness – he simply isn’t going about it in the right way. He wants you to see what happiness this woman has brought him and he feels if you witness this, you will share in his happiness. This has got to be very tough for you. When he is back to health, you should share your feelings with him and let him know how you feel – nothing may change but at least you can open the lines of communication with him and perhaps he can share some of his deepest hurts and feelings with you at the loss of his wife and your mother. And perhaps he will be aware of his insensitivity to you in addressing this lady by calling her Angel, etc. – I bet he has no idea how this has hurt you,
    and he needs to be aware of that. One thing is for sure, just as our parents could never select our friends or mates in life – we neither can select theirs. As difficult as it is, the marriage vows are “until death do us part”. He may try to replace your mother in his life with another…but after that many years of marriage, he will never be able to. He may be able to fulfill some of the emptiness he has felt and may feel he at least has a purpose to continue his life. You can’t change things and you don’t have to accept this with open arms. In time, you will learn to work around it and not let it absorb you and suck you up. I really feel your pain.

  • Alison says:

    I lost my mother in July 2008 after a very long illness. My father started seeing a woman shortly after Thanksgiving. Not only was he seeing this woman, but he was lying about it until I found out in the worst possible way on Christmas Eve. Now, he is practically living with her. He knows that I do not approve, but he has told me on more than one occassion that he doesn’t care what I think. This hurts on so many levels that I can’t even begin to explain. My parents were together for 40 years. I was close to both of my parents. For him to “not care” what I think, is unthinkable for me. I don’t think I will ever understand any man.

  • Lisa says:

    My father died unexpectedly the day after Christmas 2008. He was married to my mom for 52 years. My mom will not let us help her with anything, but rather wants to call all the (male) friends my dad had to help her. She won’t let us help her do anything if it pertains to my dad including going into his bedroom. She would rather “donate” or sell items (and she doesn’t need the money) that were my fathers instead of ask either me or my sister or either of our sons if they would like to have something of my fathers. She has already traded his truck & her van in for a brand new van for herself. I do feel that mom thinks “it’s all about her” right now. It seems more like she is having a party instead of respecting my fathers memory. We loved my father very very much. A big man he was 6’4″ and he was like a “big teddy bear”. Since my father was near death almost 3 years ago, I feel my mother was and is jealous of the attention we gave my father. I feel she doesn’t want us to grieve for him, but rather for her. I do love my mother and it hurts me and my sister when she says she would rather have dads buddies or the neightbors come to help her instead of having us over. I don’t believe after just 4 weeks, that we have even completed the grieving stages and am starting to feel very bitter towards her. Will the hurt/pain ever get better? My sister & I cry many times throughout the day.

  • Lisa B. says:

    It is so good to know that I am not the only daughter dealing with these feelings. My Mom died December 7, 2008 after a 4 year fight with bone cancer. My parents had been married 50 yrs. that September. One week after my mother passed a women that was a member at the same club as my parents contacted my dad to send her condolences, saying she had just found out about my mom. She also tried to tell me that her and my mom were friends yet I know my mom did not care for her, and if thats a friend who needs enemies. Two days later she arrived with baked goods for my dad. When I tried to worn him about her, he said she was just a friend. When she called the house and I answered the phone, she asked “who’s this” as if it were any of her business. I have told my dad that I felt she disrespected my mother with what she was doing and his reply was “well if thats how you feel”. She calls him 3 -4 times a day wanting to know what he is doing or where he was. She has tried to talk to me on the phone, but I have nothing to say to her because I do not like what she has done. I feel she has crossed the line with buying a shirt for my father that say’s “Bank of Grandpa 0% percent interest” which I feel something like that should have come from either my children or my brothers. I feel she is trying to push a wedge between my father and his family.

    I have found out that because of her, old friends of my parents (who also know this women) will not talk to my father because they have never like her. When I tried to talk with him 4 weeks after my mom passed, he informed me that he is 73 yrs. old and can do what he wants without anyone approval, yet I’m the one who he called when something needed done or needed help with my mom. I also go everynight after work and cook dinner. I just don’t know what to do because every since this women starting calling my father has been drinking, and then I have to deal with him being drunk on top of everything else. I’m trying not to blow up over this but her actions have made me so angry and my father knows that. If she calls when I’m there or I come in, he gets off the phone. She calls telling my dad all about her medical problems (which is breast cancer) after my mother battled bone cancer. I feel this women is just looking to have someone take care of her and support her, and that she is hoping to move into my parents house.
    The only peace I have is that she will have to answer to God and probably my mother in the end.

    • Chris says:

      Hi Lisa,
      I am in a very similiar situation. My mom passed away in February & the woman that came knocking at my front door was my mom’s first cousin. After speaking with a few family members, I found out that my mom did not like this cousin. She was after my father for 40 years! I would love to find out how you’re doing. I could really use some good advice on how to deal with all this.

  • judi says:

    I thought you guys might want to hear from someone who happens to be the mans girlfriend. I have been dating a man who lost his wife to cancer and let me tell you I feel like I have committed a major crime for dating this man so soon after his wife died. All we want is to be happy and I definately do not want to replace the much older kids mom. I have no desire to be alone and lonely in my older years and neither does he. Everyone has to understand that I mean no harm and I resent everyone looking down on the ‘GIRLFRIEND’ it’s become a dirty word to me…I have not done any thing wrong

    • Shari Anton says:

      Dear Girlfriend,
      I don’t think you understand. I know it is 2017 now, and I too have lost my mother and have a 76 year old father who was comforted by a lady 10 years older than I and 10 younger than he, but no one can really understand the pain that comes in seeing your father with another woman after 55 years of marriage. You may assume you bring all this joy to the man’s life, and you think of your own needs in justifying the relationship, but as a woman, I feel that the disrespect to my mother’s memory and to family, even if I seem to be the only one devastated, angry and in grieving now for the loss of my dad due to the “girlfriend”, is beyond anything I would bring to the children of that family if I were thinking of swooping up a widower 4 months after the death of a spouse.

      I have to place myself in the the shoes of a “girlfriend” and ask myself, would I lack class, respect or decency by tearing a family apart by my presence in the picture? Would I want the man to tell his daughter that they had to “get over it and deal with it”? Does that seem like the kind of relationship that would make anyone feel good about stepping in the picture? Would I really want to bring more pain to the family and use the excuse that “he deserves to be happy” as if the “girlfriend” is the only way a man of 76 could be happy? Would I ever want to come between a father and daughter for the sake of my own needs or excuses that I make this man happy?

      The answers are NO. I could never come into a situation with the full support of the grown kids. I would never tear a family apart and act like the daughter on the “outs” must fix it, or cope or change so I could be involved with her dad. I could never look myself in the mirror and feel good about it as a woman, a mother or person.

      So, as a “girlfriend”, find a man that does not hurt his own children for the sake of a woman who was never the mother of his children and use the excuse of “making him happy, time does not matter, and who cares about the fact that you have impacted in a very negative and damaging way the relationship in a family. That would not be my idea of telling those who are angry, devastated, confused and yes feeling it is wrong, disrespectful and hurting the very person you say you want to make happy in the end, DOES CLASS AND DECENCY RIGHT A BELL IN YOUR INCONSIDERATE AND SELFISH MIND?

      I would never ever hurt any child’s relationship with their parents for my happiness. To me that is the ultimate low in character.

      I have basically lost my mother, father and sister who is too afraid to stand up to dad and have no parents. What does this new lady have? She has a man who does not call, care or as my mother begged him, wrote him and told him, “when I die, please take care of our girls”. That is what mom wanted and he has failed miserably in the 6 months since her death. I don’t care how old I am, him or her.

      I guess I thought dad would finally take some time to get to know me, the grandkids and spend time doing things he did not do all the time we grew up. He always worked or had something to do. I never got to really have my father to myself growing up and even more now. i have come to hate a man I don’t know after all. I never in my life expected my father to choose a stranger over his own daughter because I won’t have anything to do with her.

      So Girlfriend, I guess no one can have any sympathy for you or take your message and somehow change the way we really feel because you need to have a companion in your old age. Take up a club, but don’t take my dad now that my mom just died. Shame on you to the end of time. Shame on you.

  • Lisa B. says:


    You are the “Girlfriend” so you would not understand how their children feel. This is all about you not wanting to be alone, because he did not have enough time to understand his grief nor did any of the other family members. When two people are together for along period of time and one passes the other is not use to being alone. I personally feel that people should have enough respect for others to let the family grieve without bringing a new situtation into the mix. What people in your situtation need to realize it is not all about you, there are children, grandchildren, in-laws.

  • Susan says:


    I actually understand your frustration because you have “done nothing wrong” & you haven’t done anything wrong. Your words “so soon” after his wife died is the problem. Yes, he is lonely and yes, you are lonely and yes, you both deserve not to be lonely. But he wasn’t the only one affected upon his wife’s death as Lisa B. commented. For a daughter, it is so traumatic to lose your mom and a daughter needs her dad more than ever to help with the healing & grieving process. In my personal situation, my dad announced to me within weeks that he wanted to have an “intimate” relationship with an old friend of theirs. I would have had no problem with their “friendship” because I didn’t want him to be lonely – but my mother was a good mother & wife to him for 60 years, raised their 3 children together & helped him run a business for most of those years before retiring together. She was an exceptional cook, kept a spotless house, and was his best friend. Wasn’t she due a little more respect than this? Again, the problem is that it happened too soon – no time for him to grieve properly or me. If your dating this man is just that – going to dinner, catching a movie, and someone to confide in…. that is all fine & after a “respectful” time (my definition of this would be 6 months or more), than go for the intimate stuff. Just remember, Judi, the immediate family needs and deserves time before you can be accepted into their lives – don’t move in with Dad and don’t allow Dad to move in with you and please
    don’t attend any family functions until the rest of the family has had time to grieve and cope with their loss. You’re not doing anything wrong – your timing is just off.

  • Sad girl says:

    This website is great. It’s so nice knowing that there are people out there going through the same thing, and that I’m not alone. Thank all of you for your stories, but here’s mine…
    My mother passed away on October 30th, 2005, a week before my 17th birthday. My parents were married for 26 years. My momma lost a long battle with lung cancer, and her death hit me the hardest in the family. Her and I were so close. I pretty much had a break down. I attemped suicide several times, and quit caring anout myself. And on top of everything that was going on with my mommy, my dad and i hadn’t been getting along for a couple years now. This made my life about 1000x worse… to make a long story short, the storm passed and my dad and I’s relationship had gotten better over the two and a half years since my momma’s passing, and that’s what she would’ve wanted. Well, about 5 months ago he started dating a woman… who he met from one of my mom’s best’s friends. I have met her once… and she is a nice lady, but she’s not my mom. She just seems like she tries too hard. My dad spends every waking minute with her when he’s not working, and doesn’t see me anymore and rushes me off the phone when I call him, and has almost completely quit calling me. IT REALLY BOTHERS ME… he’s also always with her kids!! Who are all about my age. This kills me. They never invite me to their outings together, and when I ask him why I can’t come sometime, he blows me off. It absolutely makes me feel like I’m not wanted. He tells me not to bring my mom up in front of her. And this is so offensive. I’m fine with my daddy being happy, but I’M HIS DAUGHTER, his wife’s child, his first child. He should worry about his own 20 year old daughter, not her kids. I don’t know what to do. I feel horrible about the situation. He acts like I’m his past, and I don’t matter as much as I did when my mom was here. I guess I just need to keep asking God for his help.

  • Susan says:

    Sad Girl,

    Wow…I really feel your pain. What I would do is to call your dad and tell him you would like to sit down and talk to him alone. When you meet alone, you should tell him how you feel excluded from his life & how hurt and sad you are. Her children came with the package – he is trying to have a relationship with her & she is bringing her kids along. Maybe you could try to get to know her and her children. Everyone has pain & heartaches in their lives – I’m sure they have it too.
    We each have our own stories deep inside our hearts. Concentrate on trying to get to know them and let them see you as the person you are…..give it some time and when the relationship has progressed, you could confide your feelings to her about your loss of your mother. Try to be upbeat when you are around them.
    Sometimes it is very hard to be upbeat when you feel such dispair but give it your best shot. You and your dad need to talk – ask him to tell you how he is feeling too since he lost your mom. You’re so young to be going through so much pain – don’t give up on working through this though. Try not to show anger toward your dad but approach him with kindness. Always remember, what you give out is what you get back!

  • CURIOUS says:

    I would like for someone to tell me when its ok to date after a spouse dealth. When a spouse leave this earth what is the widow or widower is suppose to do with the remaining of their life. Are they just suppose to just live their life around their kids and other relatives without a mate. While their kids and other relatives have mates and continue on with their lifes. Can so one please explain this to me. I don’t understand. I understand that the lose of a mother or father is painful. I lost my father. However I was not angry with my mother whenshe start dating. However that does not mean the living spouse is to stop their life. You have to remeber they are human. Everyone needs some type of companionship. So why are people so angry when your mother or father wants to continue their life

  • Anna says:

    Thank you to everyone for sharing their stories and opinions. It really helps me try and understand my situation.

    First I’d like to say to Curious that I don’t think there is a specific length of time that makes it ‘ok’ to date after a spouse dies. I think it really depends on the spouse and family and friends of the deceased. I realize that the surviving partner may not be used to being alone and may feel the need to begin dating before the rest of the family is ready but it is important for them to take into consideration how the other family members feel about it… if they don’t want to damage their current relationships.

    My father passed away in the spring of 2008 after being married to my mom for 40 years. My mom started dating someone just after Christmas and it came as a shock to me because within the weeks prior to Christmas she stated that she wasn’t ready to date anyone yet. Now, almost 4 months later they are still together. My sisters and I are not comfortable with this because it has become quite serious and it has also changed her personality. We have tried talking to her about it and voiced our concerns. She said that she values our opinions but beyond that nothing much was done. The lack of consideration for our feelings is slowly breaking up our relationship with her.

    I truly want her to be happy and have tried step back and look at the situation from an outsiders perspective but I am having great difficulty. I feel that it might be easier to accept the situation if she also took our feelings into consideration and explained to us what she is feeling/needing and how the situation changed so drastically within just a few weeks time.

    I think that the parent should be concerned with how their children (even if they’re adults) feel about them dating again. They should talk with them and truly take their feelings into account. It is even more of an insult if the child voices their concern and it is ignored because the parent can’t claim that they “didn’t know how you were feeling”. I realize that you can’t always make everyone happy and eventually you have to be in charge of your own happiness, but it is important to talk with those close to you and try to understand what they are feeling and also the reverse, have the children try and understand what the spouse is feeling.

    It’s during times of grief like these that we need the support of our family and friends, we don’t need to be torn apart by it.

  • Curious says:

    I guess I have it wrong Anna, I thought its was about what made my mom happy. Because she is human. I lost my father true enough and I was not ready for my mom’s friend trying to be my dad. Which my mom and her friend did say he was not there trying to replace my dad. He was just my mom’s friend and he was there for her which was ok with my brother and I. Please someone tell me if I’m wrong.

  • kev says:

    I lost my mother to cancer in November, my father enrolled in one of thoes dating web sites in December. Its April now and my dad has a new girlfriend he wants me to meet……wow.
    I put him off saying how about a rain check. I mean moms been gone for 5 months now and I have to meet the new misses? I’m just not up to dealing with that yet.
    I think he got mad at me for not jumping at the chance to meet her. my parents were married for 42 years. I understand that everyone needs someone, But i dont think it should be forced on the surviving kids/ relatives, at least not till their ready.
    Ive never really been close with my father and this seems to be driving more of a wedge between us. my mother had a dying wish for her ashes to be dispersed of in a specific manor and there was a plan to do this but now it has changed and i belive its because of new plans my father has made with his new girlfriend. Its like its no longer convient for him to do that. Maybe I’m being childish and selfish but a dying wish for a wife of 42 years should be honored don’t you think?

  • CURIOUS says:


    You are correct your dad should not force his new girlfriend on you at this time it is to early. However don’t be mad at him for having a friend. Just tell your dad you are not ready for that right now and you understand his needs. Also if his new girlfriend is a true freind she would understand also.

  • Jenny says:

    My mom just passed away 1 month ago this Aprilat the age of 50. She struggled with cancer for over 2 years. I held her hand while she took her last few breaths. It was truly the hardest thing I ever had to do. I can’t stop thinking about it. The way her throat was moving up and down struggling for air. Watching her stop breathing for 10 seconds and all of us thinking she was gone and all of a tsudden take a breath. I dream about and think about it constantly and it was very traumatizing to me.
    To make it worse my Dad moved 7 hours from all of us kids and we havent heard from him very often. I talked to him last night and he lets me know that he is already seeing someone. All he talked about was this womans body and how she works out everyday and she is model material. He talked about how she was the kind of person that back in the day he would normally rip her clothes off. I never heard my Dad talk about my mother that way …not the nasty remarks but simply talk about her beauty. I can’t believe that he is moving on this quick.
    And moving so far away. I understand him wanting to sell the house because mom died in it…but to move so far away! I explained to him that I’ll miss him because I won’t ever be able to make the trip due to my financial situation. He’s just leaving!!!!!!!!

    It feels like he is abandoning us! We kids need him. We just lost our mom , now we feel like we are losing him too! I feel like he is being selfish. I think that he is more worried about himself than us kids.Which I know that we are old enough to take care of ourselves but I feel that we need to be together right now. Its like mom was the glue that held the family together and now that shes gone….the family just went there seperate ways! And how dare him talk to me like this about the other woman. Like I really want to hear that crap!!!!!!!

    Someone help me with this. I’m not sure what to say to him or how to react to all of this.

    • lonnie says:

      People deserve to be happy but that does not mean they should forget their children. My dad does not spend Christmas or Christmas Eve with his family. It’s all about her family and that is what hurts. Eight months after my mother died my dad gave a woman a diamond. And they got married one year after my mother passed away. My parents were married 60 years. It’s been three years since my mother passed away and I am still finding it difficult to be around my dad and his new wife. I keep trying for my dad’s sake, but it hurts

  • denise says:

    I am so glad to have found this website. My dad died of cancer lung and colon November 2008. He was diagnosed last year March and just quickly got worse even started losing his memory walking around the house tearing curtains down we even had to hide his car keys he wanted to go to work. He was a workaholic. He pretty much worked up until he died. My dad dedicated his life to taking care of our family. We were not rich but we did not want for much. For much of my mothers life she did not have to work just take care of the family. For this I will be eternally grateful to him because even though this should be the norm for any family it’s not always that way. This is why is pains me to see my mother move on so soon 5 months later. Some people says thats long enough but i don’t feel that way. I have a right to my opinion. Another website I just left everyone was telling me to grow up, stop being selfish and thats her personnel affair. They said if they were in that situation they wouldn’t be selfish like me. The crazy part is they all had both parents in their lives. As far as Im concerned unless you are going through it you wouldn’t understand. Thats why i was so surprised and relieved to find people to talk to that can actually relate. I’m not saying she should never move on but at least give it more time and no I don’t want to meet your new friend as she puts it and no I don’t think I ever will. Did she ever stop to consider my feelings as well. I felt guilty when I said I don’t want to meet him, but since reading everyones comments I know im not an evil person for feeling that way. Anyone that knows me knows whenever you need something I’m there for you I will do my best to help. I take peoples feelings into consideration in any situation a lot of times before my own. Im a good mother a little over protective but i mean well and they know it and love me regardless. I just want to thank everyone for their postings. It really helps alot.

  • Cha says:

    My mom passed on in Jan/2009. In March, a recent widow called my dad and made contact. Now she is practically living at my parent’s house. She wonders how long “this” will last until we accept her. We had to ask my dad if he could fit us into his schedule because they are soooo busy doing stuff. He’ll take a day off from her here and there because of our special request. Finally, once we visited our parents’ home and we could comfortably sit and chat again with our dad without this woman hanging around. When he is sick, he’ll check in daily for advice(we’re health professionals) but otherwise, it seems an effort to check in .
    She is making herself at home. One of her friends has a special arrangement with her “new” husband. They only spend week-ends together and during the week they are at their respective homes but she is now entitled to his pension. (he has cancer)
    I fear this woman has it all figured out. She is creating the need and doesn’t like to be alone. She is needy and always in our face. Maybe they suit each other if they are that mixed up!
    Dad bought a convertible and they go cruising around town… Mom’s ashes aren’t even spread yet. He just doesn’t get it…..
    We are just trying to cope and move on but I’ll tell you, it was way too soon for us.
    Today, they went shopping for a bed. Ugh!! Save me the details..
    Ahh, this hurts… It feels mom’s memory is being tarnished and I want to make things right. What to do?

  • Cha says:

    My mom passed in Jan. A recent widow called my dad in March.. Is it possible these people are sometimes looking for financial gain? She found out through a friend that dad did this/had these kind of toys…. Loves his convertible and said to my sister that she wanted to take it to go see her daughter…… Ahh, can you imagine.

  • S.B says:

    My mother passed away about 3 years ago. Over these three years i’ve feel as the world is a very lonesome place without her and what i thought was a tight family was false. A little less then a year after my mother passed away my father went on a buiness trip and found himself a girl freind. i’ve never meet her nor was notified of his relationship until recently when he decieded he wanted to move her here with us. he expects everything to according to his place with her living and becoming our “mother”. i feel as though he hasnt repected me at all as he’s skipped most of the important things in my life to constantly go visit her. he lied to me before when i asked him of his relationship and goes off to see her whenever he wants. i feel as this home has nothing more to offer me and i should just leave it as soon as i can. i fear whats out there but i hate whats in here more.

  • Andrea says:

    My mother died from Leukemia in 2004, a year later I was shocked to find out my father was dating so soon. The woman who he choose to date knew the family and was not liked by mother. This felt like my father was purposely hurting my mother and myself along with my brother. This lead to many confrontations between the woman, my father, and myself. Many hurtful things were said between my father and myself where we stopped talking and strained our relationship. When my father finally broke up with this woman, we begun to work on talking again slowly.He then began dating another woman, who I am not completely comfortable with but have learned after experiencing the loss of my spouse in 2008, that what my father said about loving my mother no matter what and that even though he choose to date again he would love my mother no matter what and would do anything to be with her again. When I first heard this from my father I thought there is no way you love her or even did if you are replacing her. Now that I find myself in a situation where my husband passed away suddenly in his sleep leaving me to take care of our 2 yr. old son. I have gone through the grief process from both sides. I miss my husband with all of my heart and would do anything to have our life back and the way it used to be. I will love him forever and no one will take his place. He was the best father and husband I could ask for. Yet he would not want me to stop living, and he would not want for me to be unhappy. That is why I am able to see what my father meant by I can be dating someone and still love your mom and miss her. Because I find myself in the same situation. I am now dating a wonderful man and find myself missing my husband. I can love my life I had and respect that I need companionship and passion in my new life. I miss my husband everyday and would love for my son to be able to grow up with his father, but I know my husband would want for my son to grow up with a happy mother. So I concentrate on making myself and my son happy for right now.

    • megan says:

      Wow Andrea. After reading your post I felt like we were kindred sisters! Before and after my mother passing from leukemia my father was dating and later married my mother’s “best” friend from college. It was really rough, my mother actually talked to me about it days before her death-telling me to not be angry because dad was involved with this woman, that he would need someone when she was gone and that it was okay.
      In my case it turned out not so okay. My dad passed in 2004 and my stepmother inherited nearly all of my mother’s nestegg intended for her children.
      But for you being a young widow I think it’s astounding how you understand both sides of love and death now and like you said you can date and love someone again while at the same time never forgetting your first husband. What a huge insight on your part, death has made you more understanding and aware, not less. Bravo!
      I wish you great success in love, motherhood, and life.

      • Andrea says:

        Thank you. Death is a hard and complicated thing. I feel that I am always comparing the difference in my grieving from these two very significant loses in my life. From this I feel like I have been able to step back and gain some insight, and this insight has brought me some healing and clarity. I am so sorry for your losses and the situation you have came upon. I wish you the best.

  • Meg says:

    I’m so glad to see that I am not the only daughter dealing with not only the loss of her mom, but the loss of her father (to another woman) as well. It is almost like two deaths in one.

    My mom died in December 2008, almost a year ago. My dad began dating a woman about 5 or 6 months later. I was appalled and shocked when he told me. He cried and acted all upset when he told me, asking for my understanding. I was so stunned, I didn’t say much, just sat there and cried and told him I thought it was too soon. I wish now I would have gone nuts on him and really screamed to him what and how I really felt.

    He is with the woman constantly. He leaves work and goes straight to her house and is there until bedtime. He basically just uses his and my mom’s house to sleep in. I can never reach him on the phone in the evenings (we live in two different towns). I cooked a huge Thanksgiving meal and had a lot of family over…I worked really hard on it, and honestly, if I had done what I wanted to, I would have buried my head under the covers all day and pretended it wasn’t a holiday, just as I wish I could do for Christmas. Anyway, I tried really hard, invited him, of course. And the whole time he was here, he was watching the clock and couldn’t wait to leave to get back to “her”. He left immediately after we ate. It was like he was here to fulfill some sort of obligation or something. Like he didn’t really want to be here. Since I was in the kitchen most of the time cooking and preparing the meal, I didn’t even get to talk to him at all. He kept complaining that the food wans’t ready soon enough, that it was taking too long, and kept telling everyone else that he had somewhere else to be. Then he started calling her on the cellphone. I didn’t know any of this until he left. He left immediatly after we ate. In fact, I wasn’t finished eating, I had just gotten up to help my aunt and was going back to finish eating when he said he was going.

