We at SecondShaadi.com realize that a second marriage is not easy. Having gone through the process once, the second time will be preceded by a lot of questions, doubts and apprehensions.
In our humble attempt to help you handle these mental conflicts, following are some resources that will help you select the perfect partner for your second marriage
At all times we maintain that there is no substitute to knowing the person thoroughly. Do that.
All the best!
Questions you should ask your partner before remarriage
Potential partner with children
Q : What are your daily and weekly routines/schedules?
A : Lack of routines/regular schedules creates high stress levels and conflict between the biological parents and new couple. Adding predictability and structure to daily and weekly schedules decreases the amount of time and energy you’ll spend arguing about it.
Q : How do you handle discipline? What kinds of consequences will your kids face?
A : You and your potential partner may have very different disciplining styles. Understanding and respecting these differences will help you create a consistent, congruent discipline style that works for the whole household.
Q : What role do you see me playing in terms of discipline?
A : Agreeing on the forms and norms (“house rules”) is vital to relationship success. Defining roles up front allows for a smoother transition.
Q : How do you get along with your former spouse?
A : One of the biggest issues between couples in stepfamilies revolves around former spouses. Prepare in advance for the divorce-related issues you may be forced to confront.
Q : Tell me about your parents and their roles in the household. How did your parents get along? Who did what, in terms of household management? Finances? Housekeeping? How were children treated? How were children disciplined?
A : The households in which we grew up set the stage for how we expect our current households to work. Understanding the dynamics of your (and your new partner’s) “family of origin” provides insights into each other's expectations.
Q : How much time do you spend with your children? How do you spend this time?
A : Again, knowing what to expect greatly improves how you’ll work together as a couple.
Q : Incase of divorce, what kind of visitation agreement do you have with your ex-spouse?
A : Vacillating, unpredictable visitation arrangements are known to cause significant rifts between step-couples, children and ex-spouses.
Q : Incase of divorce, what would happen if primary custody of the children were to switch?
A : How would your potential partner respond if primary custody were to switch? If you have primary custody now, but it later goes to the other parent, what would this mean for you? A move? A job change? Financial impact? Alternatively, if you do not have primary custody, but were granted it, how would your potential partner respond? How would life change?
Potential partner with no children
A : It’s critical to understand the impact of schedule changes and to outline what you expect of your partner regarding time spent with the children.
Q : Incase of divorce, how did your actions contribute to your divorce/breakup?
A : Understanding past mistakes increases our chances of success in remarriage.
Q : Tell me about your parents and their roles in the household. How did your parents get along? Who did what in terms of household management? Finances? Housekeeping? How were children treated? How were the children disciplined?
4 Key Tips for Remarriage
1. Handling Remarriage Worries
It's common to feel a little embarrassed -- or even ashamed -- about remarrying. But stop! It's a near miracle to find love once, much less twice -- so celebrate! The people who love you want to gather around the two of you and help you solidfy your commitment. A wedding gives them this chance!
A wedding is also a healthy step in creating a new stepfamily, because it cements your new union as official in the eyes of all who witness it. You're never too old to be in love, and anyone grumbling at you could just be jealous.
2. Should You Change Your Name?
Your decision about whether to take your partner's name is a personal one. Changing your name at 18 is not as major a life change as changing your name at 42 or 55 or 60. You'll want to consider how your new name may affect your children, family, friends, colleagues and business clients.
Older or grown children may feel you are discarding the family name if you take your spouse's name. Take the time to speak with them frankly about their feelings. If you do add your new husband's name to yours, you may wish to retain, legally or informally, your previous maiden or married name when it would help clarify matters.
3. Breaking the News to Your Children
Just because your children are grown, don't assume that they won't react strongly to news of your nuptials. In fact, while it seems logical to think of young children as the ones most affected by remarriage of a parent, younger children are often quite resilient. When it comes to creating long-standing family rifts over remarriage, there's nothing like an older teen or adult child for creating family controversy.
Why is this the case? For one thing, grown children are articulate and can (and will!) express their fear, irritation and worry about this significant change. It helps if you remember that this is a change not only for you but for them. You are changing their beloved home (even if they haven't lived there for years) and reconfiguring their family. This is big stuff, even if "beta" is 39.
