Today, I have a question for you ...
If you knew your husband or wife were going to die young and leave you with your children to raise by yourself, would you have chosen to still marry him/her? (I'll ask a similar question to those of you who are divorced further into the article).
If you would still have opted to marry your spouse, for the happiness and love you have experienced up to the death far outweigh the sorrow of your loss, but you have been feeling victimized by the circumstances of your life -- are you willing to consider that it may be time for an attitude adjustment? Please keep in mind that this adjustment does not negate the depth of your loss; however, your power lies in your response to it.
Ask yourself ...
How can I be a victim when I would make a conscious decision to have the life I am leading?
Yes, life is tough when your spouse has passed away and you are left to raise your children on your own. However, as with everything in life, there are always different ways to look at a situation. Let us take a small glimpse on the "bright side."
Now, when you make a decision about your children, you are always right!! Doesn't that feel good? Your children are also precluded from playing their parents one against the other to manipulate a situation so they can get what they want.
Not having to worry about setting aside spousal time, your available leisure time can be spent focused on your children. This special time, when it is just you and your children, will increase their feelings of security. When children feel totally secure and know that they are number one in a parent's heart, an easier transition can be made if the time comes when you want to welcome new love into your life.
As an aside, for the first two years after my late husband died, I spent so much time with my sons that they finally told me -- "Okay, we're ready for you to go out and play with your own friends and have some fun (without us)!!
Being single also allows you to concentrate on yourself without feeling guilty or selfish. For example, you can go to that party with friends and dance the night away and not worry that you've left your spouse at the table cooling his/her heels because he/she doesn't like to dance.
Another positive to keep in mind is that because children take their cues from the adults around them and mimic their responses to situations, you have been given a great opportunity to illustrate to your children how to move through adversity with grace.
And for the divorced ...
These same issues are present, and so I ask the same question of the divorced. Despite a messy divorce, if you are the parent of beloved children, can you say that you would not have chosen to marry your ex-spouse if that meant your children would not have been born?
Single parenthood, no matter how it comes about, is not an easy road to travel. And for the divorced, it can be further complicated by continuous battles over child custodial issues.
Now, some of my examples may seem trite, but they were merely to demonstrate that in every situation you CAN find a bright spot. The trick is that you have to want to find it! Letting go of feeling like a victim will free up room, time and energy in your life to welcome positive thoughts and opportunities.