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Gisele Bündchen and Vida – how to mourn on social media

Gisele Bunchen and Vida

Gisele Bündchen and Vida

I found this fascinating American post on refinery29. It is an article about the etiquette around pet bereavement on FaceBook and Instagram. To cut a long story short, you can see the full article here,  it’s a one post only rule a la Gisele Bündchen. According to the author Madeline Buxton you should post a tasteful photo along with a sweet caption. When Gisele’s yorkie Vida passed away in October 2012 she posted a single picture and the following words:

“My best friend, she will always live on in my heart. Let’s never take for granted the unconditional love that our animals show us every single day.” 

Only post one bereavement photo with a sweet caption

You should apparently make sure that you only use your personal feed which isn’t a bad comment, it makes sense that you should post personal stuff in a personal feed. But it’s the rationale behind it that I am struggling with. Guess what, people like Maxine only want to hear once about the loss of our pet. One tasteful photo and a single caption that beautifully captures our loss. Did you get that?

Yes one post! That’s all folks, don’t go on and on about missing your pet. Honestly I just forget sometimes just how insensitive and harsh some people can be. So I am guessing/hoping that she has never had a pet..? Some people are very private and don’t want to share their grief. I can fully understand that. I can respect that. But to tell someone how they should grieve on social media is simply flabbergasting.

Reaction to the advice

Thankfully the comments on the article tell a very different story:

Wow this is really rude. People are trying to cope with a loss and now it is considered oversharing? Yeah it may be annoying to see a post about someone’s dead dog every week, but just change your feed settings. Don’t tell a person how they should mourn. If they have to post a picture everyday let them be.

WOW! This is one of the most tasteless, insensitive, offensive articles I’ve ever read. I always looked forward to reading R29 articles, but this is enough to make me unfollow. I honestly can’t even believe what I just read. I’m shocked and disgusted. You sound like a sociopath, incapable of empathy.

It’s good to see that her advice is not being taken. Losing a pet is the same as losing any member of your family. You are allowed to grieve. Give yourself permission to feel sad. Post as many photos and captions – even if they are not sweet – as you need. If people are you friends they will understand. And you might want to speak to like-minded people who get it, as Maxine clearly doesn’t.

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