Funeral Selfies: the Dilemma
Nov 19, 2013
Having recently read about the growing ‘funeral selfie’ trend, a craze where people take pictures of themselves at funerals and post them online, I shouldn’t be surprised to find that ‘selfies’ has been hailed as the ‘word of 2013’ by the Oxford Dictionaries.
My initial reaction is ‘has the world gone mad’? Are we so narcissistic that we have to take photos of ourselves in every conceivable place, at every conceivable time, in every conceivable way? I mean a funeral – really! Are we so fascinated with our looks that we have to include a photo of ourselves every time we communicate with others?
But that is where my funeral selfies dilemma comes into play; with the word ‘communication’.
At the risk of sounding ‘old’ this sparkly new age of smart phones and webcams gives cause for concern; concern that people have stopped ‘talking’ to each other. How many times have you heard people talk about texting or emailing someone rather than picking up the phone and actually talking to them?
On the flip side though we are now communicating albeit electronically on a much wider scale then we ever thought possible. Rightly or wrongly, people are choosing to share more about their lives, feelings and emotions than ever before; which is where the ‘dilemma bit’ really kicks in.
A funeral selfie does in effect mean that people are talking about funerals and in many cases their feelings towards them. As a nation it’s important that we are open and make it easier for everyone to talk about death and dying; breaking down some of those taboos and barriers.
Death will come to us all so it’s an important lesson in life that we need to learn as we grow. Talking and putting plans in place for the future can make things a little easier when the time comes for those left behind and of course a huge part of the grieving process is being able to talk about how you feel.
So if funeral selfies is about sharing your emotions, paying tribute to the person who has died and opening up to people, can it really be a bad thing?
It’s a difficult notion to get your head around isn’t it? Is a funeral selfie really a disrespectful show of self indulgence or just a way of expressing your grief?
Oh and by the way, talking about ‘selfies’; I do have to admit to taking the odd one or two myself but only holiday snaps meant for personal use and not to share with the nation. That’s really not the same - is it?