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Friend of mine just died while giving birth

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by jsherman02, Nov 24, 2010.

  1. jsherman02

    jsherman02 Senior member

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    I am stunned, but also wondering what to do? Her and her husband are both Jewish, and I am not sure what I should do. The baby is doing well, but the mother did not make it through. I would welcome any suggestions.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Dakota rube

    Dakota rube Senior member

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    Offer your condolences.
    Offer your help.

    Not much else you can do.
    Sorry for your loss, man.
     
  3. Thomas

    Thomas Senior member

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    Wow - can't really add anything to Rube's post except my condolences.
     
  4. teddieriley

    teddieriley Senior member

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    Wait, you smell that?
    Saddening news. Offering your help to the fam is best.
     
  5. Krish the Fish

    Krish the Fish Senior member

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    Dang man. I couldn't imagine what that would be like.

    Rube's advice is solid. I'm sorry for your loss too man.
     
  6. Nouveau Pauvre

    Nouveau Pauvre Senior member

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    There is an important ritual around Jewish death called sitting Shiva which is a week long period of mourning.

    It's customary for friends and family to come by with prepared food and, depending on the level of observance, participate in a brief prayer ceremony.
     
  7. Dakota rube

    Dakota rube Senior member

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    ^He said she just died. I presume he is asking what he can do now. Shiva comes after burial. But you knew that.
     
  8. jsherman02

    jsherman02 Senior member

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    She is going to be buried on Friday. I appreciate the input.
     
  9. philosophe

    philosophe Senior member

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    That's truly terrible news. I'm very sorry to hear it and send you my condolences.

    The period between death and the funeral is just hell, and shiva is tough, too. Bring food, offer childcare, and anything else they need.
     
  10. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I don't mean this the wrong way, but Jews are basically going to need the same care and love as anybody else. Just do what you would want done for you, and they will receive it well. If it somehow violates a tradition, they will just let you know, but be thankful for your caring.
     
  11. HRoi

    HRoi Senior member

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    That's unfortunate.

    Not sure what your comfort level for this would be, but make a contribution to start a college fund for the kid, and encourage others to do the same...?
     
  12. MrG

    MrG Senior member

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    Wow. That's horrible. I can't even imagine what the husband must be going through. Condolences to you and her family/friends.

    As others have said, just try to be there and offer help.

    One piece of advice I can add is to remember that dad will still have a new baby, and he'll still be mourning, in a few weeks when everyone else has moved on. There will probably be a lot of people there for him in the short term, but they'll be gone long before the pain and new-baby struggles have subsided. You certainly want to be there for him now, but you may be able to help even more if you're there down the line a little ways when the throng of helpers starts to thin.
     
  13. Mr. Lee

    Mr. Lee Senior member

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    So sorry. Mr. G's advice is very wise. Much help is offered in the initial stages and then it starts to taper off. Dad is going to need you then, too. Let your instincts be your guide.
     
  14. Don Carlos

    Don Carlos Senior member

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    I don't mean this the wrong way, but Jews are basically going to need the same care and love as anybody else. Just do what you would want done for you, and they will receive it well. If it somehow violates a tradition, they will just let you know, but be thankful for your caring.
    This. Very sorry for your loss. Just be there for her family as best you are able. Even if they're hardcore Orthodox Jews, btw, they will neither expect you to observe esoteric mourning rites, nor get mad at you for violating such. Offering your condolences and your presence will be appreciated a lot more than would an awkward attempt to observe your best guess at the proper Jewish customs.
     
  15. dragon8

    dragon8 Senior member

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    Sorry to hear. My condolences.
     
  16. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    wow, this is horrible. I am very sorry for your loss.

    one thought - if this is the first kid, they might not have life insurance for the wife, we didn't get it until after our fist kid. the husband might be in a very difficult situation with child care.

    what rube said - be there to help support, and for the husband to cry on your shoulder, if you are that close.
     
  17. acidboy

    acidboy Senior member

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    offer your help, as the rest have already said, not just now but in the days, months, years to come. but don't be too intrusive, and respect their privacy too.

    sad to hear about your friend.
     
  18. Sazerac

    Sazerac Senior member

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    My deepest, most sincere condolences.

    I don't know if you have kids yourself. I have two little girls. Under the very best of circumstances, having a child is utterly terrifying. I literally cannot imagine what the poor father must feel when the terror of being a new dad is combined with the most profound grief.

    He's in an emotional hurricane right now. The best thing you can do is be his friend no matter what he does, no matter what he says.

    As others have pointed out, the help he receives from casual friends and family will die down in a month or so. Be there for him afterwards. Indulge his tirades, rants, bouts of tears. Help him with the kid. Even if you don't have children yourself, you know as much as he does. Don't be afraid.

    Be his friend even when he exhausts you. You'll be a better man and he'll certainly appreciate it.
     
  19. MetroStyles

    MetroStyles Senior member

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    That sucks man. Hopefully he doesn't harbor any kind of subconscious negativity toward the kid.
     
  20. Cary Grant

    Cary Grant Senior member

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    That's unfortunate.

    Not sure what your comfort level for this would be, but make a contribution to start a college fund for the kid, and encourage others to do the same...?


    Sorry for the troubles. And to HRoi's suggestion, we actually did that for a friend.
     

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