Being single in older age has various benefits and some challenges.
Loneliness is defined here as a state of being by oneself despite being in a crowd. The new widow especially can feel this most strongly during the first couple of years of loss.
As you are just getting used to being no more part of a ‘twain’ or couple.
You are now an individual doing most things by yourself that was once shared with your other half.
A lot of adjusting mentally is required as your sole adult confidant in the home is no longer present. You miss the spaces; he occupied as they are visibly empty and quiet. The vacuum can be quite overwhelming and disheartening.
However, you must avoid thinking about this for too long. As the magnitude of your loss and being single can engulf you like a dark blanket. This can come in as a dark cloud that will manifest in you as low mood and depression. So, trying to prompt yourself daily away from deep thinking will prevent you from drifting into an emotional malaise.
As you gradually start to live in your new singleness you will also discover the benefits of singleness too. To mention five
1. You are freer as your space becomes yours alone and not shared.
2. You can choose to decorate the space the way you might like it and no need to compromise with another.
3. You develop newfound confidence from making bigger decisions by yourself
4. Meal preparation times become more flexible especially if you do not have dependent children.
5. You are tidying the house for one less individual
While the disadvantages could be
1. Having to decide as a single person how you want your future to look.
2. How long do you want to be on your own.
3. When to enter the dating game with all the daunting expectations that have changed since you last did this.
4. Being more mindful of your financial budget as you are one income short.
5. Missing a companion for outings and events
If you have shared your life with a spouse for many years loneliness can become apparent. Shifting to a positive mindset on how to perceive loneliness will keep you in good stead emotionally and socially.
So, surviving singleness requires making a personal and conscious decision to fight it all along the way on your journey of recovery – against all odds.
Managing your thoughts are key as the biblical quote below indicates.
‘Casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God. ‘Bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ’ 2 Corinthians 10:5
So, try to intentionally change your thoughts to positivity daily as an emotional mechanism. I pray you shall not drown in the grief of losing a spouse.
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