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South Burlington, VT

Life Changes » Death in the Family

Your spouse dying is one of the most devastating things that can happen in your life!

widowOur conversations with widows often bring up one disturbing piece of information. We find that it takes, on average 7 to 8 years for a widow to recover from the death of a loved one. The more sudden the death and the more unexpected, the longer it takes to feel grounded again. Your world is literally turned upside down. You no longer have the ability to bounce ideas off each other. The longer and more you’ve depended on your spouse, the harder the transition will be.

 Your IQ will drop

When you lose a loved one you’re going to be under way too much stress. Even if there is someone else to help you with the “details” immediately after your significant other dies, you’re going to feel very alone. You’re going to have lots of advisors, paid and volunteer, who will tell you what to do and pressure you for decisions. We hope you’re going to say, “Not Yet” and only deal with the decisions you must make.

We find, and research shows that your IQ will drop during these periods of high stress. It’s only natural that you will want to say no to almost everything. This might even go on for a while. It’s important to find a way to manage what you must. Some of the things you might want to consider are:

  • Should I stay in the home I’ve lived in? 
  • Do I need to think about changing my lifestyle? 
  • How can I honor the memory of my significant other? 
  • Is there ever going to be love in my life again? 
  • What should I do with the proceeds from life insurance or my spouse's investment accounts? 

Not all deaths are sudden……

Today we often know we’re going to lose a loved one. This gives you a chance to say good-bye. This gives you a chance to help your loved one move on. It also gives you a chance to start making some decisions early. We call this process one of priage. It’s where you work on a problem you know you’re going to have to deal with in the future.

We believe the more things you deal with upfront, the easier your journey will be after your significant other dies.

Here are some articles and workbooks that might help you through the process of priage or triage:

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