Author Topic: Viewing etiquette  (Read 2918 times)

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finecabernet

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Viewing etiquette
« on: January 02, 2013, 09:50:49 PM »
This has already happened, but I was wondering if I was rude here.

I went to a viewing this evening. The line was quite long but I was okay with waiting in the line when I spotted my brother and cousins. They suggested I join other family members much further up in the line, and I walked with brother and cousins to meet other family members. I felt like I was line cutting but in viewings you kind of go up as a group anyway. But I felt kind of bad about it and was curious about the opinion of this board and its members.

Ceallach

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2013, 09:55:00 PM »
Assuming you all went up and paid your respects together as a group, I think that's ok as you didn't take up any extra "time" than they would have anyway.   And it's definitely an understandable situation to want to be with your family.

However, if you went up individually or took extra time I would say it was rude as it was cutting.    It's such a unique situation though - I have to say personally I've never been to a viewing with a queue, so the situation has never arisen!   Keen to hear other's thoughts on this.
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Amara

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2013, 10:04:23 PM »
I'm not certain what you are saying. Did you join the line farther up and thus "push ahead"? If so, then yes, I think you were rude. You forced everyone behind them (but ahead of your original position) to be put back one space in line. To me, that's rude.

If, however, you just went to greet them and then returned to your regular place, no problem. I would probably have said, in a slightly loud voice to reassure the people behind them, "I'm just visiting, not getting in line."

Luci45

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2013, 10:10:28 PM »
This is a different situation from a line in a store or show.

You need to be with family.

I have been to lots of funerals that had lines and didn't think anything about it when others joined people ahead of me when there was an obvious reason for getting ahead of me.

A sad situation like that is not a time for childish drama. It is a time for grace and compassion and understanding.

Iris

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2013, 12:09:38 AM »
This is a different situation from a line in a store or show.

You need to be with family.

I have been to lots of funerals that had lines and didn't think anything about it when others joined people ahead of me when there was an obvious reason for getting ahead of me.

A sad situation like that is not a time for childish drama. It is a time for grace and compassion and understanding.

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bopper

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2013, 08:52:44 AM »
I believe that there is sort of a hierarchy when it comes to viewings.   If a close family member came late, would you expect them to wait in line with all the acquaintances or would you expect them to go right in? You would expect them to go right in. I suspect you feel like you are more in the middle, in which case what you did was appropriate...you started in line, but when family members told you to come in you did so. Same thing happened to me at the last wake I was at.

Coley

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2013, 09:08:20 AM »
This is a different situation from a line in a store or show.

You need to be with family.

I have been to lots of funerals that had lines and didn't think anything about it when others joined people ahead of me when there was an obvious reason for getting ahead of me.

A sad situation like that is not a time for childish drama. It is a time for grace and compassion and understanding.

POD.

Sharnita

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2013, 09:57:33 AM »
I disagree with the "you need to be with family".  In the case of a death a significant portion of the people in line are family of somebody or another, in one way or another. Now, if somebody is really distraught and needs support from people who are divided by the line, the appropariate way to handle it would be for the people ahead to go back to join their loved ones.  That would give people their supporrt system without further delaying anybody who has  been waiting patiently.

As far as very close family, I would expect them to stay for a more extended period of time so they would maybe go in, sit down, wait until there was a lull, comfort others, etc.

ettiquit

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2013, 10:17:03 AM »
I don't understand why there's any issue with this if the OP and her family all went up as a group. 

Sharnita

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2013, 10:23:22 AM »
You still talk to each member of the group. Thank them for coming, maybe a hug, a memory wiyh each person even if they are part of a group.

ettiquit

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #10 on: January 03, 2013, 10:25:45 AM »
Ah.  I've never been at a viewing where part of the "viewing" process includes a receiving line.  My interpretation is that they all went together to pay their respects to the deceased, and then left the line.

Luci45

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2013, 10:44:26 AM »
Ah.  I've never been at a viewing where part of the "viewing" process includes a receiving line.  My interpretation is that they all went together to pay their respects to the deceased, and then left the line.

Where are you?

I've never been to a viewing without a receiving line. I'm in the central US.

In the cultures I am associated with, the viewing is for the living to gain comfort and closure. All the dead need are prayers, if that. The immediate family stays during the entire viewing, and sometimes used to stay all night, though I haven't seen that for many, many years. (I've never done that.)

I even went to one where the deceased was not back from the crematorium yet, so there was just his picture and his family. (Along with a few hundred mourners - he was a teacher in the large community for his entire career and very active in other community programs.)

Edit: And there was line-jumping and no one seemed to care. A person would come in obviously alone, see a bunch of friends farther up ahead, and go with them. It was fine.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2013, 10:51:04 AM by Luci45 »

ettiquit

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2013, 10:49:52 AM »
Ah.  I've never been at a viewing where part of the "viewing" process includes a receiving line.  My interpretation is that they all went together to pay their respects to the deceased, and then left the line.

Where are you?

I've never been to a viewing without a receiving line. I'm in the central US.

In the cultures I am associated with, the viewing is for the living to gain comfort and closure. All the dead need are prayers, if that. The immediate family stays during the entire viewing, and sometimes used to stay all night, though I haven't seen that for many, many years. (I've never done that.)

I even went to one where the deceased was not back from the crematorium yet, so there was just his picture and his family. (Along with a few hundred mourners - he was a teacher in the large community for his entire career and very active in other community programs.)


Midwest :)

People who come to viewings obviously do talk to the next of kin and give condolences, but it's not necessarily right after the last respects are made.  In fact, I've never been to a viewing that had a real line.  People just go up to the casket and next of kin when they're available.

Luci45

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #13 on: January 03, 2013, 10:53:33 AM »
That is very interesting. I'll have to try to remember that can happen.

Thanks.

Sharnita

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Re: Viewing etiquette
« Reply #14 on: January 03, 2013, 11:00:36 AM »
I am in Michigan and the next of kin generally stand next to the casket - unless they are too infirm or overcome.  They will take a break from time to time in which case the next closest family member will take over. So you line up really to talk to them more than to see the deceased.  While you might be "with" a group they talk to eah person and joining people ahead of you definietly delays the people now behind you.  I ould recommend that if you needed the support of others that you have them join you further back.  They can be family back there as easily as they can up front.

Growing up we didn't actually call them viewings but rather visitations because the emphasis was on the family/friends/next of kin.  I will say that as a teacher I have attended viewings where there was nobody there at all, you signed the book, went up looked at the casket, walked out.  Different ehtnicities, and traditions can play a roll in what goes on.  Since OP describes a situation where there was a line and expresses some boubt about whether she was cutting, it sounds like there was somebody receiving.