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My mother in law has died - funeral advice needed

(17 Posts)
MABS Sun 19-Dec-04 17:16:59

My mil died on Friday after a stroke . As she was sooo very fit it is a massive shock. The funeral is Thursday and my dd 9 yrs, does not want to go. TBH i am pleased as i don't think it's any place for a child and at least if she's not there i can concentrate on my dh's grief - he's in pieces at the mo. Problem is that dh's sister thinks my dd should, at least , come to the 'wake' afterwards for 'Grandad's sake' Anyone any feelings on this? TBH i feel she's better away from it all as she is distraught about it anyway.God, it's horrible at the mo , and Xmas somehow makes it worse i feel.

sparklymieow Sun 19-Dec-04 17:21:03

If your DD doesn't want ot go, you should respect that, and SIl will have to deal with it. I didn't go to my grandnans funeral when I was 15, because I didn't want to remember her like that. I didn't go to the wake either. I actually don't tend to go to wakes as I find them hard, and I imagine thats its would be harder on a child

WideWebWitch Sun 19-Dec-04 17:21:19

Sorry about your MIL MABS. None of dh's sister's business IMO, if your dd doesn't want to go and you're ok with it, then don't make her go. Presumably dd is upset too? People can focus on other things too much at times like this and so your SIL may get inordinately het up about it but I'd just politely and calmly say 'we've decided she's not going but thanks for your thoughts' or something similar if she asks. Thinking of you, this must be awful for your dh and all of you.

MistltAeroAndWine Sun 19-Dec-04 17:22:47

Very sorry to hear this - you must do what is right for your dd though and if she doesn't want to go then she shouldn't be made to - I'm sure her Grandad will understand and there'll be plenty of time for her to see him afterwards when others are getting on with their lives. Also very sad to have happened so close to Christmas. Sympathy to you and your family.

Gobbledigoose Sun 19-Dec-04 17:25:57

My feelings are much the same as yours MABS. I don't think funerals, or the wake, are a place for children and I'd be absolutely adamant that your dd doesn't go if she has specifically said she doesn't want to. Absolutely not, she's 9 years old and those occasions are hard enough to deal with as an adult. TBH, I feel that your SIL saying 'for Grandad's sake' is horrible emotional blackmail and I wouldn't be drawn in if I were you.

So sorry to hear about your MIL.


sobernoel Sun 19-Dec-04 17:28:03

Very sorry to hear your sad news, Mabs. You might find the fact that it's Christmas helps, though. My father died on Dec 17th 12 years ago and was buried on the 22nd. At first we decided to ignore Christmas but what actually happened was that we all went overboard racing round organising presents and food and it gave us all a strong focus. It was awful, devastating, but in a way we felt glad to have got the first Christmas without Dad over and done with, with no build up of anticipated sadness, if that makes sense.

As for your dd, you don't have to decide just yet and she may change her mind on the day. It should be her (and your) decision, though, not your SIL's in my view.

This next week will be a blur of tears, laughter and plans. Please give my sympathies to your family. You will come through this a stronger unit. Hugs.

cranberryjampot Sun 19-Dec-04 17:32:42

Sorry to hear your sad news MABS.

I would respect your dd's wishes. Do you have anyone who could look after her for you?

My aunt tried to encourage me to make dd see my mum after she died (dd was 4.5 at the time). There was no way I was making her do this. You know your dd better than anyone and if she dont want to go, you should respect it.

Cadeauxbury Sun 19-Dec-04 17:34:10

So sorry to hear about your loss MABS . It was very hard when my Papa (grandfather) died last Christmas Eve. When the funeral came about in the New Year, I wondered about not taking dd (then 3) and ds (then 5 months) but did in the end. All 50 members of our family were together for that day and it really did help for us to be there.

Having said that, there was no 33 line whip on being there for anyone and it was totally everyones personal choice with no expectations from anyone else in the family.
When my father in law died, my dh and I were the only family members that the service (MIL didn't want to go and neither did SIL as they prefered to remember him as he was alive. We totally understood this and they were perfectly happy to be at the wake.

Not sure if anything I'm telling you all of this for any reason, but I guess what I feel is that your dd should have totally free choice to be there or not. It''s a very hard thing for a young girl to go through, and even worse if forced.

My uncles funeral (when I was 13) affected me deeply. Most of my cousins and I wouldn't go into the crematorium and I found the funeral service very tough.

coppertop Sun 19-Dec-04 17:40:05

Sorry to hear your news MABS.

If dd doesn't want to go then definitely don't force the issue. SIL is completely wrong IMO to use emotional blackmail in this way.

JanH Sun 19-Dec-04 17:50:59

So sorry about your MIL, Mabs. I agree that the decision should be DD's, but give her the option of changing her mind between now and Thursday - she might decide that she would like to see her Grandad that day. Hugs.

ks Sun 19-Dec-04 17:52:32

Message withdrawn

OnZephyrstdayofXmas Sun 19-Dec-04 18:08:22

hiya, sorry to hear about your loss. There's no way your dd should go to either the funeral or the wake and your sil is being extremely un-thoughtful and inconsiderate to say what she did

PaRumPumPumScum Sun 19-Dec-04 18:31:38

Loads of sympathy to your dh and family and you, MABS. I'm so, so sorry to hear this.

I agree with those who've said that respecting your daughter's views on this is the most important thing, whatever those are. If she's said she doesn't want to go that's the bottom line, IMO, if she doesn't change her mind by Thursday. However, I do think it might be worth talking to her about the "saying goodbye/remembering someone/comforting the people left behind" purposes of a funeral. I think funerals can be very important in these respects but it is easy for children (and adults) to focus on their finality and sadness only. It's worth chatting through if you feel up to it, so that she can make a more informed decision about whether to go or not. This kind of conversation might also be helpful so that she can think about ways to remember her Gran and be "allowed" to grieve in whatever way she wants to- I do think it can be important to explain that there is no wrong or right way to grieve, that some people cry, some don't, some people would be devastated to miss a funeral, others find other ways to remember the dead person, etc. If she continues to be very definite that she doesn't want to go to the funeral, maybe she could make your father in law a sympathy card, perhaps including some of her best memories of her nan?

I'll be thinking of you guys on Thursday.

LIZS Sun 19-Dec-04 18:34:07

Sorry to hear about your mil. My granny died when I was 10 and I didn't go to the funeral (not sure I was even asked) but did attend the wake afterwards. Don't think I really understood what had happened but it was nice to meet other, more distant family members. Forget what SIL says but I think it would be good if you are able to give her the option to attend one without the other, explaining what is going on at each so that she isn't frightened by it all. It must be hard for her to see her dad upset and the funeral and wake may make it worse for her. If she does decide to go perhaps you could give her a special role, to keep an eye on grandad for example.

MattyMoosMum Sun 19-Dec-04 18:54:06

I am really sorry to hear about your sad news. I agree your dh should have the choice along with you and your spouse. What an aweful time for this to happen and when you are not expecting it, it hits you 10 times worse. I hope you all find the comfort and strength you need to get through Christmas.

MattyMoosMum Sun 19-Dec-04 18:54:50

I am really sorry to hear about your sad news. I agree your dd should have the choice along with you and your spouse. What an aweful time for this to happen and when you are not expecting it, it hits you 10 times worse. I hope you all find the comfort and strength you need to get through Christmas.

MABS Wed 22-Dec-04 15:46:58

dd is NOT coming to funeral tomorrow, her decision. Wish it were that easy for me to get out of it too TBH.

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