    Since I can’t get him on the phone in the evenings, I have to call him at work. Of course we can’t talk there because his work phone is always ringing or someone is coming in his office and he has no problem quickly dismissing me. He has tried to give me the other woman’s phone number and told me to call him there. But what he doesn’t get is that I don’t want to talk to him in front of her. SHE IS NOT MY FAMILY. So basically I can’t talk to him at all except shallow, general chit chat type of conversation.

    I agreed to meet this woman one time just for him. I didn’t want to but I thought I’d try to be nice and meet her. Besides, honestly, I wanted to see what she looked like. (Shallow of me I know.) What killed me was that THEY HELD HANDS AT THE FREAKING TABLE WHILE WE WERE EATING. Really? I still can’t beleive it. She was so quiet and boring, nothing like my mom at all. My mom was vivacious and full of laughter and life. I am sure this woman was nervous, and really, she was nice enough. I actually kind of felt sorry for her. I really have no bad feelings for her, I am just hurt and mad at my dad for putting my family and me through this.

    While so many people say that life doesn’t stop when a spouse dies, what so many people don’t get is, the choices the remaining spouse makes not just affects them, but their ENTIRE FAMILY. They should use some decorum, show some respect for their children’s MOTHER, and think about the example they are setting for their GRANDCHILDREN. My daughter is a teenager, just learning about boys and relationships and THIS is the example she gets? When you lose someone you have loved for so many years dies, just REPLACE them with a new one. Nice.

    Anyway, I am furious about this entire situation. I am sick to death of reading on all these grief websites that life goes on, no one is expected to spend their life alone, blah, blah, blah…. That is NO EXCUSE for these newly widowed people to act like teenagers in their first love affair after their wife dies. I am sick of hearing about “It’s so lonely”… It is a sad day when a grown person can’t entertain themselves. I mean really? Read a book, watch a movie, a ballgame, get online, visit a friend or family member. I really feel sorry for the women these men date…it’s really not so much about that particular woman, believe me, they don’t need to feel special, these men are lonely and want someone with a PULSE. It is more about the widower than it is about whatever woman they happen to be dating. That is why I really can’t feel bad towards this woman…if it wasn’t her, it would be someone else.

    So that is the short version of my story. I won’t even go into the details of how he is doing EVERYTHING for this woman that my mom always wanted him to do and he didn’t. He’s doing it now. Does he not realize how incredibly hurtful this is to me?

    So I am basically stuck in this seething state of anger and resentment while also trying to deal with the grief of losing my mother. There are no words to describe the pain and emptiness I feel deep in the very pit of my being. How I struggle each and every day just to make it to bedtime and then get up and do it all over again, all while trying to be a good wife and mother.

    The very knowledge that my dad has “moved on” is like losing my mother all over again on a daily basis. Sure, I want him to be happy, but does he really have to be so doggone thrilled and gleeful about it? It’s almost like he’s loving that he gets a new woman. Every man’s dream, right? I am sickened.

    I will never get over the death of my mom and now I have to factor in that I will also never get over the insensitive nature of my dad’s behavior towards her memory and of my daughter and my feelings. It’s like salt in a gaping wound that will never heal. And the really bad part is, there is NOTHING that can ever change this. Even if he broke up with this poor lady today, it will never take away the harm that it has already caused. Never.

    So I guess that is the short version of my story. There is so much more, but no need to bore anyone with the details. Just more pain, more hurt, more sadness…I only hope I would never cause anyone the pain that this has caused me and my family. It’s as if, as long as HIS needs, HIS desires are met, to heck with EVERYONE else. We obviously don’t matter. at. all. Nice.

    The ironic thing about this is, if heaven forbid, the lady he is dating now were to pass away, how long does SHE think it would be before he were dating a new one? Not. Long.

    • Andrea says:

      It really does feel like you lose your father once he starts dating again. I was angry for a long time and this strained my relationship with my dad. Until I realized that I still had my dad and I don’t want to lose my dad if I still have a chance to have my father in my life. There are still times I am so angry at him for choosing his girlfriend, over his family. But for right now I am ok with at least being able to see my father periodically and trying. This wasn’t his fault he found himself in this situation just as we all have. I sometimes try to step back and look at both sides. It took a long time for me to be able to do this, and I am not perfect at this. We still have disagreements and I can’t stand to see him showing affection towards her, but I want to have a relationship with my dad. Because if he were to be gone tomarrow I would regret not trying. Not giving him a chance.

    • Jack says:

      I am a 41 yr old widower, father of three kids, daughter 8 and twin 6 yr. old boys, who lost his wife of 11 years, the last five she was sick and dying of colon cancer. I obviously don’t know your father’s situation but I offer condolances for your loss. I want to offer some perspective based on my experiences.

      Once you become a care-giver to a sick spouse, everything changes and changes in a way that children, even grown children can’t easily understand. The woman I married and loved did not even resemble the women who died after nearly five years of illness. It was profoundly lonely and its not just the loss of intimicy, it’s more then that.

      When your spouse is dying slowly, your grief process begins so much earlier then anyone around because you know where things will end and a part of you prays for it to end soon for her and for the selfish reason that caring for a dying spouse drains you in a way that you can’t possibly imagine and I already watched a younger brother die from leukemia at the age of 23.

      It’s been five months since she passed but I knew for nearly a year that she was going to die, it was a matter of time and that was that. Colon cancer is a terriblw way to die and I was with her every step of the way right up to the last moment of life. Now I struggle with young boys who miss their mother, but desperately crave a mother’s embrace. The way they gravitate towards any woman friend or family memeber is deeply sad.

      I don’t know how it happened but I met someone who was a friend of my wife’s and we just started to fall for one another in way that I didn’t think was possible, not ever, especially not after literally years of lonliness, maybe that’s what your father feels. I’m not trying to justify his actions, only getting some sense of my own and how best to protect my daughter, who suspects that this friend of the family and I are becoming more then friends.

      We are not open about things at all, but a feeling is not always easy to hide. I expect that whether or not my daughter is 8 or 10 or 15 or even 25, she would never be supportive of me dating, let alone falling in love and she clearly is not happy and has begu acting out a bit.

      I was a faithful husband and am a responsible, loving father, but I after burying a brother and a wife, I know that life is too precious to waste. I don’t want to feel guilty for wanting to be happy and make no mistake whether you are a dreamy-eyed 16 year old or a 41 yr old man, the feeling of falling in love takes your breath away.

      I am on-line trying to find information and guidance on how best to reconcile my love for my daughter, the need my boys have for a mother figure (they absolutely love her by the way), and how to explore the possibilities of a life with this woman. Who is a wonderful and caring person. It’s easy to say forget about her and watch a ballgame, but what if you watched a ballgame or read books for 5 years and stood by as the woman you loved became someone else and just withered away in a cruel manner.

      Hope is a powerful thing and joy in the aftermath of pain can bring you back from the very depths of despair. I hope for your father’s and your sake that you can work this out, because to lose a daughter’s love is something that is unimaginable so I wish you the best. I will continue to search for answers and hope that I find a way to help my family heal from this tragedy. Best of luck.

    • Chris says:

      Hi Meg,
      I am in the same situation. No soon after my mom passed, my mothers 1st cousin started coming around. From what I’ve been told, she has been after my father for quite some time. I’ve also been told that my mother didn’t like her. I can see why I never ran into this 1st cousin.
      She be-friended me & acted like we were the best of friends. No soon after I started to notice her trying to get “physcially” close to my father. It made me sick. She would show him her new necklace or have him smell his perfume (not on her wrist) right in front of me. I found her to be disrespectful & a very good liar.
      My father is with this person every single day & calls him at least 3 times a day. I wish I knew how to get passed this. It eats away at me every single day. I hate the fact that someone like her came into our lives only to get what she was after for many years. I even find myself wishing bad things happen to her. Has anyone been able to move on from the pain of their parents getting involved with someone else so soon?

    • Christy says:

      I know how you feel. My father started seeing another woman about 5 or 6 months after my mother passed away and the sad part is the lady has known my family for years and has been our church member for years. My dad feels that since he lost his wife, it is all about his loss; he does not realize this his kids are hurting and while I know he is lonely, his behavior is unacceptable. He ignores his kids and grandkids for the most part and seems so involved in himself to take out true, quality time for us. And while I understand my mother’s death has taken a toll on us all, I don’t feel that my dad gave himself adequate time to grieve and as a result is acting in a very selfish manner. Me and my sibling have tried to talk to him, but to no avail, it’s all about him!!! I just want him to do things in a way to respects my mother’s memory….that’s all!!! I don’t think that is asking for much, but I am in a place now, where I think I am going to have to cut him out of my life. I will always love him and be there for him, but I don’t know him and to be honest, I feel like I lost both parents when my mom died.

      • Shari Anton says:

        I know it is 2017 and my mom passed 5 months ago, but your message was as if I wrote it. It hit the mark with me. It was exactly how I feel and sadly where I am at. I feel I have lost my parents and that my mother’s life and death have been so disrespected by his need to be with this lady who worked in the dentist office where my parents attended for 17 plus years. I feel my father has betrayed me, failed to live by the promise he made mom to be there for his two girls, and his words that he would never get another woman when mom died.

        I feel the woman lacks the very character by doing what she had done, even though dad and my sister feel she helps him, she makes him happy. Our own happiness comes with a price and if that price is our own kids, there is nothing worth losing them. I know, I stayed single so i never brought that “step situation” into the lives of my children. They were the priority, my need to be with a man or re-marry, was not the priority. My kids were.

        I am 56 and still feel the same way. I lost my mother and need my father. He checked out. He is 20 again and mom has been gone for 5 months.

        See a pattern, most of the blogs are about dads who took up “women” for happiness or coping. Weakness is not an excuse and happiness is not always about ones self.

    • Christine says:

      Thank you for being so honest in your comments. I have felt exactly the same way weird – even down to the comments- but it is my mom that accessed a dating site 3 1/2 months after my stepdad for 25 years passed suddenly and unexpectedly. She had dates lined up and then after the second, started regularly dating. After 3 weeks went away to his winter home for a long weekend. Only told 1 sibling…..I found out by mistake – totally devastated….she has been hiding it and has now “come” out – once again without telling her children and 4 stepchildren…….the total disregard for feelings, honesty and integrity has consumed me and destroyed our relationship = perhaps for good. So sad……a horrible lesson of how not to act…..and it has only now been 7 months.

      Thanks again for sharing – it is nice to know I am not alone.

  • Carol says:

    Wow. . .I can’t believe I found this website. So many of you have stories that resound with what is going on in my life right now. I lost my mom to septic shock after routine gallbladder surgery at the end of October, ’09. Her death came as a major shock to us. She was an active, vibrant 72 year old woman who had lots of plans for the future.

    She and my dad were married for over 54 years and had the picture of a beautiful, loving marriage, one that any couple would aspire to have.

    When my mom died, my biggest sadness was not for myself, but for my dad. I wondered how he would ever be able to cope without my mom. They were true soulmates. He read to her every night until she fell asleep. She always fixed his plate. They served each other in love.

    So, to say I was blown away by my dad’s behavior two weeks after my mom’s funeral, is mild. I was out of town on business. I called my dad to check up on him. He told me he was upset because my younger sister had hung up on him. When I asked him why, he said he told her that he had been talking to a friend of his and my mom’s since the funeral, and that they were going to get together. He just wasn’t the kind of person who could sit around moping and be sad. He said he LOVED (his emphasis) this woman and that they had plans to be together. He made it clear that he had already made a commitment and promise to marry this woman somewhere down the road.

    We have been trying to talk to him. . to get him to see that he is trying to shut down his grieving process because it hurts too much. He just can’t see it. He said this woman is the only light at the end of a dark tunnel.

    I don’t think we’ve made any headway with him. He just doesn’t mention this woman’s name to us anymore. I am just mad at him, I guess. I love him so much, and no, I don’t want him to be alone the rest of his life, but my mom deserves so much more than this. I don’t want him to make a huge mistake. The person who talked about teenage behavior is right. Even my 18 year old daughter says about her granddad, “He’a acting like a teenage who just broke up with his girlfriend and is in a rebound relationship.” Only, his girlfriend was his wife for 54+ years. . . .

    • Carol says:

      Update: I’m here spending the week with my dad. He has been seeing this woman. . has met her in a neighboring town two times, and they have talked on the phone most days. This woman is playing him, I feel sure. He tells me what a wonderful person she is, but I don’t buy it, and neither do my sisters. She is playing games, encouraging him and then telling him not to call her any more. Then she calls him back saying she just needs to hear his voice. He says that she is acting this way because she has been hurt by other men. My sisters and I say that she is acting this way because she is manipulative and plotting. He so does not need this drama, but I don’t know what to do at this point. I’m not his gatekeeper. I have told him how I feel, and that is all I can do. It’s driving me crazy.

      • Carol says:

        It’s over. My dad broke up with this woman. I think he can now begin to start processing his grief over my mom’s death (we have just now passed the three month mark since her funeral.) Thank God he finally saw through her manipulation before it was too late.

        My advice to anyone going through something like this is to not alienate yourself from your parent by shaming them or speaking ill of the person they are seeing. It will do no good. Listen to them, support them, be there for them as much as they will let you, and pray, pray, pray.

        I thought I would be happier, but I’m not. I don’t want my dad to be sad or lonely, but his wife of 54 years, the love of his youth is gone. He can’t go around the sadness or loneliness he feels. He will now have to go through it. My sisters and I will be there to support him and love him through it. And perhaps, someday, he will meet a woman who shares his values and can make a life with him.

        • Carol says:

          Well. . . . I opened my huge mouth too quickly. . .it wasn’t three days after my dad called it quits with this woman, that she was calling him. . . AGAIN. . .and he fell right back into this terrible situation. I should have known. It is all I can do to keep from having a blow-up with this woman. I have never spoken to her or met her. Well, that is not exactly true. She called two nights before my mom’s funeral wanting to talk to my dad, and we were having a family meeting with the pastor to plan my mom’s service. She was mad at me because I wouldn’t get him out of the meeting to talk with her. The nerve!!!

          She has told my dad he is dull, boring, all he wants to do is work, she doesn’t want him to take care of her, to buy her things, to keep calling her. She has told him he has a dirty mind. She gets mad at him on every account. He can’t do anything right in her eyes. She says he is trying to turn her into my mom. So he breaks up with her. . . then she calls him, bawling her eyes out, wanting him back.


          • Carol says:

            Update: My dad officially proposed and she accepted. They will be getting married September 10. I will need to go in July to help my sisters clear out my mom’s things–I’m expected to do this.

            It will be 6 months on April 24 since my dear mom left us.

  • Patti says:

    I am glad I came across this website and I’m not alone. My mother passed away from cancer in 2007. After her funeral he was really short and didn’t want to stay in town. He has a house here in FL and one in KY,so he felt the need to go to KY to get away for a while. It was completely understandable. Two months after being back in his home state I got a call saying he’s “talking” with a lady. I thought this was ok since he was alone and needed someone to talk to so he wouldn’t be out of his mind. Then a few weeks it was “I’m thinking about marrying her” I completely felt he just erased the last 26 years with my mother and is replacing her with this stranger. 5 months went by and I didn’t hear any news until my brother was upset that my dad sent his son a check with BOTH of their names on it. What a way to find out that your dad’s married and shares a joint bank account with a stranger! So ever since this happened I’ve been cordial but I don’t accept her. It’s an insult to me and my dad doesn’t even care. He claims he wants to do what he wants before he dies. “Moving on ” with life as he says. I think all the dad’s that want us to “accept” them so quickly in our lives should stop and take a minute to think about what it is doing to their children.

  • Nancy says:

    I lost my husband last year. I was married for 24 years, had a familly and it began to grow. No one will understand what we widows/ers go thru unless you walk in our shoes. I don’t understand what my children are feeling because I have not lost a parent so to sit here and say that I understand what you are going thru I can’t. And you children may not understand what we go thru. All I can say is that there are many reasons why we want to date and go on with our life. My children were not happy that I told them I was dating, they were hurt and angry. Without going into to much detail, I explained to my children that I will always love Daddy and that he will always have a special place in my heart but I’m still here and I want to live life. Yes it is about my happiness but my family does come first.
    I was not looking for this it just happened. He is someone from my past and I enjoy his company very much and I love spending time with him. He is not here to replace their father nor is he to replace him as my husband. He is someone I enjoy spending time with and someone to hang out with. He makes me smile again! 🙂

  • Robyn says:

    It felt so good to get on this website and read that so many other people are experience the same things that I am. I lost my mom on March 24, 2008 after her very hard fought battle with colon cancer. My mom and dad were married for 30 years. He was her caretaker and he held her hand to the very end. All I have known for 26 years of my life is the love between my mother and my father.
    After her death my husband and I continued to live with my dad to keep him company and ease the loneliness. We became extremely close with my father and spent countless nights in the living room together playing games.
    Now, almost 2 years later he has begun dating a woman fairly seriously. So living here with him has made it very hard on me. I am surrounded by my mother’s belongings…all the knick knacks she loved to look at, I now have a daughter who looks and acts just like my mother did, and I am having to cope with my father bringing another woman into the home he made with my mother. It’s dragging me down, and I know things can be so much worse but I can’t imagine him marrying this woman and her living among my mothers things, and even moreso, putting her own personal touch on this house. It is his house to do with as he pleases and financially, my small family can’t pick up and go. So now I am stuck with discovering my “new” relationship between my father and myself where we barely talk to each other, and see each other less. It has started the grieving process all over again not only with still dealing with the loss of my mother and knowing she won’t meet her granddaughter until she’s greeted at the pearly gates, but I’m now dealing with this so called “loss” of my father…of less time etc. I’m an only child so he’s all I have besides my husband and my daughter.
    Regardless of all my feelings though, a daughter cannot fill all the emptiness that is felt. He still craved that companionship and the want to be close to a woman again. As much as I understand all this, I still find it so incredibly difficult to accept him dating. And the awkwardness of discussing my mom in front of her is almost unbearable but it is inevitable that my mom is going to come up because my daughter WILL know who her grandmother was.
    I have been lucky because he hasn’t tried to cram her down my throat, although it feels like that living with him. But he has for the most part been very respectful for my feelings so I have returned the favor. I just feel so uneasy with her…like she is hiding something really big and I just can’t put my finger on it…chalk it up to resentment as this article says or jealousy or whatever, I just can’t get over it. I just pray so much that the lady he is dating is the woman she says she is and that she and I can find a way to bond over common interests. I truly hope that all of you can find peace with your fathers dating again, and I am so very thankful to have found this site. God bless you all.

  • rae hook says:








    • Carol says:

      I know! My dad has said things about his sex life to me as well. Totally inappropriate! I would NEVER dream of discussing my sex life with him. I don’t want to hear these things, nor do you, I am sure.

      Good luck.

  • Melanie says:

    You think your Dad’s behavior is bizare………. My mom passed away at age 53 from colon cancer. Dad started dating Stepmother #1 who happened to be my mother’s best friend immediately (if not before my mom died). Dad has us get rid of Mom’s clothes the very weekend of her funeral. He & Mom’s best friend were married 6 months after Mom died. We were devastated and weren’t really allowed to grieve because he wanted us to be one big happy “blended” family. Well he & Stepmother # 1 were married for 20 years when she passed away. Second verse, same as the first. He marries another old family friend. They were married 6 years when Dad died. He had changed his will so Stepmother #2 can live in his house as long as she chooses to do so. We both live right next door to Dad’s old home place. We see her 6 kids, 40 grandkids, ex-daughter-in-laws & all kinds of rif-raf coming & going & trashing Dad’s house. Who do they call when something tears up? Me & my sister who actually own the house these deadbeats are living in. Alas, my father is haunting me from his grave. So cheer up girls – you could be dealing with multiple step families. It definitly could be worse.

  • Joanne says:

    Most of the adult children of parents who are dating after a reasonable amount of time of the passing of a spouse, are in a mode of it is “all about me” and not about my parent. You need to get a grip on your own life and let your parents be human beings. Does your parent tell you who you should and should not date, live with or be married to? What makes you all think you have the right to tell your parent what they can and cannot do in their own home and how they should live the rest of their life? Would it make these adult children happier if their remaining parent curl up in a ball in the corner, wear black everyday and sit in the house the rest of their life? So, your parent is moving on and has found a new love. What is wrong with that? Don’t you want them to be happy? or is it all about you and what you want?

    • Bonnie says:

      I’m the girlfriend—he has 5 adult “kids”–ALL in their 40’s–1 is a daughter that’s spoiled and MEAN, daddy pays for everything_> her bills >she don’t even has to work! Daddy has “made her co-dependent” on him for everything! BUT she feels entitled to the rest of him and what he does and who he dates. Her dad I have know from teen years–we were an item, and still have the same attraction we did then. HEAD OVER HEELS in love, even now.
      This daughter has put so much stress on her dad–disapproving of our relationship-its sick! WE ARE IN OUR 70’S—! These adult kids need to mind their own business–get a life, get a job>support their self. This dad has did it all for them–sorry his 45 year old marriage is over–SHE DIED 3 YEARS AGO. All should be over by then–leave him alone or he will get sick—KIDS! PERFECT example of entitlement in this society—–ME ME ME, and I’m not talkin’ about me.

  • Jodi says:

    Joanne- I think that was uncalled for- especially when everyones situation is different. People are here looking for comfort, and you bash them. What is wrong with you. And on top of this, if you actually read everyones comments, most of these people want the parent to be happy, but they are just not ready to meet their parents new friend. They are not asking their parent to not see this person, they are just wanting their parent to understand that they are not ready to accept them into their lives- just yet.

    My mother in law passed away 5 months ago. My husband & his sisters were so close with her and their father. As it has only been 5 months since they lost their mother, their father has starting seeing another woman. A woman who he has known from a long time ago. My husband understands that his father needs this companionship and is not angry with him for wanting to be with this woman. What is hard for him is that his father wants him to accept this so soon- wants to bring her over to watch our kids and have dinner together. She lives in Florida so he traveled there a couple times to visit her- and he talks about her and her family and is very happy- which is great- but has done stuff with her family and grandkids, that he would never do back home with us.

    My point is- as we are accepting his new friend- we are not ready to meet her, or allow her to be a part of our family. We are fine with him being with her, but cant handle her visiting in my mother-in-laws home… sitting in her chair….

    Although he is ready….. we are just not. We can accept that he wants this new relationship, we just wish he would accept that we are just not ready to be a part of it.

    • Carol says:

      Amen, Jodi! You spoke my thoughts exactly! I basically have had to wash my hands of the situation. I love my dad but it hurts too much to hear him exclaim his great love for this woman at this point. The 24th will be four months since my mom’s death. She doesn’t even have a headstone on her grave yet. Her shoes still sit in the entry way of the house and her glasses, hand lotion and chapstick are still are her nightstand.

      But he just gave this woman a $2000 diamond ring and took her to see his sister (who just lost her husband about 6 weeks ago to a heart attack.)

      And just like your FIL, my dad goes and spends incredible amounts of time with this woman, and my mom had to beg for any time she got from my dad. He always had too much work to do when she wanted to go somewhere–to see her grandkids and children.

  • Julie says:

    My mom died suddenly from a pulmonary embolism 2 1/2 years ago. I am still having a hard time coping with her death. We were very close; she was my best friend. My father and I have had a much more tumultuous relationship. We talk, but are not close. My mom and dad were married for about 45 years and it wasn’t always a happy one.

    Anyhow, my 73 year-old dad seemed to “move on” rather quickly after my mom’s death. I suspect he was dating again within a year after my mom died. About 8 months or so ago, he informed me that he was going out-of-town to meet a woman he had meet on an online dating site who lived in a nearby town. I was quite angry when I heard about this and we never again spoke of it.

    Well, a few days ago, my dad tells me that he is going to Florida next week with a “woman friend” of his (he never would have taken my mom to Florida). I have no idea who this woman is nor do I want to know.

    I am left feeling very angry and I don’t know why. It’s not like I want to be angry or that I want my dad to spend the rest of his life in mourning. Furthermore, if it had been the other way around (i.e., my dad had died instead of my mom), then I would have actually encouraged my mom to get out and meet someone! So, I don’t know why I can’t feel the same way about my father. My brother just thinks I’m being selfish. What’s wrong with me?

    • Carol says:

      Hi, Julie. (My sister’s name is Julie, too.) I feel your pain.

      I don’t know why this hurts us so much. I think part of it, for me, is that I feel like if I accept my dad having a new woman in his life, I am being disloyal to my mom. I, too, was very close to my mom.

