Love Thy Will Be Done

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Dear Dharma,

My dad passed away three years ago, and it was a terrible shock to the entire family. Thankfully my mom has been so strong through everything and been a total rock for me and my sisters. I don’t know how she does it.

Recently she has started signing up for new activities and making new friends that include men. She hasn’t mentioned that she’s dating, but I’m wondering if she is and it makes me really upset. She and dad were together forever. It just seems wrong and I don’t know if I can be cool with it. Am I just being an overbearing son, or should I ask her to wait a bit out of respect for dad?

Not Ready

Dear Not Ready,

I’m sorry for the loss of your dad.  Losing a parent is such a difficult thing to go through.  The loss of a spouse must be even more devastating and kudos to your mom for being the rock when she probably needed one herself.

It’s not that you are being overbearing, but you are definitely self-focused when it comes to this topic.  You know that your mom dating is not about you, right?  It’s about her and what she needs.

Just out of interest, how much time would you think is appropriate for her to wait in order to show respect to your dad? Three years is quite a long time, don’t you think?

Although your mom and dad were together for your whole live, sadly that is no longer the situation.  Things have changed and you need to find a way to adjust to that.  Start by putting her needs first, just like she did for you and your family when you needed her most.

Now she needs you to be understanding and respectful of her choices.  Your dad would have wanted her to be happy, I’m sure, and you should want the same.  I’m sure you do, and I can absolutely appreciate that this won’t be the easiest thing for you, and that’s okay.  We all have things we need to work through, and right now this yours.

This process might end up being beneficial for everyone.  By getting through this chapter and being okay with your mom moving forward, it’s one step closer in coming to peace with the loss of your dad.  It’s a multi-layered thing for sure, grief is.

And you understand that your mom moving forward doesn’t mean she’s leaving your dad behind and forgetting him, right?  Love doesn’t work that way.  A piece of him will always be with her, no matter where she goes or who she’s with.

The greatest gift you can give her is to be okay with this.  Do whatever you can to get there.

Dharma

 

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