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Minerva's Breakdown: Advice For Those On the Verge

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Dear Minerva,

I'm not sure what to do with friends on Facebook. More specifically, friends on Facebook who have died. I struggle with whether or not I can delete them from my friends list. Is it socially acceptable? Would I be a terrible person for doing so? What would Minerva do?

Sincerely,

—Dearly Departed

Dearly Departed,

That is a tricky question when you start to take into consideration how it could be perceived by others and I, too, have dealt with this conundrum. A few years back a sweet friend of mine died. We had grown very close over time and our relationship was sometimes one of romantic interest. We cared about one another. His death was sudden and shocking. Because of that, there were certain friends on Facebook who wallowed in their grief, posting frequently and tagging this deceased young man in their posts. This constantly brought him to the top of my news feed. I found this a hindrance to my grief process. Because of that I made the decision to screenshot our correspondence, save important pictures and unfriend him on Facebook, but not unfriend him in my heart. Grief is different for everyone and it's personal. How we grieve as individuals is no one's business and, in my opinion, above reproach. Do what is right for yourself and your life. It doesn't mean you don't care or don't love them. It just means you are trying to heal. No one can fault you for that.