When Does Becoming a Widow Equate To Being Divorced???

@LadyMarissa (12161)
United States
April 8, 2010 10:17am CST
As a lot of you know, my last husband died a little over 3 years ago. I did NOT ask him to die & he did NOT choose to die!!! His death was one of those things that comes from being born. My first husband was an abusive womanizer who tortured me daily. He ran around with other women daily. When the time came, I asked him to leave & he left to torture his next prey!!! The difference...I dearly loved my last husband & would still be sharing my life with him had he not died. Now I loved my first husband when I married him. However, due to the physical & mental abuse, I hated him by the time we divorced. It took me over 30 years to get past that hatred. Now fast forward to today...I've been doing a good many surveys In the initial qualifying questions I've noticed that more & more have grouped together Separated/Divorced/Widowed". Now, I'm sorry but I am HIGHLY offended to be grouped in with the "Separated/Divorced" category!!! In my mind, becoming a Widow is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT from being Separated or Divorced!!! Unless a murder is committed, a Widow has NO choice in the matter. Yes, there are some divorces where the wronged spouse had NO choice in the divorce; but all in all usually by time the divorce occurs, there are hard enough feelings it is NOT the same as losing a spouse due to death. Have you noticed this grouping together of classes??? Am I the ONLY one who is offended by this grouping???
7 people like this
12 responses
@HelloMickey (1663)
• Hong Kong
9 Apr 10
It happened that my husband and I just talked about this last night. One of my aunties divorced 10 years ago, and there's an uncle who is hubsand of my another aunt treats this divorced aunt so bad, I can't stand people being mean to their relatives and I absolutely can't accept that a man can do this to a woman and her young childern. We talked about this last night, and I concluded that a woman got divorced should be treated with love and caring, which I thought very similar to how we love and care a widow. However, my hubby totally disagreed with what I had just said, and he spoke out his opinions about it, and what you just said is indeed exactly he told me last night.
2 people like this
• Canada
8 Apr 10
I guess they figure you 'used to be' married, but are now single, not someone who has 'never been married' and single.
@zed_k4 (17627)
• Singapore
9 Apr 10
Very fine line there.. They are totally confused!
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
9 Apr 10
HEEEYYYYYY STRANGER!!! It appears from various responses here. it is something that you must experience to understand!!! I understand the company's need to classify various responses, but I feel they are misinformed if they feel divorced & widowed are the same thing!!!!!!
1 person likes this
@sender621 (14956)
• United States
9 Apr 10
I can definitely identify with you! I also lost my husband nearly 4 years ago. It's difficult enough to lose the ones we love without worrying about how people will want to group us. Nothing infuriates me more than filling out out a form for something and the only choices are married, single, or divorced. Not everyone can fsll into these areas. What are we supposed to do?
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
9 Apr 10
So far on paper forms I WRITE IN Widow. If they are too ignorant to understand, that's their problem. I've also started contacting offending companies with my thoughts on the matter. It may not change anything, but if I don't voice my opinion, it is MY fault nothing changes!!!;
1 person likes this
• United States
9 Apr 10
my mother's having a beef with those classifications too. the one thing she has to fill out every year now has her listed as "single" there is no "widow" option and it upsets her terribly to have to check it.
1 person likes this
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
9 Apr 10
I agree. Being lumped in with the Single group is WORSE than being lumped in with the Separated/Divorced!!! I feel if they can't give us our own classification then they really shouldn't ask the for the classification at all. My Mom & Dad were married for 65 years & including dating were together for more than 70 years. He screams that he is NOT single in any form or fashion. In his heart he is STILL married!!! I don't understand why these companies just can't understand that!!!
1 person likes this
@mtdewgurl74 (18118)
• United States
9 Apr 10
I take alot of surveys as well. I don't think they should lump them in either. but still being departed is still being married so why ask that even...and they ask your income..why do they need to know that..or your race...just crazy...if you ask me.
1 person likes this
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
9 Apr 10
Hey stranger...where you been??? Before computers & the internet became so popular, I worked for one of these companies where I made phone calls asking these questions. They believe that a certain income group make more logical decisions. They believe that different races buy in different ways. That's why it upsets me so that they have now decided that having a spouse die is the same as getting a divorce!!!
