Truthful Tuesday 27th September

Melanie is back in the driving seat for Truthful Tuesday. You can join in here
Question:  Is it ever even vaguely acceptable to share really bad news (not mine for a change, but someone I know well) via group text?    No name attached to the text of course, and one is left wondering who the hell is texting.   

Ought there be some etiquette around group texts?   Like leave a vague clue as to who is sending the darn thing.  I’m as likely as not to block the number if I don’t recognize it.   And I’m burned that someone would even consider sharing such potentially earth shattering news via such an impersonal venue.   Maybe I’m just a tech-no-phobe in the making.

This is so close to home for me.

My sister notified me my mother had died by text. To put things into perspective, I’d had a previous text to say that if I wanted to say my final goodbyes, now was the time. I immediately rang the hospital and was told Mum was sleeping, but if I wanted to visit, I could any time. We packed a bag, loaded up the car and the dog and were about to leave for the 300 mile journey when I received the text that said ‘Mum has just passed away.’
I rang Sis straight away to be told ‘I’m in a bad place,’ and she hung up.

Trying to lighten the load of such sad news for her, I rang Bro in NZ as I’d promised plus Mum’s surviving brother and my Dad’s surviving sister. I tried Dad’s brother too but the number was unavailable.

Details of the funeral were a long time coming, despite my asking several times, even contacting the funeral home who said a date was being arranged to suit the family.
I had sent a text this particular day and the reply was that nothing had been arranged yet. An hour or so later I received a ’round robin’ text message to say that children would be allowed at the wake until 7pm.
I rang Sis to ask what was going on and she said all the details were on FaceBook. I told her I was not on FB, as she already knew and she told me the message would have gone into my spam folder. I told her I didn’t have a spam folder as my phone was simply PAYG, and why had she not told me when I’d asked earlier. She eventually told me the date and time.

I contacted the funeral home and asked if I would be able to pay my last respects on the morning of the funeral as we had some considerable distance to travel and that we were coming down the night before to stay with a friend. Nothing was too much trouble for them to accommodate me, and I was able to kiss my Mum goodbye, lay four red roses alongside her for myself, Hubby, Bro and SIL, some dog biscuits from Maggie for when Mum crossed Rainbow Bridge, and tucked a note under the cover to tell her I loved her and that she was now with Dad.

So in answer to Melanie’s question, No it is NOT acceptable to share bad news by something as impersonal as a text, especially when it’s family.
Mum died in January 2018 and my sister has never offered me one word, by text or otherwise, of comfort, not even at the funeral.

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! In November 2020, we lost our beloved Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney. We now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of Kizzy, my GSD when Hubby and I first met so had hers done too. On February 24th 2022 we were blessed to find Maya, a 13 week old GSD pup who has made her own place in our hearts. You can follow our training methods, photos and her growth in my blog posts. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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16 Responses to Truthful Tuesday 27th September

  1. mywords2228 says:

    Sorry you had to go through that during a difficult time in your life. I’ve always experienced a call and a text in reminders of details of the funeral rearrangements.

  2. Nope, Not Pam says:

    I’m so sorry, I couldn’t imagine how you felt

  3. Sadje says:

    That’s very unfortunate and sad. Whatever the issues between the siblings, they should come together at such a time.

  4. murisopsis says:

    I agree that text is not the method of disseminating sorrowful news to immediate family. My mother was very active on many listservs and on FB. After my mother passed, my sister informed me and I informed my family. Then we posted the news of her death on all her social platforms since we didn’t know all her online friends. I hope if I suddenly die that Sparky will post the news here on WP…
    As for your sister – shameful.

    • That was why I rang my brother, aunt and uncle to tell them, thinking I could ease the load. I appreciated it was a difficult time for her, but she was my Mum too. When Dad died in 1996 she went to pieces, and turned on me to say I didn’t understand as her Dad had just died. I was stunned and said ‘So what was he to me then?’ and turned away.
      It saddens me the way things have turned out between us as I have no time for her, or her family to be honest, and am just glad Mum and Dad aren’t here to see it.

  5. Carol anne says:

    thats awful Di! But I am so glad you got to pay your last respects to your dear mom. xoxo

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