Steven's Story

June 2023

Ahead of Father’s Day, Wirral-based WAY member Steven shares his story…

Steven with his wife and daughter

I lost my wife to multiple myeloma in 2019. Our daughter was 6 when her mum was diagnosed and 8 when her mum passed away. I was no stranger to bereavement, having lost my own mum to suicide 13 years before. 

The main challenges I’ve faced since being widowed are isolation and the lack of understanding, as so few people have experienced what all of us in WAY Widowed and Young have been through. Joining WAY and meeting up with others has really helped me, especially face to face meet ups in the early years. 

As I’m not originally from the Wirral – and my only surviving family (my sister) lives two hours away in the West Midlands – WAY became my social life. I made some friends, going out on meet ups with others who’d been widowed at a young age. 

Simply chatting and listening really made a difference and certainly helped with my mental well-being, which as a parent really matters. 

"Having someone to talk to and realising that what I was going through was part of being a widowed parent – to feel that the things I was doing and feeling were normal was really helpful."

For me, what I found was that I didn’t let my emotions out and talk. I was brought up not to show my emotions. Over the last few years, I’ve learned not to hold things back – even if my daughter’s there. I think it’s good to show your emotions in front of your children.

For Father’s Day, I am a fan of giving kids the option and letting them take the lead. Normally Sunday is my one day off from working two jobs (one at a supermarket and the other as a carer in the community). I usually spend the day doing all the housework and chores. 

Steven with his wife and daughter

This Father’s Day, I am going laser questing with my daughter and another WAY member. It’s a case of making the best of what we’ve got and finding moments of enjoyment. 

My tip for anyone who’s been widowed young, with or without children, is to join WAY. It’s such an amazing organisation and it really does make a difference.