@gabs8513 (48715)
• United Kingdom
8 Apr 10
Hi LadyM Yes I have noticed this many a time on quite a lot of Forms I agree with you that it should be in that Category as you say Widowed is something totally different to being separated or divorced
1 person likes this
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
8 Apr 10
Thank you Gabby!!! I'm glad you understand what I was saying. To me lumping Widows in with the Separated/Divorced is akin to selling a 20 bag of oranges with 5 pounds of them actually being apples!!! It's just NOT the same thing!!!
@dorannmwin (36698)
• United States
8 Apr 10
I'm not a widow and I certainly hope that I never am. However, my mother has been a widow for the past fifteen years and I do find it offensive that she is catagorized in the same category as a divorcee because like you, she didn't ask for my father to die. She didn't want him to die, she wanted to share the rest of her life with him. It is very wrong to place a widow in the same category because of the fact that those that are widowed did not ask to be in that situation and they had no choice in the matter while those that are divorced/separated did have some sort of choice in their own situation.
1 person likes this
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
8 Apr 10
I pray you NEVER are also!!! You can see firsthand how your Mother has remained loyal & emotionally married to your Father. She does NOT deserve to be lumped into a category that has absolutely NOTHING to do with her emotional well being!!! I walked in from work a wife & 3 hours later I'm considered single yet I'm STILL the SAME person I was when I walked in from work.. Well, I feel the need to call bull chit on this idea!!!
@laglen (19782)
• United States
8 Apr 10
I dont think it is meant to be offensive. I think it is asking if you have been married and are no longer with your spouse. I feel safe in saying that there is a huge difference in being divorced and being widowed. I think the info they are trying to capture has nothing to do with the differences.
1 person likes this
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
8 Apr 10
I don't think they mean it as offensive either, but I can promise you that I'm offended!!! I think the info they are trying to capture has EVERYTHING to do with the difference!!! Having been BOTH divorced & widowed, I cam promise you that being widowed skews my thinking in a completely different way than the divorce did!!! In my heart & mind I am STILL 2 people thinking as one. As a divorcee I only thought as one period. I guess it is one of those things you can't understand until you've been through it!!!
@CatsandDogs (13964)
• United States
10 Apr 10
Hi LadyMarissa, I do understand your frustration, I really do however, I don't think it's meant to be offensive. I think they're trying to find out if you're single regardless of how you came to be single however, it is offensive when not meaning to be. I lost my fiance to a house fire and I've been divorced before that so I do understand your opposition. Maybe if you wrote to the company about it, they might change it.
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
10 Apr 10
I don't think they mean it to be offensive either. I just feel they haven't thought it through properly!!! I have been sending emails to every offending company. Most have sent the auto reply of we have received your email & will be back with you when we have a reply. I don't expect to hear from them. I'm a firm believer that you can't change anything if you don't try. Now,I'm considering starting a widows movement to show them how serious we are on this matter!!!
1 person likes this
@dragon54u (31636)
• United States
9 Apr 10
I have noticed it, yes, and I think that they do that to save space and give you a choice between just marking single and making it clear you are single for a good reason. You are right, though, it is offensive. A widow used to be looked upon with respect while a divorced woman was thought of with less respect. This was not right, certainly, but there was a big difference. One chose to end the marriage and the other did not. There has been so many things changed in the past thirty years--no one has any respect for marriage anymore, parents let others raise their children, unwed pregnancies are celebrated in many cases and dishonesty is praised. What a world, huh?
• India
9 Apr 10
Yes, this grouping together of classes is fairly common and I can understand that it touched a raw nerve within you. Don’t feel so bad about it though…its very innocuous otherwise and is meant for people who were married but are now single for whatever reason…don’t take it personally and hurt yourself further. We all understand that divorced and widowed are not and cannot be the same...ever, but this type of grouping I think helps the organizers in their categorization.
@LadyMarissa (12161)
• United States
9 Apr 10
Just because it is common, It does NOT mean I have to accept it!!! I also DESPISE being classified as single I lost his body NOT the man that I loved!!! He is still here with me in my heart & soul. In this day of companies being so sensitive to everybody's needs, I feel I'm being discriminated against at the insensitivity of their actions!!!
1 person likes this
@sid556 (31005)
• United States
11 Apr 10
Hi Lady, I have never been widowed so I have to be honest, it never occured to me to even consider this. You have a great point tho. If I were a widow, I have to say that I would probably be pretty offended also. It is not at all the same as being divorced or separated. This is a great question and I'll be curious to read the answers you get.