Many people feel uncomfortable expressing sympathy to a grieving widow. Showing you care by sending a gift can encourage a grieving wife. While flowers are traditionally sent after a death, these soon wilt and die. Meaningful, alternative gifts can provide comfort and may help fill the void created by the death of her spouse.
While adjusting to the loss of a loved one is difficult, many widows welcome a living memorial. Live plants that can be maintained indoors or transplanted outside can be comforting, notes Litsa Williams on her website Whatsyourgrief.com. Memorial plaques or stones for an outdoor garden area also make good gifts. Donating to the deceased husband's favorite charity is another way to make a lasting memorial, according to the FTD website. Many families request that remembrance contributions in lieu of flowers be made to honor their loved ones. A grieving wife may feel comfort knowing friends and family thought enough of her spouse to make a personal donation.
Make a Meal
After the chaos following a death dies down, the new normal sets in. A grieving wife may still feel intense loss even after the initial extra attention ends. Organize a meal delivery plan so that she receives two or three meals each week. If the grieving wife now lives alone, consider making meals in single portions, some of which can be frozen for a later date. Take care to find out the best time for meals to arrive and if she has any dietary issues. Gift baskets of non-perishable food or snacks and restaurant gift cards for those nights she just doesn't feel like being at home may also be appreciated, says Williams.
When a spouse dies, he often leaves more than just an emotional void. Talk with the grieving wife about which things she relied on her husband to do. She may be concerned about who is going to take care of the yard work or house maintenance. If so, you can bless her by making arrangements for these chores to be completed, suggests Williams. Helping out with housework, running errands or doing the grocery shopping are also helpful ways you can offer your support.
A Personal Touch
Grieving widows may find it hard to take care of their needs following the death of their husband, much less to do something special for themselves, according to the article, “Moving Beyond Grief After Losing a Spouse,” on NextAvenue.org. Perhaps a gift certificate for a massage or tickets to see a show with you can give the mourning wife a time to relax and take a break from her mourning. Personal photos the widow does not have, scrapbooks and other types of memorial art can also make meaningful gifts.