      As a woman and a wife and mom myself, I feel very sad when I think how quickly my dad replaced my mom and professed his undying love for this new woman so quickly. If my husband were to do the same, the thought of it makes me very sad. I wouldn’t want my husband to be alone the rest of his life, but I would want for him to have the time it takes to grieve properly and to give our kids the time they need.

      I feel like you. My dad does things with his new woman that he never would take the time to do with my mom. She would have loved the attention he is giving to his girlfriend. Perhaps our dads feel guilty somewhat for things that were left undone with their deceased wives and this is their second chance to do it right.

      My dad, who is almost 74, is also just realizing that he is aging and I think he is grabbing for something to make him feel young and vital again, and this new exciting relationship is doing it for him although it has broken his daughters’ hearts.

      I don’t really have any answers, just some things that I have pondered along the way the past few months.

      Hope all works out for you and that you find some peace.

      • DK says:

        Thank you Julie for your post. This is exactly how I am feeling right now. My mom passes away last July. They were both diagnosed with Cancer within a day of each other…Dad Colon, Mom Lung and then we found out Mom also had an aortic aneuyism that could burst anytime. No good way to treat it. Within 4 months of her diagnosis, she was gone! Dad went thru surgery and treatment and is now cancer free. We, siblings were there daily for them as they went through this and Dad was very needy, calling me 3 to 4 times a day, wanting me to come over and sit with him. I did because I loved him and felt so very sad for him losing mom and dealing with his own cancer. Now he has found a lady friend, a very nice woman his age and of the catholic faith like him. Their faith is very important to both of them. So why am I finding it so difficult? You summed it up in this line especially “The very knowledge that my dad has “moved on” is like losing my mother all over again on a daily basis. Sure, I want him to be happy, but does he really have to be so doggone thrilled and gleeful about it? It’s almost like he’s loving that he gets a new woman. Every man’s dream, right?”” That is the way my dad is acting and I hate it! Then I remember my mom saying ” the second wife always gets treated better” after several of her friends husbands remarried after losing their spouse. SO anyway I don’t know how to get over this feeling but am very thankful I am not the only one out there feeling that way. Thanks again for sharing.

  • Monica says:

    My mother-in-law passed away May 2009. My husband’s stepfather has been in his life since he was five years old. His parents (mom and stepdad) were married for 25 years. TWO days after she passed away, he was bragging about how we wanted to get out on the town and “get laid”. My husband and I were so shocked that we got sick. My husband and father-in-law were working together in a family print shop and had been for seven years. That same day, one of the part time workers called while we were there at his house (Irene) and showed up 30 minutes later. The first thought in our minds was that they were seeing each other. We left heartbroken and grief-stricken. Not only did he lose his mother but his stepdad was living it up laughing and smiling as if he’d won the lottery. He claimed that their marriage had been difficult for about 5 years and that my mother-in-law would treat him very badly when they were home alone. According to him, he had already grieved over her and had moved on.

    My father-in-law bragged one week later that he slept with three different women. We took it very hard, to say the least. In July 2009, my father-in-law began dating Irene and one month later, we found out that they were opening up another shop between the two of the them and were opening it the next day. I was so angry I blew up. Which was the first time I had done so in front of my in-law(s). My husband was witnessing all of this at work but hadn’t been told of this new shop until the day before it was due to open. I felt such resentment towards my father-in-law because I had tried to accept openly welcome Irene as a part of our new family picture to preserve the family and to have this kind of thing done so childishly behind my husband’s back was just too much for us. He was not there for my husband as my husband went through the grief that his mother’s death left. My husband also feared that now that his mother was gone, his stepdad would cast him aside. I asked my father-in-law about this and he said he never would do such a thing. I guess I just have a hard time understanding him. He’s always been eccentric. He says something but doesn’t always reassure through his actions. He focuses his energy on what is right in front of him and never really considers how he is affecting anyone else. He says that if you grieve over someone’s death, it is because you are not right with God. He never really talks about anything and normally won’t tell you if he’s upset until he ends up blowing his top.

    Communicating with him is like trying to squeeze blood from a turnip. We do all the footwork when it comes to trying to maintain a relationship. I call him and try to keep in touch and he gives only one word answers to my attempts at conversation. My husband says this is normal for him and says that he “is ok with it”. My husband is an only child and we have no children ourselves. I don’t want him to feel abandoned or cast aside. Maybe I am looking too much into this. Now that times are hard, he’s working at Wal-mart and my father-in-law is working the original shop and his girlfriend is having high success at the second shop. My father-in-law never put in the kind of enthusiasm and energy into the original shop that he has with the second one. Too much change and no way to navigate through it or interpret it.

  • Todd M. Paxman says:

    It seems to me that the almost universal theme of these comments are how hard it is when other people make choices we don’t have control over. My wife of 14 years committed suicide just over a year ago, leaving me with 4 children ages 12 and under. Does that sound like someone else making a choice over which I had no control? You bet. Did it make me angry at her? You better believe it did. Does it still affect my life? It will every day until I die. And without a doubt, it will affect the lives of our children even more profoundly. My responsibility now, and mine alone, mostly, is to see that my children have the best chance of success in life.

    One thing I have learned, and that many of the above commenters have not yet accepted, is that I cannot predict how I will feel in the future. Seeing comments like “I will never accept this” just makes me laugh. How short-sighted and petty is that? Did you ever think you would be grieving like you are? Were you able to predict how this would feel? Of course not. So how, after your few months of experience, do you think yourself qualified to predict your feelings years into the future? Give me a break. When my wife shot herself, I felt abandoned; I thought I would never be able to trust anyone again, especially a woman. But guess what? I was totally wrong–that was temporary. I could overcome that. It just takes work; maybe lots of work, but you can do it! Don’t be so hard on yourself!

    Now a word to those of you that think “your dad” or “your mom” or whoever is moving on too soon, and cite for evidence “it has only been 2 years,” or “5 months,” or “1 year,” or whatever. There is no objective timeline that you can use to say it has been long enough, not long enough, etc. It will be different for everyone. I, as a father of young children FOR WHOM I AM RESPONSIBLE, have to be sensitive to the fact that it may be longer for them than for me. However, I do not have to be as sensitive to my in-laws, because they are adults, and I am not responsible to them. Do you get what I am trying to say?

    Yes, it is right to be sensitive. Yes, if your parent is making irrational decisions out of grief, senility, age, etc., you need to step in. Otherwise, you need to step back. Take care of yourself first. The problem is most likely with yourself–it almost always is, you know. Don’t think you know it all, because it is your first time, too.

  • dee says:

    I found this site a little late, but thank you all for sharing your stories.

    My parents were in a small plane crash 5 years ago, and mom died from her burns. Dad was burned badly on the face and arms, but survived. I slept every night for 3 months in the hospital with him bc he couldn’t talk or use his arms to alert the nursing staff to his needs. My dad’s brother and I moved in with him and for 2 years we took care of feeding, bathing, clothing him until he could slowly do these things for himself. My parents were married for 39 years so I only knew them together.

    3 years ago he met someone at a doctor’s office and brought her over one night to introduce us. She seemed nice enough. 20 years ago she, too, was in an accident that almost killed her. She was my age and plastic-surgeried from head to toe. Huge fake boobs, huge fake lips, and annorexic-like 95 pounds with these huge double d’s that made her look like a porn star. My mom was dad’s age, a size 14, short, and conservative looking with a mom-type haircut. 20 minutes into our meeting she seemed stoned, or drunk. She would repeat herself, tell weird stories, slur her speach. I was immediately put off but whatever it’s his life, right?

    2 nights later, dad wasn’t home and I asked my uncle where he was and I was told that “(girlfriend) hit some poor 18-year-old on his bike and killed him” and dad was going to be the go between with the police-to save her ass basically. We both knew it was her fault-she was just so stoned when we met her. That night she came to our house from the accident scene and never left. That was almost 3 years ago. Add to that all kinds of weird girlfriend moments-her wearing my clothes without asking, going through my personal things, falling asleep standing up, falling asleep at the dinner table, falling asleep at other peoples houses at parties, etc. Mumbling, repeating herself, not eating but complaining about her weight to everyone including fat people (95 pounds!!!), and leaving pills everywhere-not in bottles but on countertops-Xanex, Valium, pain killers, appetite suppressants even though she told me she never takes any meds.

    Sadly, I got engaged, married, pregnant, had baby, and lost my dearest grandpa all with her by my dads side which made me miss my mom even more. She also managed to monopolize every situation with her own drama (example: she lost her license for the vehicular manslaughter 2 days before my wedding and dad and people that were supposed to help me with the wedding ended up driving her around, taking her to hair appts, buying groceries for the out-of-towners dinner at dads house which she never prepared bc she was in court so my mother-in-law had to make it, etc., taking valuable helpers away from me-the bride-who was doing/making everything herself to save money).

    Suddenly dad was cramming her down my throat even pawning her off on me when he was tired of listening to her but I could not stand being with her and as time went on it became really obvious that I didn’t want anything to do with her. Why would I? I’m not dating her. Unfortunately, dad’s answer to all this was telling me not to come by because girlfriend will be there and “I know you two don’t get along”. The reality of all this is I can’t let them watch the baby bc he is physically incapable and she is drugged up all the time. I don’t like hanging with her because all she talks about is my weight, my skin, and repeated stories about things I don’t feel comfortable about (example: your father doesn’t want me to wear clothes to bed. WHAT?? Keep it to yourself, lady!!). I understand he has to get on with his life but he picked the first thing that came along and I think he feels like he has to settle because of his facial/body disfigurments. But to do it by never seeing/visiting your only daughter and grandchild? I feel like I’m losing him, too.

    So in my mom’s house, surrounded by her beautiful knick-knacks, is this woman with no job, no prospects (she seems a little brain damaged), and no sign of getting better. Recently dad has been in and out of hospital with weird symptoms and she’s telling people I don’t care about my dad bc I’m not by his side for all of it (I’m in another state and I have a job, a husband, and a 18 month old). I fly down as often as I can but this last time he told me not to come down bc (girlfriend) will be there.

    I am so hurt by all of this. I feel like my dad is picking her crazy over our hstory together. I miss my dad-and mom-so much.

  • dee says:

    oh and forgot to mention when I first met her I googled her and found she had 3 DUIs already. And I saw her mugshots-she was smiling in one of them. Who smiles in a DUI mugshot? That’s when I started really being suspicious of her.

  • Sonia says:

    I just found this website…reading through all your comments made me feel better.I am not the only one feeling lost and angry! My parents were married for 45 years and my mom died of colon cancer. She was sick for 17 months. My dad met a woman one month after my mom’s passing but they ended up just being friends. After one year of my mother’s passing, while snowbirding in Florida, he met a woman from Belarus who can barely speak English…we are worried that she is after his money and citizenship. My dad does not see any of that and trust this woman who can barely put three words in English together without looking in a dictionary. He is imposing her on us and is threatening us–he says we have everything to lose (he is the one with two daughters and three grand-children!). He does not listen. We told him that our grieving process is not done and we are not there yet…he does not care. He is only thinking of himself. It’s like I lost my family. It will never be the same.

    I miss my mom….


  • kimmer says:

    I have been reading through previous posts and feeling much better that I am not alone. I lost my mother in November 2009 to heart disease. My dad started dating a former high school classmate of his about 9 months after my mom’s passing. She has never reached out to me or tried to get to know me–dad justs sayd she is different and not used to a close nit family. His whole personality has changed and I just can’t adjust to it. I feel at this point that my dad died too. I am so sad because we were so close. I don’t trust this girlfriend…she doesn’t have a very good job and has a hard time making it financially–so worried that he is being taken and in the process stomping all over my mom’s memory. He acts like mom never exsisted—they were married 38 years. I want him to be happy—I really do–but concerned and feeling robbed of my dad. I feel like she is trying to isolate him and I’m playing right into as I voice my opinions to him. I miss my MOM so much and I hate this destruction!

  • Ella says:

    My Mother died when I was 13 after a long, long illness. I am now 48 and would like to share my story. Within weeks of her death a woman who had been a school friend of my mother’s who would show up maybe twice a year or say she would visit and then not bother, phoned to offer a shoulder to cry on. Ten weeks after my mother’s death this woman began coming to stay in the house.I cannot describe the awfulness of that time. Seeing my father sneaking across the landing at night was excruciating. Being issued with a guest towel was terrible. I would follow them several paces behind when they went to the cemetery perhaps seeking absolution. Arm in arm they would walk- it was traumatic. My mother wasn’t cold in the grave!

    Unlike some women who date men so soon; no one could accuse her of trying too hard to fit, in or indeed trying at all! My father fawned over her and treated her like a goddess. When I asked if they were planning to marry I was told it was none of my business. I have a sister who is 20 years older and she told him it was all too soon and he should consider everyone else’s feelings but he said he was entitled and really proved he could not have cared less what anyone thought.

    My father is volatile and a bully and so guiltily I became relieved when she was about as he did not treat me so badly.

    Over 30 years this woman has caused havoc and hurt wherever she goes not just within our family but in her own. Her own son-in-law refused to even enter her house for years. When she retired she moved in full time leaving her family down south. Without warning years later she sneakily bought her own house.

    Years followed when they spent part of the week at her house and part at his. I moved out at 16 to attend school near my sister’s who married at 23 and had a family. I lived with them.

    Time moved on. Until they met her, people would say ,”Well your father needs a life of his own and you wouldn’t want him to be on his own.” I bought this argument and struggled to forgive the huge and ongoing hurt.

    She has always behaved with complete and utter selfishness and he has always supported her. She would do something appalling and be banned from my sister or my home. Then eventually we would relent. She unplugged her phone because my calling once a day while my father was sick was “stressing her out”. I said I would call when I wanted so she unplugged the phone or the ringer of the phone. She has even assaulted my sister by shaking and shoving her. Since then there has been no contact unless we dropped my father off at her home.

    Just over 2 years ago my father had a stroke affecting mobility but not speech. When he could leave hospital he elected to go and live with her rather than us. My husband said he did not want my sister and myself to become her slaves. He also warned that she might block access. She never actually had to block it because after she “went for ” my sister we all decided she was so unstable and volatile it was not safe for us to go. Did my father support my sister? Not at all. He did not try to do anything and a day or so later said he didn’t know who started it. We had offered to have my Dad live with us and had been planning renovations and adjustments to our home. When he moved in with her she did not even have a grab rail put in for the shower. My father said he did not want her to do it but he was 86 and she was 88. She allowed him a small bag of his possessions and decided she did not want any cards or mail being sent to her house.

    To give an indication of how bizarre the relationship is after 35 years neither has a key to the other’s house.They will not stay in their “partner’s” home unless the other is also present. After a year my sister got a call begging her to pick him up immediately as basically she was kicking him out. They have always fought and split all through the years vowing never to speak again. Reconciliation,would never be accompanied by any apology. This happened twice before he moved back home for good. He told my sister not to even make eye contact or speak to her.

    So after telling myself “You wouldn’t want him to be alone when he’s old” guess what? She will leave him for up to three weeks at a time without a visit. She lives about 20 minutes away and unlike my father, still drives. There is a train and buses and a taxi driver who lives 2 doors down from my father. Dad lost his car in an accident just a few weeks before the stoke. He used to do everything for her but now he is of no use to her. I visit every other day alternating with my sister. She does housework and I do shopping etc. If the woman visits, she does absolutely nothing. When driving back from hospital the other week he asked who would be taking him back the following day. I said it would probably be me unless his “girlfriend” would like to do it. “Oh no she wouldn’t like to do it she doesn’t like waiting around in hosptitals.”

    He can barely walk from one end of the kitchen to the other but then we find out he goes out shopping with her and manages to walk about fine. He makes zero effort to chat when I visit and tells me they both talk to each other all the time. When she wants him she gets him when she’s bored she dumps him back only occasionally staying at his house. We never get any notice just a call to say she’s coming or gone. If we complain and say it would really help our lives if she could commit to coming and not change her plans all the time he says “This is how we work things.”

    When she decides to go off he is in an especially vile mood due to depression at having been dumped.

    I guess I just wanted to say the relationship has blighted our lives and especially mine. When my Mum died there was no counselling and I just had to get on with it. I felt at one point I could not cope. My hair stated to fall out. I had bad exam results. I took an overdose. The situation of being out of control brought me to the edge of anorexia. Incidentally, upon hearing I had taken the pills my father said two things. One was “Next time do a proper job” and “Whatever you do never ever tell her what happened.” It occured before they were fully living together.He knew she would humiliate him over having a weakling daughter.

    I can offer no hope to anyone going through this. She is a nasty unkind person with no friends except my father and family relationships where she keeps falling out with people. Her daughter came to stay when she was in hospital and then had a falling out with her mother over something. The worse she behaves and is allowed to behave by my father the more sorry he feels for her that she is disliked by so many from the shop assistants she abuses to both his and her families.

    The scars from this involvement will never heal. He shows repeatedly that she is the only thing he cares about. I once “joked” to a friend that if she”lost it” completely and killed my sister and I, he would say, “shame about the kids”.

    Please, please if you are a parent or new love interest think carefully about how a selfish decision will cause decades of pain and suffering. Wait. You don’t have to get involved immediately. You have a commitment to your family. They need to grieve and adjust. We had no choice in this. He realised what kind of person she was quite quickly hence the “Whatever you do don’t tell her”.We were powerless, as we are now. Our only choice would have been to cut our losses. Ironic that what motivated me to try to forgive was the fact I did not want him to be alone. He is treated like a toy that gets discarded when the child is bored and he allows her to show no respect to his daughters.

    Now married with 2 daughters of my own the pain was relived when I saw as an adult how terrible it would have been for my girls to have suffered as I did.I cannot comprehend how they could be so insensitive to his daughters’ sufferings and especially me as a 13 year old living at home.

    I can offer no help but please think before you act. My father never married her which does not lessen his commitment to her in any way although he uses it as an excuse for weird behavior. Mum died at 56 and would be 90 if she had lived.I have lived with this situation for so many years. I hope that when the end comes I can finally move on. Had she been a kind woman and shown any caring it would be different. I once believed for a while she loved him rather than he was useful to her but unfortunately I no longer can receive solace from this idea. She is in the relationship for selfish reasons. If love is measured in sacrifice then she despises him.

    Thanks for an opportunity to vent although in a sense it is 35 years too late!

  • Ella says:

    Hi Dee,
    Your letter reminded me of something… On my final fitting for my wedding dress she said “You’re not getting married in that dress are you with those spots on your back?” How kind to give my confidence such a boost!

    On another occasion she said “I’d never noticed what fat arms you have.”

    She used to put a book or bag over her face during family occasions to avoid having her photo taken. She is completely self absorbed and obsessed with wrinkles. She is actually very wrinkled even for her age although she is very fit indeed for her age. She took some wrinkle cream back to the shop when she was about 85 to complain it had not worked.

    She and my father would sit together tut self-righteously if someone with a weight problem walked by. She once said that nurses who were overweight should be fired as it was obvious they could not be doing a good job.

    I cannot stress how thoroughly unpleasant she is and my Dad has increasingly become. Giggling and judging other people to make themselves feel superior.

    Other folk have mentioned sexual details being mentioned and we had that also. Dad told my brother in law they had slept together hundreds of times. It made the situation so much worse.

    The people who have been talking about the rights of the adult parent to move on however quickly are not seeing the whole picture. I can tell you how it was for me as a child losing a Mum and within days and weeks feeling uncomfortable in my own home and as an adult with all the knowledge about sex drives and rights to a new life.

    You will be able to move on. Your new partner will replace your old one but for the family left reeling from the impact of this new relationship there are wounds from which they may never recover. I implore you do this one unselfish thing for your children as honouring your late spouse or partner. Wait. Consider whether this is a kind and good person or whether you are grabbing a passing life raft.

    I can tell you these are things from which you cannot recover even if you are able to forgive. You have a duty and responsibility to those left behind whatever their age. Think of this before you jump into another involvement. You do not wake up one day and say “Oops I’ve fallen in love”. It is a conscious choice.

    To those who are the new girlfriend or boyfriend- if you really care, give space and not pressure. You cannot imagine how your prescence equates to having your nose rubbed in something unpleasant. Even if you are the nicest person ever it will be really difficult. If you care at all recognise that for the family it will be like losing two parents.

    Don’t think of rights without obligations and please try to have empathy. While you may feel alive and aglow this poor family are aghast. Your new love has you to keep him occupied all they have is pain and sadness and memories of someone they had loved and lost.

    Those of you who are kind will try to understand ,those of you who are are busy causing untold family damage and rifts will argue that you have the right to do what you like…

    The consequences of your actions do not affect just you. Generations will suffer. Your relationship may not last but the pain will most certainly endure. In my case so far all my teenage and adult life.

    My husband reserved judgement when he first was told about her and believed she couldn’t be so bad and that it was the timing that was an issue. It didn’t take him long to realise that I had not done her any disservice and that all I had said was accurate. He was not the only person to conclude thus.
    It’s safe to say she wouldn’t “spit on someone if they were on fire”!

  • Sonia says:


    I just read the most recents posts.If you read this and think you can give me advice, please do. Read my previous posting (number 57, on Octber 6th.)

    I never met the woman my dad is involved with. I live too far away. He wanted to come here with her and I said no. I am not ready or interested in meeting her. My sister feels the same way and told our dad not to visit her with his girlfriend from Belarus.

    The past month, my dad has threatened me twice about “losing everything” if I don’t get on with the program. My sister and I will apparently receive an e-mail from him before the end of the year advising us of something.

    He drives me insane. I get so mad when he threatens me! As if I was 2 years old…tonight, he did it again over the phone. I just listened and said nothing and asked if he was done and then I asked him about his day. I simply have no interest whatsoever in this woman. Don’t ask me why as I could not tell you! I am not even one bit curious about her and I never ask any questions. After reading all your posts, I’d rather never meet her! I just don’t know what to do about this anymore. My dad does not listen to my feelings and simply does not seem to care. He really only cares about himself. He said tonight “you will not win this” ” you will not run my life”. For me this is not a game but it seems to be for him. I certainly don’t want to run his life. He can have a lady friend. I am just asking him not to impose her on me. I can’t pretend to like someone. I am not that kind of person.
    I don’t want to lose my dad but knowing he seems to be ready to give his family up over a stranger from Belarus, it makes me think seriously about my own life and what I need and who I need in my life to be happy. e treats us is certainly not making me happy. After reading some of your posts, maybe I should just let him go on with his life and let him go….or pretend “I will get on with the program” and be polite when I meet her and leave it at that.
    Any comments? Any suggestions?
    Many thanks.

