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Is there a proper protocol to follow?

My daughter wants to visit her friend's house tomorrow to offer condolences and moral support. This friend came home from school yesterday and found her mother (single parent) dead. Needless to say the girl wasn't in school today and probably won't be for awhile. I understand my daughter wants to be there for her friend, but don't want to intrude on the family while they are making final arrangements. An adult I would probably take some food for, but this is a 14 year old girl. Other than calling to make sure it's ok to visit, is there anything I should do, or avoid doing? My manners in cases like this are a bit lacking. Not had to deal with this kind of thing until now.


Asked by 2autisticsmom at 8:53 PM on Mar. 1, 2013 in General Parenting

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Answers (12)
  • My faher died when I was 12. I know I would have appreciated someone my own age to talk to. I was surrounded by all these sad adults. I think spending some time with a friend would be a good idea. I agree with Dardenella. Bring food or flowers, and ask if you can take the girl out somewhere.

    Answer by musicmaker at 9:15 PM on Mar. 1, 2013

  • I really suck at stuff like this, and I tell people that. I will tell them I don't know what to say and how to handle something like this. Then I ask how I can be there for them and offer my support, however they need it. Let them know what is ok for them.

    Answer by JulieJacobKyle at 8:55 PM on Mar. 1, 2013

  • Let the kid go!
    Seriously, what musicmaker said. Old people are fucking boring and have no idea what a teen is going through
    Think of it like this, when you were young and your parent's friends tried to talk to you what did they say?
    "So how's school"? "What are you studying"? "Do you like your teachers"?
    Remember how uncomfortable it was and how you and the adult were hoping and praying for some distraction so you could both escape?

    Also, offer to take the kid for a weekend or something. The g-parents lost a daughter, but the kid lost their Mom. She may appreciate a few moments of not thinking about the loss.

    Imagine how hard it was/ would be, if your mom (assuming you like her) just wasn't there one day without any warning.

    Answer by feralxat at 9:43 PM on Mar. 1, 2013

  • I would call them, and say My kid is your GD's friend, can we do anything to help you at all? It will either be short, or someone will ask you for you and your daughter's input.

    Answer by jerseydiva at 8:59 PM on Mar. 1, 2013

  • I am not sure at this age. We also took food and I think this is the right thing to do regaurdless of age. Perhaps when you drop off you could go up with your daughter and speak with one of the adults and see if they thought it might be a good idea to get the girl out of the house for a bit, even maybe go to the park or somewhere she can just talk to your daughter.

    Answer by Dardenella at 8:59 PM on Mar. 1, 2013

  • I would still take food. And it would be fine for you and your daughter to stop by. If the friend doesn't want to see anyone or to talk, the adults there will tell her so.

    Answer by Bmat at 9:03 PM on Mar. 1, 2013

  • Oh yes forgot to mention the grandparents are now in custody of the girl so they will be there. Though I met the mom once I have never met the grandparents.

    Comment by 2autisticsmom (original poster) at 8:54 PM on Mar. 1, 2013

  • Yeah i suck at stuff like this too. I don't want the friend to feel she must entertain my daughter and apparently a couple other friends. Not sure where the boundaries are since we aren't immediate family.

    Comment by 2autisticsmom (original poster) at 9:00 PM on Mar. 1, 2013

  • I would just call to see if it would be ok for your DD came a visited. Leave it at that.

    Answer by louise2 at 5:01 AM on Mar. 2, 2013

  • How nice she wants to support her friend. Tell her that one of the best things a friend can do is simply listen if the girl wants to talk. They can cry together and just be together. It is also OK if the girl does not want to talk about the situation right now. It is very important too that your daughter know that the grief comes out over time and her friend will need her to be a good listener for a long time. Bless your little girl!

    Answer by silverthreads at 6:43 AM on Mar. 2, 2013