To request no children at my Mum's funeral?(477 Posts)
I know I am deep in grief and anger stages right now so maybe not thinking straight.
I know that my mum would not have wanted her two Great grandchildren to be upset (they are 3 and 6)/attend her funeral, so I politely asked the mum of the children (nephew's partner) if she could veto the service and bring them straight to the wake as these are the wishes of my Dad and I truly believe the wishes of my late mum. She is still insisting on bringing them and has also caused a rift between us and nephew at a time when we should be pulling together. Her excuse is lack of childcare, although her mum and dad are heavily involved with the children.
As an aside, selfishly I don't want toddlers interrupting my final goodbye to my Mum.
I am sorry for your loss.
But personally I think Yabu. Her parents may not be free. She may not think children should be excluded from a funeral. I know I don't.
It's really up to the parents to make that choice.
But since your dad is organising it o suppose it's up to him. I have never heard of anyone being excluded from funerals, unless something awful has happened.
I have taken my dd to funerals (not ds as luckily no one has dies in his short life) they have been fine. I would be hurt if my kids had been excluded from dhs grandparents funeral.
Sorry what I am saying is I think it's unreasonable to ban kids from funerals, but not sure what the etiquette is and I suppose it's your dads choice.
I'm going to say this as gently as I can. I know you're hurting and can't deal with the noise of toddlers right now but yabu. Children have every right and need to be at a funeral. Seeing adults be upset about the death shows then that its normal to grieve for a lost love one. Ask for her to keep the children with her and to take them out if they become disruptive.
A 3 and 6 year old are very unlikely to interrupt a funeral and every member of a family needs to grief.
Its your mum and you are grieving but it was not neccesary to say anything to the childrens mum at all, how would you feel if you were told to keep your kids away.
They are great grandchildren, if they never saw their great grandmother then your stance is more relevant, but funerals are often about saying goodbye and closure and should include all family members.
I'm so sorry, this must be so hard for you.
You are trying to do what your mother would have wanted...but would she want to cause a family rift over this?
I'm sorry for your loss
I suppose ultimately it's up to you and your Dad, but personally I would feel it's up to the children's parents. They're normally the ones to gauge how their kids might cope with this sort of thing.
Then again, I come from an Irish family where it's completely normal to have the entire family including kids at funerals.
Unless the kids are very unruly, I don't imagine you'll even notice/remember them being there on the day.
I often think I'm strange in this as I practically begged my friend to take her toddler to my dads funeral. And my cousins son (7) was part of the party who put dirt on the coffin.
I needed that reminder that life goes on and there's still joy in the world and our loved ones live on.
And they do.
Sorry for your loss
Sorry for your loss.
It's a difficult one. We all brought our DC to our parent's funerals as did friends with the understanding that the partner would take them out if they were making a fuss. For me it was a reminder that life goes on. Grief has a horrible way of making small issues blow up painfully.
Could you get her to agree that she will sit further back and take them out if they get too unsettled. It is unlikely they will get upset as they don't really know what a funeral is.
YANBU Children of that age absolutely do not need to be at a funeral. It's your mum's funeral. What sort of a person goes against the wishes of immediate family?
I'm very sorry for your loss.
My family welcome small children at the service. DH's doesn't. I have always gone with the wishes of those closest to the deceased.
These are your nephew's children? Have his parents (your brother/sister?) said anything?
My children attended my granddad's funeral aged 4 and 3 months. Both were quiet and calm during the service and I'd have taken them out if they weren't. DS still remebers the event and that he was asked to blow a candle out at the end. Baby DD was also a huge comfort to some of the family who were grieving, as they cuddled her as the next generation.
As a child I was kept away from my Gran's funeral and it took me many years to really believe she was dead.
A funeral is a sad time for everyone. Please don't make it into a time of conflict by asking parents not to bring their children.
You also shouldn't need to ask people to take toddlers out if they are noisy as any reasonable parent would do that anyway.
