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Old 07-30-2012, 12:26 PM
 
Location: Orlando
8,181 posts, read 16,155,849 times
Reputation: 49730

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This might belong in the other forum so please feel free to move if so.

In the last two weeks, two people I didn't care for and/or had strong dislike feelings for passed away.

Last year a co-worker passed away and I could not stand her. She was not a nice person in any sense of the word...harsh, I know but true.

I'm old school on many things and since one of them is the old adage of "don't speak ill of the dead" what do I do when approached?

To #1, who happens to be cousin by marriage's mother, I purposely leave out the part that she totally wrote off her ex-husband's nieces and nephews then whined to anyone who would listen that they wanted nothing to do with her since the divorce (thus creating a wedge between the cousins that didn't need to be there). Not true...they tried many times to keep in touch but gave up after getting shot down for their attempts after three years.
I can at least come up with, she was greatly loved by her children and grandchildren.

To #2-A person I know thru other friends. We never hit it off...that's ok, we never had to be friends, I have plenty and so did she.
She was also a retiree from my work, and since I have to deal with part of their retirement benefits, I had to deal with her. If one tiny little thing wasn't to her liking, her favorite thing to do was make my life miserable. She would call, cuss me out or report me to my boss. He of course knew how she was so never acted on what she wanted him to do with me.
I've come up with....I'm glad she had a nice long retirement....and leave it at that.

To #3- She truly was of the devil I swear. She would attach herself to every new employee and fill them in on how things truly were around there. Gossip was her middle name....only if the gossip was evil. One of our male co-workers did a very nice thing for me and the next thing you know, she's attempting to start a rumor that we were an item. This guy was so nice and newly married. Luckily everyone knew how she was. This is just a small example of her antics.
I've come up with...she had pretty hair.

It's not like I'm approached all the time about them but as two of them are recent and the other we occationally run across someone who doesn't realize they passed away.

I guess what I'm asking is how do YOU respond in similar circumstances?
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:20 PM
 
Location: Back in the gym...Yo Adrian!
9,371 posts, read 17,488,660 times
Reputation: 18346
If approached you don't have to say anything but if you feel you must you can simply say
"we weren't close", which is truthful without taking sides or saying anything negative. If you're asked for an opinion of that person simply say "I didn't know her very well" or something along those lines.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:38 PM
 
455 posts, read 486,958 times
Reputation: 770
Why is it neccesary to say anything at all?

Despite your view of these people, they were loved by someone, and deserve the same consideration of any of us other humans. If you don't have anything nice to say, keep it zipped! and take that quiet time to reflect upon your own humanity(weaknesses and flaws)!

And, yes, that's what I might do in the same situation. Death doesn't give us an opportunity to change! Our, (those of us still alive) greatfulness and reverence at having the chance, should at best warrant a "sorry to know that they've passed on."
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:41 PM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
32,106 posts, read 39,170,046 times
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Be polite, say "Oh, ____________ died last year".
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:49 PM
 
Location: Orlando
8,181 posts, read 16,155,849 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tell-the-Truth View Post
Why is it neccesary to say anything at all?

Despite your view of these people, they were loved by someone, and deserve the same consideration of any of us other humans. If you don't have anything nice to say, keep it zipped! and take that quiet time to reflect upon your own humanity(weaknesses and flaws)!

And, yes, that's what I might do in the same situation. Death doesn't give us an opportunity to change! Our, (those of us still alive) greatfulness and reverence at having the chance, should at best warrant a "sorry to know that they've passed on."
Please refer back to where I wrote I follow the adage of "don't speak ill of the dead." So "keeping it zipped" isn't really necessary.

I was looking for other responses, because I also find it rude that when approached with this subject to say nothing and walk away. That also isn't proper.

"Sorry for your loss" and "I'm sorry someone lost their "relative or friend"" is normal for me to say.

Any other suggestions besides saying nothing at all? Others might have this problem also.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:53 PM
 
455 posts, read 486,958 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Granny Sue View Post
Please refer back to where I wrote I follow the adage of "don't speak ill of the dead." So "keeping it zipped" isn't really necessary.

I was looking for other responses, because I also find it rude that when approached with this subject to say nothing and walk away. That also isn't proper.

"Sorry for your loss" and "I'm sorry someone lost their "relative or friend"" is normal for me to say.

Any other suggestions besides saying nothing at all? Others might have this problem also.
So, if others may have this issue some others may be well advised to "keep it zipped."
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:57 PM
 
455 posts, read 486,958 times
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I will also add, one of the most hurtful yet helpful admonitions I've ever been given is to simply "shut up." May not apply in this situation for everyone (refer to my saying at best we can say "sorry to hear they passed on.")
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Old 07-30-2012, 07:39 PM
 
11,672 posts, read 13,873,542 times
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Who are you being approached by? That might change the answer.

My first reaction would be to say something like, "I'm sorry you lost _____." Or something like, "I hope his family is OK." You don't have to focus on the dead; comfort the grieving.
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Old 07-30-2012, 08:24 PM
 
12,579 posts, read 12,799,267 times
Reputation: 8855
Quote:
Originally Posted by Granny Sue View Post
This might belong in the other forum so please feel free to move if so.

In the last two weeks, two people I didn't care for and/or had strong dislike feelings for passed away.

