Post # 31
For some reason my comment just disappeared. So I’ll repeat myself. Other people’s grief is not about you and you are not entitled to a life without any discomfort, especially in normal life situations. Death is a part of life. Might as well get over it now as it will probably not be the last time you’ll be in this situation. Your attitude that open casket is pointless is selfish, and your concern for your own comfort over your fiancé’s grief is really something else.
Post # 32
yes he is. Funeral traditions were an interesting part of an interfaith marriage. We’ve talked about it in particular about what our own funerals will look like. We both want to be cremated so the dead body part isn’t an issue, but I like the big, loud wakes the my family does. We don’t pull punches either – some embarassing old stories will surface and laughs will be had and it’s a celebration. I want my family to remember me that way but my husband hates them. And who is the funeral really for? Do I sit shiva for him out of respect for his traditions even though the idea of people in and out of my house crying for a week sounds terrible and isn’t what will help ME find closure? It’s a tough question that we haven’t figured out the answer to. I guess whoever dies first gets out of making that call though.
Post # 33
Viewings are optional in many cultures and faiths. OP, it’s OK if it makes you uncomfortable, but it’s not OK to complain about it to the family or not to attend because as others have said it’s not about you. No one will be forcing you to go over there.
Post # 34
Oh Yes, I realize it is different for many cultures.
i prefaced with “from what i’ve seen” because i have only attended one funeral with closed and that was due to an unfortunate accident and I have unfortunately been to my fair share in different countries and from different backgrounds.
Its very dependent on your circles, location and beliefs.
Thanks for pointing that out.
Post # 35
Having lost 2 people in my life to Covid, whose funerals could only be attended via video link due to Covid….I’m struggling to feel much sympathy here.
Of course it’s uncomfortable. But unless you have a real psychological phobia, you need to just deal.
Post # 36
This. I watched my best friends Mothers funeral over youtube live in the summer. I couldn’t be there to be supportive of my friend. Nobody could hug her. It was horrible. I would have given anything to have been able to be there regardless of what funeral customs her family chose.
Post # 37
I feel your pain, and I do think you’re getting some pretty harsh comments here.
I’m a mid 30’s woman who has been to my fair share of open casket viewings/funerals and I have major anxiety over being around a dead body. It’s a known thing and literally none of my family have made an issue about it. I rememeber VIVIDLY seeing my first dead body, my great-grandmother, in her open casket at 8 years old. No one prepared me for it, and I was absolutely horrified at the number of people touching her, kissing her, etc. It honestly affected me for life. I don’t care who feels it’s dramatic. I spent most of my 20’s not going near an open casket. Even for close family members I would gladly attend the viewing and funeral but would often be the person at the back of the room greeting those who entered. I feel absolutely nothing peaceful about seeing the dead body of my loved one who doesn’t look a thing like the normally do. I also feel very uncomfortable being that emotional in public, and so when my grandmother died I did go to the funeral home before everyone else on the day of the funeral to say my goodbyes….alone. But I also don’t think anyone *shouldn’t* have an open casket simply because I’m uncomfortable.
That being said, a few years ago my mom’s friend passed and I was basically her support person. I was with her when she felt something was up, and we found her mom (who had committed suicide). I was also the person who went with her to the funeral home to view her before the funeral. I won’t lie – I was extrememly anxious but I never said a word, I just went to be with my friend and kept it together. Was it the end of the world? No. Would I choose to do it again? No.
I guess my point it, you can be there to support your loved ones without having to go up to the casket.
Post # 38
Benefit of wearing glasses and contacts. I would just remove my glasses and I am as blind as a bat. I also feel extreme anxiety when viewing dead bodies. Can’t even watch crime shows etc as it’s always been a huge issue of mine. Luckily I’ve never been to an open casket funeral. If I had to go I would just avert my gaze and avoid the casket as much as I can whilst being subtle and respectful about it.
Post # 39
I was just listening to the Freakonomics podcast on my drive today. It was called “How to Be Better at Death”. I’d consider taking a listen if I were you. It might help reframe some of your thought process.
The speaker basically talked about how death was very much a part of every day life until recently – when it’s blown up into a 20billion dollar a year industry in the US. Embalming became a thing during the civil war, when families wanted the bodies to come home from the battlefield.
Essentially the speaker went on about how we’ve medicalized/sterilized death so much that now we’re uncomfortable with it.
How to Be Better at Death (Ep. 450)
Post # 40
Since this thread came up again, what I would have taken into consideration is how many people were expected to attend, how you would get there, the safety precautions in place, and what was expected of you afterwards, for example going back to the house.
What did you ultimately decide to do?
Post # 41
I went to the funeral, this time it was a lot easier to be further from the casket. There were only ten people there and I just tried to soak in the stories and be there for my fiance
Post # 42
I’m sure that your fiance was very appreciative of your support.
Post # 43
I’m very glad to hear that. I’m sure your presence was a great comfort to your partner.