We’ve all seen the “open letter” post which passive aggressively tell you how much you such at life. And the the list post (10 ways to ask your child about their day.)
Since when did life become so complicated humans needed check lists on basic communication techniques? I recently buried my dad and shortly before that, a friend had post something like “10 things not to say to someone who has lost a loved one.” I think we got it. Or at the very least, we can excuse people who don’t filter their words.
But instead, I’ve decided to jump on the bandwagon with my own tailed list!
Things Not to Say to Someone Whose Dad Just Died Unexpectedly at His Funeral
- “When’s the baby due?” Yes I grabbed my maternity pants this morning, but you cannot seriously tell me it’s obvious I’m wearing maternity pants. And ladies, for the love God, we all know better! Never, under any circumstances (even in a delivery with the baby crowing) do you EVER ask another woman if she’s pregnant! Particularly at her dad’s funeral! Let me be fat and sad and not wear my Spanx. Let me not worry about sucking in my stomach when standing near skinny people.
- “I am so sorry for your loss. I can’t believe he’s gone! By the way, he owed $30,000 in unsecured, verbal loans” So, you’re telling me that my dad borrowed $30,000 from his estranged brother who clearly is not able to liquidate $5,000, let alone $30,000 and you expect me to cut you a check right here? You’re eating the food I paid for, at the funeral I paid for, with the floral arrangements I and our family paid for and you really think now is a good time to talk money?
- “He was the kindest, nicest most generous person I knew. And I talked to him years ago about his wishes if something were to ever happen and he told me he would want ‘unrelated person #1’ and ‘unrelated person #2’ to have an equal amount of his estate.” But where were those people when it came time to pay for his funeral? And before his estate closes, I assume these people are willing to share the cost of his bills and insurance, correct? That should only take 6-10 months. And if this was so important to him, why didn’t he draw up a will? Why did he never say anything to me? I was the closest person in the family to him, he confided in me frequently and never told me. Sorry, not sorry.
- “He never knew how important he was to me. I bet we all feel that way.” Nope. I can confidently say that my dad knew how important he was to me and my family. He knew everyday I bugged him about wear a helmet on his Harley. He knew every time I made him go to a Garden Show or dance recital or swim lessons. He was such a huge figure in our lives and he knew it.
- Do not wear a white top when you are planning on hugging a crying woman. This actually stressed me out more than it should have. I could see women with white tops coming at me and my smeared foundation, arms wide open, ready to hold me. I absolutely needed every hug offered to me and am so thankful for them.
Really, these seem like common sense tips. Don’t get me wrong, I commonly screw up common sense myself! But I try!