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To think because you knew the deceased a few yrs more

(21 Posts)
gyros Thu 26-Sep-13 07:04:06

Doesn't mean you should get extra privileges?
A colleague died recently after an accident. I've known her for 10 years and always got on with her well. Obviously I am and other colleagues are very upset about it.
Now there is a colleague who has worked with her for 15 years and everybody seems to think she must be more upset than anyone else because she knew her the longest. So therefore had a day off work (not annual leave) the day after the death because she was too upset to work and then again on the day of the funeral manager told her not to come in. Whilst the rest of us came in in the morning then shut office to attend the funeral.
This death has deeply disturbed me and I'm incredibly upset by it too but because I have not known her as long as my colleague my feelings are not as important as hers? Aibu?

greenfolder Thu 26-Sep-13 07:10:46

its not about you.

sorry for your loss and all that, but YOU sound like you are competitive grieving and are more concerned that someone else got given a days leave when you didnt. managers react to what they can see- your colleague was probably more visibly upset than you. its difficult to get everything right in tragic circumstances. you may be focussing on this issue rather than the real one, which is the the tragic death.

Vivacia Thu 26-Sep-13 07:14:52

I think you are being unreasonable I'm afraid. Everyone grieves in a different way and can cope at different levels. You shouldn't feel that her grief diminishes yours, or resent the support she's receiving. It's not a competition.

meditrina Thu 26-Sep-13 07:15:58

The likeliest explanation is that she was indeed too upset to work.

No-one other than you seems to be taking it as a "competition"

gyros Thu 26-Sep-13 07:33:28

I don't really see it as a competition or it is all about me, we have 10 people in the office who are grieving. It's more the fact people that visit the office only ever inquire how she is and not the rest of us.

CoffeeTea103 Thu 26-Sep-13 07:39:22

I think you should just let this pass. I see your point of view but it's not coming across nice of you to question this. Sorry for your loss.

MinesAPintOfTea Thu 26-Sep-13 07:39:34

Have you considered that the extra time was likely to be unpaid? And that people visiting your office just don't know how to raise the subject, grief us difficult to talk about (at least for brits)

wigglesrock Thu 26-Sep-13 07:41:51

But you are being competitive, you're irritated because more visitors to the office are asking about your colleague.

Vivacia Thu 26-Sep-13 07:47:08

If it's not about after all, but about you, what do you want/need? You talk about visitors asking after her but not the rest of you and this hurts, Could you say something like, "she's doing ok I think, but we're all still really missing X"?

MrsWolowitz Thu 26-Sep-13 07:49:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

gyros Thu 26-Sep-13 08:02:56

Maybe it's just because I don't know how to cope with my grief for this person. I am surprised how this has affected me as I've never been in this situation before. Never had a friend who died even most of my immediate family are still alive and the ones that died I was only a child. I didn't mean to come across as selfish.

Latara Thu 26-Sep-13 08:10:37

You don't sound selfish, just that you want your grief to be acknowledged too which is understandable.

It's always shocking and upsetting when a friend dies young and you're right, it is hard to know how to cope with it.

Your colleague probably did get the time off because she was more visibly upset and maybe you are wondering why you aren't more visibly upset even though you are grieving.

It's quite normal to grieve while appearing more 'normal' to the outside world, it is the type of grief that isn't acknowledged so much because it's not so visible and therefore others don't have to deal with your grief.

Do something in memory of your friend for yourself, maybe make a small album of photos or write down some memories, it may help x

DuelingFanjo Thu 26-Sep-13 08:12:11

Yes, her bond appears to be stronger than yours as she is clearly more upset so YABU and petty.

Latara Thu 26-Sep-13 08:16:44

PS you may want to ask to get this thread moved.

gyros Thu 26-Sep-13 08:21:45

Thanks latara for your kind words, you summed it up pretty well. I never do show emotion as it was not the done thing growing up. Doesn't mean I don't feel though. I have had a lot of shit happen in my life and people think I'm so strong whilst inside I'm falling apart. I did organise a collection and book for people to write their memories of her in to give to her husband.

shewhowines Thu 26-Sep-13 08:24:09

YANBU. Just because people grieve in different ways doesn't mean their grief is any less/worse. Some people can keep control of their emotions better.

Latara Thu 26-Sep-13 08:28:27

That's a good thing to do.

Grief is strange - people react in all different ways to it, especially when the death has come as a shock.

Just carry on grieving in your own way and don't worry about how others are grieving; there is no set way to grieve and lots of people find it hard to show emotion including some people in my family.

Ginnytonic82 Thu 26-Sep-13 08:50:08

It's horrible when someone dies suddenly. We lost a very young and popular colleague last year in an accident, just before christmas, and everyone I work with was deeply effected. Is your workplace offering any counselling? We had two sessions where we saw a trained bereevement counsellor in small groups. It was so helpful and made a huge difference to us all. Perhaps you could suggest it? Other than that on a personal level, you could ask your GP to put you in touch with Cruise who provide bereevement counselling. I saw them for 6 weeks after my dad died and they really helped me understand how my grief worked, and how to deal with it.

Jinty64 Thu 26-Sep-13 08:51:04

My friend and colleague came back to work a few days after the death of her little boy. I was a bit shock but she felt that the empty house was unbearable and wanted her friends around her - this is how she coped. I had four weeks off work after my mother died because that was what I needed. I felt guilty saying this to my friend but she understood. I, in no way, felt that my loss was greater than hers because my needs were different.

Forget your colleague. She is grieving in her way (and there may be things you don't know about her that others do) and seeking support. If you need help then seek it for yourself rather than competing with her needs.

Contact cruise for advice.

gyros Thu 26-Sep-13 10:31:07

I will look into counselling my work offers.
Jinty your post really put it down that everyone copes with grieve differently. But it does not mean just because somebody screams louder they are hurting more.
It still hasn't really sunk in yet that she will never come back.

mrsjay Thu 26-Sep-13 10:34:41

you are annoyed because people are asking how this woman is coping and I can see why but try and not see it as she is grieving more this woman has obviously been hit very hard and is dealing with it in her own way grief strikes us al differently, I am sorry for your loss you all must be very upset ,

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