To soften the ground for the eventual big news, talk to your children as your dating relationship deepens. Grown children especially need to know your plans for the family house, your grandmother's china and other sentimental family keepsakes. They'll likely feel they're being selfish and won't bring up these concerns, but you can head off trouble at the pass with some reassurance.
4. Breaking the News to Your Ex
Don't make your friends or your children be the bearers of this news. Instead, tell your ex in person and as early as possible. If your relationship is difficult, you might dread this task, so make it direct and brief. This shouldn't be a shock -- your ex is probably already aware that you've been seeing someone. Try saying something like, "Raj and I have decided to get married. We're thinking the wedding may be in about 10 months or so. When our plans are firm, I'll let you know."
10 Steps to marrying a widower
Remarriage itself is a daunting undertaking, but when one marries someone who has lost a first spouse, it can also be fraught with issues, emotions, and real-life problems that had never before been written about in the history of periodical literature…until now.
1. Embrace the past - Don’t hide it or run from it.
Ignoring your husband’s grief will not stop it. Nothing will. He will most likely forever grieve his loss. Living in denial of grief’s existence will only prolong your spouse’s grief recovery. Better to allow your husband the opportunities he requires to talk about where he’s at in his grief journey. Better still to have a relationship where you, too, can talk openly and honestly about your issues regarding his grief and his past, and how they both make you feel about your marriage.
2. Accept that your marriage will be one of three hearts.
It’s no easy task to share your husband’s heart with another woman, but in a marriage to a widower, that is precisely what you must learn to live with. But take heart – it IS possible for grief and love to co-exist! Even more encouraging is the knowledge that your husband’s love for his late wife will never diminish what he feels with you!
3. Don’t let pettiness over material possessions get you off on the wrong foot.
If you battle with insecurities about whether or not your husband does or will ever love you as much as he loved his late wife, then resenting her pictures or personal possessions from their marriage in your house may seem like an important point of issue to you. Many wives of widowers deal with this problem when blending two households into one, and it can cause the most pain and frustration in your new marriage – yet it doesn’t have to.
The keys to healing this problem are communication and compromise. Between the two of you, decide which possessions you are both comfortable with keeping, and which of them you are willing to donate to Goodwill. Remember that you each have special mementos of the past which hold great sentimental value. Be sensitive about the other person’s feelings when deciding on which of these you can live with if they are to be displayed in your home.
4. Be ever vigilant about remaining sympathetic & empathetic when dealing with all the bereaved family members.
While the late wife’s family may or may not accept you into the new extended family fold, remember that they have experienced a great loss and are dealing with the backlash of grief. They may fear that their daughter’s/sister’s/niece’s/granddaughter’s memory will fade into obscurity just because your husband decided to remarry, and may subconsciously blame you for this. If you remain constantly focused on their bereavement, it will become much easier for you to deal with any negativity on their part.
As with anyone who has suffered the loss of a loved one to death, allow them their memories and be patient as they learn to grow to love who you are and respect your place in your husband’s life
5. Don’t dwell on the past or let it feed your insecurities.
Was the late wife prettier/sexier/funnier than you? Was she a better cook/lover/friend/parent/etc.? Comparisons are normal, yet when we fall short of our own comparisons, they can feed our insecurities and inhibit the growth of a relationship with a spouse. Your husband did not marry you because you were an exact replica or clone of his late wife. He, more than anyone else, is keenly aware of the unique and special qualities that made him fall in love with you, no matter how different or alike you are to his first wife. Accept that you and the late wife are two different people, both with wonderful characteristics that are worthy of your husband’s love. Remember that the negative differences you create in your own failed comparison to the late wife may be just the reasons why your husband found you to be so appealing!
6. Be selfless and gracious enough to accommodate grief-related episodes as they occur.
You cannot love a widower enough to make him forget his late wife. Yes, time is a healer, and along every grief journey, sadness turns to joy at some point. However, do not be fooled into thinking that your husband’s late wife’s death anniversary or their wedding anniversary, her birthday, or holidays will be grief-free.
