Widow…..its a word that I never thought I would ever have to call myself. I never dreamed that I would be a widow in my 30’s. I mean we had a full life ahead of us. We were married for 10 years and frankly we were just starting to get the hang of the married life. I know…..after 10 years we finally understood each other well enough. Took us a minute but we were proud of how far we came. Nowadays it’s tough being a widow because now people look at you as if you have a disease. No longer are you invited out to couple things, the friends you had as a couple disappear as if they never knew you, and as a newly single person you thrusted into this world of being a single mom. I am thankful that I had a good mixture of married friends and single friends so that I wasn’t totally by myself but it was still tough when you are no longer invited to girls night out with your use to be married friends. Grief is hard…..when people mention my husband I usually laugh it off and say oh you are fine and they are because honestly saying oh I’m sorry about your loss doesn’t get any easier no matter how many years pass by. We all grieve differently. I am use to deaths as I have been to more funerals than I have been to weddings so grief is not a foreign word to me. I don’t normally cry or go crazy when someone tells me that someone has passed because I am use to it. I have 0 emotions sometimes and I wonder why that is. When my husband died I went into getting things done mode….I shed some tears but honestly after I lost my mother…..grief and tears become a part of life that I somehow got use to.
There are some things though that you need to know and prepare for just in case you ever find yourself down the road of being a widow. Let’s talk about some things you need to have in place
Life insurance – GoFundme is not life insurance. I wrote a post about this a while back. Have life insurance in place. My husband didn’t have life insurance. When he died my first thought was OMG how am I going to pay these bills and keep a roof over our head. I wasn’t prepared to lose him at such a young age so I never thought that life insurance was a must have. Now I know and my kids and I have it. Life insurance is not a bad word and it needs to be in place no matter how young or old you are. Get life insurance even if it’s just the basics. I wasn’t working when my hubs died so I was more worried about where we would live vs anything else. Thankfully I had enough money saved in reserves to pay for about 3 months of rent and his job went above and beyond to make sure we had everything we needed for the first few months. I was able to take those few months and get a plan in place for what I needed to do next and when I tell you all I moved….I moved. I could not sit still and cry because I had to figure things out and quickly I only had enough to last for a few months and time goes by quickly.
Make sure you know about important passwords – My hubs was kind of secretive. I knew some stuff but didn’t know a lot of his passwords to his emails or even to his phone. Thankfully the phone was in my name and I was able to get them to reset it for me to be able to login. I know that some married couples don’t want to tell everything some of y’all be hiding stuff in your phones but as a couple you have to put that shat aside and be able to have access to things. I could not get into several of my hubs emails to take care of bills or important stuff. I was able to reset some things (thank goodness he had things set up to his cell phone number where they could email me reset pins and stuff). My son could not play the xbox because I didn’t even know my hubs had a whole other email address just for his video games. I did have the passwords to the bank accounts but other than that I was lost as hell. If you are married you will have to share those passwords….or have a general account where all the important bills go to so that you don’t have to be wondering how to pay stuff or what is the balance of things. In case of an emergency communicate how you will access private information
My hubs and I didn’t have anything together thank goodness. We were renting a home which was in his name so that was no problem. I handled that by not telling the leasing people that he passed until I had everything in place. I continued to pay the rent as usual so that I could handle things. Sometimes you have to keep your mouth shut! I also did this with his bank accounts. It’s not wise to do this but I had to do what I had to do. He did not have a will so automatically everything came to me and I was appointed power of attorney. I had that in writing because you know how family can be…..I was able to access that fairly easily because I already lost my mom and had to handle her affairs so I knew what to do. I didn’t shut down any bank accounts and kept them open so that I could access his last paycheck. Speaking of bank accounts make sure you both have an account with your names on it. I had my own account and he had a separate account but we had a joint account. People will send you checks and you may get things later on that has his name on it and you will need to be able to deposit. Keep an account open for a while. I kept my moms account open for about 5 years after her death just in case I got something later which I did btw…it was 3 years after she died I received a check from a car she had sold back to the dealership and they couldn’t find her and the check kept going from house to house until it finally arrived to me.
Here are a few other things you need to have in place now so that you can always be ready
- Don’t put student loans in both of your names. If he has student loans those bad boys will be buried with him and you will owe nothing. Don’t let them tell you that you are responsible either because it’s a lie unless you both were on the loan docs
- Have death insurance on your car insurance the car people won’t tell you this but if someone has a car and they die the car insurance people can cut you a check for that person to help pay for the car….get it on your car now. I didn’t know this until after my mom died and I couldn’t pay her car note and someone asked me if I had the insurance on the car for death and I was like whaaaaaaa
- Have insurance on your home so that you can pay for it in case someone passes
- Anything that has your name on it jointly you will be responsible for. Thank goodness I didn’t have to deal with that
Becoming a widow has been tough but thankfully I knew all about that single motherhood life since I was a child of a single mother. I was able to step into action with no problems since I was use to living that life. Things will not get easier and there will be certain holidays you will hate. The best advice I can give you is to surround yourself with good people who understand you and find like minded folks who understand if you just need a moment to yourself. I pray that none of my friends become widows anytime soon because it sucks.