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Old 10-16-2009, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Somewhere on Earth
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I think it's very debatable. At one point, the sister wants to grieve in her own way, so the siblings should respect her choice. But at another, the siblings want her to come, so they could all grieve together and build the family bonds strong, while making their grief more tolerable as they are surrounded by loved ones for comfort.

I think the family should talk it out with the sister. Would the sister be willing to give up her grief ceremony to go to the funeral to support her siblings. Or does she want to do her own thing even though the siblings would like her to attend?
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Old 10-16-2009, 03:31 PM
 
Location: Tucson
42,837 posts, read 77,122,397 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coolhand68 View Post
It's up to her, however, funerals are important in one aspect. It drives home the reality that the deceased is really gone. You see them laid out, and it forces you to accept that they are gone, and it often serves as a healthy foundation for the grieving process.
I think you're right. Perhaps I was in denial for a long time because I couldn't go to my parents' funerals.

Quote:
At the same time they can be very traumatic for some. Some people do not want their last memory or image of a loved one to be stretched out in a casket. They want to remember them as they were in life.
That's true. It so happened I was out of the country when most of my relatives passed away. I only saw my uncle dead and that's the picture stuck in my head. Wish I hadn't seen him...

Quote:
Funerals are for the living, not the dead. She's not being disrespectful for not attending. She's entitled to grieve in her own way and shouldn't be treated as an outcast by your other family members.
On the other hand, people have obligations regardless of how they feel about something... What if there were no siblings?! Somebody has to bury these people. To this day I feel guilty and always will that my cousin had to take care of my parents' funerals. I was an only child and people back home are buried 24 hours after passing away, which means there was no way for me to make it even if I jumped on a plane immediately after hearing about it, but I still feel guilty... She shouldn't have had to do this for me... I knew thatís how it was gonna work out beforehand and opted to go and see them for the last time alive and Iím still happy I did this instead; however, I hate being a burden on other peopleÖ I appreciate her help and I would do the same for her need be, but wish she didnít have to do it.
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Old 10-16-2009, 04:30 PM
 
28,906 posts, read 45,211,944 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovemaine View Post
I hope I'm posting this in the right place. Our Mom has terminal brain cancer. She is in her final days now. We have a sister who lives across the country who is not planning on attending the funeral. My other siblings are extremely upset by this. The sister who is not attending told me that she wants to mourn in her own way and doesn't believe that she HAS to come to the funeral. I tend to agree with her. Does anyone here think she is being selfish or callous for not attending? I know there will be hurt feelings from my other siblings, but I do believe that it's a very personal decision.
I hate psychobabble, because it allows one to rationalize just about any kind of selfishness. Since when did self-actualization become the highest good in the universe?

In case your sister doesn't understand this, the point of a funeral is to honor the deceased, comfort the family, and sort through the aftermath of a loved one's death. It is not therapy. Adults understand this.

At the very least, this is a woman who bore you in her womb for nine months, wiped your bottom, stayed up all night for you when you were sick, went to your dance recitals, drove you everywhere you wanted to go, made you breakfast, lunch, and dinner, laundered your clothes, organized your birthday parties, taught you to put on makeup, coached you in math, comforted you through breakups with your boyfriends, paid for your tuition, and generally sacrificed her time, money, sleep, and everything else to fulfill almost every whim of yours from the time you were born until the time you left home. All without reservation or even serious complaint.

And now, you're saying that attending a one-hour funeral service in her honor is too much of an inconvenience or too big of a bummer to attend. Do you realize how shallow this really is?
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Old 10-16-2009, 04:33 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
6,772 posts, read 11,584,557 times
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Honestly, I'd be mad and I DO think it's a little selfish of her. No one wants to go to funerals, they are terrible, but it's just the right thing to do IMHO. Sorry.
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:12 PM
 
Location: Houston
3,567 posts, read 3,820,453 times
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I gotta admit, I would be upset too. It's the last opportunity to say good bye forever and she dosen't want to be there?
She can be alone after the funeral. Yeah, at the end of the day she can do whatever she wants, but this will be her ONLY chance to say good bye.
Visiting the grave is something else than actually be there when she gets buried.
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:21 PM
 
691 posts, read 2,018,214 times
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I did not attend my Grandmother's funeral, and she was very close to me. I just could not do it. I am glad I did not go, and chose to grive privately.

I think that your sister should not have to attend her mother's funeral, and I do not think that your family should make her a pariah for choosing not to go.. or make comments for the next 30 years to make her feel badly.

Sorry this is an issue, at a time when your family should be very spiritual and close. I wish your mother a peaceful time, and strength for you.
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:22 PM
 
Location: Tucson
42,837 posts, read 77,122,397 times
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Originally Posted by XodoX View Post
I gotta admit, I would be upset too. It's the last opportunity to say good bye forever and she dosen't want to be there?
I'd refrain from judging unless I've experienced something myself. I did say "goodbye" to alive people and we all knew it was final... Even though I said I feel guilty my cousin had to take care of their funerals, I'm glad I remember my parents alive. Any time I think of my uncle I picture this yellow waxy face in the coffin...
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:24 PM
 
985 posts, read 2,300,990 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovemaine View Post
I hope I'm posting this in the right place. Our Mom has terminal brain cancer. She is in her final days now. We have a sister who lives across the country who is not planning on attending the funeral. My other siblings are extremely upset by this. The sister who is not attending told me that she wants to mourn in her own way and doesn't believe that she HAS to come to the funeral. I tend to agree with her. Does anyone here think she is being selfish or callous for not attending? I know there will be hurt feelings from my other siblings, but I do believe that it's a very personal decision.
It depends, how close is your family? And, how close is your sister to your mother? If you guys are a very tight knit family then, yes I think she should suck it up and go. If you all aren't that close then I think she should be able to "mourn in her own way."

I don't like funerals either but I would go if someone I really loved died.
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:39 PM
 
Location: Where we enjoy all four seasons
20,799 posts, read 8,532,428 times
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I am very sorry about your Mother....maybe your sibling would like to remember how she was before she got sick...I did have one thought and that was could she by any chance be doing it for financial reasons? That she cannot afford to make the trip and is too embarrassed to say so?

I do wish you the very best in this horrible time for you and your family.
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Old 10-16-2009, 05:49 PM
 
Location: Land of 10000 Lakes +
5,554 posts, read 5,867,984 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pers View Post
I'm sorry to hear about your mom.

I do not like funerals and would prefer to never attend one again! If the funeral is for a loved one, I avoid viewing the body as I would rather remember them in life than in death. Grief is very personal but I understand how your sister feels.

When my grandmother died, I really didn't want to attend the funeral. I would much rather have stayed home, looked through old pictures and had a good cry--not the trickle of tears you wipe with a tissue, but the ugly racking sobs with swollen eyes and snot bubbling from my nose cry that you just can't do in public. Even though that's how I wanted to deal with my loss, the day of her funeral, I stood next to my siblings and supported my father. When I came home, I grieved the way I needed to, in private with my photos, memories and snot bubbles.

I get why your siblings feel your sister is being selfish. You will all lose your mother and it's understandable that when a family member dies the others want to gather and touch base with one another. That's why I go to funerals, not to deal with my grief but to support my friends and family through theirs. It's not how I choose to grieve but out of love, I go to be with those who need me to be next to them while they grieve.
My feelings, also. I believe people should be allowed to grieve in their own way; but I also believe that siblings need each other - all of each other at this time. It will help her more than she realizes to be near them.
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