It is difficult to make decisions after your spouse’s death. Many of the decisions that have to be made can be made beforehand, with the help of a lawyer and/or a financial planner. But most people refuse to think about death, they mistakenly think that they do not have enough assets to make planning worthwhile, or procrastinate until it is too late. It is normal to feel mentally paralyzed following the death of a spouse. Most surviving spouses have trouble concentrating, feel disoriented and are easily overwhelmed by the slightest problems or the simplest decisions. Your family and friends will inundate you with well-meaning advice-Why don’t you sell your home? Why don’t you go back to school? Why don’t you pay off your mortgage with your insurance proceeds? You don’t need all that room. The “You should…” can often make you feel fearful of what the future may hold. Because you may be having trouble concentrating and your judgment may be poor, even irrational while you are grieving; it’s important to avoid making decisions that cannot be changed for at least six months after your spouse’s death. If you have to make quick decisions, consult experts for a thorough analysis who are not as emotionally affected by your spouse’s death and can give you sound, objective advice.


Ava Brown