I had to fill out a form a few weeks ago in order to collect the death benefit offered by my late husband’s former employer. There was a space on the form for listing my marital status. These are the choices the form gave me: married, single, or living in sin. Whoops, I‘m mistaken about that last choice. It actually said domestic partnership. Only someone as old as I am would’ve made a mistake like that. “Living in sin” became obsolete some time during the 70s, I think, and was replaced by the far superior domestic partnership label.
I didn’t like my choices. Where was the choice marked “widowed?” After all, this form was an application for a death benefit. You might think the creators of the form would’ve considered that at least some of the applicants had recently been widowed. I pondered how to answer the question of my marital status for some time. I still feel married: it’s only been six weeks since my 50+-year marriage ended with my husband’s death. And yes, I do understand the part about “till death do us part.” We have parted and one of these days I might stop feeling married. But that day hasn’t come yet. Continue reading