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Old 02-03-2014, 05:02 PM
 
Location: Glasgow Scotland
14,526 posts, read 11,505,888 times
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What a lot of nonsense this seems to have been.. I can remember in the 50s women dressing what seemed forever in black after a relative died then maybe changing to grey with purple.. it was horrible and no need for it... and why only women who carried on this way.. who did they actually do this for, the neighbours, themselves.. Im sure the dead dont want others grieving in such a public way for What are Widow's Weeds? (with picture)....
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Old 02-17-2014, 10:32 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 65,305,521 times
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It is a cultural phenomenon and by wearing clothes that signify that one is mourning, it immediately alerted others to that person's state of mind, status in life, and the fact that she was going through a difficult period after the loss of her spouse.

I don't think it was/is a terrible tradition. Many cultures have had some form of outward recognition that a woman was going through a mourning period.

People still wear black bands on their arms to signify the death of a loved one.

Some people get a tatoo.

Some people change their wedding band to their right hand after a period of time.
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Old 02-17-2014, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
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How disrespectful, insensitive and callous to suggest that wearing black, or any other mourning tradition, is nonsense.

Wearing black is an outward expression of grief and signifies many things, including state of mind and respect for the deceased. When I became widowed, I completely understood why people wear black after a loved one dies. It's part of the recovery process.

Everyone mourns in their own way; if you don't like one mourning tradition or another, you don't have to do it. But you might change your mind when you're confronted with your own grief.
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:02 AM
 
Location: Glasgow Scotland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
How disrespectful, insensitive and callous to suggest that wearing black, or any other mourning tradition, is nonsense.

Wearing black is an outward expression of grief and signifies many things, including state of mind and respect for the deceased. When I became widowed, I completely understood why people wear black after a loved one dies. It's part of the recovery process.

Everyone mourns in their own way; if you don't like one mourning tradition or another, you don't have to do it. But you might change your mind when you're confronted with your own grief.
Been there on many occassions friend since losing my adopted parents young... I was meaning the way it was done in this country at that time, it was more a womans thing as men didnt mourn like that for a long period of time..... I found it gloomy , eerie and sad as a child and still do.. I hate it... believe me I wasnt being insentive, and wearing dowdy colours for long periods of time helps no one ... in my opinion..here in Scotland mirrors and windows were covered in white sheets, which i never understood and thank god thats done away with too..The Victorians seemed to make this into some type of fashion statement, wearing mourning jewellery with bits of the deceased hair in the locket or brooch how bizarre... surely you wouldnt want that nonsense back . and yes it is nonsense. Taking photographs of dead children fully clothes to keep as a momento too from Victorian times is horrible.
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Old 02-17-2014, 01:34 PM
 
Location: Philaburbia
31,216 posts, read 57,353,566 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dizzybint View Post
wearing dowdy colours for long periods of time helps no one
That's not for you to say. Everyone mourns differently, and certainly no one but you is going to conform to your schedule or idea of grieving ...
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Old 02-17-2014, 01:41 PM
 
Location: Glasgow Scotland
14,526 posts, read 11,505,888 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
That's not for you to say. Everyone mourns differently, and certainly no one but you is going to conform to your schedule or idea of grieving ...
of course we do.... all I was saying is that its good that women dont wear heavy veils now or black for years..grief means adapting and adjusting and moving on, not being stuck in a costume to let the world know your circumstances.
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Old 02-17-2014, 04:08 PM
 
Location: State of Being
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It was only in the 80s that I noticed folks were attending funerals dressed in colors other than black or navy blue. So the socially acceptable "rules" for funerals were even still pretty strict only 30 years ago. Now, no one expects everyone to show up to a funeral dressed in black, but typically, family members will wear subdued tones.

Other than at a deceased's funeral, I don't think anyone sees clothing as connected to mourning these days.

