Single Through Sorrow: Christine Stanton’s Story

By Allison O'Connor

footprintsOnce we walked together. Now I walk alone.

Christine Stanton knows how this feels all too well. Her husband Scott’s sudden passing left a void in her life not easily filled. As we continue our series Single Through Sorrow, Christine shares her feelings with our readers about how she coped with her husband’s death and her relationships with her stepchildren.

SMW: You lost your husband suddenly. How did you cope with the shock of his death, and then the grief?

CS: Coping with the shock of his death and grief has been an ongoing process. I’ve found that burying myself in my business has kept me going forward. Knowing that Scott sacrificed a lot of time and was such a strong supporter of my business, I’ve made it his legacy.

SMW: Did you have support from family and friends?

CS: I’ve had support from my parents, friends and even business networking groups that I’m a part of online.

SMW:  Who or what helped you the most as you were dealing with your grief and life changes?

CS: God, definitely!

SMW: Sometimes assistance and inspiration come from unlikely places. Did you receive any assistance that surprised you or were you unexpectedly motivated by a particular person or event?

CS: The day after Scott died, I sent out a twitter and I was amazed at the support I got from my business networking groups and business partners. It was heartwarming and shocking when they showed how much they cared through an outpouring of emails, flowers at my door within an hour, and phone calls.

SMW: You mentioned that your husband was your biggest supporter in terms of your business. How difficult was it to resume the day-to-day aspects of your business following your husband’s death?

CS: It was so hard. I was working in a haze for weeks. But like I mentioned, knowing that Scott sacrificed a lot of time and was such a strong supporter of my business, I’ve made it his legacy.

SMW: You have two stepsons, one a recent high school graduate and the other a soldier who is serving in Afghanistan. How has your relationship with them changed since their father’s death?

CS: I wish I could say that we are as close as ever, but they, like him have a tendency to hide from their feelings and are not good communicators. There was a lot of anger surrounding Scott’s suicide. I think they are having a hard time dealing with it and because I’m not physically with them, are burying it within themselves and are not reaching out, which often saddens me.

SMW: What have you found most surprising about being a single stepmother?

CS: I feel that my feelings for them have grown stronger, even though I don’t have maternal ties to them. Now that Scott is gone, I feel I’m his voice and can tell them all the good things their father did and how proud he was of them.

SMW: Even though you became a single stepmother through sorrow, are there positive aspects of the single stepmother experience? And, if so, what are they?

CS: I think that through the sorrow, the boys and I will always have a special bond because of the love we shared for their father.

SMW: What advice would you give other stepmothers who are newly single through sorrow?

CS: Be patient with yourself. Allow yourself to feel the pain. Reach out to others and know that things do get better one day at a time.

Christine White is the owner and founder of Scandle LLC (www.abodycandle.com), where she has specialized in the research & development of all natural and plant based massage candles and complimentary spa/beauty products for over a decade.

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