DEAR HARRIETTE: My best friend died earlier this year, and I thought I was doing OK. But recently, every time I think about her, I get really sad. We were very close, but toward the end of her life, she got very quiet and didn't tell anybody about what was going on. I had no idea she was sick. She had her aches and pains, but it was a surprise when she died. I think I'm still in shock. When I talk to mutual friends about her, it seems like they have moved on. They still love her, but they are not necessarily thinking about her all the time. What can I do to be less emotional about her passing? I don't ever want to forget her, but I need to stop hurting so much inside. -- In Mourning, New York City
DEAR IN MOURNING: You describe this woman as your "best friend." It's natural that you would still be missing her and having moments when you cannot believe that she is gone. That is part of the grieving process. Your mutual friends have their own journey. How close they were to her and how they process grief determines how they manage.
Rather than comparing yourself to anyone else, keep the focus on you. If you feel like you could use some help processing your loss, seek it out. You can speak to a grief counselor and talk about what has been coming up for you. You can join a support group with other people who are dealing with grief. What you don't want to do is isolate yourself. You may want to begin a new hobby that fills the time that you used to spend with your friend. You must choose to live your life even though she is no longer physically in it.