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In other cultures, however, widowhood customs are stricter.

After being widowed, however, men and women can react very differently and frequently have a change in lifestyle.A study has sought to show that women are more likely to yearn for their late husband if he were to be taken away suddenly.In societies where the husband is the sole provider, his death can leave his family destitute.The tendency for women generally to outlive men can compound this, as can men in many societies marrying women younger than themselves.It is also uncommon for widows to challenge their treatment because they are often "unaware of their rights under the modern law…because of their low status, and lack of education or legal representation." As of 2004, women in United States who were "widowed at younger ages are at greatest risk for economic hardship." Similarly, married women who are in a financially unstable household are more likely to become widows "because of the strong relationship between mortality [of the male head] and wealth [of the household]." In underdeveloped and developing areas of the world, conditions for widows continue to be much more severe.

However, the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women ("now ratified by 135 countries"), while slow, is working on proposals which will make certain types of discrimination and treatment of widows (such as violence and withholding property rights) illegal in the countries that have joined CEDAW.This custom, called sati, was outlawed in 1827 in British India and again in 1987 in independent India by the Sati Prevention Act, which made it illegal to support, glorify or attempt to commit sati.Support of sati, including coercing or forcing someone to commit sati, can be punished by death sentence or life imprisonment, while glorifying sati is punishable with one to seven years in prison.Don't Give Up on Love Just Because You've Been Widowed. Create Your Personal Profile and Start Meeting People!Your Partner Wouldn't Want You to Spend the Rest of Your Days Alone and Neither Do We! This negatively impacts the mental as well as physical well being in both men and women (Utz, Reidy, Carr, Nesse, & Wortman, 2004 as Cited in Mumtaz 71).