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  1. #1
    newmomto1's Avatar
    newmomto1 is offline Platinum level (1000+ posts)
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    Default Condolence call questions-what do you say?

    Okay, I KNOW this sounds like a silly question...

    But when you pay a visit to a family who has just had a member pass away, what do you say?

    We are going to a shiva this evening. For those who do not know, a shiva is (in the Jewish religion) a period of time where people gather & visit after the death of a loved one. It's a time for people to visit, pay their condolences, & remember the loved one's life.

    Somehow, I always feel awkward with the "I am so sorry for your loss" or "I am so sorry about your Dad", etc.

    I do not know WHY I feel awkward. Is it just me? Is there soemthing better I could say?? I am just not good at this (which is ridiculous since I was a nurse for 13 years!!!!!!!!!).

    Somehow, in the hospital setting I as better at it.

    So, what do YOU say????????

  2. #2
    rlu is offline Ruby level (4000+ posts)
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    Did you know the person who passed? If so, a rememberance "I remember when Joe graduated from high school" or "Joe once told me how much he loved your pies" or something .

    Also, "is there anything I can do?" will probably just get a polite response, but if there are young children in the family offering to take them for a playdate on a coming up day or even just for a walk while you are there could be appreciated.

    Your presence is your support, that's the important thing.
    DS Mar04, 8th grader. Life Scout. Being read Flash the Homeless Donkey.
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  3. #3
    elektra's Avatar
    elektra is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    I think "I am so sorry" or "I am sorry for your loss" are the most appropriate things to say.
    I think less is more really.
    I try to also stay away from things like, "he's better off" or "things happen for a reason" or "God has a plan" because even though I may believe these things, the person just may not want to hear that at that moment or maybe they don't agree.
    Sometimes I think it's approriate to add something like, "he meant so much to me" or something short, sweet and sincere like that. But whenever I have the slightest doubt, I don't think you can go wrong with "I am so sorry".
    DD - 9
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  4. #4
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    My mom died 2 years ago and here are the things I wanted to hear and/or appreciated hearing:

    1. I am so sorry for your loss (NOT "what are you going to about your father?"!)

    2. I hope that God is giving you what you need to get through this time. (NOT "she is in a better place")

    3. I remember when..so many nice stories about my mom.
    Mom to:
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    RIP Andy, the furry first child, 1996-2012

    "The task of any religion is not to tell us who we are entitled to hate but to teach us who we are required to love."

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by StantonHyde
    My mom died 2 years ago and here are the things I wanted to hear and/or appreciated hearing:

    1. I am so sorry for your loss (NOT "what are you going to about your father?"!)

    2. I hope that God is giving you what you need to get through this time. (NOT "she is in a better place")

    3. I remember when..so many nice stories about my mom.
    My grandmother died back in Feb and I TOTALLY agree with this post. The people I remember from the viewing and funeral were the ones who came up to me and told me stories about my grandmother. We all know she's in a better place, but we still miss her!

  6. #6
    newmomto1's Avatar
    newmomto1 is offline Platinum level (1000+ posts)
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    Thanks for all the advice.
    Unfortunately, I barely knew the man.
    So, I guess I'll stick with "I am so sorry for your loss".
    Thanks again!!

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