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The New Widow: Who Am I Now? - Jennifer Waugh

When you were married, you never thought you’d be facing this so soon. In fact, you probably never really thought about facing it at all. You’ve gone through the adjustment of becoming a couple from figuring out finances, maybe changing your name to running a household together. Now the worst thing you could ever imagine has happened and you’re faced with a very different future and a very different life. It’s like starting over as a different person.

It’s hard enough to cope with a huge emotional loss but there are so many other things you have to think about at the same time. Some of them are practical like your finances. More than likely you are now one salary less and you still have bills, rent or mortgage and car payments. There are possibly government benefits to be navigated and you may have life insurance as well as insurance for credit cards that will pay off balances. If your husband died after a long illness, there may be health care bills that need to be sorted out. And if you have kids, it can be even more complex. It’s all just what you don’t feel like facing when you’re still coping with a world turned upside down.

Some of the things you have to deal with are less straight forward but still difficult. People, family and friends, may not know how or feel comfortable talking to you after your loss. You are no longer one half of a couple and no one knows what to do with you socially, if you even know how much you want to be social. Grief is so individual and when you’re at your lowest point it’s hard to tell people what you need and what you don’t want. As a society we’ve lost the understanding for how people need space to grieve. Ask a new widow how often she cries when she’s alone in her car. A terrifying, raw and devastating process can be even harder because we embarrass and make people uncomfortable with our grief

I understand. I know what you’re going through. My name is Jennifer Waugh and I get what you’re going through because I’ve gone through it myself. I have experienced loss and gone through the process so I have real first-hand experience of the trauma, fear, loneliness and anxiety that you are trying to deal with. I’m here to be the nonjudgmental support system that you need. I will help you with everything from giving yourself permission to take time to be sad to organizing your finances. Finding your new identity is a process. It’s different for everyone and I offer individual coaching to help you through the difficult steps to becoming that new person whether it’s going back to work after staying home with your children or when is the right time to pack up clothes and possessions. I’m on your side. You don’t have to do it alone. You don’t have to worry about letting me down. You get to be who you are until you figure out who you want to be.

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