The death of a spouse or life partner can be one of the most distressing events that a person can experience. Widows and widowers at different ages and phases of marriage face different challenges. Of the people who experience spousal loss, just 5-7% of them are 49 or younger.
Young widows face unique challenges, and next month, starting July 10, will be the first meeting of a Yoga + Support Group for Young Widows that I am facilitating with Talia Singer, MSW, LICSW, a clinical therapist. Part yoga class, part support group, part personal discovery, this 6-session group provides a compassionate and safe environment for widows under the age of 45.
This group provides an opportunity for widows to talk with other people who have experienced the death of a spouse, partner, or significant other. Additionally, we will practice gentle yoga, breathing, sound healing, and other relaxation techniques. People in this group don't have to be flexible, fit, or strong.
Sometimes, claims about yoga are overblown. However, there is evidence that physical activities such as yoga benefit young people who have been bereaved, and the use of yoga for treating psychological trauma is well-established.
The support group does not offer promises of cures. It's a safe space to acknowledge pain, practice feeling sensations in the body (interoception), and move through grief. I'm looking forward to integrating yoga into this support group setting.