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Modern Manners

April 4, 2014 Sarah Coggins

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 loss, thoughts on Modern Manners

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.


  • Natalie April 4, 2014 at 2:19 pm
    I totally agree with this...thanks for sharing this.
    • Sarah Coggins April 5, 2014 at 8:31 pm
      Thanks. Hopefully more people will start to think first and this won't be an issue soon.
  • Nichole April 4, 2014 at 9:27 pm
    That's how I found out my grandmother had died. My cousin (one of my grandmother's great-nieces) posted about it on her Facebook page, and I saw it there before my mom got home to call me.
    • Sarah Coggins April 5, 2014 at 8:29 pm
      I am so incredibly sorry you learned that way. Social media is great, but not at times like this. People just don't think. :(
  • JDaniel4's Mom April 5, 2014 at 8:34 am
    I totally agree! Thank you for this reminder!
    • Sarah Coggins April 5, 2014 at 8:31 pm
      Thanks. I knew I was probably preaching the choir with my audience, but glad to know I'm not alone in thinking this.
  • lovelifelogistics April 5, 2014 at 7:40 pm
    omg.. I see this happen all the time, and it makes other people on facebook curious what is going on with the person.. and it's like if they really wanted to send their sentiments, that's what PMs and emails are for!
    • Sarah Coggins April 5, 2014 at 8:30 pm
      Yes, exactly! Say something private. I get there is that "connection" but you can wait a day or two.
  • Elisabeth May 1, 2014 at 3:33 pm
    I agree entirely! PM all the way...
  • bolton carley May 1, 2014 at 7:18 pm
    couldn't agree more! i've actually seen someone tag the deceased when at their funeral. are you kidding me?
  • Leave a Reply

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