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My best friend of 15 years died yesterday. What can I do to take my mind off of it?

A man I have known for since middle school died yesterday. He wasn’t even 30. I am heart broken and have cried more in the last day than I thought imaginable. I’ve never lost a good friend like this. What can I do to distract myself?

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47 Comments

  1. First Im very sorry for your loss. I have friends since Kindergarten I can’t imagine losing one of them. I would ball my eyes out. I think you should grieve don’t hold it in. It will hurt and damage you more if you hold all that pain in. If you have a friend group that he was always a part of I say hang out with them. Do something to celebrate his life and Spend some time together.

  2. One thing I found really helpful for processing my emotions was to write stuff down.

    I started a small notebook where I’d write down stories as I remembered them, things that made me think of him, his favorite foods and movies and songs, etc.

  3. I lost my best friend at 21. He was a Navy SEAL.
    A drunk driver killed him. I’m 50 now and he died in 1992. I’m still not over it. I’m sorry, the pain will always be there. It’s the burden of the living.

  4. Mourn for sure, Work on facing a fear it’s a positive life achievement but you won’t have ignore your grief. Some examples: heights? Plan a bungy jump or sky dive, or go to a swimming pool with many levels of dive board and work your way to the top. Spiders or snakes? Do research and learn about them, get in contact with a local zoo or wild animal home, offer to do 10 hours volunteering if they help you with experienceing holding a dangerous animal. Public speaking, if the family allow it ask to do a short speech, it’ll let share and heal in two ways.

    You don’t have to only focus on the positive to find a good place again, but focus on remembering what good your friend inspired in you or In others and tell anyone who’s giving you a comforting arm or ear, don’t bottle it up.

  5. I am sorry for your loss.

    Two things that helped me during my own huge loss this year:

    -Tip from a friend who was widowed in recent years…

    Feel the grief when it hits….the way it hits…sometimes tears…sometimes great joy…definitely a possibility of roller coaster effect.

    -Someone directed me to a zoom meeting conversation… The convo featured a rabbi (though I’m not Jewish) who wrote a book about grieving. I enjoyed his ideas and bought the audiobook version of his book.

    https://zibbyowens.com/transcript/rabbisteveleder

  6. My condolences..

    Dont distract yourself from it. Cry and mourn for the loss of your friend. Talk to other people about it, pray, whatever it takes to keep from bottling it up. Look up to heaven and smile at them every once in awhile. It will get easier with time but not better.

    I lost two good friends this year so far. One I had known for over forty years. It still hurts every day.

  7. Pour a bottle for the fallen do something to remember them by cry do what you need to do then move on and accept it but don’t forget him or his parents best way is to look after his parents I seen hella ppl die and their friends not look after their parents

  8. Very little. I recommend setting reminders to eat if you’re forgetting and trying to get some sleep. I hope you have friends or family who understand what you’re going through. You likely at times will absolutely not want to be alone, or the complete opposite. That’ll also be true about talking so having people you can just ‘be’ around is important.

    If you can, spend time around people who knew and liked him, too, even if it’s over Zoom or on Discord while gaming. Being able to share memories can really help. If you can’t attend the funeral or if there isn’t one, do something to honor him. It could be going to his favorite place and thinking about him, sitting down somewhere, lighting a candle and looking through photos, going to his favorite restaurant or having his favorite drink.

    Here’s the thing. You never really get over someone’s death, you just get better at living with the loss. There is no timetable for grief anyway, though unfortunately, many people don’t realize it until they have lost someone dear to them. It took me about four years after my brother’s death before I felt like I’d recovered. Once in a while, something will cause a wave of grief to crash over me, though it doesn’t stop me in my tracks like it used to.

    Losing someone is never easy, but when it’s a sudden and unexpected loss, it can be a lot harder to recover from. If after a few weeks, you cannot function at all, look into grief support groups or seeing a counselor.

    Lastly, some day, you will get to a point where you will be able to easily recall good memories and while it may be bittersweet because you miss him, that sweet part will be there, too, and the memory can bringa little happiness.

    Hugs if you want them.

  9. My heartfelt condolences, my man.

    Wallow in it. Remember the person. Cry.

    When you are tired of this… it will be time to move on. but don’t expect this to be the last episode of grief. Embrace those episodes, too.

  10. I’m really sorry for your loss. I lost one of my best friends recently too and it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to experience. You really can’t take your mind off of it at first unfortunately. You can hang out with your family and stay close but you need to let yourself cry and grieve. Let yourself process it and don’t bottle it up. I miss him everyday but it has also gotten better everyday. I am slowly but surely getting some peace and I know you can too. If you already don’t see a therapist definitely try and see one now. Try and see one that specializes in grief if you think you need them just for that. They can really help you process a lot of it. Good luck man.

  11. It’s healthy to grieve, you will feel terrible for a while, but I the long run you will be happier. Remember all the good and bad moments and Remember them for who they are. You will get through it. And it’s ok to cry, no one will judge you for it. Sorry for your loss

  12. You won’t be able to distract yourself entirely, it’s time to accept it kinda. I reacted the same when my childhood friend died a few years ago, he was 21 at the time, just moved out and started his own life.

    I still think about him every day, every single song we used to listen to – and it still brings tears to my eyes. But it’s something I’ve accepted, it doesn’t physically hurt anymore. Tears are just the expression connected to missing someone that much.

