Patton Oswalt is expressing thanks to a widow who wrote a letter defending his decision to remarry, days after EW sister publication PEOPLE announced his engagement to actress Meredith Salenger.
“This is so amazing. And SO well-written. I expected some bitter grub worms to weigh in (anonymously, always always always) with their much-needed opinions when I announced my engagement last week. And I decided to ignore them,” Oswalt, whose wife Michelle McNamara died suddenly in April 2016, wrote Saturday on Facebook, sharing similar sentiments on Twitter. “But yeah, I felt this rage. And Erica articulated it better than I could have ever hoped. So there you go. Thank you, Erica.”
Friday, in an essay on her blog, Erica Roman, who noted her husband died a few days before Oswalt’s wife, wrote, “happiness for him quickly shifted to indignant anger on his behalf as I began to read the comments.” One commenter said it “reminds me of Mad Men when Don married literally the first warm body who was good with his kids after his divorce,” while others asked if it was “normal” to be “getting on” so soon and expressing discomfort in the situation.
“Comment after comment poured out judgment and disdain. It made me sick. I had to stop reading before I gave in to the temptation to rain fire in response to every comment,” Roman wrote. “So, my dear ignorant, judgmental, a–holes, this one is for you.”
“Who gave you the position to judge when it’s ‘too soon’ for a person who has suffered the worst to be able to find happiness and companionship again? [It’s] been 15 months! How long should a widow sit in isolation before YOU are comfortable enough to release them from their solitary confinement? Because it’s really about you isn’t it? You aren’t actually concerned about the heart of the person who has found the strength and courage to love once more. You’re worried about your own offended sensibilities rooted in old Victorian traditions. Stop pretending you are actually concerned about their ‘healing,'” she wrote in part.
Salenger re-Tweeted Oswalt’s thanks to Roman — who concluded her blog extending “congratulations from the bottom of my heart” — adding her own message to supporters and who she called “a few trolls.”
“I think for Patton, having met and found love after over a year of intense therapy and openly grieving and dealing with his pain… I am grateful to be the one who helps him climb out of the depths of grief and find some joy again,” she said, then mentioning Oswalt’s 8-year-old daughter Alice. “I have waited 47 years to find true love. Creating our family unit while honoring the brilliant gift Michelle has given me will be my life’s goal and happiness.
PEOPLE broke the news of Oswalt and Salenger’s engagement Thursday. The two went public with their relationship last month at the Los Angeles premiere of Baby Driver.
Read Erica Roman’s entire essay here.