Dear Annie: When I lost our son to suicide in 2012, there were no words to take away the pain. I understood that clumsy attempts to console were well-intended and appreciated the intent.
However, there was one card that meant so much that I still keep where I can see it. It says, “Everything that love could do was done.”
I would like to help people understand that after a deep loss, one will always have times of sadness. It helps to be allowed to express those sad feelings when they arise. It helps to speak of the one you have lost and to have others share memories of that person.
It is best to respect those sad feelings and not trivialize them with any “get over it” sort of remarks. Sadness and grief cause many to be uncomfortable; therefore, they want those feelings to go away. But it is best to understand that they are part of life, and we can help each other just by being present and caring. – Missing David
Dear Missing David: I am so deeply sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your experience with others. I’m wishing you comfort.
Dear Annie: My neighbor has a huge tree growing squarely in the middle of her yard. The tree is so big that a limb crashed down and broke part of a fence I share with another neighbor. I was left with the repair and the cleanup. When I mentioned this situation and my safety concern to the neighbor with the tree, she responded, “Whatever falls onto your property is not my responsibility.” My understanding is that I have a right to prune branches that might overhang my property, but is it my obligation to hire a company, scale the tree and have it pruned? Isn’t it the homeowner’s responsibility to maintain this massive tree and have it properly pruned so as not to endanger the well-being and property of a neighbor? – “Arboring” a Grudge
Dear “Arboring” a Grudge: It sounds like your neighbor is not acting very neighborly. She is lucky that the limb only harmed the fence and not a person or animal. While she might be correct that it is not her technical responsibility, it should be her moral responsibility to help you with your fence, especially because it was her tree that caused the damage. Perhaps you live in an association where you can speak with the head about the dangers of that tree. Sadly, if the tree is 100% on your neighbor’s lawn, it is her right to do with the tree what she wants. The only thing you have the right to do is trim the leaves that hang onto your property.
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