  • Ella says:

    Hi Sonia,
    First let me say how terribly sorry I am for your situation. I have been there and am still there after many years. The gaping hole in your life you feel for your Mom will not be healing when you are in this horrible situation.
    I can’t say what it is that makes parents cast off their responsibilities towards those left behind but this website is a testament to the fact that they do.
    One of the difficult things that I felt most accutely was that people think they are being helpful when they self-righteously preach at you and state that surely you would not want the parent to be alone. No one is arguing that at all. In my own case it was what eventually powered me through some difficulties. Unfortunately, due to the selfishness of the woman concerned, my sister and I are the ones looking after my father. She visits or picks him up if it suits her.
    My father’s personality is such that although he feigns bravado he actually lacks confidence and so this woman through herself at his feet and I guess he could not pass her up.
    The damage done can not be undone. I believed up until 3 years ago that if my father had his time again he had learned lessons and would not behave the same way. I now know that he would make the same choices again as he proves on a daily basis.
    It is made all the harder for you because you feel this woman is unworthy and the relationship is too soon and too in your face. This woman is everything my Mum was not. While my Mom was a real people person who would do anything for anyone this woman would avoid helping someone if she could. When I was about 16 my friend’s Mum was dropping me off a short distance from my home when her car would not start late on a Sunday. I live in England and certainly at that time no garage would have been open. I ran home with my friend several paces behind me to ask my father to help. My friend arrived to hear her say “Well can’t she just call a garage instead of bothering us.” Never mind that she had been doing my father the favour by giving me the lift in the first place.
    There is no way your father can get you to accept this by threatening you. You may put on a brave face but he ought to know that that is not the same as accepting her. For myself, I don’t think my father could care if we genuinely
    accepted her just so long as we acted as if we did.
    Just like in your case our Dad told us that if we didn’t like it that was just too bad as he was a big boy and could act as he liked. He seemed to believe that because he had suffered through years of my Mother’s illness that this was what he deserved.
    I know that for me there is a desire not to cross my father’s wishes. He talks to me now as if I was 8 sometimes. He draws a proverbial line in the sand at times and lets me know there will be a vile atmosphere if I dare ask questions.
    Of course I can only speculate but you may find that the threats involve removing you from his will or something.
    Funny I said to my husband recently that if someone had said to me that for the amount of money I may inherit I could have not gone through 35 years of trauma I would gladly have given up the cash. This situation has eaten up so much of my life and energy that I would have loved to have avoided it.
    My father is now almost 88.My sister and I alternate visiting him daily and seeing to his needs. He lives alone just waiting for her to phone or say she will visit him. He does not dare ask if she will be staying for a few days.
    Even if she said she was she would probably change her mind. She might not come or she might take him to her home for several days until she was bored and then drop him back. He insists these are mutual decisions but aquiescence is not the same as agreement. Since he can no longer drive she holds all the power.
    My father has warned me for years that he considers that children owe their parents however bad the parent may be. On the contrary he thinks that he owes her because she moved and sold her house on retirement to live with him. She never acts but with self interest and self preservation in mind so she did it for her and not for him. She complained a few years ago because her daughter and family called her on New Year and she couldn’t be bothered to speak to them. This is how involved she is with her family.
    She physically abandoned her family but my father mentally abandoned his. From her arrival on the scene we were told like you were, that no issues we had counted at all and it was non-negotiable.
    You don’t say how old you are Sonia. Your father may not recognise the implications of how his actions will impact generations. My daughter said to me yesterday when I was offering to explain something about my father “I’d rather not know because the situation either makes you angry or sad.”
    Obviously, I cannot advise you. You must decide yourself. I want you to know that I feel your pain. If you pretend to accept you will be able to maintain the relationship for longer but is it really a relationship when there is no honesty?
    You could try writing a letter from yourself and your sister because he would have to read it and not interupt or threaten. The relationship may well blow over. With so little communication one could only conclude that it is based on attraction rather than having a lot in common.
    Sometimes men can suspend reality. Recently my sister was hoping to get some help from an organisation where people visited the elderly. In the end my father refused help. However, at one point he asked whether the potential new visiter was married. He was told that she was and remarked that her husband object to her visiting another man-he’s almost 88!
    Remember, your father has made a choice. If he chooses her it is his choice. You don’t state his age but he may face old age alone. I am guessing the woman is younger. There is a saying in England “There is no fool like an old fool”.
    My aunt’s son married a girl from the Philippines and after he died the daughter in law was always writing asking for money for various family crisis. They had no children; it was for her relations.
    The problem is, even if the relationship is short-lived the pain it has already caused will not heal. You will never trust your father’s love for you again. I am sure you are even doubting your parent’s relationship. How could so much love be so quickly forgotten. No doubt this will bring people to say I can’t see things from the other side.
    True I have never lost a husband so I can’t judge. I do know one thing though.
    I cannot imagine ever being in a situation where self-interest would lead me to watch my children who are now 22 and 18 go through the equivalent of an additional bereavement while I bask in the warm glow of new romance.
    The relationship has already caused pain and destruction ;do parents believe things will improve?
    One thing that has changed my perspective over the years is from whom is duty owed.
    Because I was faced with a totally insensitive and unkind woman who barged in without the slightest sympathy or care for the family or me as a 13 year old living at home I blamed her more than I ought to have done. It’s no good getting mad at the shark because it attacks you. She is a horrible woman.
    However, and this is the crux of the matter- it is my father from whom I am owed a duty of care and not from her. Morally, she is culpable for her indifference to my sufferings but he permitted her to behave the way she did and does. He invited her in. He watched as she ruled the roost, assaulted, unplugged the phone and did all she could to be top dog and see his family pushed away. For that he must bear responsibility.
    Sonia- I hope you find this response. Know that there is someone in England who is thinking of you and hoping you find your way. If I was there I would give you a hug.Listening as you work things out is the best thing a friend could do.
    You are behaving with more emotional maturity than he is showing. Try not to burn any bridges unless you have to while you are in such distress and emotion. He is making a bad choice because he is emotionally vulnerable- although I do not feel that is an excuse. Telling you “You cannot win this” is a mistake. He may force your behaviour but he cannot force you to accept or like her until such time as you may want to. He may feel he will win long term because you either accept her or lose him. What he fails to see and I can say from experience is that he is inflicting untold damage on his relationships with his daughters. If he thinks things will ever be the same he is mistaken.It is not a question of bearing a grudge or of forgiveness. It is just the innocent acceptance of a child (even as an adult) that the parent’s job is to love and protect his child is irrevocably shattered. The trust has gone and the innocence. Knowing I cannot change the situation I have sometimes asked my husband to hold up a sofa cushion while I give it a good punch!
    Can you find a friend who will just listen and not judge? I have sometimes confided in someone only to find I felt worse after the chat…
    Sending sympathy for your loss and your distress x

  • Ella says:

    Hi Sonia,
    Just thought it might help to fill you in a bit more. My father’s house is about 5 minutes drive away and even less from my sister’s home.
    After so many years we do not feel we can cut and run. Even I never expected his woman friend would be so callous as to abdicate all responsibility after 35 years of being together. He makes excuses but we all know if she wanted him there he’d be there immediately even if he had to take a taxi. She lives about 20 minutes away. They are not together because he’s too proud to say he’s lonely and she doesn’t want her freedom to go out curtailed by someone who is not as fast and agile as he once was.
    I cannot advise you to cut the ties. I am not sure I would have had the courage to do that myself even if I could have seen the future. However, the horrors of the past and the selfishness and defence of the indefensible behaviour make visiting and caring all the harder. I am just not going to feel sorry for someone who is disliked by both her family and his. She is disliked because she is thoroughly dislikeable and it is her victims who are worthy of pity.
    Knowing that this person would throw you to the wolves if it would please her makes it hard to have a cheery disposition. If we had to make a 100 mile round trip to save her a 2 mile detour he’d want to save her the trouble.
    The joke “Be nice to your kids they get to pick your care home” sounds a little sick. However, this family that is thrown away with such callousness may be expected to jump to and pick up the slack when the new friend decides it’s not so much fun anymore. Psychologically, knowing that the visit is almost resented because I am not her is hard going. He is depressed because he has been abandoned by her and takes it out on me.
    Hope these things give you some things to consider.
    P.S Sorry for the typo in last post should read “threw herself at him”

  • Ella says:

    Hi,I was just re-reading these posts and I wanted to address some of the points made by Todd Paxman in posting 54.
    No one could fail to see the pain and suffering Todd has endured.My husband’s Dad shot himself when my husband was 14 so I know the huge impact this would have on the children and those left behind. No one could fail to feel for the terrible situation in which you were left.
    I did want to address a couple of points.
    You say you cannot know how you will feel in the future and so you cannot predict how you will feel so when people say things like “I will never accept it” they should not forecast their future emotions. I think it is true to say,from my experience, that when loss is handled with gross insensitivity the impact of that causes a person not to trust the perpetrator again. In your case the perpetrator was your wife so perhaps with work you would learn to trust another again. In most of these cases the person inflicting the additional trauma is the parent who is flushed with joy at having found someone new and is not open to the fact that his emptiness has been filled while his family is still grieving.It seems they cannot wait to force the person on their family and present ultimatums for non-compliance.
    Even if this new romance proves long- lived and even if the person turns out to have an admirable and loveable character- the damage has been done. The family has been told by word or deed that their pain and suffering is secondary to the new romance. All the things they believed about their parents lifetime of loving are shattered. These things may be forgiven but a person cannot erase the pain from their memory unless they have memory loss. The pain may fade but it will not go away. Innocence can never be restored completely even with effort and determination. Your children’s pain and feelings of abandonment will probably always remain with them even if never alluded to.
    You also say that there is no definitive objective timescale for someone moving on with someone new. On this point I beg to differ. My father was communicating within days or weeks with this woman. She lived a distance away but was staying at the house 10 weeks after Mum died; I was 13. I defy anyone to say that this does not demonstrate an obscene lack of decorum and sensitivity. The speed with which these relationships begin seem to be often at break-neck speed and you are wrong to say you cannot say “how soon is too soon?” If what I do causes distress to those around me then for that I am responsible. Yes, certainly more culpable if you ignore your young children’s feelings but also for in-laws and adult children too. True you may carry on regardless of their pain and there is no law which says you cannot but for this failure in good judgement there will be a penalty in the shock and lack of trust that will ensue.
    I wish you well and hope that your pain is healing and that your children are coping with their loss. I feel the sadness of never having met my husband’s father and that there is a grandfather my children never knew. I hope in time you will be able to move on with the full support and blessing of those around you. I just want to make the point that grieving cannot be hurried. Forcing a new person on a family who are still going through that process with scant regard for their emotional state is not a thing that should be embarked on lightly. Unfortunately, I fear that the perpetrators are emotionally vulnerable themselves and often these new people move on them too quickly when they are not thinking straight. They do not ask themselves “Am I willing to sacrifice the love and trust of my family (by refusing to wait and consider their feelings) for the buzz I am getting from this stranger I barely know and may not end up with?
    People spend more time debating which car they will buy than” Is this person suitable or are they just making themselves available?”

  • N says:

    Like others have mentioned many times before in the comments, I too am glad that I am not alone in my feelings of anger, sadness, and guilt. My Mom passed away on July 21, 2011 from a long battle with colon cancer that ended up returning and metastasizing all over her body after one short period of remission. I was sitting with her overnight when she passed away, and cannot get the events out of my head from what happened (no matter that the grief counselor I have seen says I should be “happy” because from what I’ve told her, “she didn’t suffer like others I have heard of”). My parents were married for 29 years, and I am the oldest in the family (28) of three children. I am married and living about an hour from my parent’s house.

    I honestly did not know that after the funeral and her burial that I could ever feel so much pain inside again. It’s been over 3 months since she passed and it still feels like I relive it at least once a day. I grew up feeling that my father was an intelligent, kind and warm gentleman who attends church every week. He was supportive with my Mom, but also caused my Mom some pain and sadness towards the last few months of her as he simply could not understand why she would not eat. It was because of the cancer that was growing all over her body.
    Within a few weeks after losing my Mom, my father started talking with women online for “friendship” and “companionship”. He lives alone and works in a very good job. He travels for his job and since I am going to school full time now, I have been house sitting for him while he is gone. Needless to say, he’s been talking exclusively with one woman who is from the UK and is about six years older than I am. The picture he showed me showed a beautiful girl that looks about 19. Every time he has mentioned these other “women” he is talking to, I just feel like dying inside. He told my younger sister that he has already grieved for his wife and is ready to move on. I understand and accept that. However, my grief is still fresh and often debilitating. I am torn between supporting his decision, and speaking honestly: it’s too soon.

    Well, earlier tonight, he called me and told me that this woman is flying from London to Chicago and is coming to stay with him…tomorrow through Thanksgiving “or sometime”. He was very nervous during the entire conversation (like he has been since he started bringing up about talking to these women). He is planning on having some woman, who he has only met less than 2 months ago on a chat messenger program, stay in the house and attend our Thanksgiving family function (the first one since my Mom passed away, which is almost too hard to bear right now). To say I was shocked beyond words is an understatement. I told him kindly, and honestly tonight, that I am not interested, nor do I want to meet anyone at this time- the pain is too much. It seems that tonight, my world was shattered all over again after his phone call. I am worried for more than a few reasons: one being that what kind of “woman” will fly to the US after meeting someone “online” less than 3 months ago? Apparently, she has family (or was originally from) Florida, and he mentioned going to visit her family at some point. I think the part that hurts the most is after I told him how I felt, he continued on to tell me that this woman will be staying, “most likely past Thanksgiving”. I almost swallowed my own tongue after hearing him say that. I am now very upset and can see the future ramifications if he continues on this “break neck” speed. I would feel more comfortable with him dating, even if he set up a local profile on eharmony to meet for a date within the large cities he lives by. I would even approve of someone who is from our church- not some stranger who feels comfortable enough to fly over on a whim to visit an online friend or whatever so quickly. My father nervously said, “You know- this isn’t a mail order bride situation or anything, you know” and laughed nervously. I think at some point, my ears and brain stopped listening and corresponding after he dropped this bombshell.

    Thank you, Ella, for being able to put into words the impact this has on the immediate children and future generations. I understand that my father needs companionship, but I do not feel that it would be too insensitive to ask him to please wait just a bit longer, even a few weeks longer- so that we can at least get used to the idea. My sister, brother, and I only were told one month before she passed that my Mom was going to die. She and my father hid the severity of her initial diagnosis of stage iv for almost the entire illness (until it was undeniable). I strongly feel that like a teenager who gets his heart broken for the first time, he is clinging to someone TOO QUICKLY. I am afraid he is going to make a mistake that will cause a rift in our already hurting family. At this point, I am already now considering not attending Thanksgiving if she will be in attendance because the pain is still too great, especially for the first holiday without my Mom. I feel that bringing her around a family function this soon is very unacceptable. Just thinking about this makes me feel sick.

    I never expected my Dad to be alone after my Mom passed, but I sure didn’t expect him to suddenly turn into “Mr. Bachelor” and constantly discuss these women he is talking to, showing us their pictures they have sent him on his smart phone, and even dropping vague hints that he has met up with some of them while traveling for work. I am finding myself angry with him and frustrated. My husband even commented to me tonight that he feels uncomfortable with the fact he is constantly bringing up about talking and meeting other women. I am trying so hard to listen to him and be there for him, but he only talks about these new women- and it’s breaking my heart. I don’t want to have to cut him out of my life, but I am very angry with him for choosing his own happiness right now over his adult children, who are aching for his support. He is clearly uncomfortable talking about any grief that he is feeling now but says, “talking with women online” makes him feel better. This is why I feel guilty- because I want him to feel better. But it seems that for right now, what makes him feel better is pushing our family apart.

    I read every comment on this page and for those that are in the same or similar situations – I feel your sadness, anger, and pain.

  • Ella says:

    Dear N,
    How sad your letter makes me! Perhaps your father would do well to read some of these letters. I cannot fathom what causes grown adults to behave like children in a sweet shop when they lose their spouse.
    Firstly, I speak as an Englishwoman married to an American who has only recently after almost 25 years of marriage taken joint citizenship! I have to tell you that although Britain is a first world country there are many people who see the U.S as a golden ticket. Although both countries are going through economic difficulties if you are able to work and are not reliant on welfare there is in general a higher standard of living in the U.S. Naturally, I know there are exceptions to this rule but I speak in general terms. When we married we decided to make a go of things in the U.K as I was closer to my family than my husband was to his but people acted as if we were crazy to stay here! I tell you this because it may not be a mail order bride situation but it is true to say that lots of folk would want to move to the U.S.So in answer to your question “What kind of woman would fly to the U.S…”-Many Brits would! It was and is possible for British people to buy houses in Florida and rent them out through an agency. For the price of a large house in the U.S you could get a tiny place over in the U.K You just get “more bang for your buck” in America. We are a tiny island and so property prices will always be high even now when property and land has dropped substantially. There are people in the U.K who have never worked and who live in what is called “council housing”which would be social housing in the U.S
    I am not casting doubt on this woman or saying she is financially motivated. However, I think it is fair to say that even if she is comfortable financially,which seems unlikely judging by her age, that an opportunity to move to the U.S or even go for an all expenses paid vacation would be seized with open hands.
    One thing I must emphasise to you is that you have nothing at all to feel guilty about and the fact that you are is as a result of your father’s behaviour.
    I mentally slapped myself about the head striving to gain acceptance of my terrible situation. I told myself that I could never forgive myself if something happened to my father too.It worked somewhat in that I tried as hard as I could.
    However, this woman is a fair weather friend and has proved to the world her worthlessness. My sister and I took my father to hospital yesterday for eye check ups and tests and we were there about 7 hours not including travelling. While we were in a coffee shop he took the time to be checking his phone to call this woman. She will not go to hospitals with him as she doesn’t like waiting around.My father says he is grateful to us but cannot comprehend the irritation and annoyance his behaviour causes. All those years of trying to cope because I didn’t want him to be alone were wasted. He proved he was a lousy judge of character and that once he had committed himself to her he would not let go. Now when he truly needs her she is not willing to be there. She had him stay with her for about a year because she was scared of losing control. After attacking my sister we could not visit at her home. He resented being taken out for visits almost as if he felt we were at fault. He is pretty much alone now anyway. Sometimes she doesn’t see him for 3 weeks at a time. I wish people could see that jumping feet first into a relationship at an emotionally vulnerable time even if they think they are ready for it can have devastating consequences not only for the rest of the family but ultimately for themselves.
    I feel so sorry for you. Thanksgiving is such a strong family time and you are still reeling from your loss. It would be appalling enough to celebrate without your Mom but to have a young girl thrust upon you is just too much.
    Your husband sounds lovely and supportive and it will be hard for him to witness your pain and to know he cannot prevent it. I do not know what I would do without my loving husband’s support. After all this time he is good and angry about the way I am treated in order for my father to maintain good relations with this unworthy woman. He sees my distress and is powerless to act. Your choices are agonising ones. I cannot emphasise enough that there may well be a case of self-preservation here. Your father says “talking with women online” makes him feel better. It could be argued that not being forced to entertain this stranger on an important family holiday would make you feel better!
    I think one thing my life has taught me is that emotional maturity is not age dependent. People of all ages show complete selfishness and display the behaviour sometimes associated with petulant teenagers!
    Your counsellor’s attitude is beyond comprehension! My husband and I have two beautiful and healthy adult daughters. There is a 4 year age difference between them as we lost 2 babies due to miscarriage. It is so unspeakably insensitive to tell people that the pain and grief they are dealing with could be worse. For me expressions such as “You’ll have more”,”There was obviously something wrong with it”,”At least you already have a child” beggar belief. You have every right to be feeling absolutely appalling right now having lost your Mom and with everything going on with your father and being told that you should cheer up because things could have been worse for your Mom is so uncaring. All you will be wanting is for your Mom to still be alive and well and for your Dad to be be with her and for all this never to have happened. If someone lost a leg would we feel we could say “Cheer up at least you still have one!”
    The only practical suggestion I can make at this time would be to let your father know exactly how you feel. Not by talking to him — doing that means you have to let him talk back or pretend he is tired or distracted or not well or busy or whatever it takes to not listen (most likely piling guilt on you). Just send him a link to this webpage. Of course, you are taking the risk that there will be a family split and you will get the blame. But if you don’t, you’re taking the risk that in 35 years you’ll end up where I am — with a family destroyed by his selfishness and sham relationship. However …. and this is the reason these men get away with this … there is a chance that you could just sit back and the situation will resolve itself, this “relationship” fails, he gets hurt, he learns his lesson, and never does it again. These are the only options I see — and it is a tragedy that they all mean the most pain is experienced, as always, by the innocent party. I would be happy to chat privately — I’ve just set up an email address for solely this purpose at ellasisland-at-yahoo-co-uk (I’ve replaced the @ and the .’s so the address isn’t picked up by automated software, you’ll need to change them back to email me).
    Thinking of you and understanding where you are at!

  • Peggie Gwenn says:

    I’ve watched … I’ve watched several of your videos tonight. Fabulous job. This is step choreography for the real world- it is a exact blend of fascinating movements but not too complicated. Some of the step videos I see online would seem to warrant a degree in dance in order to stay on it- much less teach it. Thanks so much for thoughts that I can easily transfer to my classes.

  • Jo says:

    Dear All,
    I’m so pleased I found this site as I thought I was alone in what I’m feeling! My mum died a year ago after a very short, unexpected battle with cancer. Dad has visited a friend of his a couple of times recently – she lives a couple of hundred miles away. He hit me with the bombshell today that they are now “an item”. I was speechless. I was very calm until he left, then i cried for hours! What makes it even harder is that dad also has terminal cancer, and we dont know how long he has left to live. I know I’m being selfish but I want to spend as much time with my dad as possible & I would like to think that he would want to spend it with me, my children, my sis and her children. He hasn’t known this woman very long. He said she is dreading meeting us – on the assumption that we WANT to meet her! I’m in such a state. I dong want to meet her. I can’t tell my dad how I feel as I don’t want to upset him. Sorry for rambling on! X

  • Angie says:

    A big thanks for all who have shared their situations. I thought my feelings of anger and hurt were unfounded. I lost my Mom to cancer at the end of 2010. My Dad and I have never been close but Mom wanted us to mend the rift and after her death I stayed with Dad and helped with as much as I could before going back to my family. I typically visit Dad once a year and he does the same. I kept in constant communication with him after leaving. I wanted to be there for him and was worried how he would live after being married to Mom for over 50 years. Little did I know 14 months later I was going to be blindsided with a call that he was dating. This came out of the blue, as I had just seen him several months prior and there was NO mention of him ever wanting to get back into the dating pool. When he told me I cried and later apologized but I wasnt emtionally over the loss of my Mom. Mom was the only parent to make me feel special and love me unconditionally. I feel like Im being emotionally abandoned all over again and Im 50. Hes only been dating her 3 months and Ive just been told he will be bringing her to visit when he sees us over the summer. Let me preface that by stating Im an only child and he is really the only family I have, outside of my husabnd and kids. So I accept it or lose my Dad. He used to return my calls and now that is no longer the case. Its like Im an afterthought. It is so very hurtful. Our relationship is strained and I feel a double loss as someone mentioned in a previous post. I feel as if Ive lost both Mother and Father. Its hurtful because he is excited to be able to take her to see the sights when he visits me. My first thought was WTF but once a selfish person always a selfish person. I have learned to expect nothing and be greatful if something more is given. I told hubby i was glad he was excited about seeing us..NOT. As she is his first priority Im sure many things will change. It would have been nice to have really gotten closer to Dad but that is simply not to be, It takes two people to want a relationship to work. Im sad that my Mom worked so hard all her life and many times was forced to be frugal and now woman will be reapiing the rewards of Moms hard work. Dad has apparently lost his frugal mentality, He bought a new car, treats his girlfriend as if she can walk on water and does for her, all the things my Mom always wished for. I pray every day for my Mother and for acceptance. Its very hard to accept that which you have no control over. Im sure by the end of the year there will be an announcement of a wedding.

  • Jennifer says:

    I found this website yesterday. The day that I had to meet my father’s new girlfriend. My mother passed away September 15, 2011 suddenly and unexpectedly to a massive heart attack. I have struggled with the news of this now fiancé for about a month now. How could my father do this to me, the memory of my mom!!?? Well, I met her and my attitude has changed. I saw my dad smile for the first time since right before that dreaded day in the emergency room. I realized, it’s not about me, it’s about him. I hope that all of you struggling just as I was come to that realization too. His love for my mom isn’t being replaced by this lady, he just found more love in his heart to give.

  • Leebee says:

    Oh how I wish I had found this website after my Mother passed,18 months ago.
    She and my dad had been married 54 years, both we’re/are 78 then.
    My Dad went on a date with a mutual friend of theirs within one month, which I was astounded by.
    Then not even 5 months later he was dating seriously, and had been talking about marriage with
    another woman. I simply could not process the situation. My brother was okay with it, my sister was as well(but now she is not)
    and my dh could not understand my sadness at this. I felt so desperately sad and alone for so long, for all the reasons the previous posters have stated. I just wish I had read all these stories so I wouldn’t have felt so alone!
    I have accepted the situation( he lives at her home since about 3 months after they started dating)and his condo is for sale now),
    I’ve finally accepted that he hasn’t replaced my Mom, he just wants companionship and to be happy again.
    I have always felt he could have waited longer than 5 months after my moms death to date and move in with another woman, I believe it was in very poor taste, and he did not honor his and my mothers relationship by doing so.
    It’s still uncomfortable being with them, I think perhaps if he’d waited lo get, it would have been easier.
    But, as he said, he had to get on with his life and he didn’t want to be alone.
    In doing so, it’s damaged our relationship a little, but I love him and do not want him to be unhappy.

    • Lee bee says:

      I can’t begin to write about all that has happened since I posted. Long story short:
      J(dad) made some poor choices after choosing this woman as his new ‘wife’, including choosing her family over mine for attending certain momentous occasions. He felt it was no big deal, couldn’t understand why my feelings/my daughters were so hurt, we should get over it, it’s bullshit (his word)we were so upset etc.
      After a year of my distancing myself and my family ,due to awkward and mean conversations with him, he called me one evening yelling swearing and finally telling me I was never to be in contact we him ever again, then hanging up on me! I found out from my SIL at the hospital while waiting during my bros triple by pass heart op, that he had taken me out if his will. A coward at heart, he didn’t even have the guts to tell me himself. Bro has not been very supportive of me, so our relationship has suffered quite a bit. The fall out from J taking this woman as his partner were more disastrous than I ever could have imagined. I feel okay about my behavior through it all as I only ever told him the truth about how I felt, I never yelled or lost my temper. I feel I did everything I could to salvage our relationship but he did not care and was not interested in having me or my family, his granddaughters in his life anymore. My only advice to any of you dealing with a similar situation is to always calmly and truly speak your mind, don’t let things go unsaid. I feel like I never really knew my ‘father’ after this awful behavior. It makes me question my whole life growing up in our family. I have learned and moved on, knowing I will never let this happen with my kids. I will never tell them their feelings don’t matter. If they tell me I’ve done something to hurt their feelings, I will talk with them and try to rectify it, I would never dismiss them!

  • Melissa says:

    My mother passed in April 2011, and by January of 2012, my father became involved with a woman he dated before marrying my mother, thirty-eight years ago. This woman is a widow, and was my father’s high school sweetheart, which makes it even harder for me to think that maybe they have harbored feelings for one another over the years. He has moved in with her.

