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Dear Grieving: I hope you will choose to discuss this with your grief counsellor.
I suggest writing down your thoughts. Use loving and unequivocal language: “Frederick loved you so much. We are all grieving. I miss him every day. He and I built our life here, and I have chosen to stay here, in our home. My job and friends are here. I want to continue to live in the home he and I made together. I know this is not what you want to hear. I care very much about you and I will be out to visit as soon as I can, but I won’t be moving in with you.”
You should add that you have been seeing a grief counsellor, and that the counselling has helped you. The Compassionate Friends (compassionatefriends.org), or their local hospice centre will have recommendations for them. Once you’ve read the letter and are satisfied with it, send it to them. Understand that this repeated entreaty might be their way of coping with their own loss.
Dear Amy: I just received an invitation for my close friend’s baby shower, next month.
While she and I have diligently attended each other’s events in the past, I don’t feel comfortable attending her baby shower due to COVID-19 concerns.
I’m the new mom of a six-month old baby. I work from home. My only childcare is my mother, who is in her 60s.
I have not left my house (aside from two visits with the pediatrician) since the beginning of the pandemic. I even get my groceries delivered.
I’m gravely concerned for the health of my family (especially my baby and my mom). I don’t want to run the risk of contracting the virus at the baby shower and I also don’t want to hurt my friend’s feelings.