By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Helping widows cope with the gaping hole in their life is the goal of a group that grew out of heartache.

After Susan Gross of Cheltenham lost her husband in 2003, she attended grief counseling, but when the course ended in a couple of months, she still had ongoing, unmet needs.

She found others in the same boat and started the Philadelphia chapter of “W Connection: Widows Helping Widows Rebuild Their Lives” which holds a monthly meeting and more.

“If you’re in the early stages, you get a mentor, because the first year you don’t even know what reality is. I mean, it’s very confusing,” Gross says.

Remembering her own anguish, Gross says, you find a reason to go on, and “after you finish taking care of all the emotion that’s stocked up in you, you either decide whether you’re going to be a victim or you’re going to make the best of it, and I guess I’ve always made lemonade.”

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