I have come to the conclusion that I am not a good friend. It's not that I don't mean to be -- I am just not very good at it, and I feel rather bad. More than anything, I hate to see anyone in pain. I immediately want to do whatever I can to help them. But I invariably seem to end up doing the wrong thing. I have a wonderful friend who lost a parent recently. No one ever knows what to expect when they lose a parent. It is probably one of the worst things anyone will ever go through, and as much as people don't think so, believe me it is. And it is made even more difficult when there is tension in the family. Instead of having some quiet time to grieve and deal with the loss, folks are bombarded with having to deal with nonsense from other family members.
Grief has different stages that all mourners will face, each at its own time and in its own pace. I have had to deal with the loss of both my parents, as well as other people in my life, and I know it is not an easy thing. Often we don't know how we are going to react, especially to our friends, who really do mean well. I guess it is just as frustrating as well, when one wants to help and cannot. One feels so helpless.
I wish I could have been a better friend ... and I hope my friend feels better soon.