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A Widower's Passage: A Widower's Journey through the First Year

Who's Here for Us?

Men have been brought up throughout time to be the strong one, the breadwinner, the protector of others in times of need. We are the go-to guy, someone to help fix things that need repair, the shoulder to cry upon in times of sorrow, the pillar of strength that doesn't let emotions get the better of him, someone that helps others get through the most difficult times. But what about us?

Throughout history, men have been raised to be that person. The one that doesn't show emotion or sorrow, self-doubt or insecurity because it has been taught to us that those are signs of weakness, and not to be tolerated. Crying is not something we do, and if one does, others look away or avoid them. We are supposed to man up and move ahead, get on with our lives, and show others that we are still that pillar of strength.

But the death of a loved one, a wife, a soulmate, a partner is probably the worst and most traumatic event anyone can experience, and none of us are prepared for something like this in our lives. We are flooded with emotions and conflicting thoughts and teachings and have no one and nowhere to turn to give us guidance on what to do next. Family, friends, coworkers, and others are of little or no help, and few offer support for this journey you will be taking because they really don't know how, but there are other resources out there that you can seek out and utilize during this time.

The purpose of this book is to, first and foremost, let you know that you are not alone. You are not the first man to experience these emotions, the confusion, and the insecurity of your new situation due to the loss of your loved one. Others have travelled this journey, mostly alone, and no one is really prepared for what is to come, but you don't have to be. Within these pages, there are suggestions that you can incorporate into your journey, and there are personal examples of what at least one other widower has experienced during that first year without his loved one. Each one of us is different, due to the differences in our relationships, but you may see some common examples of what may happen in your journey as well.

--John Hutzelman



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