    My mother was ill for quite sometime before she died, which I know was a burden upon my father. Out of my siblings, I was the only one physically involved in the day-to-day care of my mother, so their understanding is limited. They are accepting of his new relationship whereas I am not. Recently, she was invited to family function by my brother (who did not tell me). I am expected to meet her and spend time with her, and when I do not, I become the outcast. No one in my family understands. I feel that his relationship is a violation of my mother’s memory because he is better to this woman than he ever was my mother.

  • Ron says:

    I lost my wife Jan 12, 2012, June 9 is her birthday, I have 4 daughters, one the oldest accused me of wanting to throw her mother into the Forrest, which is the farthest from my mind, my wife (ashes)is here with me, I am having a terrible time dealing with these issues of my daughter not talking to me but being disturbed about “throwing”, I am no where near even thinking of a companion, I’m still grieving and attending grieving classes at hospital where she died. my hurt is more that my own daughter accused me trying to do that, my wife is not garbage, she has to realize she lived with her Mom about 19 years, I lived with her 33 years, so my bond is closer and I gave my daughter almost EVERYTHING she asked for even the diamonds I bought my wife, that was a big mistake, now her other sisters are probably not happy with that, all my daughters except the oldest are going to celebrate their mothers birthday, Her mother would not want that to happen but I did not ask for it to happen, I’m alone, hurt, suicidal, I cant even leave the house because my wife is still there, I dont want to leave her, there has not been a day I dont cry my eyes out.

  • Emily says:

    Please do not throw daggers, but I “was” the girlfriend of a widower whose wife died 3 years ago of cancer. We only dated for 3 short, wonderful months. He has 3 children….D 14, S 18, S 22. I only met the D and the S 18 on one occasion. The S flat out told me he did not have a problem with our dating. But unbeknownst to me the D and the S 22 could not accept a new women in dad’s life. The D in particular had a very difficult time handling it. I later learned she did not want me to come around. This took its toll and the widower ended the relationship. I am SO very sad, but I feel there is nothing I can do. But oddly, I feel like a very bad person and that dating him was something very bad. I feel like the enemy. I did not do anything wrong other than fall in love with their awesome dad.

  • Can't Get Through says:

    It has been really helpful to read so many posts, as I’ve never talked to anyone in the same situation as myself. My mother died of cancer when I was 16 and my sister and brother were 18 and 14. My parents had been together since they were 14 and 15 years old (and married since their early 20s), so my dad had no idea how to be alone. I understand that, but it was still entirely too soon when he began a relationship months later, she moved into our house and slept on my mom’s side of the bed less than 6 months after my mom’s death, they were quickly engaged and married less than 20 months after my mom had died. My sister and I tried telling my dad that we weren’t ready for this and we were still grieving our mother, but he insisted that he had to do what was right for him.
    It has now been 14 years since my mom died. It has been 14 years full of ups and downs, and all of us “kids” have had a tumultuous relationship with my dad. I believe that the two things that have made this the hardest are 1. It happened to soon.. we basically lost our dad (to his live in girlfriend) just months after losing our mom. With more time for our family to grieve and to have our dad, I think we would have had a much easier time accepting his new wife. 2. He has made it perfectly clear (he has has actually told us) that if he has to choose between her and us, he will choose her every time and if we cannot include her in everything that we do, then he will not be in our lives. I’ve tried reminding him that while our mom was still alive, it was normal and non-threatening for us each to have our separate relationships with our mom and with our dad, and then the combined relationship with all. For example, my dad and my sister used to go sailing together all the time– they were very close; yet, now he refuses to do ANYTHING with any of us, ever, unless his wife is also present. We have a very civil relationship with his wife. I make a great effort to make her feel welcomed, to make conversation with her when I call the house, etc., but it frustrates me that he refuses to see that if he would stop pushing us to have a relationship with her, our relationship with her would actually improve. Isn’t it obvious that the reason my sister has the worst relationship of all with my dad’s wife is because she lost her relationship with my dad because of his relationship with his wife?? If he could build his separate relationship with us, the hostility towards his wife would fade and we would be much less resentful. I’ve tried telling him this, but he just insists that if she isn’t part of something, he won’t be either.
    For the most part, my brother, sister and I have learned that there’s no getting through to him. We try to maintain as civil a relationship with him as possible… we all live several hours from my dad and have learned to avoid certain conversation topics with my dad because they’ll result in huge fights. This “sweep it under the rug and ignore it” strategy goes against what I would like, because I feel it makes our relationships with my dad superficial, but I’ve come to accept that a superficial relationship with him is better than no relationship at all.
    However, as big events come up in our lives, issues come up. There was a huge blow out after my wedding because my dad disrespected my wishes to not have his wife as part of my procession. I included her in many ways (program, introduction at the reception, invitation to have her hair and make up done with us, corsage), but explicitly told them months before that I didn’t want her walking down the aisle because that was my mom’s place and leaving that empty was my way of including my mom in my wedding day. Well, I walked into the church and she was standing there, waiting to begin the procession. My dad told me after that he didn’t want to hurt her feelings or for me to seem so mean and selfish so he told her to do it, not caring or considering how it would upset me as I’m about to walk down the aisle on my wedding day. This is just an example of the extent my dad will go to, the disrespect he’ll have for our feelings and emotions at a difficult time. Now my sister’s wedding is around the corner. It’s a destination wedding and he has told her that he won’t be able to make it because of work. She is very upset by this. (Of course, his wife was invited also, and my sister has told her that she is still welcome to come even if he does not.) I had a long talk with him the other day and tried to explain that his relationship with my sister has gotten worse and worse over the years and if he fails to go to her wedding, it will be another big wedge between them. He said it wasn’t his fault that they’ve grown apart and there’s nothing he can do about it. I told him he should try to develop and strengthen his relationship with her and, in turn, her relationship with my dad’s wife will improve. He said, “Absolutely not.”
    Issues like this will continue to arise, for example, when we begin having our own children, and we will continue to grow farther apart. We do not want to lose our relationship with our dad completely, and we know it would upset him not to have us in his life at all, but there is no give and take, not compromise, no willingness to try to accept our feelings.
    I didn’t mean for this post to get so long… there’s a lot I’m not even saying.. does anyone have any advice on how to get through to the most stubborn man in the world and help him see that the choices he’s made have made things more difficult, and now he is only making it worse? He doesn’t acknowledge or appreciate any of the things that we do to try to make his wife feel accepted by us, he just dwells on what we don’t do. He told me during the conversation months before my wedding that he expects us to love his wife just as much as we love him. I told him the only person we would love that way is our mother. For him, it’s not good enough that we have a nice relationship with her… he wants us to be one big, happy, loving family. I truly believe that he never let himself grieve and accept my mother’s death. Instead, he quickly filled that void, and doesn’t understand why our family relationship/dynamic can’t be exactly the same as it was before my mom died.
    I think our options are to either let our relationship continue to grow weaker and more stressful or to try to get him to agree to speak to a counselor/therapist that we could all speak with. In theory, this sounds great, but my dad will never hear anything people have to say if it conflicts with what he wants and feels. A therapist sounds like it could help, but I know there’s no changing my dad’s mind or attitude about anything. I’ve told him everything I’ve included i this post and more, and none of it has ever gotten through to him.
    Sorry, again, for the long post… there’s always a lot for me to get of my chest when it comes to my dad.

  • Tara says:

    I feel so much better after reading these posts. My mother passed away in May 2012 after a five-year battle with brain cancer. She and my father were married for 45 years and were, by all accounts, and amazing couple. Dad was a wonderful caregiver. Mom was worried that he would pine away when she died. Instead, he announced his engagement a mere 3 month and 3 weeks after her death. We knew he was spending time with a woman a month after Mom’s passing, but managed to come to terms with that somehow. However, the engagement and upcoming wedding (December 1st!!) has taken our frustration to a new level. He insists on talking about this woman non-stop and wants our families (including several grandchildren aged 8 to 14) to spend time with her. My brother and I are still grieving the loss of our mother 4 months ago. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to need space. Dad has told us that he has “never felt this way” about anyone, that nothing can keep them apart, and that he’s going to be selfish and do what he wants. No one has ever asked him to stop seeing this woman. We ask only that we be allowed the to take time to grieve before spending time with the new love of his life. I should also mention that he is well aware that some of the children, who were especially close to Mom, are struggling a great deal with this. We have told him that they are not ready for this. They will barely speak to him, yet he continues to talk to them about her and asks them if they like her or tells them how much he wants them to like her. The pain of losing my mother has quadrupled as a result of his behavior.

  • Lisa J says:

    After reading all these stories i feel like i am reading about myself.
    So here is my story…my mom died on oct 17, 2010 after battling cancer. She was my best friend and i miss her everyday. My parents were marred for 30 plus years. About 8 months after my mom died my dad started seeing someone this person that he is seeing was a friend of my mothers back in the day. It is also the mother of a friend i had in elementary school. It is weird cause growing up i was over this persons house all the time hanging out with my friend her daughter and now she is seeing my dad….just weird. Anyway my dad has been staying over at her house for probably over a year now. So i have been living in my parents empty house with all the memories of my mother dealing with everything on my own. Dealing with my loss and almost like dealing with the loss of my father as well cause i feel like i never see him. We get together once a week for dinner but even that lately seems like he is only doing that cause he has to not cause he wants to have dinner with me. So as if all of this is not bad enough now he tells me that she is gunna move into his house. So she is moving in here where i live, into my mothers space. We have not even gone thru my moms stuff yet. We have not been ready to and now i feel like we are forced to whether we are ready or not cause she is moving in….am i just over reacting?

  • Virginia says:

    Sadly, Mom passed away in 2002 from that awful C word…Cancer. Dad was heartbroken lonely after 43 years together with Mom. Dad had a couple girlfriends….that we liked. Then he met the one we didn’t, not because we didn’t try – because we did. She is so insecure within herself, she doesn’t feel that a daughter should have a relationship with her Father. She has made Dad chose between his family and her’s. We’ve included her in our daughter’s wedding, birth of our 1st granddaughter (his great granddaughter), graduations, family gatherings, birthdays – I’ve even had holidays before the holiday to include her. Her words to me: “your Dad is with me and my family now,” “your gonna lose your Dad, he’s going to pick me over you” and at my daughter’s wedding “I’m dancing with your Dad, you can’t.” Dad and I always had a great relationship, lunch, golf, fishing, talks on the phone. She will not allow him to have lunch with me or my daughters. The key here is I believe, she has abused him into such a state – that he can no longer think for himself for fear of being alone. Who does this to a man? What kind of man allows this? Then today, I get a text……we are now man and wife. This is how our family learned that he married her. She got what she wanted….sadly, she was right! I kept asking Dad to find someone that liked his family…..he chooses not to be alone. Very sad, I’ve kept praying for the strength….just too tired to turn my check again. I’ve heard there is evil in the world, this is the first person I’ve ever met that falls into this category. I’m done – this is just too heart breaking for me and our family. If he ever needs me I’ll be there, but for now…..I want him to be happy, however, I don’t think he is.

  • Jeanette says:

    I am also so happy to have found this conversation. I am also dealing with the situation of my father being remarried after my Mom passed away. Virginia – I can really relate to a lot of what you wrote…

    I recently sent a letter to an online relationship advice column and they responded to my letter. I am copying it here because I wanted to share my story and also share the response that I thought was really helpful to me.

    Here it is…

    Nov. 5, 2012

    My mother passed away 10 years ago when I was six months pregnant with my first daughter. A year later, my father met his wife and within months of dating she wanted my 1-year-old to call her Grandma. I said I needed time since I was still grieving the loss of my mother.

    I requested that she be called by her first name. Over the years, I worked through my grief over the loss of my mother and accepted my father’s marriage. However, his wife continues to feel I haven’t accepted her into the family and that I am disrespectful towards her.

    We had a big argument a little over a year ago and hurtful words and letters were exchanged. I tried everything I could think of to resolve our conflict. I suggested talking it out. We live nine hours apart, and I suggested meeting somewhere in the middle with a counselor.

    I sent a letter apologizing for my part in the argument and for hurting her feelings in the past, and I’ve tried calling just to talk. Everything I tried has been met with either silence or continued blame for my “attitude” and “disrespectful behavior.”

    Since then we’ve had little positive correspondence and haven’t seen them for over a year.

    Now my father and his wife have asked by written correspondence to be able to take our daughters, seven and nine, for a few days. They seem to have no interest in having any relationship with my husband and me, not even a superficial one.

    We offered to meet as a family. Their response is we are selfish and over-controlling for not allowing them to take the girls. Before the argument, we had some discomfort about leaving our daughters with them. Now we feel it is out of the question.

    I want a relationship with my father and his wife, but unless we agree to put the past behind us, I don’t think it can happen. My father and I were always close, and now I feel sad, hurt, rejected, angry and guilty.

    Do we accept presents from them for the girls and allow them to speak with them on birthdays and Christmas? That was the only time they called the girls last year. Do we allow them to take the girls but have no relationship with us?

    How do I make peace with no longer having a relationship with my father and his lack of relationship with my daughters?


    Meaghan, when you bend over backwards, you are likely to lose your balance. When you do everything you can to resolve a situation and the other person still rejects you, you must stop thinking, “I haven’t done enough.”

    His wife and you each have a different relationship with your father. Your relationship is decades longer, and your link to your father is through a woman no longer alive.

    Now his wife has him to herself. She doesn’t want another master in his life. Chances are the desire to see the grandchildren is coming from your father. Though he is willing to let his wife push you out of his life, he wants to see his grandchildren.

    But he doesn’t get to make an end run around you. Your father has his grandchildren because he has you. You can’t reward him with private visits with his grandchildren while he ignores his own daughter.

    Tell your father he can see you and the children when this relationship is repaired.

    It’s up to him. If he is not in a healthy relationship with you, how can he be in a healthy relationship with the girls? And if he has no relationship with you, he has no relationship with them.

    If your father wants to be in your life, the answer to all your questions is yes. If that is not what he wants, the answers are no.

  • Karen says:

    I feel the pain of all the daughters on this website and I’m glad I found this site. I am an only daughter. I have one sibling, a younger brother. I lost my Mom in July of 2003 to a form of lymphoma cancer. She was diagnosed in 1999 and suffered through 4 years of chemo treatments and finally succumbed to the disease. She was only 59 years old. She and my Dad had been married for 41 years and I have to credit him for sticking by her side through her long illness. Around January of 2004, a neighbor and fellow church member of my Dad’s set up a date for him with another woman I’ll call “Ellen.” It had barely been 6 months since Mom had passed away. I had always been very close to my Mom and I knew my Dad was lonely and miserable. He and my Mom did everything together and she spoiled him. But anyway, I felt like this neighbor more or less pushed Ellen onto my Dad. Ellen is divorced and has two adult sons from her previous marriage. Ellen and my dad married in October of 2004 just a little over a year after my Mom passed away. They had small get-together at my Dad’s house after the wedding and my Dad simply did not look happy that night. In fact, I caught him with tears in his eyes at one point and I couldn’t help but wonder if he was thinking about my Mom that night. They moved into my Dad’s house after the wedding. She had her own house but sold it. That was tough, as it was my Mom’s house too and this woman just moved in and took over. My Mom always hated clutter and Ellen “junked up” the house. From the beginning, Ellen and her mother who was still alive at the time were very pushy with me in terms of trying to establish a relationship that I just simply was not ready for as it was too soon and I had not had time to grieve my Mom. Ellen started telling me she “loved me.” At the time she barely knew me as I had just been an acquaintance in the past! She would try to hug me which I finally just had to ask her to stop doing. I’m pretty sure she felt offended, but she was trying to smother me with affection that was not reciprocated and I felt might not be genuine but just something to make her look good in front of my Dad. As I said, we barely knew each other. I got word through the grapevine that Ellen’s mother was telling her biological grandchildren that “she had to treat me, my kids and my brother the same as them, blah, blah, blah.” At first we were being invited to some of their family get-togethers that I politely declined as I did not feel comfortable attending them. My brother did not attend them either. Ellen also at first was sending me Mother’s Day cards and she would send my husband and I an anniversary card. When I did not return the favor to her, she stopped sending the cards. I don’t feel I owe her a Mother’s Day card as she is not my mother and I could care less about her and my Dad’s wedding anniversary. Ellen has the strangest relationship with her two adult sons, or at least it seems strange to me. I guess since I was close to my mother, I just don’t understand Ellen’s relationship with her sons. It seems strained to me. Both sons are married, one lives locally and one is in another state. The one who lives in another state rarely calls Ellen and apparently she doesn’t call him much either. The other son would come up and visit Ellen’s mother who lived next door and then leave and go home without visiting Ellen. As I said, they have a strange relationship. Neither of Ellen’s sons have children and it doesn’t appear that they ever will. So, she has no concept of what it is like to be a grandmother and quite frankly I hope she never has any biological grandchildren as she doesn’t deserve to be a grandmother. Despite the fact that she tried to be affectionate at first, she has never called me to ask how I am doing or how my children are doing. In the beginning, the hugs, “I love you,” were always done in front of other people. If she wants something, she gets my dad to call our house. When they first got married people who attended church with them told me that she had my Dad “on a leash” and that he seems to aimlessly follow her around and do what she wanted. My uncle laughed and said Ellen had my dad “whipped.” My aunt and uncle don’t like Ellen either and I have sometimes talked to them about how I feel about her. This is my Dad’s oldest brother and his wife. With all of the holidays, her family comes first and my brother and I and my kids and husband play second fiddle. When my Mom was alive, she enjoyed cooking and having her family over to eat. Ellen never cooks and we are never invited over to eat. She did cook a birthday dinner for me once the first year she and my Dad were married. The following year I asked her not to do that as I did not want to put anyone to any trouble. She acted as though she got offended over that. As I said, she so pushy and it was just too much too soon. On Thanksgiving they go to her brother’s and his wife’s house to eat and I assume they go there on Easter as well. We don’t get together on Easter. I finally started having dinner myself on the Sunday after Thanksgiving and having them and my brother over. I told Ellen that since my brother has never married and has no kids that he has no where to go on Thanksgiving. She could care less. We have to get together on Christmas Eve because her family gets together for Christmas Day. Do you know though, that this woman accused me of “giving in” to my husband though and going to his family’s for holiday dinners years ago? I’m pretty sure she heard my Dad say something and misconstrued it. What my husband and I did years ago is none of her business anyway. I used to just let her say pretty much whatever she wanted, but I’ve gotten to a point where if I don’t agree with her, I just let her know it. My Dad will occasionally still talk about my Mom and I do too in front of her and she will sit there with her lips poked out pouting. I don’t really care hows she feels and I feel like I have every right to talk about my mother whenever I feel like it, in front of her or not. My aunt, (my Dad’s sister) told him once that she would never be able to feel the same way towards Ellen that she felt towards my mom. Everyone in the community remembers my Mom and tells me what a sweet lady she was and for that I am grateful that people have such fond memories of her. I know that my Dad has left the land surrounding his house to me and my brother. However, and I really hate this, the house will go to Ellen if my Dad predeceases her. I really hate that as my Mom worked hard to help my Dad build that home. I felt willing it to her was a stupid decision on his part but there is nothing I can do about it. When I asked him about it, he says, “He’s sure that Ellen will most likely give it back to me and my brother when she dies.” I’m highly doubtful about that. While I did take some of my mom’s belongings out of the house when my she passed with my Dad’s permission there are still things in the house that belonged to her and my grandmother. Things that I feel need to stay in the family. I would hate for one of Ellen’s sons to get them and sell them. It wouldn’t put it past them. I will never be close to Ellen. I don’t understand her and I never will. I don’t really want a relationship with her. I try to be civil and that’s all I can do. I will never be her friend or her buddy and don’t want to be. I know this was very long, but I had to get these things off my chest. Thanks for allowing me to do so.

  • Karen says:

    I forgot to mention in my original post, but I need to mention this also. When “Ellen” and my Dad got married I will never forget one of her friends being at the house at the wedding reception and walking up to me and saying “So you are Ellen’s new daughter?” I thought I would nearly fall over! I AM NOT nor will I ever be a “daughter” to Ellen. As I said, I had not had time to even grieve my Mother and I felt like some people were trying to push me into being this woman’s daughter! At times, my Dad will bring up being “buried” next to my Mom. His name is on the plaque beside my Mom’s in the church cemetery so I assume he will be buried beside her and I certainly hope so. That appears to be his wish. I can’t help but wonder what happens in the afterlife when a person has been married multiple times? But then again, it is “Till death do us part.” It’s been a long nearly 10 years since my Mom passed away and while I hate to bring religion or the afterlife into the conversation, I do believe I will see my Mom again one day. Those are my personal beliefs and I feel though she is gone she is still with me. The only thing that has gotten me through these years have been that I feel her presence still with me and her telling me that I should focus on my family and not let things get me down. I don’t know if my Mom would have approved of Ellen or not, but I do feel that she would not have approved of some of Ellen’s behavior toward’s me or my family. She herself, had to stand by and watch her own father (my grandfather) remarry only six months after my grandmother passed away. So, I know that on some level, she understands what I have been through as well.

  • Karen says:

    To: Can’t Get Through:

    I read your post and I feel your pain. It appears that you have done all you can and the only selfish person in the equation is your father. It sounds like this woman has him as my uncle would phrase it “whipped.” What these “lonely old men” don’t seem to realize is that there is more to the situation than just their wants and needs. When they decide to remarry it involves the entire family – their children, grandchildren, in-laws. You are right, your father is an extremely selfish man to expect you to bend over backwards for his new wife with no thought for you or your siblings or any grandchildren, etc. I would say the best thing you could do is tell him very firmly that unless he changes his thought process and his ways with you and your siblings that you will have nothing else to do with him and if that is the way he wants it, then just end it there. Frankly, to heck with him and with her. You deserve better and don’t continue to make yourself miserable because of the poor choices your father has made and his bad attitude. He has obviously made a choice to side with his new wife and you have to let it go and let him go. Trust me though, if something happens to her, he’ll come running back looking for his family to support him again and then the ball will be in your court. While my situation is not quite the same as yours, I did feel that the woman my Dad married was pushed on him by his neighbor. I’ve really never forgiven her for that either. She thought she was doing my Dad a favor, but she was supposed to have been a friend to my mother too! At the time my Dad was vulnerable, miserable and lonely. My stepmother is the only woman he dated after my mom died. He really never had time to grieve her passing before he jumped up and remarried either. He wanted “companionship.” I get that, and it’s not that I expected him to never get married again or have a relationship with another woman, but it just seemed to happen so quickly for him. As I said, I caught him weeping at his wedding reception and it didn’t appear to be because he was happy about getting remarried. I know in my heart of hearts, that he was thinking about my Mom and maybe might have even had second thoughts. Anyway, I wish you the best of luck in your situation. I can be contact at [email protected] if anyone here on this forum wishes to or needs to talk further. This has been very therapeutic for me.

  • violet says:

    my daughter passed away several years ago it has not been two years yet. the ex son in law immediately brought a new woman on the scene, he had asked my daughter for a divorce after 28 years of marriage. I think he had the new woman on the side waiting in the wings so to speak. he took her to eat at my daughters favorite restaurant, not a month after my daughter died. it was like he was showing the new woman off. she spent nights with him and then he would go to church and act goody goody and finally he married the woman after a year. there is a minor child living with them, my grandchild. I try to be cordial because I want to stay in my grandbabies life. he sold his home and moved into the womans house. I feel very unwelcome there in fact have been there about three times since they married last sept. the whole situation makes me sick. the new woman has done away with every thing that was my daughters . she is like a dog marking her territory. the son (ex) in law has gone thru all my daughters life insurance money which should have been saved for the child (I think) . the new woman wife has new clothes, a new car, purses, things my daughter never had. he would be happy to be rid of the old family and embrace his new family but we, the old family, will not let that happen. we try to stay in the childs life as best we can. it is very hard.

