General Etiquette > Family and Children

Informing my father about my grandma's death

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So... I'm kind of in a sticky situation here.  This shouldn't be long, at least I hope not.  Also, this is about my grandma on my mother's side - so not my father's mother.  I think that if something happened to my paternal grandmother, they would be the ones contacting me.

In August 2004, out of the blue, I received an email that my father and stepmother were cutting off contact with me.  So, no more visits and they asked that I didn't email or call them.  So, kind of a cut direct.  I say kind of because we still exchange birthday and Christmas cards with money / gift cards.  So, they still care about that but not enough to tell me what the heck I did to deserve a cut direct.  I understand that they don't need to tell me but this was completely out of the blue, as I was there a few weeks before this happened and nothing was out of the ordinary.  Nothing.  So, I was really hurt but respected their wishes.

Fast forward to now.  My grandma died on March 29th and we held a private (family and close friends of the family) funeral.  Information was passed through word of mouth throughout the family and friends.  However, I've been sitting here and thinking about how to tell my dad.  I still have his actual address, but it feels weird to send a card out of the blue.  I found him and my stepmother on Facebook, but it feels weird to send him a private message that way too.  I always send a thank you card back for whatever they send for my birthday but I don't feel like it's appropriate to put it in a thank you for a gift. 

Oh - just thought - I don't have his current email address.  I also feel that, if I did send a message to his email address, it wouldn't be seen due to filters.  However, I feel that if I did have his email address, I'd send it that way and wash my hands of it.  Mostly because the guilt would be off of me for not telling him as it is the ball being in his court if he wants to read an email from me.  And then I'd just mention it as a line in a thank you card of "we're getting along better since grandma's death even though the house feels so empty without her".  However, this line of what to do would probably be very PA of me.

Also, because I feel this is going to be asked, my grandma hated that my father cut me off out of the blue like this.  She never spoke of him, even if someone brought up him up like at the Christmas eve party with the cousins, because that's the way she was.  She never spoke ill of anyone because she kept the golden rule as gospel.  The only time she spoke ill of anyone, in all my life that I can remember, is of my father when all of this happened. 

So, wise e-hellions, what do I do? 

ETA: I thought I should put in which grandmother it is that died so it would help y'all with your responses.  :)

You could put the obit in an envelope and mail it to your father without comment.  However, I'm sure that someone from the family has already contacted him - it is his mother, right?


--- Quote from: BarensMom on April 21, 2013, 05:27:44 PM ---You could put the obit in an envelope and mail it to your father without comment.  However, I'm sure that someone from the family has already contacted him - it is his mother, right?

--- End quote ---

We didn't do an obit.  I'm not sure why we didn't do that or a death notice.  I think it's because we felt that everyone we wanted to notify was done via word of mouth.

And no, it's my mother's mom.  Sorry about that.

I wouldn't worry about it unless you know your Dad was particularly fond of your maternal Grandmother. Otherwise...

Do they live in the same town as your Grandmother? If so, assume they saw the obituary in the local paper and don't worry about it. If that doesn't work...

Do you include a newsletter with Xmas cards? If so, mention it there. "As always, 2013 was a year of highs and lows. High points were my new promotion at work, the cat failed to burn down the house, and some brave soul bought and rehabbed the crack house down the street. In sadder news, my Grandma Bertha passed away in March after a lengthy illness, and was interred in a lovely private ceremony. She was a wonderful woman who will be remembered fondly by all who knew her."

In other words, unless you have a specific reason to do so, I wouldn't bother notifying your Dad specifically. If you do so in the course of your remaining limited contact, that's fine, but I wouldn't go out of my way.

I am sorry this happened to you. 

I don't understand why you even want to tell him?


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