DEAR ABBY: Three weeks ago, a dear friend, "Mary," died, only four days after being diagnosed with lung cancer. I spent those four days in the hospital with her, sleeping in a chair by her bed at night.
Her husband, "Jim," was also by her side. He held her hand and spoke to her even though she could no longer speak due to the morphine that was controlling her pain. The time we spent at the hospital was only the second time I had met him. We talked for hours while we sat in Mary's room. I thought Jim was a very sweet man.
Last week, Jim said he wanted to see me. I didn't think much about it because I had helped him with some insurance documents. When we met, I was surprised when he expressed a desire to spend time with me.
Abby, I'm not sure Jim should be dating anyone at this time. I think he may be lonely. Any suggestions? -- E.H. IN VIRGINIA BEACH
DEAR E.H.: I agree that Jim is lonely, and it's too soon for him to make any important decisions. However, I see no reason why you and he can't see each other on a more or less platonic basis for a few months -- until the shock of losing his wife subsides. You appear to be a caring and sensible woman. He may -- or may not -- be transferring his feelings for Mary to you because you were such a good friend. Trust your judgment.