Thousands of Redditors have gathered to share their thoughts on how long it takes to properly mourn a lost loved one after a viral post about a user’s mother made waves in the wildly popular r/antiwork subreddit.
In a now-viral thread that has received nearly 20,000 votes and over 1,100 comments, u/TheGreatCharta wrote that they learned something unpleasant about their mother. Explaining that their mother was telling them about her day at work, u/TheGreatCharta detailed how she got mad at a grieving employee.
“On his way to work, one of his employees called. The employee called because her boyfriend died after failing to find a heart donor,” they wrote.
“My mom had the audacity to tell her to look for someone to cover the shift herself, pointing out the attendance and points system,” u/TheGreatCharta added.
In 2020, Business Insider reported that the average HR policy allowed between one and five days to mourn the loss of a loved one. Although three days is apparently the most common permitted bereavement period, the time allowed for bereavement varies and is often adjusted depending on the employee’s relationship with the deceased.
According to Business Insider, mourning periods vary depending on family ties, and in some cases “policies are even murkier for loved ones who don’t share ties formalized by blood or marriage.” In their original post, u/TheGreatCharta clarified that their mother’s employee’s boyfriend had died, acknowledging that the couple were not married.
u/TheGreatCharta also explained that the employee’s boyfriend died after failing to find a heart donor, further challenging their mother’s request to find someone to cover their shift.
Last year in the United States, doctors performed 3,658 heart transplants, an increase of 3% from 2019, according to data collected by the United Network for Organ Sharing. But while the Health Resources and Services Administration reports that patients awaiting heart transplants represent only 3% of patients awaiting organ transplants, the National Foundation for Transplants says these patients face costs astronomical and are almost guaranteed to be billed heavily before it is ever confirmed that they will receive a new heart.
Responding to the thread of the original poster, commenters praised u/TheGreatCharta for sharing the exchange, and in a few comments they said they berated their mother for showing a lack of empathy.
“Congratulations to you for sharing the story,” u/PeterMossack wrote in the lead comment to the post, which received 13.6,000 votes.
“‘The hardest job children face today is learning manners without seeing any,'” u/PeterMossack added, quoting famed actor and dancer Fred Astaire.
u/WanderingGreybush called the original poster’s mother a four-letter expletive and u/RandyTheRealAmerican was blunt with u/TheGreatCharta, saying simply, “What a bummer.
u/TheGreatCharta engaged with a handful of commenters and endorsed their assessments of their mother’s behavior.
“Imagine your boyfriend dies on Christmas and your boss tells you it’s up to you to cover your shifts or face a penalty,” they wrote, before detailing the exact words they used to confront their mother.
“I told her she was ab***h,” they wrote in a comment.