Learning Not to Give Too Much Advice

When my mother died, now an inconceivable four years ago, my friends offered a lot of advice. “This is how grief works,” the most didactic of them said. Wanting only to help, people gave me lists of feelings they told me I would experience: You will be more tired than you can imagine; you will be overcome with crying jags when you least expect it; the first year is the hardest.

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