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rebbel's avatar

Half-term In Memorians: A good idea?

Asked by rebbel (31093points) September 5th, 2010

I have noticed in myself a feeling of pity, when i attended funerals where In Memorians were spoken.
Pity for the deceased, whom i think, would have loved to have heard what nice and loving things were said about them, if they were alive.
By no means the same thing, but last week when i reached 10K and @zen_ and @Adirondackwannabe threw me a party, i got showered with lots of sweet and complimentuous remarks, that got me feel quite good/better.
My question:
Would it be a good idea to have half-term In Memorians for people we love, and tell them what we think about them, which strings they touched in us, why we love them, etc.?
I have this feeling that that would boost people’s (possible lack of) self esteem/self worth?!
What is your opinion on this?
The name In Memorian is probably not well chosen for the idea i unfolded, but i trust there will be Jellies who can come up with an appropiate replacement.

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9 Answers

Trillian's avatar

I don’t know about your terminology. I think “half term” completely and wildly inappropriate. But I agree with and have always tried to live by the sentiment that we should appreciate those we love every chance we get because we never know when they may be taken from us. When I say goodbye in the morning, I add “I love you”. I would never want to separate from a loved one in anger or have angry words be my last.
It is the same for all aspects of our lives. Kahlil Gibran said; “All that you have will one day be given. Therefore give now, that the season of giving may be yours instead of your inheritors.”
Life is short, and the time we’re given together is even shorter. Don’t waste it. And if you’ve been given someone who loves you back, be grateful. It’s a gift not given to all of us.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I’m with @Trillian on this but it took me into my 30’s for the feeling to hit that time was no longer on my side, as if it ever was. Now I try to find opportunity to spread my love to the people in my life. When I leave my SO and mom in the mornings then I know I could wipe out on the highway, same thing going home. I love text because I can jot out a few words to share and feel a little something that day was wonderful. Also, I love gathering for holidays in order to toast each other’s company.

Jeruba's avatar

I think you’re referring to eulogies, @rebbel. (In memoriam just means “in memory.”)

Letting people we love know how we feel about them from time to time is a good idea, regardless of how long we think they’ll live. Printed greeting cards help us express it if we’re not up to it ourselves, but really, it’s not that hard to say “Your friendship means a lot to me” or “Thanks, Dad, for all you’ve done for me.”

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

Fact from fiction, truth from diction. I believe many of us get so busy we don’t take the time to tell those who make our day better how well they did it. Since there is no national day of apprecialtion or gratefulness you can create one either alone or with close friends. It can be informal, a BBQ where you have fun. Play some games, and after the eats are under way each person can express how those attending (or not) has touched them. Then the person will get to hear before they pass how they affected the lives of friends and family and how well they are appreciated. That is something you can do today in the now, while everyone is still alive.

rebbel's avatar

Yes, that is the word that covers what i meant, @Jeruba, thanks for that.
I used In Memorians i guess, to explain where my thinking originated, but eulogies is the right one.
I agree with all three of you, in that it is already a good thing to tell our loved ones today that we appreciate and love them.
Not only to make them feel better, but because we ‘just’ feel that way, because we want to be loving.
I was more thinking in the lines of, to use the word you just taught me, @Jeruba, eulogy interventions (maybe on someone’s birthday or an anniversary of some kind).
But then again, that may be a bit artificial(?)?

rebbel's avatar

Great idea, @Hypocrisy_Central, i like it!

Seaofclouds's avatar

I’m with @Trillian and @Jeruba. I always tell people how much they mean to me whenever I have the chance. I have blank cards that I hand write and send to the people I don’t get to see often. I try to do that at least once a month. I would hate to lose someone without them know how much they mean to me.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Here are two more ways to let someone know:

A couple of years ago, our mother’s birthday was coming up. Since there wasn’t anything she really needed or wanted, I sent an e-mail to family members asking them to send me ‘X’ number of memories of her via e-mail back to me. Once received, I typed them up in a document with their name attached to each one, cut them out into individual strips, folded them up and placed them in a crystal candy dish with a lid.

She loved it. She keeps the slips in her bedroom and will pull one out and read it. It’s a tribute to her in what she has given to us. It’s much better sharing those stories with her while she is alive than after she is gone. The cost? Minimal. The value? Priceless.


At work, we went through an exercise where we drew a large oval on a blank sheet of paper that represented a boardroom table. The speaker told us to think about our personal lives as if it was a business. He went on to explain that good businesses have a board of directors, and that we do, too. He asked us to write down the names of people who influence our personal actions. People named family members, friends, lawyers, doctors, accountants, supervisors, mentors. Some were people they haven’t seen in years and some had passed away, yet still influence them. Then he asked, “Do these people know that they are part of your board of directors? If not, I encourage you to get in touch with them.”

That weekend, I called the ones the ones that are still alive to let them know. Pretty much all of them knew, except for a couple of people who are younger than I am. I’m really glad I did it. And as the board members change, I let the new ones know as well.

augustlan's avatar

I’ve always loved the idea of telling people what they mean to you while they’re still alive to appreciate it. In addition to always saying things like “I love you”, “You’re a great friend”, or “I appreciate everything you’ve done for me, Dad”, I like to go a bit more in depth sometimes. So far, I’ve only done this with people I’m very close to… mainly immediate family members. When my children ‘graduated’ from elementary school, I wrote each of them a letter telling them how much I love them and why, and how proud I am of them. They framed them and hung them on their bedroom walls (which in turn made me feel really good, too!). For a special anniversary, I’ve written a similar letter to my husband.

I love the idea of making it a more formal undertaking, as you suggest and as @Pied_Pfeffer gives examples for. Maybe it could become a tradition at 30th birthdays.

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