In the age of Facebook and social media, the need/want/desire for instantaneous contact and to be included seem to be further magnified. I’m not knocking that. I know at times all of it (this blog too) is fulfilling my own need for those things. But we’ve also forgotten some manners along the way.
In light of the past week, one in particular has struck me and led me to write this post. Please, please, please refrain from posting or commenting on someone’s Facebook page (or really any social media account although Facebook is more lasting/obvious) until the family posts a message. Think of it along the lines of how in a news media report names aren’t given until next of kin is notified. I don’t know that any of the family learned through Facebook of our loss. I certainly hope not. But you don’t want your post to be the one that tells someone this news.
After the family has posted, I think it’s wonderful to leave a message, a favorite memory, a photo. These can be uplifting and healing to all who loved the person.
Just don’t be the first. Talk to those close to you. Share your grief. But please, wait and be respectful of the family before making a public comment online.