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Quote:
Originally Posted by River View Post

If someone dies who you love, will they know how much you love them? Do you call your grandparents or great grandparents who are maybe nearly the end? Do you even feel it's important that they know, seeing as this is a very atheistic/agnostic community, and many likely feel there is just darkness after, and if there is, why bother calling your 97 year old great grandma?
All my grandparents have passed. My longest living grandmother died a few months ago. She had dementia and so she didn't know who I was anymore. She was 98 when she died. For that reason, calling her wouldn't likely have had much benefit for her. It might have eased my conscience if I had called her more often, but I didn't. I was very sad when she died because I felt guilty. I felt guilty because I thought of her as racist and so I avoided her. Her racism made it hard for me to see her as anything more than that. I never let her meet my son. I felt guilty about that when she died. But at the same time, my feelings about my grandfather changed dramatically after we visited him in his final months. I don't think it's necessarily a good thing for children to be exposed to dying people who are in pain. Anyone in pain can be very mean.

I tell my close family that I love them. I feel like they know and I won't have any worries that they will pas away without knowing I love them. I tell my son I love him all the time. I tell my mom and my husband often. My sister and nephew hear it too, but maybe I should tell them more often. Then there are some other family members whom I don't speak to as often (my dad, etc). I don't say "I love you" much because, frankly it's not 100% true. We're not close; we just interact because of blood or marriage.

But I think it's important for people to feel loved as they exit this world. I'm glad Hospice exists to help people in that regard. It's not about religion or anything. I don't need to believe in an afterlife in order to feel that one shouldn't feel loney in their final moments on Earth. I'm a little offended by the suggestion in the OP that athiests and agnostics wouldn't care about that. I imagine my death and I think it would be far worse if I were alone than if I had some loved ones around. I think everyone should have someone to hold their hand and help ease their fear and pain.
 
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