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 Post subject: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 6:34 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 26, 2010 6:05 pm
Posts: 165
Lovely cheery subject !

I am currently having a heated discussion / arguement with DH regarding a family funeral on friday. We've obviously been brought up very differently.............

It's their great uncle's funeral and both of my DCs were very fond of him, so I would like them to attend. DH thinks it will upset our 10 year old DD and therefore unfair if our 12 year old DS goes. DH didn't attend a funeral until he was 19.

My view is that it's just life (and death !) and both should be able to go to say goodbye.

I saw my first dead body at 6 - apparently I insisted. Coming from an Irish Catholic family most of the funerals I have attended, sadly about 25, have been of the open coffin variety. Luckily this one isn't. But I personally think it's given me a healthy attitude toward death. DH just thinks it explains why I wear alot of black ( no that's because it's slimming !!!).

I don't want to fall out with him or go against his wishes but I really think they should go, and they both want to.

I was just wondering what everyone else's view on a suitable age for a funeral is ?


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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 6:51 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:45 pm
Posts: 4604
What do the children think? I didn't go to a funeral until I was 17 - I missed both my of my grandfathers' at the age of 12ish, but I didn't mind, it was a bit abstract to me and I had no great desire to go. I think it very much depends on what they want, and I would be guided by that - it might be different for each of them, but if they express a preference I would go with that.

My commiserations for your loss :(


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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 6:55 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 1:05 pm
Posts: 4019
Location: Reading
If the children want to go they should be able to go, just be prepared to take them out if they want.

I wasn't asked if I wanted to go to my grandma's funeral. I would have wanted to, even though I was 10 at the time. I never felt as though I got chance to say goodbye.


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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 6:56 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2012 6:32 pm
Posts: 290
Do they want to go? If they did, I would talk to them and take them as long as you thought you could hold yourself together (which it sounds like you will).

I know of a close friend who went to a funeral of her friend's Mum aged 10 and was scared of funerals because of it. But I think that was probably quite a traumatic service for a lady with 2 young children.

It's hard to explain, but there are definitely very different types of funerals. As a church organist I get to go to a fair few. I find some very peaceful and a fitting way to say goodbye, but others are just so upsetting and I wouldn't want my 10 year old there.

Another example I can think of is a 10 year old that chose not to go to a grandparents funeral. He came to the wake afterwards and was happy and felt like he had been part of the family marking the occasion. Another relative of a similar age was so upset that he had to be taken out of the service, so the first was a much better solution.

I'm not helping am I? I tend to think 12 is fine, 10 might be too young. But I certainly don't think that they both have to go or both not go. Different people have different personalities and you are best placed to take that into account.

It's not an easy question is it?

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The more that you learn, the more places you'll go.
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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 6:57 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 8:51 am
Posts: 8113
I reckon you can easily take them up until about the age of 6 .. then they can go wobbly and can only reliably cope when they are about 15+..

Having said that the best thing is to ask them if they want to go or not and don't push it.


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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:06 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 17, 2006 8:54 pm
Posts: 1770
Location: caversham
Hmmm, had this discussion. My opinion it is helpful if they get to go to a funeral that is not to close and personal at a reasonable age. Helps to demystify the process. Have followed discussions on the Irish open house viewings of casket versus the Victorian? English undertakers hold the body arrangement.

Preparing DCs for theses kind of unpleasant things is one of the tough parts of being a parent, but done well is also one of the most rewarding. At the risk of going all philosophical, celebrating the life of a family member after the grief of those affected has been acknowledged , is very uplifting.

Lol my slow thinking and typing, six replies before I post.


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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:07 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2009 8:19 pm
Posts: 6255
I think it is a very personal thing and depends on the child. My father died last week and his funeral is next week - D1 wants to attend and at 14 I think that he will be ok'ish but DS2 (10) is adamant at the moment that he doesn't want to attend and we respect that. If he changes his mind fine but it has to be his choice.

I definately wouldn't say that the one who wants to go can't because their sibling doesn't want to go - IYKWIM - every child is different.


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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:21 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 26, 2010 6:05 pm
Posts: 165
Doodles, I'm so sorry to hear your news and sincerely hope I don't offend you or anyone else with my views, which tend to be on the morbidly flippant side.

Thanks everyone else. I have to say I am quite surprised that it appears that I am the odd one, when I was convinced it was DH.

Both kids very much want to go, I suspect from curiosity as well as to say farewell. DD wants to help my Mum, (it's her brother) and actually I'm sure it will.

I agree with Stevew61 in that part of the reason I would like them to go is because although they liked my uncle very much, he was a slightly more distant relative than a grandparent. Sad to say , the next funeral they go to is more likely than not to be a grandparent and therefore at least they won't have to worry about the funeral aspect. Gosh now I do sound morbid.


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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:40 pm 
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Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2012 6:27 pm
Posts: 620
I would definitely let them go if they want to. I have always taken mine with me since they were about 3 and it has never been a problem with my children. I see it as a part of life, as a chance to say goodbye and also a celebration of the life just passed. I too am from an Irish Catholic family, perhaps we've been brought up to accept death and to embrace the situation.


Logic32 and Doodles, deepest sympathy sent to you both. RIP. X


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 Post subject: Re: Funerals !
PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:45 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 9:28 pm
Posts: 2439
I've got similar aged children to you and I think they would both cope okay.

Are they used to going to Church services? Sitting still ? etc. As others have said, prepare them for what it entails, that people will be upset etc. How do the family feel - are they happy at having children at the funeral? Have contingent plans if they do get upset. You know your children, and whether they would be okay with it,


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