  13. You need grieving time, so let it out. You’ll need a break from that, so sleep, make something you enjoy eating, if you have a hobby, go do that. (Or good time to start a new one).

    Eventually, you need to shift to being grateful for the times you had with them. This might be hard right now, but eventually those memories of them is what you can do to honor them from time to time.

    Stay strong. Momento Mori my friend.

  14. Just take the journey for what it is. You need to accept the pain and attempt to stay away from unhealthy coping mechanisms, but sometimes you kinda have to. Best of luck

  15. Write your memories down, it’s advice that my father gave me after my brothers passing. I didn’t adhere to his advice right away and I fully regret it.

    We forget things with time and memories become less vivid. Do it for yourself.

  16. Stay around family and trusted friends. People who won’t put you down for crying. Distracting yourself from his death will only lead to hurried trauma and pain that you will have to dig up later to deal with. Cry, mourn, and let that pain out. It will take time and how long varies. For some it can take a year to 2 years before your good days outnumber your bad. And up to 5 years before you can even get through the year without crying at least once. Take time, mourn, and be kind to yourself.

  17. Sorry for your loss, try going to the gym or go for a run, it will make you focus on something else but still give you the time you need to process your grief in between sets. Try to think of the good times. All the best to you.

  18. Experiencing that too at the moment, though a little older. Best friend, like a brother, made me his daughter’s godfather, died suddenly from Covid complications. Just out of the blue. Hard to imagine never seeing him again. I do things to take my mind off of it but talking to the girls or their mother brings it all back. Good luck with it, and just try to remember the good times and the genuine love and trust you shared. It’ll get better over time.

  19. You gotta feel what you’re feeling. If you can, take a couple of days off work. Make or order yourself your favorite food, do things that make you feel nurtured like a hot shower or wrapping yourself in your favorite blanket. Your grief needs to be addressed, distracting yourself will make it so much worse later on. I’m so sorry for your loss my friend, I promise you will get through this.

  20. It is okay to suffer and have an occasional cry about something, just always remember not to dwell on it because that’s not what your buddy would want for you. Keep your friend in your heart, not your brain.

  21. I lost one of my best friends of 30 years this summer. I’m only 34.

    I still cant put into words what it feels like.

    There is a hole there that can never be filled.

    Sometimes I want to crawl in that hole.

    I would give up a solid decade or two to have 10 more minutes with him.

    I would give my life without hesitation to give him back to his parents and sister.

  22. don’t give me karma for this

    go give u/GSnow something, he deserves it

    I saved from someone else a while back

    A relevant comment from u/GSnow:

    I wish I could say you get used to people dying. I never did. I don’t want to. It tears a hole through me whenever somebody I love dies, no matter the circumstances. But I don’t want it to “not matter”. I don’t want it to be something that just passes. My scars are a testament to the love and the relationship that I had for and with that person. And if the scar is deep, so was the love. So be it. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are a testament that I can love deeply and live deeply and be cut, or even gouged, and that I can heal and continue to live and continue to love. And the scar tissue is stronger than the original flesh ever was. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are only ugly to people who can’t see.

    As for grief, you’ll find it comes in waves. When the ship is first wrecked, you’re drowning, with wreckage all around you. Everything floating around you reminds you of the beauty and the magnificence of the ship that was, and is no more. And all you can do is float. You find some piece of the wreckage and you hang on for a while. Maybe it’s some physical thing. Maybe it’s a happy memory or a photograph. Maybe it’s a person who is also floating. For a while, all you can do is float. Stay alive.

    In the beginning, the waves are 100 feet tall and crash over you without mercy. They come 10 seconds apart and don’t even give you time to catch your breath. All you can do is hang on and float. After a while, maybe weeks, maybe months, you’ll find the waves are still 100 feet tall, but they come further apart. When they come, they still crash all over you and wipe you out. But in between, you can breathe, you can function. You never know what’s going to trigger the grief. It might be a song, a picture, a street intersection, the smell of a cup of coffee. It can be just about anything…and the wave comes crashing. But in between waves, there is life.

    Somewhere down the line, and it’s different for everybody, you find that the waves are only 80 feet tall. Or 50 feet tall. And while they still come, they come further apart. You can see them coming. An anniversary, a birthday, or Christmas, or landing at O’Hare. You can see it coming, for the most part, and prepare yourself. And when it washes over you, you know that somehow you will, again, come out the other side. Soaking wet, sputtering, still hanging on to some tiny piece of the wreckage, but you’ll come out.

    Take it from an old guy. The waves never stop coming, and somehow you don’t really want them to. But you learn that you’ll survive them. And other waves will come. And you’ll survive them too. If you’re lucky, you’ll have lots of scars from lots of loves. And lots of shipwrecks.

  23. You are the best friend of him, we pray for him,
    Appreciate your concern for him, may god give you power to overcome the grief.
    Death at young age of 30 is very bad in this modern medical era. First take care of yourself also.

  24. I lost a friend a few years ago and the best advice I can give you is: cry, mourn and be surrounded with people that you love and love you back. Sharing your pain with someone that understands and loves you will make the loss journey less lonely. Cry as much as you want and need to. Eventually, only the good memories will stay <3

  25. I think you shouldn’t try to distract yourself. Mourning is a process that will help you deal with the situation. Read up on it to help you understand. It will get better.

  26. People come and go and its a matter of time when you will accept that
    Keep going chief there’s a whole lot of life left ahead of you don’t waste it by crying your friend is in a good place and the fact he left an impact only you are good enough

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