Grief and Loss

How long is it OK to grieve a loss of a loved one?

DEAR DOCTOR K: My spouse passed away last year, and I am still grieving. Is this normal?

DEAR READER: By coincidence, I'm writing this reply to your question on the 51st anniversary of my father's death. He died very young. This is a sad day -- at least for me, this grief never fully ends.

How can I help a grieving friend?

DEAR DOCTOR K: A close friend suddenly and unexpectedly lost her spouse. How can I help her through her grief?

DEAR READER: It's not easy to console a grieving friend; you can't fix the situation. Instead, just be present and offer hope toward the future. Accept that your friend's grieving is a natural process that will gradually ebb. Here are a few specific, practical pieces of advice.