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Sex and the Single Widow/er

The surprising connection between sex and grief

Abigail Carter
4 min readFeb 20, 2021


Sex and widow are not words you often hear together. Bit of an oxymoron actually. And yet. It's been a dry spell, so maybe this topic is on my mind more than it ought to be. I am pretty certain there is an interesting link here. I have come up with a bunch of reasons why sex would play a large role in a widow/er’s life:

  • Replace lost intimacy
  • Feel alive
  • Stave off loneliness
  • Be touched
  • Feel comforted
  • As a way of giving love that no longer has a place to go
  • Rediscovering oneself after a long marriage
  • A release of sexual repression
  • A form of spirituality
  • Overcome separateness

Wild Thang

In my experience, and judging from some conversations I’ve had with other widow/ers, sex often becomes a large part of one’s recovery. In fact, widow/ers seem to have a kind of “wild stage” where getting laid takes on greater importance than it has since they were newlyweds. I know that I personally discovered an entirely new side of myself – a sexual side AFTER my husband died. I threw myself into the act, surrendering in a…



Abigail Carter

Writing about widowhood, parenting, life, grief, art, writing and publishing. #singlemom #author #memoirist #writer #widow #9/11widow #artist