Never say my condolences again.

johnny k

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I ve buried a bunch, and for the love of god who is still alive, please say i am going to miss him, or i am here with you, or whatever . but please, no condolensces.

It doesn't sound cool or anything. Just come up with something which is heart felt. He was an an==hole but at least he died is better.
 

Toto'sDad

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I have not just attended funerals I've paid for them. I take no offence at being offered condolences. Funerals are for the living not the dead. Many people can't face death, they may offer condolences as a way of just not really facing death as a part of life.
 

johnny k

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I have not just attended funerals I've paid for them. I take no offence at being offered condolences. Funerals are for the living not the dead. Many people can't face death, they may offer condolences as a way of just not really facing death as a part of life.
I feel sorry for and i wish you are going strong; because who can beat Toto's dad ?
 

memorex

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I've witnessed the deaths of many friends and family members and family members of friends in my life. The truth is, no one knows what's the right thing is to say to the bereaved, because at that moment, almost nothing helps anyway. But you have to say something polite, because it sounds better than, "Gee, I'm sorry your brother died, even though he was a no-good, shiftless bum."
 

Toto'sDad

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I've witnessed the deaths of many friends and family members and family members of friends in my life. The truth is, no one knows what's the right thing is to say to the bereaved, because at that moment, almost nothing helps anyway. But you have to say something polite, because it sounds better than, "Gee, I'm sorry your brother died, even though he was a no-good, shiftless bum."
It's especially awkward when the death is self-inflicted. There just isn't ANYTHING appropriate ever going to come out of ANYONE'S mouth at one of those funerals.
 

scrapyardblue

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I've witnessed the deaths of many friends and family members and family members of friends in my life. The truth is, no one knows what's the right thing is to say to the bereaved, because at that moment, almost nothing helps anyway. But you have to say something polite, because it sounds better than, "Gee, I'm sorry your brother died, even though he was a no-good, shiftless bum."
I agree with all this, except the nothing helps part. If it's the standard, "condolences" (as Johnny K despises) or "sorry to hear...." than the words mean little.

I've always tried to tell a quick story about the deceased: "one time your dad...." or "I remember your sister was......" very brief, but close it with an attribute that relates to the anecdote. I can tell by the reaction, especially if it's an unheard story. Yes, it requires a little pre-thought, but if I didn't have such a story, probably wouldn't be there in the first place.
 

Chiogtr4x

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I've always had a problem or conflict with
"Thoughts and prayers",

as even though I grew up in a somewhat religious environment ( even by choice, in College), I always have had a '?' about my own faith/belief.

So for me to say "...prayers" is kind of a conflict ( just explaining my own feeling here) as I'm not sure if I really pray. I do but always question it, as it directed to Someone ( just not sure who!)

- but I will still say that ( say, responding to an email, or FB post) as you want to express some kind of respect, empathy...

Hope I did not cross Forum rules
 

schmee

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But really, saying ANYTHING seems hollow or trite to me.
I don't even actually know people on this forum who may have a loss. In some ways it seems non genuine to say anything at all to someone you don't even know?
 

Chester P Squier

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I have heard it said that the best thing to say to a grieving person is "we love you."

At my age of three-score and ten and then some, I have been to quite a few funerals/celebrations of life in the past several years. They are getting more and more frequent.
 
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telleutelleme

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In my recent experience, I was much more grateful to the people who reached out than what words they used. Acknowledgement is what means something. I had a lady who I worked with briefly at an oil company. I was shocked to see her at my wife's funeral. I thanked her for coming and all she said was, you were kind to me and she was glad to be there.
 

Toto'sDad

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At my son's funeral, there were over nine hundred people there. People who knew him, people who knew me. The two highest ranking bosses from the company my son did contract work for introduced themselves to me and offered their condolences. They impressed me by not only attending his funeral, but that they would take the time to introduce themselves and thank me for having a son who was so conscientious about his work. People from farming companies, construction outfits, and people we had just known over the years. When you have that many people in attendance, you're going to have a lot of different ways of people offering their condolences.
 

getbent

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like anything, any forethought is probably helpful. i was recently at a wedding where the daughter of an old old friend attended. Her dad (who was about my age) passed away after a terrible illness. There had been only a very small funeral due to recent circumstances, so none of us had been able to attend. they live at a good distance from us and over the years, we haven't seen them in years.

It was important for her to find me and say hi. When she saw me, she came over and gave me a HUGE hug (she is in her 30's now) and was tearing up. I thought, 'oh my, what can I say that will make this livable?' She said, "I wanted to thank you, my favorite memories of childhood are when you would come to visit." And that just killed me, I knew that she'd endured some very hard times. When I would be up in their area working (in my early 20's) I could hire her dad to work with me and I'd stay with them and go to the grocery and load everything up. (her dad was a carpenter)

all I could think of to say was, 'I just want you to know how much I love your mom and dad (they have both passed way too young) and I want you to know, you were one of the sweetest, coolest, best, little kids..' and she hugged me again and said, 'you never change, you always made me feel important'

She is doing well. She has 2 little ones, her own business (in Vegas!) and her husband also has a business and they are thriving.

I kind of decided that from now on, I'm just going to tell people that I loved the person that passed (assuming that is true.) I've had enough loss in my life to know what I appreciate and what can cause other issues. I steer clear of the anecdote as it can make others feel weird or left out. I steer clear of expressing how great the person was because often the family had a different experience or there is the 'well, he may have helped you, but he was always drunk at home' or something.

I have buried people who struggled at life and caused a LOT of pain and all the 'kind words' were rough to hear... graciousness always wins out... but, bs is pretty much never a good call.

Maybe, when you really don't know the right thing... I just leave it at, 'I'm just so very sorry for your loss.' which is heartfelt, I don't want anyone to have to lose anything and it doesn't tromp into other territory that may not be appreciated.
 

Toto'sDad

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My oldest son (34) has testicular cancer and the doctors are concerbed about other cancer issues. I hope I don't go through what you have had to TD.
There is really nothing I can adequately convey to you that would express my sympathy for your, and your son's situation. I can only offer that great strides in medicine have been made since my son's cancer ordeal, and that I have personally known three folks that have completely recovered from cancer through treatment in recent years. My wife's baby brother is at present undergoing treatment for cancer by radiation, and chemo. We, like I'm sure you're doing, hope for the best.
 

REWTX

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Something that usually comes to my mind in this situation is to say “I hated to hear about their passing” and if I genuinely mean it I add “I thought so much of them.”
 




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