According to rigorous research, it has been found that sympathy flowers have a bigger effect on those in mourning than just honoring the deceased. Sympathy flowers have been found to give a warm feeling to a memorial setting as well as brighten a otherwise darkened moment. They have also been found to have a huge impact on the emotional well being of those in mourning. A behavioral research study done by Nancy Etcoff, Ph.D. of Harvard University emphasizes the calming and fortifying feelings that flowers create. Study showed that flowers do have a strong positive effect on ones emotions and that people are naturally attracted to them. Previous studies have proven that flowers do have a strong effect on ones emotional well being easing depression, anxiousness, and agitation when receiving flowers. They have also shown that those who receive flowers have a higher sense of enjoyment and life satisfaction. (Rutgers, State Univ. of New Jersey; Journal of Evolutionary Psychology)
The bereavement process is a high emotional time where flowers can play a huge role in easing some of pain during this time. There is a new trend in funeral planning with the use of “in lieu of flowers” where the family will ask that instead of sending flowers, those who want to pay respect to the deceased send money to a particular charity. However, in light of the benefits flowers can bring to a memorial service, it is hard to imagine one without them. Although the sentiment is nice in being charitable, it takes away those who want to pay respect to the deceased the ability to express their sympathy in a manner that is comfortable to them. For many, flowers are customary and what is comfortable for them to express sympathy for the loss of a loved one. For those who are in the unfortunate position of planning a funeral, a better phrase to use when incorporating a charitable contribution to a particular cause are “Donations may be made to (charity)”, “The family has designated (charity) for memorial contributions”, or “The (charity) Memorial has been established for those wishing to make a contribution” so the ability for those to express sympathy do not feel as if their hands are tied. This is not being stated to diminish the deceased or family wishes, just to give alternatives so those who feel the need to send flowers can do so as well without feeling as if they are showing any disrespect.
One would automatically think that there is nothing wrong with sending sympathy flowers to anyone when a family member passes away, however, in some situations it can cause conflict in homes, making the already sensitive issue even more so.
Here are some flower etiquette questions to ask yourself before sending flowers that will help to eliminate any awkward situations.
Is your ex in a new relationship and do you get along with your ex’s new partner?
Depending on your current relationship with your ex and their new partner will determine where the sympathy flowers should be sent. If you are in good standings with your ex but not so much the new partner you can send sympathy flowers to either the home or funeral home as long as you include the new partner’s name on the gift card. If your ex is not in a new relationship, and you are in good standings, you can send sympathy flowers anywhere. If you and your ex are in ill standings, have the sympathy flowers delivered to the funeral home with the card attached not singling out anyone person, but rather “to the family of”.
Where you close to the family member that passed away? If you were close to the family member of the ex that passed away and remained that way after the split with your ex then it is appropriate to send funeral flowers to the funeral home or sympathy flowers to the home with the card addressed to the family. If you were not close to the family member but remain in good standings with the ex, you can send sympathy flowers to the home, just make sure if your ex is in a new relationship to address the new partner as well in the card.
Lastly, ask yourself if your new partner feel offended? More than likely they won’t be, but if your new partner has always been uncomfortable with your relationship with your ex, they may. If that is the case and they have strong feelings against you sending flowers to an ex at a time of loss, you probably shouldn’t send them if you value your new relationship. However, it may make an uncomfortable partner feel more comfortable by including their name on the card when sending sympathy flowers, as well as addressing the card to the family of, rather than just the ex.
Life brings on many ups and downs, with one of the most solemn times being when a loved one passes. It can appear impossible to console a person who has lost someone close to them. The biggest way people express their sympathy and regret to the existing family members is through flowers. Funeral flowers or sympathy flower arrangements can range from enormous wreath and special arrangements to vase options and plants.
A common thought amongst people, especially anyone new to sending funeral flowers, is what exactly should one send or how much should one spend on funeral flowers. There are numerous different funeral and sympathy flower arrangements available with Brant Florist. The amount you spend plays factor on what you have available and who it is you are honoring. Generally, the closer the connection to the deceased, the bigger the arrangement but again, finances can come into play. There is no real right or wrong, it is more the show of support that matters then the dollar amount spent.
There are some flower arrangements that are more traditionally associated with funeral such as:
Any of those are a tasteful way of showing your love and support and will be welcomed.
Another concern for those new to having to send funeral flowers is where to send them to – the family home or the funeral home. Depending on the arrangement you are having delivered plays a role in where to have them sent. Bouquets, vases, and plants are usually sent to the residence to be displayed throughout the home however can be sent to either location. When you are attending the funeral in person, sometimes the flowers you send make for an easy conversation starter for the family grieving such as thanking one for the lovely flowers sent. If they are at the home, the grieving family may not be aware of them yet. Standing wreaths, casket sprays, and large floral arrangements are more appropriately sent to the funeral home, especially if you are wanting them to be transported the burial.
Regardless of what funeral flowers you choose, they will be appreciated by the family in mourning and a way of showing your support in their time of loss and need.
I was at a funeral once, when the pastor delivering the service told the following story.
There were quite a few flowers at the front of the chapel and he began by saying that flowers were a reminder of the person whose life we were celebrating. He said flowers follow the life cycle of a human and that we were fortunate to have so many beautiful flowers to admire.
Both start with a seed and both required lots of attention during the early phase of their life. Next comes a maturing time as each develops into adulthood. The plant moves into the flowering stage as the ultimate show for survival just as humans do from about the age of 25 to perhaps 50. Both shine during this period and everybody admires their talent, their beauty and their contribution to our lives. During this time, both set the foundation for survival of the species. The plant initiates the beginning of seeds via the flowers and humans raise children. Then, both move into the final phase of their life………wilting and withering in old age until the end comes. Continue reading →