... is the perception that the only way to "move on with your life" after losing a partner is to get into a new relationship, and that until and unless you do this, you're stuck in some sort of quagmire.
And beneath that, or possibly alongside it, the assumption that a new relationship is inevitable, and that if you haven't started one, it's because you're "not ready" yet.
As far as moving on goes, I have moved on with my life. I've been doing it ever since the beginning. I didn't want to, but the morning after P died, the sun rose just like always, and I had to get up and face the day. Five hundred days later, I haven't stopped. I've done things. I've gotten G through an entire school year and then some, I've moved to a new place, I've dealt with a whole set of holidays, I've done projects at work and changed my hair color and gone on a cruise and updated my health insurance. And I resent the fuck out of the implication that none of it counts for anything because I haven't hooked up with some guy.
I am not going to hook up with some guy.
I'm not going to do it because I don't think it would be healthy for G. My own mother's dating and remarriage damaged our relationship for years, and I won't risk that with her. On top of that, I don't want anyone interfering in the decisions I make for her -- decisions that are in line with the way P and I agreed she should be raised, and the way in which I have a responsibility to raise her now that he's gone.
And I'm not going to do it because I have no desire to. I miss P -- I miss him more than I can say -- but I don't feel the generalized free-floating loneliness that sends people running to the online match sites in search of "someone." I'm sure there are lots of nice "someones" out there, but I don't want them. The idea of going on a date holds about the same level of interest for me as birdwatching or making my own yogurt: I know other people enjoy it, and more power to them, but it leaves me totally cold. I'd rather stay home and read a book than waste an hour of my life having an awkward cup of coffee with a semi-stranger, and frankly, I can see myself going on like that for years, if not decades. Check back when I'm 50 and I'll let you know if I've changed my mind.
Gahhhhh. I had no idea being a widow was going to make me so irritable!