Dear Carol: My mom died six months ago and I'm still having a hard time accepting her death. I keep thinking about what I could or should have done better when she was still with me. I don't communicate my grief to my family members because they think I should be over it by now. They seem to be getting on with their lives just fine, but I’m not. Actually, I’m getting worse. Maybe it’s the holidays. When I look back, I remember complaining about being Mom’s primary caregiver and how hard it was. Now I feel guilty. Mom understood everything about me and I feel like an orphan now with no one to talk with about my past and childhood. I wish I knew then what I would feel now. Maybe I’d have been more patient. - Amy
Dear Amy: Please don't feel guilty about the times you were frustrated with your mother. You are human, caregiving is tough and you had the bulk of the responsibility. Six months isn't all that long for grieving such a loss, and everyone grieves differently. Be prepared for tough times during this first holiday season without her. I remember writing in one column years ago about how I felt like an orphan after my mother died.