Her Glee alter ego gave him a fond farewell on a tribute episode on Thursday, and in real life, Lea Michele is slowly moving on from the pain of losing her boyfriend and costar, Cory Monteith, who died in July.
"It's getting a little easier," a source close to the star tells PEOPLE.
Michele, 27 – who posted a photo of herself with Monteith on Instagram while the episode aired – "still misses him every day," the source admits. "She talks about Cory all the time."
The source says the actress, who has been leaning closely on good pals since Monteith, 31, was found dead in a Vancouver hotel room from a toxic mix of heroin and alcohol, "doesn't like to be alone. Her friends have really been helping her through it."
And despite reports, the source says Michele, who was with Monteith for more than two years, isn't ready to think about dating.
"She really struggled," adds a friend in her inner circle. "It was hard to get up every morning. But now, she's doing okay."