There’s a fine line between witty and worrisome at important events such as the wake of your grandmother, so here are four things not to say to her on her special day:
I believe this one is fairly obvious. It is never appropriate to tell anyone they smell bad, but especially not someone who has spent hours getting ready. Plus, the embalmer may hear, and you’ll probably hurt their feelings, too.
2. “Have you been working out?”
Your recently deceased grandmother has been very busy lately, so she has not had the time to exercise. This is clearly just rigor mortis, not some toning up.
3. “You look a little pale.”
It’s currently winter, so it will come as no shock that Grammy hasn’t been catching many rays recently. And we all know she was not one to go for a spray.
4. “Looks like Aunt Debbie and her husband are getting separated for real this time.”
This is a serious occasion. No need for family gossip to cloud the focus. This is Grammy’s day. She worked hard for it. She lived a long and full life, raised children, cared for grandchildren, travailed selflessly and tirelessly for the sake of her family. And now you want to talk about some petty drama? Let her have her moment. She deserves it.
Although it’s difficult, it can be valuable to say a few parting words to your grandmother as she enters the great hereafter. So take some breaths and some time, and speak from the heart—as long as your heart doesn’t say “PU.”