You should read this piece by Jan Wilberg aka redswrap.wordpress.com.
I think you have to be careful about how bad you feel for someone else because it puts a burden on them that you probably don’t intend.
I realized this long after I’d listened to a friend tell me about her daughter’s suicide. At the time, I felt almost paralyzed by grief, as if there were invisible droplets of nerve gas hanging like tiny Christmas lights all around me. I listened and tried to manage my body language.
She told me things, the truth as it were, she told me the truth. I tried to reconcile this truth with what I was doing which was eating, I was sitting eating a wrap and coleslaw as if everyday I listened to tragic death stories over lunch. The obscenity of it struck me. What had happened was hideous in all ways. Unjust, terrible, and irrevocable. I nodded but I wanted to rend…
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