I went to a funeral that was completely ruined by toddlers. But their parents were of the competitive ilk and incapable of stopping them being loudly precocious even for a short time. My best friend was saying goodbye to her dad and was heartbroken it was ruined. On the other hand, children are human and sensitive and sometimes need to be included. It is entirely up to you and your family and these things are so bloody crap when they come up at a time like this. Its your mum. As far as I am concerned you can be unreasonable if you need to. I'm so sorry for your loss. X
So sorry for your loss OP
Agree with the others, we took our DS to my uncle's funeral, and to my DH's uncle's funeral too, all the mourners loved having him there, the whole circle of life thing, he was under 1 at the time so I couldn't have left him in any case but he was very good and I took him out when he cried once.
Your DM didn't stipulate anything so although you think it might have been what she wanted you can't be sure x
The wishes of the deceaseds spouse override what anyone else thinks about the subject, so YANBU as its what your dad wants.
In the OP, it says the children are welcome at the wake. They are not completely excluded.
Children of that age absolutely do not need to be at a funeral.
Why not?! Not attending my brother's funeral (I was 3) has caused issues with the way I've handled death ever since.
My DD attended her great grandmothers' funerals (but not the cremation) at age 6 months and 3 years. She still talks about the latter one at 5 (very much a celebration of life) and means we can talk about death far more openly than if she hadn't been there.
So sorry for your loss xx
You seem to think the children's mum is unreasonable yet you also say it's caused a rift with your nephew which suggests he is in agreement with her in wanting his children to attend. Perhaps he needs the support of his partner at the service and he is certainly not unreasonable for that.
FWIW I have been to far too many funerals over the years, nearly all have had small children present but they have in no way disrupted the service. Whatever your fears are about that, I think they are unfounded and I hope you can be reassured by that.
I took my DSs to my dads funeral, aged 4y and 10m. The youngest kicked off, but we had already arranged with someone to quietly take him out. I will always remember the oldest one asking "why are they putting grandad in the ground?" I found it extremely helpful to explain it all to him as best I could. He learnt something that day, as did I.
I'm so sorry for your loss
YANBU to feel the way you do, and you acknowledge that grief and anger are affecting this. Arranging a funeral for a loved parent is horrific, I went through this a year ago, and trying to keep everyone happy, plus keep to what you consider is the 'right' thing to do is a difficult path to negotiate.
I think the reasons that pinkflower gives for having children at funerals are lovely and poignant, but, more importantly, I think the path you should take is the path that does not cause rifts in the family now
I personally, would allow the children the children to come.
YANBU Children of that age absolutely do not need to be at a funeral.
Lets not forget, they're 6 and 3 so they're not actually toddlers.
Very sorry for your loss X X
I have never heard of children being asked not to attend a funeral, it is generally up to the parents if they take them or not.
I went to my sisters funeral when I was 4.
My brother came to our uncles funeral when he was 6.
Whatever my own views on children attending funerals, I wouldn't dream of opposing the wishes of the closest bereaved relatives. This is not about the children but the deceased and their nearest relatives.
The children will be present at the wake so are not being totally excluded.
Having said that, it is not worth a rift, but it would certainly colour the way I would view this person in future.
Huge sympathy on your loss. I've been there and there are no words.
What I would say is that perhaps your mind is focussing on this because you can cope with the small things? When my mum died. I was in a very casual relationship and we should have been on holiday together. He went anyway, and he called me every day, sometimes twice. I raged and raged that he hadn't cancelled his holiday too, because I could cope with that; I couldn't cope with what had just happened. what I am trying longwindedly to say is, there are much bigger things about the day than this, and all you can do is be kind to yourself and take it one step at a time. If the children are there, it won't be the thing you remember afterwards. what you will remember is seeing the people who loved your mum all together, and how much she is missed. And hopefully there will be some comfort in that for you in days to come.
for you and your mum.
I personally think YANBU. I have a 5&6 year old and would never dream of taking them to a funeral. I stayed at home with them when DH nana died as I really do not think they are old enough. Yes people die but people are also raped and murdered but I still turn the news off when something g horrific is on. You can explain to a young child about people dying without them seeing and hearing others sobbing and wailing. The last funeral I attended was so sad and many members of the congregation were so grief stricken that they howled when the coffin was brought in. My babies are not ready for that; I found it distressing enough. If it was the wishes of the deceased then those wishes should be honoured and it's incredibly selfish for anyone to go against those wishes. So sorry for your loss.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.