Memorial Etiquette also known as social graces, the rules of etiquette ease us through challenging social situations. Most of us know how to behave in common circumstances but unless you’ve been to a lot of memorials, you may not know the rules of proper behavior in this often uncomfortable social situation.
Emily Post once said, “Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others.” Much of what we know today about etiquette comes from this woman, who published her first book of etiquette in 1922. When you use those words as your guide, the rules of funeral etiquette become easier to understand.
The Basics of Memorial Etiquette
What to Wear
What to Say
What to Do
Follow-up with Kindness
If you’ve not already done so, this is a good time to send the family a sympathy note or card. About a week after the memorial service, pick up the phone to check in with them to see if there’s anything they need.
“Good manners,” wrote Emily Post, “reflect something from inside — an innate sense of consideration for others and respect for self.” That just about sums it up; no matter the situation — wedding, baptism, dinner party or cocktails with friends — her observations about good manners (when followed) will serve us all well.