  • Beth says:

    My mom passed away in October of 2010 after a six-month battle with lung cancer. I know it’s ridiculous to think that my Dad would (or should) remain single for the rest of his life (he’s only 54 now), and I don’t truly feel that way, but I can’t accept the fact that he has apparently begun seeing someone without admitting it to me or my three siblings. We are all in our mid-twenties to early thirties, and I feel that we are mature enough to hear him out, if only he would talk to us about it. However, he has been pretending for the past few months that this older lady (probably about 10 years older than him) has just been buying gifts for my niece and making him food all the time because she feels sorry for our family. Interesting then that my brother would come home the other night to find them cuddling on the couch at my dad’s house.
    I haven’t even gotten to the worst part yet–she is currently caring for her terminally ill husband! I can’t respect someone who would be messing around while their spouse of many years is suffering. Of course, I don’t know the whole story (maybe he approves? who knows), but it gives me a bad feeling. I’m even more upset about that than I am about my Dad trying to hide what has been going on with this woman. Plus, I feel like she is somehow trying to get in good with us by buying gifts and donating money to the charity walks that we do in my Mom’s memory, and it makes me mad that she is pretending to be a family friend or something.
    I don’t know…I feel like a jerk for saying these things but I’m really upset about the particular circumstances surrounding this relationship. Am I crazy for feeling so disgusted? The worst part is that I can’t even say anything because I don’t want to embarrass him or start a fight. Just have to wait until he thinks it’s the right time to tell us I guess…

  • Bri says:

    Im so happy i found this website i thought i was the only one in this situation. Im 14 and my mom passed away this year from breast cancer, and it was really hard on me because i was so close to my mom, not very close to my dad or brother. My moms hospice nurse Judi became friends with my dad shortly after my mom passed and he called it just friends. Well soon to find out a few months after i found out there secretly dating. This really hurts me because she was my moms nurse. And i think its to soon it really makes my stomach upset when i hear her name or see her with my dad. There still secretly dating behind my back and they still call it friends even though they kiss and always hangout, ect. Ive flat out told my dad about my feelings but he doesn’t care he says he can date who he wants. My dad has been acting differant since they started dating too hes been drinking more, ect. I feel like im growing up to fast because of this to ever since it ive been having to cook almost all the meals and everything on top of my homework and sports and friends. My dad has also been lazy too since it

  • Cherz says:

    Hi, so glad I found this site…I’m a grown adult or like to think I’am!! My Mother passed away Nov 2010 one month after passing my father emailed his girls and said he has meet a lady friend and would keep us posted..We at that time had been okay with it, at the same time upset we all new he couldn’t be by him self he and my mother had been married 49 years…Anyways on with the story Mother passed Nov 2010, lady friend moved into my parents home Jan 2011, engaged Oct 2011 and Married Aug 2012..How fast is that??
    Needless to say we have grinned and bared it, and have been as pleasant and respectful as can be.We went for dinner to my dad’s house that he and my mom built together & new wife thinks she owns it, “besides the point” we had dinner and I noticed something on her wrist and it seemed like she was hiding it 🙁 all evening I was staring and making sure that maybe I was just seeing things. Well the evening ended, said to my husband on the way home ” I know where my mom’s ROLEX watch is” he says on the new wife wrist…OMG I wasn’t seeing things, I told my middle sister so the next time we saw them she took a look and yup, I was right…She is still wearing it to this day and that just makes me sick 🙁
    Mothers Day we joined my dad and his new wife for lunch, and she proceeds to tell my middle sister she found the sunglasses that my little sister was looking for and she is telling my middle sister were she found them- my middle sister says, my Little Sister was looking for them, and the new wife proceeds to say “I Found Them” and never gave them to my middle sister to give to my little Sister she is still wearing them to this day..Makes me sick!!! Then we get an email from our dad on new policies of his home,on what we can do and cant do, to what bathroom you can use that is another story in itself. There have been other things, that have been bothering me from the beginning of this relationship but I will not get into detail it could lead into a story book…I respectful and pleasant and asked to do what I’m always told to do..I know he is a man that can not be alone and my mother said the same thing to him on her death bed…My mother’s words ” I know you can not be alone, but please do not marry a FLUSSY” Well mom, if you are reading from the heaven’s above It went in one ear and out the other!!
    Anyways any advise???

  • Jennifer says:

    All of your comments here are like echoes of my own situation.

    I am the daughter-in-law, though. But I still feel the same way a lot of you do. We are in the same scenarios, so I won’t get into it. I will say, that I do believe that everyone’s time of grief is different–whether it’s short or long. And it’s obviously not uncommon, especially for an older widow, to remarry quickly. Life is short. I don’t see anyone on here disagreeing with that or disliking their parent’s happiness and desire for companionship. We all want that. What I’ve gotten from these conversations, is that everyone in these situations is hurting in some way, and it’s always uncomfortable and awkward when a new woman comes in to the mix–especially to the kids (grown adults or otherwise). What I’m also seeing, and what I feel about my own situation, is that, the bottom line is there is a lack of respect, sensitivity and compassion for those who’ve also lost that person by either both, or the dad or the new woman.

    People I trust who I’ve spoken to about this all say the same thing, to develop some kind of communication with the girlfriend. Honestly, I’d rather stick a fork in my eye than talk to her. But I’m still reeling over a set of events that happened this last Christmas, our first without my Mother-in-law. Because, even though my Father-in-law needed someone in his life, someone that made something “spark” again, and even though she’s there to take care of him and take him on the trips he’d planned on doing with his wife, my husband and his siblings lost their mother. They are still feeling that loss in various degrees. And though he’s a grown man who can make his decisions, the kids still deserved some consideration. Though he was ready to enter into this relationship, the kids weren’t ready for it and its quick progression. A simple acknowledgement about that to the kids from her, especially, would have been nice.

    But we don’t live in a perfect world. Our loved ones leave us and we are broken and have to pick up the pieces and figure out how to have family dinners with that empty place at the table. We can plan and think we’ll know how we’ll react, but life just happens to all of us. This woman has inserted herself arrogantly into my Mother-in-law’s house, insisted the kids go through her things so she could have a yard sale and park her car in a giant three-car garage, and put all her tacky things everywhere. And kicked the dog out of his bedroom. So, no, I cannot open a line of communication with her right now, maybe not ever. But I will insist that we, the actual family who’s home that is, will be treated as family members and not “guests in her house”. And I will make sure that we maintain a relationship with my Father-in-law. I think the worst thing to do would be to follow my instincts and just never see her, and by extension, him, again. They want people to be happy that they are together and getting married, but she has not earned that, nor is she entitled to dictate my feelings or any one else’s.

    I feel that the only way to achieve some kind of middle ground here, is to accept what is happening, support my Father-in-law in his happiness, and be positive for my husband and his siblings. We don’t have to be happy about this situation, and I don’t have to have them over for dinner every week, but my Father-in-law can still be in our lives and I can be civil to this woman. She is helping us by taking care of him. And he is happy. But that will never make the feelings we have invalid. Maybe over time our feelings will change. But that’s the issue here for me, recognition that we still need time and space, and respect and sensitivity to having her in our lives so soon after loosing our Mother.

  • Genevieve says:

    I just found out that my Dad is beginning a relationship with a new lady, so I instantly came home and found this amazing website.
    My Mum died almost 2 years ago in Sept 2011. I was 19 and it was completely unexpected. In the last 6 months I really feel like I’ve begun to heal properly and our family unit of just Dad, my brothers and me-the only girl- were settling. I missed my Mum so much in the beginning, and hated being the only girl in a family of boys who talk about computers and machinery and leave me out completely. The hole in my heart was huge.
    Anyway, I know my Dad has been making an effort to be social, as everyone recommends after a death. He goes to dancing every Tues night. But he just told me that his dancing partner “Judith” is very special and will be coming over for dinner. He implied he has begun a relationship with her.
    I do really want my Dad to be happy, he’s much a nice man. But an immature part of me hope he feels guilty for moving on from my Mum, who he adored. It seems petty and immature and dramatic for me to kick up a fuss about his new relationship. But I’m really confused about how to take it all! I hope she’s nice and will be my friend and be good to talk to. Hopefully she’s not mean and takes my Dad’s money and excludes us. I’m sad, scared, confused and irritated with myself for petty immature thoughts.
    What do you guys think?

  • sean says:

    I cannot believe how selfish some of these comments are. I am a 45 yr old man who lost his wife of 18 years and partner for over 23 yrs after a long battle with cancer. I loved my wife deeply and will miss her for the rest of my life but I did start a relationship 3 months after her passing. I started the grieving process well before the end and do not want to waste a day of my life living it in mourning and lonliness. I have 4 kids (teens) who I am being very honest with but careful not to introduce anyone as a replacement for their mother – no one will ever take that place. They, and the rest of the family, are appalled at me. I went from wonderful caring husband who cared for the love of his life up until the end in our home to a heartless sob who doesn’t respect the memory of his wife. How dare anyone pass judgement on me? My kids will always be my priority but I need to be happy too. I only wish that they and others would stop confusing the love and devotion I had for my wife and have to her memory with moving forward and living life. I am not a heartless jerk – on the contrary, I am a loving, dedicated father and have much to give – why waste a day living in sorrow and lonliness on this earth when the time God has given us is so short?

  • Beanie says:

    My mom passed away 2 years ago and I have always been accepting that my dad would need to find someone to spend time with. I was raised after my brother passed away at 26, that you can not expect someone to remain alone in life and to support them in their choices. Well it seemed to be a lot easier to deal with when it involved my sister in law and her new boyfriend than my dad and his new girlfriend. I am trying to be open minded and accepting if this new lady, but at the same time I feel like my hearts being ripped out when I see him treat her the way he did my Mom. I miss her so much and this new lady doesn’t have children, so I know she can’t relate to how I am feeling. I know it is selfish of me to feel this way and my dad deserves to be happy. I just miss how my family used to be and having someone I my life that doesn’t judge me and loved me unconditionally. I am glad to see I am not alone.

  • Tiffany says:

    My Mom died December 5th, 2012. Just a couple weeks after her death I found out that my dad received pictures of Young Filipino women, 3 different women, and on top of that it was from a distant family member whom divorced my aunt and remarried an American Filipino women. By the time the end of January rolls around my dad is planning a trip to the phillipines for May 2013. I knew why he was going, but he was not being honest about it. Well, he gets back from the phillipines and just a few months later he lets me know that he is starting the process which takes 4-8 months for her and her two year old son to come here, and that they are going to get married. The girl is only 25 years old. I’m and always had been very very close to my parents, especially my mom. She was diagnosised with pancreatic cancer and only lived for 20 months…those 20 months were so hard on her. Having to have chemo weekly with only a few breaks in between, left her very ill during the process. My mom was the backbone of this family, when her mother (my grandma) passed away she left my mom a legacy. My mom wanted to make sure to pass some of why her mother passed on to us, her kids. My mother seemed to have a feeling that my dad would move on quickly. Boy was she right. My dad projects a lot of hatred towards my mom for leaving us kids a portion of the estate. So now my dad takes it out on me. He says my Mom did this to us. Which I’m so mad at him for….he won’t even let me have things that were my mothers, meanwhile bringing someone into the house she lived in to walk upon my moms things. He thinks we should just be fine it! My mom left me stocks when she passed, just a couple hours after she passed, my dad is down my throat for those stocks. He bullied me into selling them, yet I never even talked with anyone to sell them. He sold them took the money. This is my real dad. My parents were married for 35 years together since 17 years old. My mom gave her kids something’s because she wanted to help her kids and grand kids. I even told my mom not to give me anything, because I knew my dad would be awful. It started even before she died! My dad was already planning the future while my mom was living. He was trying to tell me he needs the things my mom was leaving to me. He constantly talks bad about my mom and then crys over my mom. He constantly is trying to one up me, that his loss is greater than mine, since I still have my husband. It’s really a nightmare. All the while he expects me to hang around him and live life with him in it! All I see is that greed has been number one on his list. I think whether I gave my dad back what my mom gave me or not, I’d still be dealing with a jerk. Unfortunately I still care about my dad. I think he is lost and being stupid. But how much do you put up with before you’ve had enough? If I were to write down everything he has done that’s been terrible I’d have a 500 page novel, it just gets worse and worse, really!

  • Melissa says:

    I need some advice. My mom passed away in Nov. 2010. Last year I suggested that he started dating. Which he did, but he seemed very needy and insecure. The women he dated didn’t respond to him like he had hoped. He met a nice lady this spring. They were going out a lot. She is currently separated from her husband and when they met she was in the process of selling her house. Her house sold and then all of a sudden she is living in my parents house. I question my Dad, he says it is temporary until she finds a condo to buy. She has no place to stay. He then invites her to go with the family on our trip to Disneyworld. I told him I was ok with it. I was nervous, she hadn’t made any effort to get to know me. The trip was uncomfortable. My kids were disappointed that they didn’t see him that much. We were home a week then they left again on a trip to Hawaii. While they were gone I went to the house and the girlfriend had packed up a ton of my Mom’s things. I was shocked. She had no right to do this. I have talked to a few of my Dad’s friends and they are worried. I tried to talk to Dad about how upsetting it was and he accused me of wanting him to be alone forever. That is not it, I want him to be happy. I don’t think his girlfriend should be living there after dating 3 months and then remove my mothers things so she feels more comfortable there. One of the friends that I talked to took it upon herself to call the girlfriend and tell her all my complaints and now my Dad is so mad at me, blaming me cause the girlfriend is upset and is possibly moving out. I just don’t know what to do. I don’t want to be the cause of them breaking up but he should respect my Mom, me, my brother and his grandkids more. If he wants these things packed up, family should do it, not girlfriends. He just doesn’t understand how upsetting his fast moving relationship is.

  • maura says:

    My mom has been dead for five years. My father met a woman (she’s actually renting our old house) about a year and a half ago. Let me be clear- I am thrilled that my dad has a companion in his life- they have fun together and he’s got a traveling companion. Her kids are great (we’re all in our 30’s).

    Here’s what I’m not thrilled about:
    – The feeling that my family isn’t my family anymore.
    -The feeling that my role in my family has changed. Before this woman was in the picture I was treated as equal and my opinions and input mattered and where often times asked for. My relationship with my dad was great- we saw each other at least once a week and always had great talks. Not so much anymore.
    – The gossiping and meddling that has started to take place- my dad’s girlfriend is at the center of all the drama. She thrives on it.
    – The fact that my dad feels that I should be grateful to this woman “for everything she’s done for me”. Let me be clear- I’ve never asked this woman to do a thing a for me and I never will. I don’t ask for a thing from my father, either. I cannot be grateful for a woman who has stepped in and commandeered control of my father and my family.

    He’s now decided to let his girlfriend move into our family mountain house. The house that he and my mom picked out before she got sick. The place were we went to grieve her loss. The only place where I feel close to her. He didn’t tell any of us- he just did it. When I confronted him about it, he asked if I was on my period.

    I am tired of my feelings being invalidated and being made out to be the bad guy.

    Every day I can’t help but wish my mom were here. It may not have been a perfect life or relationship, but it was better than this.

    • Sue says:

      I stumbled on this website in hopes of finding someone going through a similar situation. Your story could be my life story. The hardest part of losing my mom has been my dad moving another woman into our family home where we grew up. I find it completely disrespectful and so demeaning to my mom’s memory. And how can I have respect for the other woman who can so easily insert herself into a deceased woman’s home? Thank you for sharing your story.

  • nancy flynn says:

    Your mother who has passed away and is in heaven wants you to be happy which is your job here on earth. In addition to wanting you to be happy she would want her entire family….all of her children and everyone they are in relationship with to treat one another with love, kindness, respect and consideration. Your mom is in a beautiful, peaceful place and exists in pure love. Blaming your father or his girlfriend or anyone else who you feel has caused your sadness will not help you find happiness. If, in all circumstances you ask yourself the question: “Is this how my mom would choose for me to be living my life?” Can you lay down your unhappiness and anger long enough to understand that we all (even your father who you are unhappy with and have judged) want to be ‘wanted, needed and loved.” Focus your energy on creating the kind of life that would be a tribute to your mom….love your children; love your spouse but most of all love yourself the way she would have loved you. Comparing notes about your feelings and sadness and living in a way that keeps you mired in pain will fade when you accept that your JOB IS TO BE HAPPY. The only person responsible for your happiness is you. We all are just about as happy as we make our mind up to be…. There is nothing as strong and pure as a mother’s love for her children so take that thought and live the kind of life in your mom’s name that would reflect that truth. Life is very short and fleeting so take a deep breath and shine your mom’s light for her.

    • Annie says:

      The frustration in your post beneath your cheap shot of saying we should ignore very real and valid feelings to honor our mothers in heaven is sickening. Have you read the posts? When someone dies, especially a mother, the significant other isn’t the only one to suffer a loss, it involves the entire family. People that immediately jump into a relationship and force it on their families are wrong in doing so. Fathers should be there for their daughters and their grandchildren versus pouring your energy into a complete stranger. For most of them it’s the very least they can do considering that the mother did most if not all of the work related to the children. Any girlfriends or new wives that are allowing their involvement to tear apart a family are also wrong and very selfish. People that think the only way to find happiness is through a relationship and not through a connection with their family are selfish and shortsighted. Following the loss of a family member, the family should come together and support each other. Bringing in a stranger so soon after the death of a spouse and abandoning your own family during the time they need you the most is inexcusable. Only someone that is shallow and selfish would do this. It’s disrespectful and rude. Don’t try to justify it.

  • Shelby says:

    I’m glad I found this, too.. I’m glad to know I’m not alone.. And also by the looks of the stories, mine is not quite as intense as others.

    Here’s my story:

    My mom, like many of your moms, passed away from cancer (colon), in 2006. She was 50. I was 21. She found out she had cancer early 2005 after she became jaundiced in December 2004. Obviously, a liver issue meant the cancer was in more than 1 organ by the time she knew. She fought so bravely, and had pockets of success, only to be followed by a very quick decline (3 weeks from notice of having months to live). Looking back, I know I fought my own demons when coming to terms with her dying and then her death. My dad was her caregiver, and we had rounds of family and friends to support up until her last day and breath. I decided to move out July of that year to live with my boyfriend. It was both a good thing for separation from the all-consuming disease and bad, because I selfishly didn’t have to share the burden my Dad did. The day she passed, my dad, my uncle, my husband (then boyfriend), and I were there next to her as she took her last breaths. It’s a beautifully horrifying memory that is vivid to this day.

    When my mom passed, I realized almost immediately how little of a relationship I had with my dad. My mom was my confidant, my best girl friend, etc. Knowing this, I sought out my dad, and I developed a great relationship with him. We would talk on the phone for long periods of time. We would go over to each other’s houses for dinner. I’d take him out to sporting events of our favorite teams. We were very knowledgable about each other’s lives. Unfortunately, my dad didn’t necessarily have a life. Work was his salvation, and really, the only place he had his own friends or stories to connect himself to. He was kind of a hermit. Our house was a mausoleum. Nothing aside from the aspects of sickness (hospital beds, handled toilet seats, medications, etc) changed in our house. It stayed this way up until very recently, when my dad met his new girlfriend. This was a 6.5 year period… yikes.

    My dad met his new and first girlfriend since my mom’s passing early this year. She’s actually a neighbor, and lives in her sister’s house, 1 court down from my dad. In addition, her other sister lives on the same street, across the driveway, from my dad. She used to visit her sister, and when my dad was out, they would talk. She began to bring him desserts, and he eventually asked her to dinner. These dinners were pretty casual (March-April 2013). By June of this year, he went on a family trip of hers, to visit her niece’s college graduation?! Then in July, he went camping with her and her family. Then in August, he went to Cabo with her sisters and family…. At the first “family” trip, I was already stumped at how quickly things were moving. I let him know that I was worried, and sad that we really never had done this. It was so hard to get him out of the house in general :(.

    She makes her own clothes — she has no job — she lives in a room in her sister’s house where she is the primary caregiver for their mom when all the sisters are at work. All her sisters have families and are married… She has never been married and has no children. Speaking of clothes, she has over 28 bathing suits that she has made. My dad showed me photos of her modeling them for her…. She wears daisy duke shorts and mini skirts and tight dresses…. She isn’t bad looking, but still — She came to a fundraiser at the ELEMENTARY school that I work at wearing said mini dress and hopped out of my dad’s raised pickup truck….. have some decency please!

    So now it’s November.. my dad’s house is in the process of being fully remodeled. In the summer, I helped him clean out my mom’s clothes. We donated most, but I took the time to go through every item, so I kept a few that I liked. I’m glad he let me do this instead of just getting rid of it all himself. Basically, if I didn’t offer to help, this is the route it would have gone. They don’t live together… yet…. but she is an active participant in the redesign. In addition, there are several new “tasteful” furnishings in the garage, including a poster-size image of his girlfriend, and a multi-picture montage including an 8 x 10 OF HER BIKINI BUTT!? WTF? There is another of them “tastefully” making out………I told him, once again, that this WAS AWKWARD…. It’s one thing to have pictures of strangers in bikinis in a garage, but a person you are trying to have a motherly relationship with?!? It just doesn’t compute! Anyhow, they are still up… and they are still awkward…. And.. I was looking for my mail, and stumbled upon an awkward pairing of items: leopard print undies, and bibles….. She is apparently very religious, and my dad is now, too….. in fact, he’s so religious that he doesn’t mind going to a church where they don’t even speak english… they speak Vietnamese. AND… my dad is now the proud owner of two hens in his backyard, as well as a 2 burner outdoor stove for cooking pho broth….. Basically — who is he?!?

    The sad realization that I have made is that my dad may have always been a follower. He lost his identity when my mom passed. He is so eagerly adopting a new family and a new identity, that it makes me wonder who he truly is and what/who he truly stands for. I’m hurt and lost. Its like all of you say… the wounds are re-opened… He is so blissfully happy…. but I’m defensive and worried….. Maybe she is the one… but like many of you, she doesn’t seem to be trying to have a relationship with me..We go out to dinner together with my husband, daughter, Dad and dad’s girlfriend, and its like crickets…. She whispers to him or says a few words or sentences, but that’s it. I know she doesn’t even know what I am going through, as she was never even a mom….. How can she ever begin to be that for me….. Is it even on her radar? Is it even on his? What could she teach me? How to sew my own clothes? How to raise chickens?

    I think two equally lonely pp found each other and are love drunk…… I wish I could say someone was sane, but in the end, I just hope my dad isn’t being played. I would appreciate some validation from him… he wants to know what I am feeling, but isn’t necessarily up for doing anything that would change a decision he has already made…. Also, new caveat — she is now on our “family plan” because its cheaper, for her, and bc she dropped her phone in a toilet on accident.. I wouldn’t have even known, except I checked on the plan today to find it all for me to see….. She is also apparently data-greedy….and has used almost 2 gb of our shared 6 gb data in 10 days…… what the heck is she streaming? Is she going to pay for her extra data if she causes it to go over? Probably not… how can she afford anything without a job? Where is her income? Does she pay rent? Does she have good credit, or credit in general? These are all red flags for me……

  • Sam says:

    My mother passed away 5 months ago from cancer. I’m 23 years old and an only child. Growing up, I lived with both my parents and I would say we were a very close family. When I moved out for college, my parents’ relationship began to change. My mom had a disability in her legs for as long as I can remember and as she got older, it got worse and she got to the point of not being able to walk. My dad had been laid off and began taking care of her at home since she wasn’t physically able to take care of herself.
    The past year, I noticed an even bigger change in my parents’ relationship. My dad started using Facebook and was always on it. In November I found out he met another woman online and was planning to move in with her once I graduated college. My mom had known for a while but didn’t want me to find out because she wanted me to finish school. I did not handle it well at all. My biggest concern was my mother. She had fallen out of love with my dad a long time ago, she had told me, but I was worried about who would take care of her.
    The day before thanksgiving, my mother wasn’t able to get up. Her legs were in really bad shape and her hands were shaking and she wasn’t responding well. She got taken to the hospital and the doctors said it was a very bad cellulitis infection that was curable. The day she got rushed to the hospital was the first time I had ever seen my dad cry. He had actually showed some sort of care for her. They transferred her to a rehabilitation center to have her go through physical therapy so she could work better with her legs.
    Christmas came and the woman my dad had been talking to came to visit. My dad spent all of Christmas week with her in a hotel room and didn’t even visit my mom. This was hard on me and because I was taking it so bad, my mom began to too. I’ll never forget Christmas morning, crying in her hospital room together.
    January came and I continued to visit my mother. My dad was cleaning up the house to sell because my mom and I were planning on living together when he moved to his girl friend across the country. However, my moms health took a turn for the worse. I came to the hospital every single day without my dad for 2 weeks while she was in excruciating pain. The doctors didn’t know what was wrong and ran more tests. They found out she had stage 4 pancreatic cancer and that she was near the end.
    I found all of this out the first day of my last semester in college. I decided I was going to finish school for her and myself (which I did!). When all of this was happening, I went numb. When I wasn’t in class, I was in the hospital talking to mom, watching her sleep, and helping her stay comfortable. 11 days after her diagnosis, she passed away peacefully in her sleep.
    My dad sped up the selling of the house and ended up moving in with his girl friend in May after I graduated. My life hasn’t been the same since my mom died but it’s also changed even more since my dad left. It’s like I’m dealing with the loss of them both.
    My dad has changed with the way he is with me too. Before he left, he promised he would only be “a phone call away”. However, when I call, he rushes me off the phone. He never calls me, it’s always me calling him and 80% of the time he won’t even answer. He still is helping me with money and will send me checks to help me pay for things since I’m completely on my own now but the dad that I had growing up is pretty much gone. He wants me to accept his new relationship so bad and I feel like he’s shutting me out because I’m not really for it. Lately I have been trying to show my support but I feel like it’s all fake. As much as I want him to be happy, I’m upset with what happened to my mom for him to become happy & I feel like a traitor for even talking to him. I know my mom would want me to be a part of my dad’s life but it’s so hard for me to accept it. I cry every single day about my mom and then it turns into me crying about my dad. I feel so alone and I just miss them both so much and the way that things used to be. I wish I could know what my mom would want for me to do because as of now, I really don’t know what to do and how to handle this.

