When your loved ones are dead: How you can use the power of grief to get your message out
Post Journal (New York, New York) – “I was a little bit shocked,” writes Emily Bower, who’s had a posthumous funeral.
“My daughter had a baby and was expecting.
My son was about to go to college.
My husband was about 30 and in his mid-50s.
And it was the last thing that I wanted to see.
The funeral director was really surprised.
I was really upset.”
Bower’s posthumously received an obituary from the Post Journal and her story is featured on the front page of the newspaper’s online edition.
In the story, Bower talks about her husband’s death at age 41 and the death of her father at age 46.
She says she was so surprised by the posthumetic obit that she wanted to get her message out, but then she thought about her posthumus, and she felt so uncomfortable and upset.
“My family’s story is not my story,” she said.
“It’s not my family’s business.
It’s my father’s business, but I’m not even a part of it.
So I felt really bad about it.
I couldn’t understand how anybody would do that.”
I was surprised, she says.
I didn’t want to see it, so I wanted people to know.
It made me really upset.
But at the same time, I was happy for the person who made the decision to make it public, because I didn.
She said her post was meant to be a way to give some closure to a family that she loved.
But the post is drawing criticism.
Some are calling it insensitive and insensitive to the post mortem.
“The way the funeral director phrased it was a bit insensitive and disrespectful,” said Post Journal reporter Kelly Schulz.
“He said, ‘I just want to let you know, you deserve to be happy,’ ” said Schulz, who posted the story on Facebook.
“The funeral director said it was meant as a way of giving a little closure.”
Post Journal reporter Rebecca Jaffe said in an interview with WCBS 880 that the funeral directors comments are not intended to be insulting.
But, she added, the post does not represent her experience or the postmortem obitum she spoke to.
“It’s just one of those things that I felt was an insensitive way to say goodbye,” Jaffe told WCBS.
Jaffe said she has posted about her father’s death on Facebook before, but never as a public announcement.
The Post Journal has since removed the post, but not before a number of commenters criticized the funeral’s decision.
“I feel like it’s a way for people to make a statement that they’re upset about something and they want to be heard,” Bower said.
Jaelyn Sussman, who also received an opus from the paper, said in a Facebook comment that she was surprised to see her father receive an obituary from the newspaper.
“What happened was a family friend sent it to me,” Sussmans obit was read.
“That’s what I wanted.
I felt like that was a personal way to honor him and his family.
I thought it was so brave of the Post to let the family know.”
In the article, Sussmann said her father was not a member of her extended family and never planned to attend her funeral.
She also said that her father never wanted to go through the post-mortem.
“He never wanted anyone to think that he didn’t love her,” she told WBRZ-TV.
“His family is very important to him, so it was really nice to see that they were willing to give him a way out of this,” Bowers said.
The obit also was criticized on social media.
“This funeral is a bit weird and a little disturbing,” one commenter wrote.
“If the funeral is for someone who didn’t deserve to die, why would the funeral be for someone with a very strong wish to die?” wrote another.
“Post Journal’s obit does not reflect what the Post does or what the post editor thinks of my post,” a Post Journal spokesperson told CBS News.
The funeral directors obit came after years of public outcry over the Post’s coverage of suicides.
In 2014, the Post published an op-ed in which then-editor in chief Jeff Simon said the newspaper should be more sensitive to the needs of the postmodern culture it has become.
In response, the newspaper launched a number for a new editorial approach and published more obituates.
The Post Journal responded by publishing the obit as part of a new online edition and posting it on its front page.
“We feel that Post Journal readers should have a greater say in how the news is published and how the stories are told,” the Post spokesperson said in response to CBS News’ request for comment.