This common phrase is used in a variety of ways all the time. Stop for a second and think about how it diminishes your experience, sells short the loss you feel.
After we have poured our hearts out- we finish our thought with “It could be worse…”
Not only are we capping off the grief we feel it sends a mixed invalidating message to ourselves, “what I am experiencing must not be that bad, the pain and hurt I am feeling is somehow not equitable to my experiencing must not be that bad, the pain and hurt I am feeling is somehow not equitable to my experience therefore, I should just stop… because somewhere, someone has it worse.”
Having a positive outlook, having a grateful heart, recognizing others loss and having empathy for their circumstances are all healthy (highly valued) cultural norms- but don’t for one second let that diminish your hurt or pain.
Feel it allow space and time to honor your loss. Let it pass, then fill in the holes with all the positive, thoughtful expressions you want. But don’t use them as a way to invalidate your experience.