  • Loren says:

    I am sorry that you are going through this. I could relate and it completely sucks. My mom died of cancer April 2013 and then this month, July 2014, my dad got a lady friend. I thought we were just doing something the two of us and this woman I have never heard of or seen in my life showed up and my dad doesn’t introduce her. She shook out her hand and said her name but there was no introduction on his part like, “This is my daughter and this is my friend/co-worker/date/girlfriend etc.” So I sat there the whole concert wondering who the heck this woman is. On the ride home, my dad asked, “What do you think of my friend?” But my brother was living with his girlfriend for four years and my father still called my brother’s girlfriend a “friend” so the semantics don’t tell me anything. My dad knows I’m not for him being with anyone else in more than a platonic way. I asked my dad if they were just friends and he said yes and then he pinky promised on it. And then a few days later, I come home and he invites her without my permission to join us and my friends at a restaurant with live music. I invited my dad so my friend could help him improve his dance skills so we could dance together. I wasn’t thrilled but she came and we had fun. The next day, I find a note in plain view written by her that says, “On July 12 you… On July 13th we went to the concert” and then the last one said he sent her a dozen red roses! Then I checked his texts on my mom’s phone and all evidence points to them being intimately involved. I don’t feel my dad is trying to replace my mom. I’m upset that he is treating another woman better than he treated his wife and mother of his three children by appreciating this lady, sending her flowers, making her feel special, communicating with her etc. while my mother told me all sorts of details about their crummy 38 year long marriage. I’m upset he does not outwardly express that he misses my mom or feels sad that she died, for example, he forgot that the one year anniversary of her death was on that day and her birthday plus he doesn’t say anything about how he misses her. Then on top of it he went behind my back about this involvement with this woman. I love my dad and he is a great dad but he’s not handling this well and he’s a crappy husband. I’m dealing with this right now and still haven’t confronted my dad about how upset I am by all of this. If anyone wants to talk who is going through or has been through the same thing email me [email protected]

  • Dave says:

    My wife passed away on February 22, 2014 after a very very long battle with alcoholism. We have three children. They are devastated. I will provide the 50+ year-old male perspective. Not saying it’s right, just my perspective. We were married for 22 years and have many happy memories to keep. Our kids are simply amazing, they truly are. They are very strong spiritually, academically, are very respectful people and all have a great sense of humor. People constantly comment about how incredible they really are. This is (as I tell EVERYONE) a testimony to how great a mother she was before this terrible illness struck her. I’ve studied alcoholism a lot, and for those of you stricken by our societies version of it, please understand it really is a disease and NOT a choice. My wife was taken away from me well before February of this year. This disease took her away from me as a wife. We no longer had any type to normal life — didn’t do anything together. I put myself into survival mode and protected my children with all the strength and energy I had. Which BTW is quite a bit. I’m not frail, fragile nor naive. I dealt with this situation head-one and attempted to equip myself with all the information I could. It was a very difficult 10-12 years. We are all somewhat scarred from all we’ve been through. Her death, while so very difficult to deal with of course, was not a surprise for any of us.

    Amongst other things I turned to biking as a release. I signed up for bike rides and rode any chance I got. I put in over a thousand miles this year preparing for a 500 mile bike ride across our state. I went on this ride a little worried about my ability to accomplish such a thing. Ironically, I spent the entire week with many of my wife’s nephews and relatives in a camper and tents. They were awesome and always treat me with great respect. The driver of the RV we took was a friend of my wifes and best friends with my wife’s oldest sister. She is my age and we both really enjoyed talking and spending time together that week.

    I never thought I’d ever find someone who would make me happy again in terms of a relationship. She certainly does that. We are very compatible and truly love spending time together. However, this has been very tough on my kids. We have both tried to move very slowly in terms of being around them. But, it has been tough. I’ve made it very clear to all my kids that NO ONE will ever replace their mother, NO ONE EVER will do that. I won’t allow that to become a goal of anyone who enters into our family. My new GF is so understanding and does not want to replace my wife. She knew her quite well and really does understand (as much as possible) what we went through.

    I guess I wrote this hoping to give a Dad’s perspective and ask that those struggling try to accept the new person in your life and get to know them enough to judge them as they are.

    • nadia says:

      Well, I’m happy to have found this forum – even though there are old entries on here, i hope maybe one person will read my experience.

      My experience with this is quite similar. I lost my mother in 1995, i was 14 years old. I have 2 older sisters. Since then, my father has been the family rock. My sisters have been amazing as well. We bonded like we hadn’t ever. Our family members secluded us, for reasons that are not even worth the effort of sharing – but that made us 4 tight.

      My father was really respectful. He only started dating after a few years (well, to what we know – and that’s fair in my eyes). The woman he was dating is a wonderful, genuine respectful woman. She also lost her husband same year as my mom.

      She told us from day one, she is never going to replace anyone, but having a companion is nice. We became friends and built such a great friendship with her. They never lived together – the occational wknd away or at the cottage and she said she would never sleep in my mothers bed so if she came to spend the night, it was in the spare room. She sent us cards on my mothers death anniversary or birthday and was SO sympathetic to us.

      Unfortunately she has a big drinking problem, and after 9 yrs together my father couldn’t support this any longer. I don’t blame him. It’s a lot to handle.

      SInce then, my dad aquired another ‘lady’. The complete opposite. My dad is now over 70 and this woman lives 4 hrs away. I still live in my fathers home with my husband and ‘fur’ babies. We maintain the house, pay all the bills and it’s our home. They visit for birthdays and events.

      This has been going on for almost 2 yrs. I have been loving. I am loving. I’ve been through a lot in my life that i don’t need the added drama. Is she my cup of tea? It doens’t matter. All that matters is that she is respectful and sensitive and treats my father, my rock with the same as he treats her.

      In the summer, they went on an extended vacation. My sister and her family went to surprise them. I went next. My dad was on CLOUD 9! He was so happy that we were there in his hometown, with him and his family (since here he doesnt’ have that extended family). We had a great time. We toured , we ate , we relaxed – we connected again and again. Lovely experience. I went alone, my husband started a new job and we can’t afford it yet.

      That being said – i’ll speed this up.

      The wknd they arrived home, they spent the wknd with us before driving back to her place 4 hrs away. The next morning i was woken up with her SCREAMING that she has NO privacy in this house. That I keep this house a MESS. That i don’t respect that she doesn’t like the shampoo i buy her or the hand soap. She complained that when we were away, everyone bowed to me and did everything for me. It went on for a bit. Finally i heard my dad, he told her to shut it, because he heard enough and she’s a horrible person.

      It didnt end there. It has been like this for 3-4 months. I comfronted her. She claims there is nothing wrong. This story is long, and if you’ve reached this point, i mean – just finish it off 🙂

      My dad had threated to leave her a few weeks after this, she begged she’d change and she told me TO BACK OFF IF I WANT MY FATHER HAPPY – i did. It’s for my dad’s sake. I didn’t make myself visable every visit. I gave them space and just pleasent with her… that’s it. Can you ask more of me?

      New years eve and we’re celebrating – i took a great family photo of us 4 and SHE LOST IT. Claims that i do everything to aggravate her. The next morning when she was giving me the cold shoulder, i comfronted her. It’s because i took a picture of us 4 without her and because i have pictures of my mother up in the house and i do that on purpose. Oh and because when i came to visit them on their vacation i was really there to ‘cheat on my husband’ … she claimes.

      I LOST IT. i lost it. I basically kicked her out of my home. done. my dad went to her house, picked up ALL his belongings and is now living with me and my husband in OUR home together.


    • Alice A says:

      Dave and to all of you that are hurting and grieving your beloved parents and family members,
      I came to this website looking for guidance that could help my future husband and my own relationship with his adult children after his mother passed away 3 years ago. We do not live together.We both had spouses that die under the terrible cancer disease. We took care of our spouses at home, tube feeding, hospice, hospital visits, radiation therapy and chemotherapies. We suffered with them too as well as all the family members. We loved our spouses with all of our hearts, we dedicated our life to them and to the children. We both were happily married for more than 25 years and the unexpected happened to us. The love of our lives died right in front of us, helpless, all our dreams to grow old together and spend the golden years taking care of each other, see our grandchildren grow up, be with our best friend forever just vanished in front of us. It was a shock!!
      People grieve in different ways, but we all experience the pain, the hurt, the images that will haunt us probably for the rest of our lives,(it will get a little better) the isolation, the depression, loss of direction, the anger, and the acceptance of what happened and the hope that things will be better in the future. During this period I recommend that the complete family join a grieving group. It is never too late to join a grieving group. It helped me to learn ways to understand my feelings and cope with them. Every person mourns in different ways, intensity and time. Loss impact every person in a different way and we all need to process that loss. I believe that we have to be aware of the family feelings of loss, where are they in their journey, understanding and caring about it is important and may help your relationship with your children.
      Going to the point. I empathize with some of you that are hurting first because of the loss of your loved one and also because of your mother or father started a relationship with someone else. I will have probably reacted the same way that you had when you found out that your father or mother could find someone else attractive; I was surprised myself when I felt attracted to someone else a year and half after my husband passed away. I wasn’t actively looking for anyone but the opportunity presented itself thru my church. I met this wonderful man who I could talk very easily about my feelings of lost of my late husband and he could do the same with me. We enjoyed many of the same things, and were eager to try some new ones. Sharing time together helps us during our grieving period. I found out that life wasn’t over, that I could laugh again, that I could feel almost like the happy person that I have always been, and that it was a possibility that I could be happy again with someone else. This is a different time of your life, a different love. The love that you have for your spouse and your children will never change.( the dynamics may change) I know that there is a sense of family loss when your father or mother enter a friendship or more serious relationship with someone else. Things will never be the same that they used to be, fear of the unknown, change. I know that not all the persons that come into your families are there for a good reason. Some of you expressed concern about the relationships being too soon, and I agree with some of you, but specially men that depended completely n their wives, have been married for a long time, don’t want to be alone. We all are afraid to be alone. Your children are there but they are not there. They can not commit 100% to you. At this time of our lives we can make mistakes with relationships because we don’t have the tools, awareness, and you become almost like a teenager, naïve in some ways, excited about anything new, and different. We all need the support of the family, during the process of grieving and for the rest of our lives. I believe that acceptance and clear communication is important for both parties. I believe that you could give the other person a chance to get to know them, isolation doesn’t help in any way. My future step daughters(in their late 20s) do not accept that my fiancé have a person in his life. Even before he met me they didn’t want him to socialize with anyone else. It is very sad, but after 2 and half years I haven’t been able to talk to them more than 2 times, they were reluctant to meet me.I believe that I am a good, caring person who loves their father and only want the best for them, if they only will give me a chance. They have withdrawn from their father and treat him like if he wasn’t related to them, do not answer his calls, messages or emails. They consider that he has destroyed the family and he has betrayed them because we are going to get married. I can not understand their position. I had also cried too many nights when I see him suffering for the hurtful things that they had done or said to him the few times that they talk or argue. I don’t think he was very tactful when he delivered the news of our engagement to them, and I don’t think that they expected that he was going to propose after 2 1/2 years, why not? it is the next normal step of a solid relationship. I constantly encourage him to keep a relationship with them, I don’t want him to separate from them. I believe in family values.
      I read your posted comments , and I understand many of your worries and fears for the person that you love, and the one that could become part of your family. I don’t agree with certain behavior of some of the parents: comments about physical description, lovey dovey demonstration in front of your family, this thing has to be deal with at the moment that they occur or soon after. I believe that boundaries have to be in place and respected from both sides. After suffering a lost you should know that life is too short and it can change in any given moment. We have to live it the best we can and not have regrets later on. I just hope that you could open your mind to someone new in your life that it is not trying to replace your mother or father. I will never be the mother of my future step-daughters nor I want to be. I only would like some acceptance and respect.
      Please Open the Door and the path to a renew relationship, to a new future together as a family. Forgiveness will change your life. Do not live in the same painful place, allow yourself and your family to move on. ( I understand that there are some exceptions and some times this will impossible to accomplish) Well, I overextended myself. I will leave you with a beautiful bible passage
      1 Corinthians 13:4-8. Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoice with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hope, always perseveres.
      God Bless you!

    • Dave says:

      I’m Dave who posted in November of 2014 —

      Fast forward a couple of years — Today (Sunday April 17, 2016) I MARRY my awesome girlfriend that I met on that bike ride. We have spent the past 21 months gradually allowing everyone to adjust to this new life. Our 5 kids (ages 20, 21, 22, 23 and 25) have embraced this new life of ours with open arms. Don’t get me wrong, there have been many bumps along the way, but we have always kept the big picture in mind. We would never do anything to upset the awesome family lives that we worked so hard to create.

      We are so happy and today is the day we get to celebrate us. We absolutely love one another. We consider ourselves nothing short of blessed to have met and enjoy each other so much.

      When life changes through the loss of a loved one, it should be the responsibility of everyone to evolve slowly into a new life.

  • Ali says:

    I’m so greatful to have found this website. Today is the one year anniversary of my mother’s death from a 6 month battle with pancreatic cancer. 6 months after her death, my father announced that he had been dating a new woman and asked if my wife and I wanted to meet her. I’m not sure if it was curiosity or what but we agreed to meet them for dinner and a movie. Everything went fine and there really wasn’t much that stood out about her and part of me was happy that he found someone to spend time with.

    The next time I saw her was 2 weeks later in the hospital. I received a text from my brother which stated that my dad had a heart attack and I needed to get to the hospital right away. When I arrived she was there crying incessantly like a long suffering wife. It was ridiculous. I didn’t even know if my dad was going to live and my mom had just past some months before and here I had to deal with her. If ended up asking my brother to take he for a walk just so I could get her out of my sight. This was after she told me she wrote a poem about her perfect man which included her preferring him to NOT having kids or if he did the would like her and they could be a family and he being financially well off and how once she found my dad she knew it was him.

    While he was lying in ICU she canceled her thanksgiving plans and invited herself to ours which was a few days later. I was mortified. I ended up moving it from our house to my brothers because I just could not imagine her here. On thanks giving my dad was not feeling up to leaving the house, but guess who showed up? You guessed it. His girlfriend had the nerve to come without him, then pull me aside when she was there just to tell me that she wasn’t trying to replace my mom and we should honor her at all occasions. I wanted to punch her in the face because she followed up that statement with she loved my father and next thanks giving would be better. I wanted to scream, you’re only able to say that since my MOM is dead..

    Needless to say I didn’t sleep all night and sent my father a heartfelt email telling him how I felt about the situation. He called me the next day and was surprisingly understanding about not forcing his relationship on me or making me watch home makeout with his girlfriend as he did in the hospital.

    Well… Since that time he has reversed his mind, moved his girlfriend in and invited her on the cruise he offered to take me, my wife, my brother and his wife on while we sat at the hospice the night before my mom died. He said he wanted to thank all us kids for all our help with my mom. Of course, now he says the cruise has absolutely nothing to do with my mom and doesn’t know why I think it does. So, me and my wife backed out on the trip.

    Tonight, us kids and spouses had a dinner to honor the passing of my mother. My dad said he could come because he would have to bring his girlfriend. Honestly, I’m at a loss. I really don’t know how he can do anything more hurtful at this point. Its lime he has not only moved on, but he no longer wants anything to do with anything that had to do with his marriage to my mom, including us kids. I don’t know if this situation will ever be reparable.

    • Ali says:

      Sorry for all the misspellings above. Typed on my phone, dang you autocorrect! Hopefully you all got the gist of my situation.

  • CA says:

    I am glad that I came across this website, looking for guidance that could help my future husband (next year) and my own relationship with his adult children after his mother passed away 3 years ago. We do not live together. We both had spouses that die under the terrible cancer disease. We took care of our spouses at home, tube feeding, hospice, hospital visits, radiation therapy and chemotherapies. We suffered with them too as well as all the family members. We loved our spouses with all of our hearts, we dedicated our life to them and to the children. We both were happily married for more than 25 years and the unexpected happened to us. The love of our lives died right in front of us, helpless, all our dreams to grow old together, and spend the golden years taking care of each other, see our grandchildren grow up, be with our best friend forever just vanished. It was a shock!!
    People grieve in different ways, but we all experience the pain, the hurt, the sad images that will haunt us probably for the rest of our lives, (it will get better ) the isolation, the depression, guilt, loss of direction, the anger, and the acceptance of what happened and the hope that things will be better in the future. Getting involved with a grieving group helped me to learn ways to understand my feelings and cope with them, it helped me to move on. Some of you are just beginning the grieving process with very painful sentiments of loss and you need time to heal. Every person mourns in different ways, intensity and time. I empathize with you that are hurting because of the loss of your loved one, because of your mother or father started a relationship with someone else before you have time to heal and because you new relationship is not accepted by your or their children. I will have probably reacted the same way that the children did when you found out that your father or mother could find someone else attractive; I was surprised myself when I felt attracted to someone else a year and half after my husband passed away. I wasn’t actively looking for anyone but the opportunity presented itself thru my church. I met this wonderful man who I could talk very easily about my feelings of loss of my late husband and he could do the same with me. We enjoyed many of the same things, and we were eager to try some new ones. Sharing time together helps us during our grieving period. I found out that life wasn’t over, that I could laugh again, that I could feel almost like the happy person that I have always been, and that it was a possibility that I could be in a happy relationship with someone else again. This is a different time of your life, a different love. The love that you have for your spouse and your children will never change. I know that there is a sense of family loss when your father or mother enter a friendship or more serious relationship with someone else. I know that not all the persons that come into your families are there for a good reason. Some of you expressed concern about the relationships being too soon, and I agree with some of you, but especially men that depended completely n their wives, have been married for a long time don’t want to be alone. We all are afraid to be alone, we are human beings, social by nature. Your children are there, but they are not there. They cannot commit 100% to you. I agree with some of you that at this time of our lives we are very vulnerable, we can make mistakes with relationships because we don’t have the tools, awareness, and you become almost like a teenager, naive in some ways, excited about anything new, and different, remember we have been in a safe relationship for years. We all need the support of the family, during the process of grieving and for the rest of our lives. I believe that acceptance and clear communication are important for both parties. I believe that you could give the other person a chance to get to know them; isolation doesn’t help in any way. My future step daughters (in their late 20s) do not accept that my fiancé have a new person in his life. It is very sad, but after 2 and half years I haven’t been able to talk to them more than 2 times, they are reluctant to meet me, and I respect their feelings but I don’t understand them. I believe that they are still grieving the loss of their mom but it seems like they can’t find the way out of this stage of pain (need some counseling to find a way forward). I believe that I am a good, caring person who loves their father and only want the best for them, if they only will give me a chance. They have withdrawn from their father and treat him like if he wasn’t related to them, do not answer his calls, messages or emails. They consider that he has destroyed the family and he has betrayed them because we are going to get married. I cannot understand their position. I had also cried too many nights when I see him suffering for the hurtful things that they had done or said to him the few times that they talk or argue. I don’t think that he was very tactful when he delivered the news of our engagement to them and I don’t think they expected that he was going to propose after 2 1/2 years, but why not? It is the next normal step n a solid relationship, but it is not in their view. I constantly encourage him to keep the relationship with them when he feels frustrated and misunderstood and wants to give up. It is an emotional overload for everybody. I don’t want him to separate from them. I believe in family values. Sometime in your life, your own children may be going thru the same experiences that you are going right now. It is important that you allow your children to grow up with feelings of forgiveness and happiness. Please don’t ever tell your spouse or children that you don’t want them to ever get married again if you die, I don’t think that is the right thing to say to anyone. Live ends and the rest of people around the one who died have to keep on living.
    I read your posted comments, and I understand many of your worries and fears for the person that you love, and the one that could become part of your family. I believe that you should take into account the children feelings up to a point. I don’t agree with certain behavior of some of the parents and new GF or friends: comments about physical description and sexual nature, lovey dovey demonstration in front of your family, verbal abuse, etc. I believe that a photo of a late husband or wife has a place in a new home. I am actually planning a wall dedicated to our late spouses and children. You can’t just erase them from the face of the earth. All these things has to be dealt with at the moment that they occur or soon after. I believe that boundaries have to be in place and are there to be respected from both sides. While reading some of the behaviors of the GFs, I felt very bad for some of you, I understand where you are coming from..
    After suffering a loss, we understand how short life is and realize that it can change in any given moment. Today is a gift of God. We have to live it the best we can and not have any regrets later on. Celebrate your parents, give thanks for all that they have done for you and the family, appreciate, and respect them. I wish my dad was here today. I just hope that you could open your mind to someone new in your life, understand that they are not trying to replace your mother or father. I will never be the mother of my future step-daughters nor do I want to be. I only would like some acceptance and respect.
    Please Open the Door and the path to a new relationship, to a new future together as a family. Forgiveness will change your life and set you free. Do not live in the same painful place, allow yourself and your family to move on, to grow. (I understand that there are some exceptions and sometimes this will be impossible to accomplish) Finding happiness, it is a choice. Your choice. Well, I overextended myself. I will leave you with a beautiful bible passage
    1 Corinthians 13:4-8. Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoice with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hope, always perseveres.
    The best to all of you. There is Hope. Never give up!

    • Jennifer says:

      Hi there,

      I would like to speak to the women dating widowed men. My dad went online 7 months after my mom passed away and “met” someone. I will never forget my dad showing me how worked. Thanks dad lol omg. He had made plans to go out with a group of people and asked what I thought he should do – I think he was nervous. I encouraged him to go? I figured “who would seriously date my dad” lol – figured he was fun and nice so a group of “going out friends” would be fun and good for him? What followed was one of the most upsetting summers of my life. so far from my realm of understanding or reference. My parents had been happily married for 43 yrs. Now, less than a year after my mom died, here was my dad taking a woman out for Valentines Day? Not only that, he was telling me all the details? Where they went, what they ate, how they laughed….so I set to trying to say the right thing and be supportive even thought I didn’t like the idea of this woman.

      but then….

      I got to my parents house, and noticed that a cupboard that was under the stairs – that my dad hadn’t cleaned out in 43 years of being married, nor had he looked in , in that same amount of time -was completely empty. I noticed that the hutch with glasses and mementoes (another place my dad never looked at) was emptied. That this woman was cleaning personal stuff of my mom’s in her house made me so angry. I had a physical reaction, my pulse quickened, I was sweating, my heart broken – it was intense. I was a wild animal fiercely defending my mom in her space. My dad said they were just cleaning, but they weren’t doing his office stuff, the kitchen counters and other spaces less tied to my mom. I felt completely violated. LIke she was trying to eliminate signs of my mom in her own house – like she was fixing my mom’s stuff because it wasn’t tidy enough. Each time I got to the house something else was touched – not bathrooms cleaned or floors cleaned or my dad’s clothes organized, but places my mom had stuff were rearranged.

      for all you women dating widowed men, take note that the adult children (esp daughters?) may take time to adjust to a new woman in their dad’s life. For me I didn’t like the idea of this woman but was prepared to accept her into my life. The getting into my dad’s house and rearranging personal stuff – that is the thing that was worse than the fact that she existed.

      to deal with this woman – was challenging as admitting that this woman existed I had to admit a few other things:
      1) mom was gone
      2) this new woman existed
      3) dad has a girlfriend

      those are huge hurdles when you are proud of your parent’s relationship, your family and have not lost a partner. I assume you cannot know this feeling of losing a spouse unless it has happened to you. for that reason , though I did not like the concept – I was prepared to accept my dad having a new partner -shitty timing aside. Cheap internet dating aside.

      All bets were off when she was in the house organizing stuff. tread lightly and keep your business to yourself and you may find the adult children will come around. give them time and space.

  • CM says:

    Like so many others, I’m very glad to have found this website. At 15, I lost my mother to a 2-year long battle with cancer. Not 6 months later, my father introduced my brother and me to his 28-year old girlfriend and her two children. At this point they were already in a serious relationship, and I have no idea when he first entered the dating scene–all I know is that it must have been fairly soon after my mother’s death. A year hadn’t passed since my mother’s death, and already my brother and I had to welcome this woman, her 8-year old daughter, and 4-year old son, into our home every weekend. Otherwise, my father spent the entire weekend with them, and my brother and I were stranded at home all alone.

    After a year, my father broke up with the woman. He was single for a while, and really took the time to bond closely with my brother and me. It was probably the peak of our relationship–never had we been closer. I was extremely happy, but the same probably couldn’t be said for him. After all, his needs weren’t being met. Eventually, he announced his current girlfriend to us. I was still uncomfortable, but slightly more accepting of the situation because (1) a little more time had passed since my mother’s death, (2) the new girlfriend was actually my father’s age, and (3) at one point my father had said: “Don’t worry, she doesn’t have any kids!”

    Fast-forward a bit, and I am now 20 years old. It’s been a little over 4 years since my mother’s death. For (mostly) financial reasons, my brother and I are still living with my father while we attend college. He moved us all into his girlfriend’s home because she gave him an ultimatum–give her a child or end the relationship–and in the end, he gave her a child. So I now inhabit a house with them and their infant daughter.

