Dear HM

Hello, I am just trying to get an unbiased take on this. Recently someone passed away and the parents asked for money for their son (a college educated adult with a full time job) for more education in lieu of flowers. I thought it inappropriate.   I have never seen such a thing, unless it’s a young child whose parent passed. I have seen donations to a cause in lieu of flowers, and that seems tactful, but not for an an adult who can support himself.

Just a sanity check,



Dear HM,

I have heard of asking for cash in lieu of flowers in the past at funerals, but it is usually tactful and/or at the prior request of the deceased themselves. I feel torn on this current situation that you have described.

I do not like speaking negatively about anyone, and especially about those that I know nothing of. I am not aware of their circumstances or reasons behind making such a request at a time like this so I do not wish to judge their actions without more details from their perspective perhaps.

I will say that as a parent, I could not see myself ever making the same request for one of my sons education if another of my sons had just passed away. I would feel as if I were cheating my deceased son from his rightful respect being shown to him.

I would suggest that if you are uncomfortable meeting their request, then to go ahead and send the flowers anyways. Be certain to remain tactful in your attached card no matter how distasteful you found this whole situation to be. This is a time to honor the deceased and not bring attention to yourself.



1 comment for “Dear HM

  1. Lindy
    July 19, 2011 at 9:03 PM

    Dear HM,

    Don’t worry about checking your sanity. If you were able to meet this request without a jaw-dropping expression on your face, you are doing waaaay better than I would have!
    What nonsense! Where I come from, your presence at visitation/service is how you pay respect. Flowers, donations, etc. are lovely but none of it should be EXPECTED, let alone, “let me direct you to make a cash payment”…utterly classless!

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