Etiquette when it comes to dealing with loss on social media

The digital age has become a huge part of most of our lives, especially the social media element. Almost everybody in the world over the age of sixteen now have at least one active social media account, with most young adults averaging at two active social media platforms.

So, when it comes to dealing with the loss of a loved one, how does social media play it part?

Sharing loss and expressing emotions through the glaring eyes of social media is definitely a sensitive subject and something that will be considered on a personal, individual level by everyone. When it comes to knowing how much and what to share, is completely subjective but we do have a few tips for getting the etiquette right when it comes to dealing with death on social media.

Let immediate family post first

It seems like a no brainer right?! Letting immediate and close family post first, will allow those closest to their loved one to set the tone for social media posting and how much detail should be revealed. Being the first to break the news should come from those closest to the deceased, as it can be important that people find out before seeing your social media post.

Don’t go into too much detail

There is absolutely no need to uncover sensitive details on social media that others could find uncomfortable or distressing to read. Being considerate and respectful to those who are also grieving the loss of a loved one is of the upmost importance when using social media to express emotion.

Don’t bombard the bereaved

Those closest the deceased will have enough on their plate without you bombarding them with messages, no matter how supportive or attentive you think you may be being. Sending one message or replying to a post letting the bereaved know that you’re thinking of them is enough. If urgent information is required for whatever reason, be understanding, respectful and considerate, try to gain that information without overstepping boundaries.

Forgo funeral selfies

As social media has become such a huge part of our lives, some of us feel the need to document our lives on social media, but some things you just shouldn’t post. Funeral selfies have become a popular trend in the younger generation, and although there is no intent of offence to be caused, these can be assumed as extremely distasteful and disrespectful. Avoid taking selfies at a funeral, in fact avoid the use of your phone at all if possible.

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