Sun 18 Mar, 2007 06:18 pm
I volunteer at Mo's school and I have come to know his teacher quite well. Not really as a friend but really more than just Mo's teacher.
She had missed a couple of days of class a bit more than a week ago and since some virus had been traveling around I assumed she was out with that. In conversation the other day it came up that her mother had died.
I would like to somehow acknowledge her loss but I'm wondering if it is appropriate. Report cards just came out and teacher conferences are scheduled for next week and I don't want to seem all brown-nosey....
... but I don't care how old you are, losing your mom is huge.
I'm not sure if I should do anything or let it pass or what.
Can you offer my any help?
Both my kids had the same teacher for 5th grade. I volunteered in her class and she offered kind words when my husband left. I really like her as a person but never have persued anythings further like coffee. My kids always gave her a holiday gift and a year end thank you gift. When her son died 2 years ago both my kids were at a different school. I sent her a sympathy card by mail.
I think that would be appropriate and thoughtful.
A letter of sympathy is always correct. Sincere sympathy is never intrusive.
I have no idea of how to mail it to her and I feel kind of weird about handing it to her. How do I manage to get a note to her?
Can you address it to her c/o the schools address?
Stop in the principal's office and ask the secretary to slip it in her school mailbox.
you can always just leave an anonymous " Im a mother of someone in your class and I heard that_______ so i wanted to let you know ____. Lots of love/sincerely/or how ever you would sign it .. A MOM "
Do the teachers have a mailbox at the school?
Could I just drop it off Friday after I have my conference with her?
Is it weird to do something after so much time has passed -- by that point it will have been almost three weeks.
I feel that not saying anything isn't right but I'm not sure what to say or when to say it.
When she mentioned it I gasped and said "Oh. I'm so sorry. I had no idea." and she busied herself with some other task, closing the conversation.
Yes teachers have mailboxes at school. Yes the sympathy would be acceptable.
Boomer, she probably worried she'd put you on the spot, or worried that she might become over-emotional if the conversation continued. I agree with the other posters -- showing sympathy at someone's loss is always appropriate. Leaving a note/card in her school mailbox allows her to react to your sympathy without dealing with you directly if her feelings are still raw.
I wouldn't worry about this. Express sympathy in person or by card.
I agree with everyone here. Do it. Do it because she's human and you're human, and damn any protocol.
When she changed the subject, she was probably just trying to get her emotions under control. It wasn't meant to shut you down.
People in deep grief need, really need, for others to acknowledge their pain. When I think back to the cards and stuff that came in the wake of my husband's death, the one that I remember best (not the card itself, but the thought) was the one that came from the pharmacy where I had been buying all his prescriptions. Complete strangers they were, I never had the time to do more than grab the phoned-in order and go, I didn't even think they noticed me. But the thought of that card still gives me a little warm spot.
So yes, do it. And 3 weeks is a blink of an eye to her, right now. It wouldn't matter if it was 3 months.