(Closed) whats the american thing to do??

posted 7 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 3
750 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2014

I’ve never heard of it…but perhaps they were trying to be inclusive and understanding of your culture? They probably were just trying to do whatever would be most appreciated by you, and didn’t know which you would prefer, ya know?

Post # 4
1744 posts
Bumble bee

I don’t know if it’s regional or generational or some of both, but my family has received monetary gifts when someone has died.   Probably 1/3 of the cards have come with cash or a check and 2/3 have not.

Post # 5
2437 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

@asianyoushi:  I’ve never heard of that. Maybe she was feeling generous!? Sorry for your loss. 🙁

Post # 7
3625 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Having been privy to both Asian and Western funerals, I’ve only seen money being exchanged for Asian funerals (usual in an auspicious amount). For Western funerals, people usually bring flowers and/or a card. Occasionally, if they’re very close to the grieving party, they will bring food over, e.g. a casserole.

Regardless, I wouldn’t turn the money down so I would graciously accept it and move on. Sorry about your loss.


Post # 8
822 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

that seems odd that she would send you money for your MIL’s death.  did your husband handle the arrangements? i’m asian so i’m used to giving money.  when my fiance’s uncle died, he went to the funeral and i sent money to help the family with the arrangements because i knew they needed the money more than they needed flowers.  apparently i was a little too generous because he brought back half the money.  i asked why he didn’t give the entire amount and he said, even with half, i gave more than double of what others gave.

Post # 9
5184 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: February 2013

@asianyoushi:  I’ve never heard of that.

Post # 10
427 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@asianyoushi:  I think it’s relatively common to give money at funerals.  Funerals are expensive so people choose to help out with funeral related expenses, or to help the family if the person was a “bread winner”.

Post # 12
604 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

I’ve never heard of it.  It’s more common to send flowers, cards or to make a donation to an organization that was dear to the deceased.  Also, for ppl who are local, it’s common to bring over food for the family.  The cash thing is different but very generous.  Just make sure to send a thank you.


Post # 13
552 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

I’m sorry for your loss. It’s unusual, but even in America traditions are varied from region to region in a lot of things. Where I am if somebody chooses to do something besides a card it’s usually 75% donate to a charity either named by the family or of their own choice, and 25% flowers either smaller sent to a specific relative or sent to the funeral home.

if you and your husband don’t need the money maybe donate to a charity in her name and in the thank you card let the person know? If not let them know it was appreciated to help cover the expenses. I don’t think it matters how well you two know the relative, but rather how well they knew his mom. 

Post # 14
278 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

I’ve never heard of money being given at a funeral/for a death but I can see where it would help out the family. When both of my grand parents died our family asked that instead of flowers donations be given to their church. As both were cremated, flowers would have gone to waste.

When a neighbor or family friend has died I usually get drafted to cook up something that will keep in the fridge/heat up well.


Post # 15
1597 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

I have received (and given) monetary gifts/flowers/fruit baskets/gift cards when someone passes away.

I think the idea behind a monetary gift is that usually when someone close to you dies, you are taking a lot of time off of work and it might not be paid, so you need some help.

I also know food like casseroles or gift cards for restaurants or grocery stores are popular because when you’re planning a funeral, etc. you don’t have time to cook.

Not sure if it’s regional or not, but very common where I live.

I think people just want to help out as much as they can in anyway they can. When you’re grieving, you don’t have time/money/energy to think about basic things like food or paying the bills.

Post # 16
2285 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: Central Park

Nope. Usually flowers and sometimes food for the immediate family.

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