It used to be that where I grew up (in the South/USA) that whenever there was a death in a household, folks always put a white wreath on the door or front porch (on a stand). I never see that anymore, either.
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:20 PM
 
Location: 900 miles from my home in 80814
4,670 posts, read 6,747,013 times
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I think funerals, or memorial services should be celebrations of life, and dark clothing or widow's weeds are an archaic tradition. I didn't dress any differently after my husband died, than I did when he was alive. Mostly jeans and t-shirts or sweatshirts...

When my dad died in 1989 a few months after my mom (hers was a rather serious memorial service at the funeral home), we decided that since my dad's passion had been playing clarinet in a dixieland jazz band, that the band members would play at the service at the funeral home. Everyone came dressed in colorful clothes, the band played super upbeat songs like "When The Saints Come Marching In", "In the Mood", etc., people clapped and cheered and it was really moving. That was very unusual, even in the late 80's in Colorado.

When my husband died, none of the men wore suits and few of the women dressed in dark colors. I wore a navy blue sweater with a navy and white skirt, and my kids wore subdued clothes, but we were the only ones. We had music (mostly 60's and 70's music) as one neighbor played guitar, another piano and everyone sang along to rock songs of the 60's and 70's. It was festive, lots of laughter and stories. We didn't want it to be somber as that was not him. He was a sweet, happy, fun-loving man, and we wanted his service to celebrate that.
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:59 PM
 
Location: SWFL
21,451 posts, read 18,167,629 times
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It never occurred to me to wear dark clothing except on the day Earl finally got to be rested. I didn't do it for my parents either. Just at their funerals. I wore a black scrunchy for my personal mourning.

Last edited by Sam I Am; 03-03-2014 at 06:27 PM..
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Old 02-18-2014, 07:12 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 65,305,521 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcy1210 View Post
I think funerals, or memorial services should be celebrations of life, and dark clothing or widow's weeds are an archaic tradition. I didn't dress any differently after my husband died, than I did when he was alive. Mostly jeans and t-shirts or sweatshirts...

When my dad died in 1989 a few months after my mom (hers was a rather serious memorial service at the funeral home), we decided that since my dad's passion had been playing clarinet in a dixieland jazz band, that the band members would play at the service at the funeral home. Everyone came dressed in colorful clothes, the band played super upbeat songs like "When The Saints Come Marching In", "In the Mood", etc., people clapped and cheered and it was really moving. That was very unusual, even in the late 80's in Colorado.

When my husband died, none of the men wore suits and few of the women dressed in dark colors. I wore a navy blue sweater with a navy and white skirt, and my kids wore subdued clothes, but we were the only ones. We had music (mostly 60's and 70's music) as one neighbor played guitar, another piano and everyone sang along to rock songs of the 60's and 70's. It was festive, lots of laughter and stories. We didn't want it to be somber as that was not him. He was a sweet, happy, fun-loving man, and we wanted his service to celebrate that.
How wonderful to celebrate your father's "coming home." That is what so many folks are choosing to do where I live. I don't know if it is something happening all over the country or within churches themselves or a combo of factors -- and changing thought (about customs) in general.

I see people referring to their loved one's "homecoming celebration" (for example) in obituaries, too. In both Lutheran and Catholic services, folks often choose joyous, triumphant, celebratory music, as well. It may be that other churches are doing this, too -- I just haven't been to any of those services.

Amongst friends, folks are also opting to have memorial services along the lines of what you described, MARCY -- personalizing the event to suit their loved one's wishes or something that fits their pursuits in life. And, many are doing this (memory services) if their loved one chose to be cremated.

I think it is wonderful! So many more choices for how to say one's final goodbyes. It really is an individual (and family) decision and so good to see that we are (as a society) less tied to strict customs and able to create what fits for our loved ones in particular.

We all have different thoughts on death, life after death -- and we all mourn/grieve differently. Whatever fits the situation and the people involved is what should be done and so good to see that this is what is being embraced.
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