    Don’t get me wrong. I’m well aware that I’m of an age where I could move out if I needed to, and I’m immensely grateful that my father is still supporting me. Nor do I fault him for moving on and pursuing his own happiness. Still, I feel like the pressures of my father’s new family are drawing him rapidly away from us. He may back us financially (and again, I don’t want to disregard his generosity here), but our relationship is suffering. I rarely see him these days, even though we live in the same house. The issue is that I can’t spend time with him without his girlfriend and the baby hovering around too. I’m not talking about holidays or family parties, where of course inclusion is important. I’m talking about watching a movie together, going on an outing, having a conversation. I cannot access my father without taking on the girlfriend as well. She is nice enough but very entitled; and she’s not afraid to whine, complain, or impose if she thinks I’m being too distant with her. In fact, she’s quite shameless on that front.

    The bottom line is that I miss my mother. The loss is still immensely painful. Like others have explained, I also feel like I have lost my father. I can’t have him without his girlfriend, but it hurts to be around her. She is not my family. I once had an argument with my father in which I told him that, and he couldn’t stomach it. He kept rattling on about being “fair” to her–as if she were entitled to have me consider her my family. I have no trouble being civil and friendly towards her, but I can’t pretend that she is my kin, and I can’t ignore the detrimental impact she has had on my relationship with my father.

    While I share certain similarities with the other posters here, I’m also aware of some differences. Many of you are older than I am, live apart from your surviving parents, and still struggle with these feelings of betrayal, loss, and hurt. It’s at once comforting to find other people who relate, and daunting to imagine that these feelings might not fade with time and age. I’ve sought counsel elsewhere, in real life and on the internet, and it always amounts to a guilt trip: How dare I try to deprive my father of happiness? How dare I try to prevent him from moving on? I’m grown, so his actions should be of no concern to me! The latest blow has come from a slew of articles that I’ve come across, which (1) advise divorced/widowed parents to prioritize the new S.O. above their children, and (2) aggressively reprimand the children for being selfish. It seems like people only understand this sort of thing if they’ve experienced it themselves.

    So I thought I would reach out to this community. It’s a relief to be able to explain myself to a group of people who might understand. Maybe some of the older folks here could offer a little wisdom.

  • Bonnie d says:

    My mother died suddenly in November 2014. She was not ill. My father was already searching for a new companion at the wake and as soon as the funeral was over was on the prowl. 22 women until he reconnected with a woman who he had known for 30 years. This relationship went off full steam ahead and had to tell us he was in a relationship on my mother’s two month anniversary. He was pushing us to meet her and was relentless. So 10 months we met her and now he wants this woman in our lives. Can not understand we don’t need her in our lives. It is his companion and we are happy for him but just wants more and more. He is very overbearing and always gets what he wants. He does not remember telling us the night of the wake we have our lives and I have mine live them.

  • nicole says:

    My mom passed away quickly from a rare cancer 2 months ago. And in this time my dad has changed. He has been spending a lot of time with my aunt my moms sister. They had never been really close other than the usual run ins at family BBQ’s. Now going shopping together, she’s visiting alot, furniture shopping, he wants to buy her a necklace and tell her not to tell the other sister where it came from. Even though the other sister was with my mom every second of every day since my moms diagnosis and passing. I told him he’s wrong for that. My moms remains were in a box we got from the furneral home and he wasnt even thing of buying her a proper urn. I live a block away from my parents house and never once has she been by to see me she has to pass my house to get to the highway. And mind you im her only niece from my mom.She had a spots car she lost. Now he wants one. I asked where is this all coming from he says he has the need for speed. And not ever having one now he wants one. I don’t know if I’m reading to much into this. But I feel myself being divided from my dad and a slap in the face to my Mom if there is something going on. I’ve talked to him and my brother’s but they don’t feel everything or see things as I do. I’m lost!!!!

    • Dee says:

      Reading through the different experiences that people have shared on this website has been a little helpful.

      My family and I are working through grieving my mother who died in spring of 2015 after an 18 month battle with an aggressive form of cancer.

      Less than three months after her death my stepfather started seeing this friend who he and my mother had known. The friend made her self available to “help” with gardening and a lot of the outdoor work to be done at the house. From summer to fall 2015 he would call different relatives to tell them he would be making big changes soon and moving on with his life.

      In fall of 2015 my stepfather announced he would be taking the friend on a trip out of the country.
      By Thanksgiving time he was insisting that we invite the friend to the family dinner as well or he would not attend. We explained to him that we were all grieving my mother and doing our best to cope with the first big holiday without her. Well, he decided that If he could not bring the friend then he would not attend the dinner so he was not at the family dinner. By Christmas time, he started calling around to my aunts, uncles and cousins (from my mother’s family) to announce that he would be getting married in January.

      According to him he is old, 81 years old, and cannot be by himself. My family and I have done our best to communicate our feelings to him. He may have moved on and is ready to make sure he has a life partner in his life and home. However, our reality is that we are still grieving the woman who was mom, sister, aunt, grandmother. His response about this has been so offensive that is has resulted in some family members wanting to not have any further contact with him.

      We understand that he will cultivate other friendships and relationships in his life. What we find offensive is –
      1) remarrying within 8 months of your spouse’s death and wanting to insert the new wife into everyone’s life regardless of their feelings;
      2) little or no regard for your dead wife’s family and their grief especially after they were there to support both of you before, during and after her illness;
      3) he has admitted several times that he is afraid of being along and he can’t be alone – those were his exact words. He refuses to accept that this fear is a big factor in his decision to marry so quickly;
      4) he has been calling family members talking about how miserable he has been and that he will be getting married – in the same church where he and my mother were married and moving the new wife into the house where he and my mother lived for over ten years.

      We are doing our best to cope with things. But, his actions have alienated many family members including me. It is disappointing and offensive to know that the 20 plus years of marriage he had with my mother, doesn’t seem to matter much now as he has decided he can’t be alone and has needs.

      I’m sure people have different views on this. For me, it shows a lack of regard to go out and re-marry within a year of your spouse’s/partner’s death. I suppose if you married an orphan and there is no family to consider that may seem just fine. It seems to me the concept of family and what means to really show up and fully support what your family needs is a hard thing for some people.

      For those of you who are grieving a loved one and dealing with similar things with a surviving parent or step-parent, I can relate to how you feel. In addition to adjusting to life without parent who has died, you now have to also deal with the surviving parent/step-parent’s relationship choices which will surely impact you directly and in-directly.

      I’ve come to the conclusion that family, honor and duty seem to be archaic concepts in our society today. I say that because too many people operate as though their actions and choices have nothing to do with their family. Unless you are an orphan or have exiled yourself from your family, your choices do have an impact on family – at all ages.

  • Rusty monroe says:

    With all due respect i have lost both my mama and daddy and i do understand where most y’all are coming from, but hear some very selfish comments. First off do you have to be the one to live alone? I am sure you mama’s and daddies loved each other VERY much and perhaps to you it was too soon. But how can you be the judge? I mean it is not all about what you want. They deserve to be happy. And they honestly dont have to answer to anyone but the man upstairs. Heck perhaps they didnt like your husband or wife but didnt treat y’all with such coldness, at least i pray they didnt. I know its not easy i honestly dont know how it ever could be cause lets face it we want our mom and dads together but who is anyone else to say when its right? Its no one elses business. Why treat your living parent and new partner like dirt? Seems veryselfish to me.

    • Leebee says:

      Rusty, I think that most of us want our fathers to be happy and we don’t mind so much that they are seeing a new person. What I, and it sounds like many others here, think is inappropriate is possibly the timing involved- being so soon after our mothers death, and the insensitivity towards our feelings of grief and loneliness of having lost our mothers. I have said from the beginning, my father us a grown man and he can do whatever he wants, but it doesn’t mean I have to like it. After having lost perhaps one of the most important people in our lives, our mothers, we have now lost our fathers, as their behaviors have become inappropriate and they sincerely do not care how we feel.

  • Kristina says:

    Hi, please somebody help me this is unlike anything I’ve been able to find on the Internet. I’m 29 ok, my dad and mom were living with my moms mom in her house of 50years. They were married 34 years good relationship. My mom whom was my teammate died suddenly it was most horrible experience of life, I’m devastated. My dad starts seeing a woman from his work THE NEXT friggin day, I hear them have sex the first week after mom dies, this has been very traumatizing to me and my grieving. I now had to take care of my moms mom who had dementia in her home while my dad is busy in the first stages of a love relationship right after my mom died in our house. My dad and his girlfriend kinda wait for my granny to die, then he moves her right in after making me get rid of my dog who then also dies in his new home suddenly. Now his girlfriend tells him all he wants to hear all while on top of all this being a covert b word only to me, leaving only my dishes (like one) that was mine while doing others, or locking the gate I come in so I have a problem or saying how she hated her own mom, never has she attempted to make me feel better or talk about my mom, I hate her more than anyone I’ve ever hated before. I’ve tried ignoring it and being the bigger person always doing her dishes, then she starts moving in more on my house putting her mark everywhere and being home all day in my grandma house. He has chosen her over me and I’m in straight hell constantly being reminded of my moms death as she is living much better in my house with her nose in the sky and always wnjoying when me and dad fight cuz of her. My heart eyes goes way up every time she messes up our home, bleaching the carpet, breaking things cuz she mindlessly pulls stuff too hard or carelessly. I’m going insane, and waste all day being unproductive as I think about how unfair and how much I hate her. My sister doesn’t live here and takes my dads side cuz she didn’t have to experience this like I did. My father has no friends so that’s why he’s so desperate to be with her. She is a horrible stupid butt who my dad even called psycho the other day yet continues to torment me with putting her shit all around my mothers moms house who of course both are dead. It has made my grandmas home a horrible memory now and I really don’t know what to do cuz this just isn’t right, thanks any suggestions appreciated.

  • Kristina says:

    Hi, please somebody help me this is unlike anything I’ve been able to find on the Internet. I’m 29 ok, my dad and mom were living with my moms mom in her house of 50years. They were married 34 years good relationship. My mom whom was my teammate died suddenly it was most horrible experience of life, I’m devastated. My dad starts seeing a woman from his work THE NEXT friggin day, I hear them have sex the first week after mom dies, this has been very traumatizing to me and my grieving. I now had to take care of my moms mom who had dementia in her home while my dad is busy in the first stages of a love relationship right after my mom died in our house. My dad and his girlfriend kinda wait for my granny to die, then he moves her right in after making me get rid of my dog who then also dies in his new home suddenly. Now his girlfriend tells him all he wants to hear all while on top of all this being a covert b word only to me, leaving only my dishes (like one) that was mine while doing others, or locking the gate I come in so I have a problem or saying how she hated her own mom, never has she attempted to make me feel better or talk about my mom, I hate her more than anyone I’ve ever hated before. I’ve tried ignoring it and being the bigger person always doing her dishes, then she starts moving in more on my house putting her mark everywhere and being home all day in my grandma house. He has chosen her over me and I’m in straight hell constantly being reminded of my moms death as she is living much better in my house with her nose in the sky and always wnjoying when me and dad fight cuz of her. My heart eyes goes way up every time she messes up our home, bleaching the carpet, breaking things cuz she mindlessly pulls stuff too hard or carelessly. I’m going insane, and waste all day being unproductive as I think about how unfair and how much I hate her. My sister doesn’t live here and takes my dads side cuz she didn’t have to experience this like I did. My father has no friends so that’s why he’s so desperate to be with her. She is a horrible stupid butt who my dad even called psycho the other day yet continues to torment me with putting her shit all around my mothers moms house who of course both are dead. It has made my grandmas home a horrible memory now and I really don’t know what to do cuz this just isn’t right, thanks any suggestions appreciated. Oh and one more thing, on top of all this he continues to traumatized me by giving my moms and grandmas car to this lady to drive and she even uses my moms dresser and this just is so wrong I want to die sometimes to make it stop

    • Paula says:

      To Mel from June 2016, that is horrible! You shouldn’t have to be at such a Situation! That is heartbreaking but she is tormenting you. If somebody loses a parent, the remaining parent should not engage in a relationship until a reasonable time has passed. Not only that the new person should be respectful of the loss, not try to impede and Reggie their way into the home, or any of the personal belongings of the parent that has passed, nor should they create such disgust in any of the children. So messed up!

      I wish there was a Facebook group like this page, as much as I would love to talk to my friends about such a situation like the one I am in, I feel like none of them can relate.

  • Mel says:

    My mum passed away in 2011 after battling cancer for 6 years. 6 months after her death I realized my dad was sort of speaking to other women and though nothing was obviously happening, I was enraged. I barely spoke to him for a month (and we live together!) And he once told me how it had been weeks since I even hugged him. It crushed me that he could feel my resentment but I remember how angry I felt and how it felt like my world, my family unit was being ‘invaded’. It literally felt like a foreign body that antibodies were trying to flush out. I did, however, start practicing acceptance and my father never forced me to be ok with anything. Incidentally, he didn’t really develop a new relationship with anyone, and somehow I tided over the resentment and anger and we came to a place of understanding – took nearly 2 years though. Sometime late in 2014, he connected with an old college friend and they began dating, and I was surprised by how ok I was with it. I didn’t feel resentment anymore, and it helped that the lady he’s seeing is a lovely classy lady who I am quite fond of, and this doesn’t feel like an intrusion into my family, the way it used to. I am so thankful to be in this place right now, because the earlier one was hell. I will say though, that as much as adult children need to be sensitive to and understanding of their parent’s companionship needs, the surviving parent must not force a friendship with the new woman in his life on his child. It will do no one any good, it needs to be organic. You could encourage it, but don’t force it, it will only make your kid resent you. I also strongly believe in letting a respectable period of time pass before beginning new liaisons, because these events affect everybody in the family, not just the parent – this needs to be understood by parent and child.

  • Sherrie says:

    My mother passed away 30 days ago. Within 3 days of her passing, my dad asked me if I wanted to meet this lady friend of his. I nearly lost my breath! I quickly looked at my dad and told him that her body wasn’t even cold and she hadn’t been cremated yet. My dad dropped the issue. Now I have discovered that while my mother was dying, this other woman was pursuing my father. I have a huge problem with this. What kind of person pursues the spouse of a dying person? Where is the respect for my mother from both my father and this homewrecker? Personally, I want to punch this person in the face, and as for my dad, I feel like I don’t even know him. It actually appears he has chosen this woman over his own family, and his own action have proven that. I have not met this woman, nor do I want to. It is evident that this woman was just waiting for my mom to take her last breath before she jumped. I am heart broken, and I want nothing to do with my father. I feel he has been deceptive with my mother and with me. To make matters worse, they were even intimate within the 30 days following my mom’s passing. This whole matter has made me sick and disgusted.

  • Paula says:

    Haven’t really been able to talk to anybody except for my significant other. My mom passed a few months ago on March 23, 2016. Laugh March mom and Dad declared a separation ( Long story short, my 34-year-old big brother a wedge between them). A month or so later my father started to talk to a new woman. I completely was disgusted , It was too soon!

    3 Months later she’s already sleeping over and redecorating. The holidays were brutal, because of their separation. The new year came by and I finally excepted that my parents were going there own direction. It sucked having to hear every once in while about the court problem. However I am pretty blessed that my mother never seem to mention any issue. He kept things secretive and kept things peppy and happy to keep me from thinking she was hurting or worried. Just won the divorce seem to be near to an end, my mother passed away unexpectedly from an aneurysm. At 62.

    I am 23 years old, I am her youngest, and I am in the toughest time trying to get through this. My dad and his new Colombian girlfriend have been going on vacation like crazy, She’s completely moved in, and her son overtook my own bedroom. I never excepted her at first, but then I excepted her and things were pretty all right. Except for the fact that it was really hard to communicate with her because she spoke little English. Three months after my mothers passing, it really starts to hit me. It doesn’t feel like my mother and I are working hard that will barely see each other, it’s actually settling in that she’s gone.

    It just so happens that my father is away for 24 days with his new girlfriend on vacation while I’m having the toughest time dealing with my mothers loss. Her and I had a petty argument on something so stupid. I want to apologize and she declined at my apology. I thought he was a grown adult. But turns out that my father wasn’t receiving any of my text messages. Because he had block them. I’m 23 and I cannot stand the situation that i am in. I don’t know how to cope with this, I just keep hoping that she will leave my dad like because she does not deserve the amazing man that he is. It has crossed my mind that he’s in it for his estate or money. But then again as tough as my father is, I know you wouldn’t want to be alone. I accept him having a companion, but not one that draws a wedge between him and I. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to except her. I feel like she’s disrespectful to my mother for thinking that she can take over the house. Not only that, even if things got better between her and I, I would feel like a traitor to my own mother.

  • T Wall says:

    It’s not a case of not liking dad’s new partner,it’s the fact that he’s totally different with her than he was when mam was alive. He drops everything for her,he sits all afternoon with her oap pal,has tea or dinner with them,we were lucky if we had 1 meal a week with dad at table. He drives her everywhere even though she has a car sitting outside her door,THEY BOTH go visiting her family together,regularly together,yet it’s only dad alone that visits my family and sisters. Dad will not be late or her or she will not go out with him,so when I visit him,and he’s arranged to be at hers,even just to be at hers for nothing in particular,he panics to get me out just so she won’t be annoyed with him. I once cut his hair too short,she told him he looked like a thug,wouldn’t speak to him for days,now he panics every time I cut his hair incase I use the wrong fitting. He was’chilling’at hers today so couldn’t even call in to see his grandaughter to congratulate her on exam results,says he’l call her tomorrow. What am I to do?

  • J says:

    What if the resentment comes from the girlfriend? What if she hates you because you’re
    mother’s daughter and your dad just doesn’t want to see it?

  • Connie Hill says:

    Mother’s Day is this Sunday, I have told my Dad that I won’t be around. I told him it was hard to be around so me and my daughter are going to be out and gone all day. He just told me that he wants me to call her or come by to wish her a Happy Mothers day, he says she wants to be a mother to me. I don’t want to. She has tried her best to destory our family and keep us away from my dad. I’m sorry but she is not my mother and never will be. What do I do?

  • Denise says:

    I have dilema now.My husband died and His son never call or visit.Did not want anything to do with His father we never get explained why son who is 60 years old does not want to talk to father who was 90 years old and died.
    Should I send death certificate to this son?

  • Sarah says:

    My mother died in 2009. She commited suicide several years after several 12 hour long surgeries that involved a metal rod in her spine. My parents were married for 44 years. Needless to say, my father, sister and I were devastated. They were very codependant, but because I grew up with them being that way, it wasn’t a big deal to my sister or I. My mother’s sister used to say that my parents went to the bathroom together-

    One year later (almost exactly), my dad told my sister and I that he was engaged. He was dating an old friend of my mother. (My mother used to make jokes about her-that she was ugly, an old maid, etc). We were surprised, but happy for him if he was happy. The year my dad was alone was the saddest I’ve ever known- my sister and I took turns visiting him every weekend with our children, and called him every day. We told my dad and his fiance how happy we were for them, and we were. Then, they got married, and DIDN’T INVITE US TO THE WEDDING! We were stunned and disappointed. My father said that “she”didn’t like crowds” (nice to know that my sister and I, our husbands and our two kids- were a “crowd”), and that they would have a second party. Time passed, and my sister and I asked when the party would be so we could plan accordingly. My father got quiet, and said that they weren’t having a second party. Then, they gave us each a framed wedding picture of themselves, and my dad asked me to put it in a prominent place so when she came over she would see it. Shortly after that, he asked us if we would have our children call her grandma. We were horrified, but decided to think of our children instead of ourselves, and we allowed it. Anytime my sister and I would try to talk about mother to reminisce, “she” would kick my father under the table, and he would be silent. My father’s brother saw right through her from day one, and to this day can’t fake his disdain for her. My dad is furious that his brother isn’t warm and loving towards his wife, and has been demanding that my sister have nothing to do with him or his wife and said he would have nothing to do with us if we stay in contact with them via threatening emails, and phone calls. Finally, we had a 3 hour discussion where I was able to say how I felt about everything for the past 8 years. My dad’s wife won’t let us have 1 minute alone with him. I told her how much that upset us. “Well, I’m just a terrible person.” she said (playing the victim to my dad). “I need to be there.” she said. I told her that my sister and I need to be alone with my dad from time to time. “What will I do?” she said. “What about me?”. I sat there stunned. She said that she has insecurities. I told her that her insecurities were causing a tremendous problem in our family. She didn’t shed one tear as I poured my heart out. My dad at times had his head down as if he were ashamed or saddened to hear my pained feelings. Not once did she admit any wrong doing or remorse for her callusness or for disrespecting my mother’s memory. I have given up. I have lost my father, and “she” couldn’t care less about anyone but herself. A good woman would honor her husband’s relationships with his family to ensure his happiness. So very sad.

  • Wendy Dunbar says:

    My mom passed away October 2015. Dad and her were married 53 years. My parents did everything with my husband and I. My dad now has a girlfriend. All the time my husband and I spent with my parents is with with this new girlfriend. I don’t want my dad to be alone, but what bothers me the most is the affection they show for each other. Holding hands, sitting close together and kissing. I get emotional every time and do not how to deal with it. I am not even over grieving the loss of my mother and I feel I have to be the strong one and accept this new faze in my life. How do I deal with it?

  • Dhaval Dhande says:

    I am 16 year old boy. It has been 3 months since my mother passed away in a car accident. Me and my father both were not there. Now my father has started looking for a woman on matrimonial sites which I came to know when I sneaked into his phone. They were married for 20 years. I just dont understand what to do. I can’t just tell him about it because he hasn’t told me anything about this. I can’t see any woman except my mother as my mother. I am in 12 grade and this thing has stuck in my mind which is degrading my performance in studies.

  • Stephanie says:

    I know this article is old, but it could not be more relevant to my life right now. I lost my mother unexpectedly over six years ago, when I was 17. It was the hardest thing I have ever gone through, me and her were so close. Within the year, my Dad was dating and in a serious relationship. From the get-go me and my siblings had qualms about his relationship. It felt like he was choosing her over his family. My brother was only 13, but my Dad spent most weekends at his girlfriend’s house. My brother has never been good at expressing his emotions, so it was especially heartbreaking to hear him express to me and my sisters that he felt abandoned. My Dad’s girlfriend would get offended when my Dad asked to spend some quality time with his kids. So much so that even when you spent time alone with him, he wasn’t really there in spirit. Wn we would try to bring it up to him it became “Don’t you want me to be happy? I don’t want to be old and alone”. Which of course makes you feel awful.This continued throughout their relationship. It has completely altered my Dad’s relationship with is children. Just four months ago I watched as my 28 year old sister cried because my Dad wanted to spend time with his girlfriend instead of her.
    Back in July my Dad and his girlfriend got married and moved in together. I still live at home (student loans, yay!), so was well aware that it was going to be hard seeing another woman not only married to my Dad, but living in the same house that my Mom did. But me and my Dad’s wife do not get along at all. She’s a nice person, but takes everything personally. If I try to clean (I want to contribute to the house somehow), it gets misconstrued as me trying to take over and not allowing her to make it her home. Then instead of her telling me how she feels, she complains to my Dad, and I get yelled at. I’ve always been close to both my parents, so to see my relationship with my father deteriorating due to his marriage hurts. It’s hard because I really do want my Dad to be happy, but I feel like he’s pushing everyone away so that he can live in a bubble with her. I think he expects both the families to just blend together like the Brady bunch and I don’t think that’s ever going to happen. He referred to her as my stepmother the other day, and her kids as my step siblings. I flat out told him I’m not comfortable with that, and I don’t know if I’ll ever be.

  • Planet-BBob says:

    With this same situation here at home, my wife, her dad’s girlfriend just died. What are our responsibilities towards the funeral? My wife and our family never got to know here, as our children feel that he betrayed their grandmother in such a short time. We believe he was seeing her before she died, during her long illness.

  • Cindy easdale says:

    What do you do when the new girlfriend, is very pushy? I have watched her manipulate my father’s time, and talk him into marriage with only 3 months of dating. I can’t sit back and watch. What do I do?

  • Stacy says:

    I am in the same ship as most of you. My mom died in 2005 and my dad went on a date 3 weeks later. I was shocked at his behavior.
    He casually dated my best friend’s mother from high school. That was okay until she abruptly told him they shouldn’t see each other any more.
    3 weeks later he started dating a woman 15 years younger than he from church. I was not comfortable with the relationship however as suggested I tried to form a friendship. We had many excursions and seemed to hit it off generally.
    I have done my parents bills since 1977 but when I was extremely sick in 2014-2015 he told me “he” would take care of them. Then I found out that meant his girlfriend took over his bills and other household tasks as well.
    She has her own home, has 2 grown children, 2 grandchildren but is now completely in charge of his checking and savings account. Her name is not on the account, but mine is!
    I have 1 older brother who has taken everything from my dad (which has tried to be hidden) so since she likes him he is 120% on her side. My dad isn’t rich but has enough for his needs and has slipped money to me in the past to be kind to me. Now I am being watched if I try to manage his checking account
    Worse still, he is in ICU with a poor prognosis and I am expected to defer to her.
    I know jealousy is very likely, but my mom and dad were married 48 years and I was very close to my mom.
    I am pushed out and don’t know what to do except stay away, but he is probably dying.