I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

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I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby Rico » Thu Oct 29, 2009 5:43 pm

This thread is about funerals and death. Sure…not a pleasant topic, but death is as much a part of life as is birth. And if there are not many takers to this thread, I understand.

Funerals, 2-3 day visitation of the dead, and wakes in a large family like mine are common but occasionally strange events. Most often they’re totally peaceful and respectful. But at other times they have been just the opposite, filled with human drama, where unsettled family differences and long-held grudges surface and eventually boil over. Shouting matches erupt…people start screaming at each other in Italian or in English…and all hell breaks loose. I have even observed a few physical altercations.

Have you ever been to a funeral or visitation that turned into a shouting match? Have you been a participant or even an instigator? Why is it that long held grudges tend to surface just at this time? Is one a better person for just holding back, forgiving even the most undeserved of forgiveness, or is it better just to join in the fray? I really don’t know.
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby Daknee » Thu Oct 29, 2009 7:36 pm

I had a friend who was a funeral director. He was you would not believe the fights (physical and verbal)that go on with familie and friends. Although I have never been to one myself
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby nimby » Thu Oct 29, 2009 9:06 pm

My family here in Toronto is in the funeral business, own a chain of funeral homes. But that doesn't exclude us from drama either (te he he!). My wife and my sister ended up duking it out at my grandpa's funeral. It was unreal. It was all over even before I realized what was happening and both ran screaming in opposite directions down the street. My grandpa would have loved it. Also during my uncle's funeral procession, a car ran a red light and broadsided the hearse!!!!! Jeez, the stories I can tell. Burping or farting corpses. Playing hide and seek as a kid in the funeral home after hours. While we were dating, my wife's family tried to sue my family for performing an indecent act on human remains(it's not what you think, you sickos), but we settled out of court and everyone lived happily ever after (well, not everyone). I can go on and on.
Last edited by nimby on Sat Oct 31, 2009 8:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby madsglen » Thu Oct 29, 2009 9:14 pm

The dynamics of family and friends (and sometimes 'not friends' - I hesitate to say enemies) all come into play at funerals. At times, I've seen just how disfunctional the family is or has been. And often just how wonderful. When I think back on the experiences within my own family with my Dad's funeral, my Mom's and my stepmother's I feel lucky and truly appreciative of them and my brothers and sister. But I've also observed at other family funerals (an aunt and a couple of uncles) and funerals for friends or people within their families things, relationships and behavior that definitely raised my eyebrows and sometimes my blood pressure. Sometimes touching, sometimes disturbing and sometimes just downright sad.

Whoever said that funerals are more about those left behind than the deceased are right on in some respects. Some of it's cultural. Sometimes it has to do with 'status' (within the community, within the family, within individuals' own minds, etc.). But it all gets down to people's relationships with the deceased and with each other. I've seen people act out because they apparently felt slighted (or the overused 'disrespected'). I've seen people say or do things that apparently were due to some sense of entitlement. And I've seen some of what I considered pretty glaring social gaffes. Grief, or the apparent lack of it, can also come into play. Death leaves so many feeling like things may not be resolved. Or in some cases situations will have to be faced that have been avoided. Funerals are by their nature not happy family events like christenings, engagements, weddings, etc. They come about suddenly in most cases, with everyone having unsettled feelings and in general uncomfortable, even raw and vulnerable. There's also the 'duty' thing. For some reason it may be OK to miss a wedding or graduation gathering but Lord help you if you don't show up at a funeral, even if it will be a difficult experience for you.

As far as your last question, my personal feeling is that 'holding back' would almost always be the most appropriate reaction. Especially since the altercation likely has to do with those people's feelings and/or relationship and may have nothing really to do with the event or with you. As far your telling phrase of 'forgiving even the most undeserving of forgiveness', I'm not sure I can say as forgiveness is a very personal thing and can only be between the persons involved. And forgiveness is ultimately a gift to oneself.
The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek - Joseph Campbell
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby Earl Butz » Fri Oct 30, 2009 5:39 am

I've never been to a funeral. My family doesn't believe in them, so I won't be going to any in the future either. Fine with me.
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby ispeaktexan » Sun Nov 01, 2009 2:24 pm

I don't like going to funerals.
I have been to many and I really don't feel comfortable, I do go though, and its rude to fight i think....
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby butch » Sun Nov 01, 2009 11:48 pm

Kind of neat that some folks say what they mean, and mean what they say. So many relatives talk behind the backs of others. Best slug it out and what better way to liven up a funeral.

I don't care for funerals, myself. I hate going into a church... hate churches/houses of evil, and most funerals involve religious stuff. I hate that.

Reminds me of a funny gravestone.... inscribed "I told you I was sick".
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby ispeaktexan » Mon Nov 02, 2009 7:24 pm

Well I pretty much have to go to church very often.
Can't do much about that.
As for funerals. I still go but not for long.

And it would be better to battle it out afterwards, or somewhere else, It should be more devoted to mourning/last offerings etc. IMHO.
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby butch » Mon Nov 02, 2009 10:07 pm

No one HAS to do anything. It's in your mind... but good luck.

Many people live lives of co-dependency... doing what they think others want them to do in order to keep OTHERS happy.
You aren't responsible for anyone's happiness but your own.

And THAT is what the book "The Road Less Traveled" (by Scott Peck) is all about.

Stop living other people's lives and start living your own. If people give you a hard time, they aren't worth the time of day. Really... I mean it.
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby ispeaktexan » Mon Nov 02, 2009 11:49 pm

If i want to live in this household i HAVE to.
So thats an easy way to put it.
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Re: I went to a funeral and a fight broke out

Postby nimby » Sat Jan 15, 2011 5:20 pm

I'm preparing for a family funeral and I KNOW an altercation will break out. I'll have the cameras running, so look for it on youtube.
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