Ask Wendy

Am I a Rebound to a Widower?

September 23, 2016
rebound to widower
Hey Wendy,

I have met a really terrific guy. He is a widower. His wife passed away one year ago, a year after being diagnosed with an illness. His grieving process started well before the end. He thinks he's ready to start dating.

I don't want to be just the rebound. How early is too soon? And should I assume we should take it very slowly before sex?

I really don't want him to cry after (or God forbid) DURING sex.

Judy B. — Orange County, CA

Hey Judy,

No one wants to be a rebound, and as annoying as this is, there’s no way to predict how things will unfold. Some dive into a relationship and then bounce right out after they’ve hit something deep, while others have staying power.

Watch to see what he’s generating. Is he planning dates and courting you? Does he seem to have plenty of heart, energy and undivided attention to give? Everyone’s grieving process is different, and it’s not for you to decide what he’s ready for. You can’t predict his needs or know his emotional state. Neither of you can know how he’ll respond after sex the first time. Scary, right? So whether you dive in or go slow, anything you decide to do together should come from a place of authenticity, not strategy. Trying to use a game plan to get it right will most likely have you get it wrong. Do what feels right for both of you and remember, love is risky.

Now since it sounds like you’re willing to take this risk, let’s play the odds. Statistically, men marry and/or couple much quicker than women do after a loss of a spouse. They don’t like to be alone, and they appreciate the team effort it takes to make their life happen. And if their marriage was a good one, they want that for their life again — without delay.

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