Last year a co-worker passed away and I could not stand her. She was not a nice person in any sense of the word...harsh, I know but true.

I'm old school on many things and since one of them is the old adage of "don't speak ill of the dead" what do I do when approached?

To #1, who happens to be cousin by marriage's mother, I purposely leave out the part that she totally wrote off her ex-husband's nieces and nephews then whined to anyone who would listen that they wanted nothing to do with her since the divorce (thus creating a wedge between the cousins that didn't need to be there). Not true...they tried many times to keep in touch but gave up after getting shot down for their attempts after three years.
I can at least come up with, she was greatly loved by her children and grandchildren.

To #2-A person I know thru other friends. We never hit it off...that's ok, we never had to be friends, I have plenty and so did she.
She was also a retiree from my work, and since I have to deal with part of their retirement benefits, I had to deal with her. If one tiny little thing wasn't to her liking, her favorite thing to do was make my life miserable. She would call, cuss me out or report me to my boss. He of course knew how she was so never acted on what she wanted him to do with me.
I've come up with....I'm glad she had a nice long retirement....and leave it at that.

To #3- She truly was of the devil I swear. She would attach herself to every new employee and fill them in on how things truly were around there. Gossip was her middle name....only if the gossip was evil. One of our male co-workers did a very nice thing for me and the next thing you know, she's attempting to start a rumor that we were an item. This guy was so nice and newly married. Luckily everyone knew how she was. This is just a small example of her antics.
I've come up with...she had pretty hair.

It's not like I'm approached all the time about them but as two of them are recent and the other we occationally run across someone who doesn't realize they passed away.

I guess what I'm asking is how do YOU respond in similar circumstances?
Is this how the conversations start? If I were in your position I would make no mention of the passing(s) unless the other person brought it up. From there you can keep it short sweet, i.e; if they say "that's too bad" you can just nodd in agreement.
From the context of the OP you sound a bit of a blabber mouth yourself.
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Old 07-30-2012, 08:30 PM
 
1,891 posts, read 3,834,603 times
Reputation: 1463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Granny Sue View Post
This might belong in the other forum so please feel free to move if so.

In the last two weeks, two people I didn't care for and/or had strong dislike feelings for passed away.

Last year a co-worker passed away and I could not stand her. She was not a nice person in any sense of the word...harsh, I know but true.

I'm old school on many things and since one of them is the old adage of "don't speak ill of the dead" what do I do when approached?

To #1, who happens to be cousin by marriage's mother, I purposely leave out the part that she totally wrote off her ex-husband's nieces and nephews then whined to anyone who would listen that they wanted nothing to do with her since the divorce (thus creating a wedge between the cousins that didn't need to be there). Not true...they tried many times to keep in touch but gave up after getting shot down for their attempts after three years.
I can at least come up with, she was greatly loved by her children and grandchildren.

To #2-A person I know thru other friends. We never hit it off...that's ok, we never had to be friends, I have plenty and so did she.
She was also a retiree from my work, and since I have to deal with part of their retirement benefits, I had to deal with her. If one tiny little thing wasn't to her liking, her favorite thing to do was make my life miserable. She would call, cuss me out or report me to my boss. He of course knew how she was so never acted on what she wanted him to do with me.
I've come up with....I'm glad she had a nice long retirement....and leave it at that.

To #3- She truly was of the devil I swear. She would attach herself to every new employee and fill them in on how things truly were around there. Gossip was her middle name....only if the gossip was evil. One of our male co-workers did a very nice thing for me and the next thing you know, she's attempting to start a rumor that we were an item. This guy was so nice and newly married. Luckily everyone knew how she was. This is just a small example of her antics.
I've come up with...she had pretty hair.

It's not like I'm approached all the time about them but as two of them are recent and the other we occationally run across someone who doesn't realize they passed away.

I guess what I'm asking is how do YOU respond in similar circumstances?
Granny Sue,

Assuming you're "older" as in you're in your late 40s or beyond (I say this very respectfully and without sarcasm - I myself am approaching the age of 40, so I am not in a position to mock anybody about them being older), I find your post enlightening and thought-provoking. Even if you were in your 20s, it would still be a good thread starter, but the reason I link older age to it is because yours is a thread showing you are seeking wisdom - and many "younger" folks seem not to know what wisdom even is.

It looks to me that you know it is ethical not to speak evil of others, and certainly more so of those others who are dead. But you are also being very honest in that you feel no pain, no pity, and no sadness about these certain individuals being gone. I know the feeling - not the feeling of experiencing the death of one-time coworkers whom I disliked and/or who were simply despicable (believe me I've had a few coworkers who constantly reminded me the utter depravity of humanity).

You're not obligated in any way to mourn their deaths. They weren't your siblings, your friends, or what not. They were just people you met through employment

I think some people think that sharing a large chunk of our lives with people whose paths crossed ours strictly and only because of work makes us have a certain affinity for them. Sure, it's normal to like coworkers and even to befriend them. Doesn't always happen.

So what I would tell you is that if anybody approaches you about these people, say a NEUTRAL thing, or perhaps something about how well they did their work (if applicable)... or a reason why OTHER coworkers or perhaps clients liked them - even if you yourself didn't.

And, Tell-The-Truth, I like your posts too. Many times, silence is absolutely best. That's something life is teaching me. It's amazing how getting older brings you more wisdom (if you're willing to learn, that is).
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