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chelle21689's avatar

Is it disrespectful to your partner to "remember" your deceased partner?

Asked by chelle21689 (5085 points ) January 15th, 2013

I notice on Facebook people always give a shout out to their loved ones that they have lost each year to remember them. They mention how much they love and miss them and their good qualities.

I wonder if it would be disrespectful do to this to a deceased spouse/partner if you were to be in a new relationship or marriage?

It seems kind of unfair that you can talk about everyone else except the deceased partner because it may make them jealous or hurt which is understandable. But it’d kind of suck to just keep it all inside of you and not be able to express that.

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20 Answers

tedd's avatar

I wouldn’t think so, or at least I wouldn’t take offense. So long as my partner makes it clear to me that they are living in the now, and want to be with me/are happy with me… I don’t think I could take offense to them mourning a lost love one.

Coloma's avatar

Only if it were constant and obsessive which would, obviously, indicate a problem.
Otherwise no, the deceased person DID exist at one time and to deny memories arising or other acknowledgments of having known, been with them, is unrealistic and childish.
Healthy people do not react with jealousy and hurt feelings in discussing a partners dead loved one.

Akua's avatar

I don’t think it’s disrespectful to remember them. There is a way to do things so as not to offend the current partner. It’s a time and a place for everything too. I would be hurt if my partner mentioned this person constantly or if this partner were spoken of fondly with his family and friends when I was around. I would feel left out or that maybe they wish I was more like that person.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Personally, I think the “shouting out” concept to a deceased loved one is a bit bizarre. They most likely do not have internet access not a FB account where they are and will not shout back.
If this type of activity makes the partner in the here-and-now uncomfortable, I would do my “shouting out” in private as a silent sign of respect to both parties.

My Dad died 15+ years ago and my Mom died 40+ years ago. I get a small quarterly dividend check from some stock they owned that I couldn’t bear to sell When that check comes I still hold it up in the air and say “Thanks Mom, Thanks Dad.”
I do not post my “Thanks” on FB.

marinelife's avatar

I would remember them quietly not on FB.

Pachy's avatar

Lovely, @LuckyGuy. You are, as my people say, a mensch.

janbb's avatar

@LuckyGuy My people think that about you too!

chelle21689's avatar

You may think it’s bizarre and I would feel a bit weird doing it in public but some people you know actually believe in spirits and that they know. Also it’s a comfort thing to feel like they’re still in a way talking to them although they aren’t in denial..

codette's avatar

My father’s girlfriend is very supportive and welcoming of Dad’s deceased wife’s memory. She is open to his grieving, “takes a step back” when necessary (say, in social situations where everyone else in attendance knew the deceased), and they even feel my stepmom’s ghost might have visited the house once or twice since newgirlfriend moved in. Newgirlfriend is very deliberate about saying—for the spirit and Dad and everyone else to hear—that it is all right and good with her. She does not want to step on any toes. Likewise, she is open about her deceased husband. I think it is very nice that they can both accept each other’s pasts in the present.

JLeslie's avatar

I think doing it on facebook is odd and disrespectful, but mentioning them during conversation at times is totally normal. A funny memory or something a deceased spouse used to do is just simply remembering the past as we all do.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@janbb, @Pachyderm_In_The_Room (I’m blushing.)

@chelle21689 People in the tangible world need to communicate using tangible methods.
It follows that spirits would no be so tethered and could comfortably communicate spiritually.
If spirits are real they would not need a laptop or iPad or any other device to communicate nor would they need to read a remembrance on FB to know they were loved and missed. Do they have some IT person constantly upgrading their OS, virus protection and wifi connections? Do they have Zuckerberg gurus on tap to open accounts and circumvent privacy settings?
I don’t think so.

The person doing the remembering does not need to use communication tools designed for this world. They should be able to communicate spiritually – as in thinking about the loved one and the positive, loving impact they made upon the lives of each other.

Don’t you agree, Mom?

wundayatta's avatar

My feeling about Facebook “shout-outs” is that they are kind of showing off. Look at how loyal and honorable I am. Look how I love my diseased spouse.

I’m sorry, but to me, grief is a private thing. You can share it, but not with the world. Share it with people who knew the diseased. If you need to publicize how wonderful they were, then write a book. But Facebook, to me, is unseemly. Then again, I don’t participate on Facebook. I’ve never seen any appeal there.

As to showing grief to a new spouse, I think that is fine. I think a new spouse should understand. If they don’t, that’s a red flag. It shows insecurity. I would not trust a new woman who did not respect my feelings for my diseased spouse, if I had one. If someone in this couple has to die, I would sort of rather it was me, but really, I’d rather we both live long lives.

Shippy's avatar

Why would someone be jealous of a dead person. Eh Gads!

wundayatta's avatar

@Shippy I know. And yet, occasionally, there are people who are jealous of a dead person.

JLeslie's avatar

I think they are jealous of the affection and love for the person. I think it happens when the new spouse feels insecure in general, or if the spouse constantly is comparing the deceased spouse to the new one, and the new one doesn’t measure up. I don’t think that happens often though. Most couple I know handle a spouse having passed away with respect and grace.

Bellatrix's avatar

As with most things there are levels in terms of how that ‘remembrance’ takes place. I haven’t noticed the Facebook thing so I won’t comment on that. It is perfectly normal to remember those we have loved who have died. If it’s a partner, just because you meet someone else doesn’t remove the memories or the love you had for your former partner. I don’t think that love is replaced. It remains, but you develop love for another person alongside it.

Still, remembrance for a deceased partner can be overdone. I remember my step-mother had photographs of her former husband around our house. Even as a child I thought that was odd and disrespectful to my father. While I could see the desire to have one photo, perhaps in your own private space, to have many publicly displayed photos seemed wrong. Especially when the she was also jealous of my mother (my father didn’t display photos of my mother). In addition, she visited her former husband’s grave each year. Yet when I wanted my father to come to the crematorium to take my wedding bouquet to leave for my mother, he decided against joining me because it would cause to many problems with his new wife. She would be jealous. So, like anything else, it’s about balance and remembering your former love in a way that is respectful to your present partner.

Shippy's avatar

@wundayatta Maybe they should trade places? Put it into perspective?

ThisIsYourMom's avatar

@LuckyGuy I totally agree, dear! And you’re welcome.
But do get the lint out of your navel when you’re meditating, it causes interference.

nofurbelowsbatgirl's avatar

I lost my husband. I think of him often and tbh I haven’t moved on yet. I’m also not in a rush. When I do decide to move on the person I choose to be with will know about it, because I am very open about it because I love my husband still very much, to me he was perfect. I am even getting buried with him and my family tried to talk me out of that in case I met someone else.

If the person I choose to be with can’t accept that I love all the traits of my husband and is jealous then I don’t need that negativity in my life. After all he is dead there is no competition. It’s not the same as an ex or someone who is alive. I honor my husbands memory now, if thinking about him too much is a dishonor, than I’m confused.

The facebook thing I would never do, but in this age of technology I understand why people do it. You can honor someone whatever way you want, if people don’t get it than that’s their problem, grief is a very personal thing.

poisonedantidote's avatar

Never be jealous of a dead guy.

I would say it is disrespectful to not allow your partner to remember/celebrate the memory of a loved one.

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