Never Say These 14 Things At A Funeral

Whether you knew the deceased or not, there are certain things you should never say at a funeral, partly because you may hurt someone’s feelings, partly because they will make you sound incredibly impolite. Funerals are always very emotional moments for the relatives and friends of the deceased, meaning that you have to choose your words carefully. Here are 14 sentences you should never use when someone passes away.

“I Hated That Guy”

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Maybe you and the deceased did not get along, but this is not something you should mention at the funeral. Do not talk about any negative interactions or bad experiences you had with the deceased.

Funerals are not for the deceased. They’re for the living. Funerals are meant to help those who enjoyed that person grieve. The last thing a grieving spouse or child needs to hear is how much you hate the deceased.

Keep those bad memories locked up, probably forever. If you cannot control what you say, just don’t show up to the funeral and excuse yourself politely.

“You’ll Get Over It”

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Telling a relative or friend of the deceased that they will “get over” the death is very insensitive. At best, you will sound like the well-meaning but tone-deaf person who likely just burned their bridge. At worst, saying this might be taken as an insult worthy of being ejected from the ceremony.

Worse, it is also inaccurate. Some people never get over the death of a loved one. Saying they will move on quickly diminishes their feelings and may make them feel even worse. 

“Why Isn’t She Crying?”

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If there was ever an unspoken rule about funerals, it’s that you should never, ever police a person’s emotions. Some who may be distant might start wailing. Others who were close friends might be stone cold. It doesn’t matter how they react. They’re there for a reason.

Everyone deals with emotions differently. Some people may cry for weeks or even years over the death of someone they love. Others will remain stoic and silent, keeping their emotions hidden away. Pointing out people at the funeral who aren’t crying is extremely rude and judgemental. 

“There’s Plenty of Fish in the Sea!”

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Do not tell the husband or wife of the deceased that they will find someone new. You may just be trying to make them feel better, but they likely need time to grieve. They should not be thinking about new, budding relationships.

There’s also a chance that saying this may come across as you putting the moves on the bereaved. This is a great way to ruin your chance at keeping that friendship alive.

“How Do You Think He Died?”

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Not all deaths are transparent. You may not know the specifics of how the person died, but you should never ask. Maybe the family doesn’t want to share the cause of death or perhaps it is still unknown. Speculating how the person died is very rude.

Some ways people die can be very traumatic for the living or quite embarrassing for the deceased. If you don’t know, trying to push the matter will only upset those closest to the person who died.

“Did They Read The Will Yet?”

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Never, ever mention a will while at a funeral. You don’t want to be the person who is just there to see who inherits what. Respect the deceased’s life and stop wondering about all of their valuable possessions. If you still choose to make this major mistake, don’t be surprised if people start eyeing you with suspicion.

This kind of move makes people assume you have ulterior motives for everyone around you. It’s beyond a bad look. It’s a relationship-ending move.

“How Long Should We Stay?”

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Funerals can be long and uncomfortable. This is true. But you need to pay your respects and stay as long as needed. Do not be the first to leave and do not ask how long you have to stay. A funeral is one of the most important places you will ever need to be. 

Remember, funerals are there for the living. Even if you are bored out of your mind, your job is to make sure that the grieving are not alone while they watch their loved one’s last rites.

“That’s An Awful Suit”

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Commenting on the apparel of the deceased is terrible taste. They will be in that outfit for all of eternity. Maybe they wanted to be buried in a bright red cocktail dress or a bathing suit. Keep your comments about their outfit to yourself. 

On a similar note, you shouldn’t be the person who critiques attendee’s clothing either. Even if they look totally shabby, it’s not a good time to make a snarky comment. For all you know, they may have even struggled to get out of bed due to the sheer grief they felt.

“I Heard She Was Having an Affair”

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There are certain places where gossip is quite normal, if not welcome. For example, if you’re going out with friends or venting at a friend’s place. A funeral is not one of those places.

Never mention the questionable relationships of the deceased. Maybe they didn’t have the best moral compass but you should not bring that up at a funeral. Let their secrets die with them. Besides, this is the kind of talk that could easily lead to an actual physical altercation, depending on who the loved ones are.


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Unless a loved one of the deceased tells a joke, you should never laugh at a funeral. There is nothing funny about the situation and you should try to control any urge to laugh. Even if you are laughing at something that isn’t funeral-related, try to hold in the giggles until you leave the venue.

People who are particularly sensitive to rude gestures might hear your giggle and assume you didn’t care about the deceased. It’s just not a good look.

“How Much Did All Of This Cost?”

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Funerals are definitely expensive, but that doesn’t mean you should ask how much money the family of the deceased spent on the event. Money is generally a topic to avoid at a funeral. Do not question or inquire about how much it costs to bury someone you used to know. 

If a funeral seems unusually lavish, don’t poke around asking about financials even if you’re tempted to. This often comes across as gold-digging behavior, which is never good.

“Why Wasn’t She Invited?”

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Funerals do not usually have invitations or formal guest lists. However, the deceased’s family may decide who they inform about the funeral. On very rare occasions, family members may also request that a person not attend.

There are many reasons why they may choose to exclude someone from the event, some of which can be incredibly personal and private. Asking this question puts the family members in the spotlight. Ask at least two weeks after the funeral if you’re really desperate to know.

“I Know How You Feel”

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It doesn’t matter if you’ve been through a similar experience. The truth is that you do not know how someone else feels about the death of a loved one. Everyone reacts differently to these traumas, so saying, ‘I know how you feel,’ is simply incorrect. Try to show your support by listening and helping in whatever way possible.

Anything Religious

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While for some people, hearing that your beloved one is now with God may be a relief, for others, it may be quite ridiculous, leading to even more pain. Unless you are sure about the faith of the person you are talking to, avoid any sort of religious comment. Keep in mind that some people may also decide to celebrate a funeral in church while still identifying as atheists.

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