Widows and Remarriage

A long time ago in Britain widows did not have a lot of options to choose from if their husbands were to die. They could choose to remarry, just rely on their children, or support themselves. It was not easy for the women in this time to support themselves unless their husband died leaving them an enormous amount of money. Gladly remarrying was common for the widows in this time. It is said that thirty-five percent of widows in Britain remarried within nine months of their husbands death. The main reason it was common for widows to remarry is because if they did not it would become difficult for them to obtain a livelihood. Although it might sound bizzare, men really did not mind marrying a widow in this time because they wanted children. The only downside of this was how the widows were treated differently depending on if their family had good money. If a widow remarried and brought property with them, it was then restored to her. Although remarrying sounds like the common thing, most widows decided to rely on their children. They sometimes would choose to remarry later in life but for a while they would fall back on their children for help. It was also very common for husbands to put into their wills that if they were to die their wife was not allowed to take the money they inheriteded into their new marriage. This led to women being powerless in the subject of controlling their own financial future.

Each and every day after my poor husband died I thought that life could not get any worse, but sadly I was wrong. I was beginning to feel hopeless until Mr. Morrow came into my life and changed every feeling I had. He was considerate of my feelings, handsome, and most importantly showed me that I could love again. I had not been thinking about remarrying for about 4 years now instead I have leaned on my children for help, but now that I have found Mr. Morrow I have reconsidered. The children love him, I love him, and he loves me. It could not get any better. The problem I am facing is, if I decided to marry him I will loose all of the wealth my husband left for me. I think about this every day. If I were to be asked to become Mrs. Morrow would I choose love or wealth? I did not know what the right choice was. I was beginning to get lost in my own thoughts the longer I lingered about the subject. I knew it was better not to think about it, but I needed to prepare myself. I feel as if I am a terrible person because of the thought that this is the worst thing to ever happen to me in my lifetime, even over my husbands death. I longed for the feeling of being loved by someone other than my kids again. It felt like the biggest decision of my life, but when the time came I knew I would follow my heart and do what was best for me.

Works Cited:

Widows in 18th Century England, umich.edu/~ece/student_projects/make_your_way/france.htm.

Associated Place(s)

Event date:

circa. 1800 to circa. 1899

Parent Chronology: