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To Sam


My best friend passed away when I was 13; we were very close. She was buried in a cemetery near where she lived. I've only been up to see her once just after she'd passed away as a sign of respect and to put some flowers down.

3 years on and I've not been back. Seeing it upsets me and I struggle to talk about my feelings to anyone.

Recently, an old friend of ours got in touch with me. She went to a different school so hasn't had much info about the death or anything. She'd asked me if I could take her to the cemetery. I instantly said yes and we've planned the day. But how do I prepare myself for this? I know it's going to be tough but now feels like the right time to got back.


Ask Sam


Hi there,

People cope with death in different ways. There is no right or wrong way to go about grieving. It's okay to distance yourself from someone who has died as a way of coping. If going to the cemetery was too difficult for you then it was the right choice at the time. Now you're feeling like things are changing you can be more prepared for when you visit.

The first thing to do might be to think about what this person meant to you and how you feel about their death now. It's likely you will still feel her loss quite strongly but you may be able to see things differently now that a few years have passed. One way of understanding your feelings is to write things down. If you wanted, you could write a letter to your friend and take it to the cemetery.

You may also want to plan what you're going to do after the cemetery. Make sure you plan in some time and space for yourself later that day or the next. It's important to give yourself space for any grief or difficult emotions that you feel.

Telling the people close to you can also help as the more aware of your feelings they are, the more they can help. Remember that you can always talk things through with our counsellors if you need to.

I hope this helps you to prepare for what sounds like a difficult day.

Thanks for your letter.


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