A reader writes:

I think we don't talk about it because we've run out of things to say. But we all still feel deeply about it. I still can't say Ronald Reagan's name out loud, even after all these years. Somehow, I managed to live through that time, as did my husband (although we didn't know each other), and now we find ourselves having come through the woods into the clearing and, now what? The grief is still there. the loss is still unimaginable. Our whole social network has been zapped. We find ourselves with these deeply felt experiences and few people to share them with.

How does one explain a cataclysm? Unless you've experienced one yourself, you cannot know. And so we keep silent. Understandably silent. But don't mistake our silence for avoidance. I'd give anything to engage in a discussion again about this. There's just no one to talk to.

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