He may be unwilling to share his grief feelings with you on these special occasions simply because he may be afraid that speaking of them will hurt your feelings. These are the times to boldly take the bull by the horns and graciously offer your permission as well as your understanding. Lovingly remind him that you are aware of the significance of these dates when they occur, and that you are available for listening should he wish to share his feelings. Also, offer to go with him to the cemetery if that is what he desires. As painful as it may seem, joining your husband in this way can be soul cleansing to both of you and to your marriage because of the opportunity for therapeutically honest communication that arises.
7. Firmly set boundaries, but with gentleness and cooperation.
A marriage to a widower isn’t all about his grief and tiptoeing gently around it. YOUR feelings matter, too, and they deserve validation, no matter how petty, insensitive (to grief), and unrealistic the outside world may find them.
Many wives of widowers are hurt when their husbands refer to their late wives as “my first wife” or simply “my wife, Rajni (or whatever her name was!)”. If you can relate to this issue, you must firmly but gently communicate your discomfort to your husband, and allow him the opportunity to be as sensitive to your “second wife needs” as you are to his “grief needs”.
8. Read, research, and learn all you can about the stages of grief and what to expect from each.
By the time you marry, most of your husband’s grief journey will be complete. However, as with all bereaved persons, there will always remain a spark of grief that must be dealt with on a regular basis. If you are to be truly “one” with your husband, it will be your responsibility to learn all you can about grief and its effects in order to understand how they will eventually fit into your individual marital puzzles.
9. Don’t be afraid to seek outside help should you find your feelings to be overwhelmingly frustrating.
My husband shared a very special communication about his past, his late wife, and his feelings about both, which provided comfort and encouragement to both of us in our marriage. However, at times I still tended to tilt at the windmills of my mind as well as the intimidating ghostly presence of his late wife.
Wives of widowers are few and far between, and sometimes, you aren’t even aware of whom your friends are! They could be our neighbors, our chatty friends at Yoga class, or even the mothers of our children’s friends. Your status and the issues that arise because of it are not the typical conversation fodder for most casual acquaintances!
So many wives of widowers feel that they are either alone in their feelings, or just a tad crazy to have them at all! Therefore, it becomes acutely necessary for someone who constantly deals with negative pressures of her role to seek the support of a counselor, clergyman, or fellow wife of widower. Sometimes, just getting validation for your distinctive emotions is the first step towards healing them.
10. Live for the present and welcome the future by making each day count.
Every day of life you live and every breath you take are gifts from God. Show your appreciation by making each of them count! Make new memories with your husband that are special only to the two of you and that are autonomous from his marriage to his late wife.
Plan vacations to exotic places that neither of you has ever visited. Combine your holiday traditions, thereby making new ones that will become unique to your marriage. Redecorate your house or even one room at a time together, or buy a new home…together…and make it your own.
Life is a teacher, so be a good student. Remember - you cannot change the past, but you can accommodate its memory and grow from it...and so can your marriage to a widower.
10 Mistakes not to commit in a remarriage
Don't badmouth your spouse to your friends or associates. Spouses need to be thanked. They need to know they are appreciated.
This includes allowing your mind to wander, paying more attention to the computer or television set, ignoring body language, and interrupting.
This is a death knell for a marriage. Seek medical counsel and therapeutic counseling if necessary. Don't leave your spouse wondering why you aren't interested in sex.
This includes lecturing your mate, or having to have the last word. Very few people can love a know-it-all forever. Admit once in awhile that you made a mistake or that you don't have all the answers. Don't answer every simple question with a long-winded dissertation on the topic.
Actions do speak louder than words. When you say you'll do something, do it. When you say you won't do something, follow through.
If your spouse says the teasing is hurtful, considers it a put down, or thinks that it is inappropriate, then stop it. Claiming that your spouse doesn't have a sense of humor or is too sensitive is being inconsiderate and unkind.
Having lies and secrets in your relationship can create distance and lack of trust between the two of you.
This includes continuing to have gross personal hygiene habits, or always being late, or nitpicking everything your spouse does, etc. It is when you know you are annoying and you continue to annoy.
This is when you spend money on yourself, but make a big deal if your spouse spends a dime. This is not wanting to open your home to friends and family because you prefer to be alone and don't want the hassle of entertaining. This is hogging the remote, only going to cheap restaurants when you could afford better, or not watching movies your spouse wants to see.
Every couple needs to be able to handle conflict in a constructive way. Having an angry outburst so that you can win an argument will make you the loser in the end.