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GIft for ill gf's grandma 2011/11/14 04:08
Guys, I need your advice.

I'm traveling this end of the year to Japan to visit my girlfriend. Her grandma (who I briefly met last year) was diagnosed with cancer a month ago, but she's already in a terminal stage. She doesn't know about it yet :(

I'd like to give her some kind of gift along with a short message or something, but I'm unfamiliar with these type of situations in Japan. What would you recommend that I give her and what would be proper words to write on a note?

I'd appreciate your advice

by jose (guest)  

Re: GIft for ill gf's grandma 2011/11/14 18:51
I hope you get well soon.

The general gifts for the omimai(expressing sympathy) in Japan are the fruits or an arrangement of flowers.
But, the chrysanthemum, the camellia, the cyclamen, the potted plant and the strong smelling flowers are not good.
I think you should talk with your girl friend about the gift, because her grandma's favorite may be better.
At any rate, Japanese think that your good faith is better than the strict customs.
by ajapanese (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: GIft for ill gf's grandma 2012/1/20 05:41
The best thing that would make her happy and show your care is to do your research on types of Japanese teas and herbs. Buy lots of different types of very good teas and herbs for her. Dont pay any mind for cost other then buy the best. This is her grandma and a very important family member and she is dying. Flowers show that yea she is dying and I dont really care for her to get better....well thats how I feel but if you buy her all kinds of herbs and teas this will show your true care for her health and that you really wish her to get better even if its a fact she wont. When you do your research make sure you done it well because older Japanese women know health and herbs and it will give her great joy that you learned about them and wanted to do everything you could to help her. Life doesnt have a price so dont care what you spend. When you give them to her show her what you know, with each and everyone of the herbs and teas you get tell her what it is and what it does and how its used. Make note of where her cancer is and try to find herbs and teas that help that area and help her feet and back. As you are giving these gifts show your consern for her and that you really want to help. Tell her that you will help her with them as well. With the tea make sure you learn how to make it the right way and make it for her. Make her feel like you care. In doing this it will show your girlfriend and her family just how much you care about her family and they will be pleased. Make sure to always be respectful and kind to her no matter what even if she doesnt like you, this will show that you respect people older then you. Good luck
by Yume (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: GIft for ill gf's grandma 2012/1/23 16:41
The usual norm is flowers or a fruit basket. No chrysanthemums because that's the kind of flower you offer to a grave.

Also, avoid a flower pot (i.e. ones where you have soil and the plant is actually planted in it), because it suggests permanence and the illness "taking root"in the patient.

If she doesn't know she is dying, play it casual. Give her the flowers, smile, cheer her up, tell you hope she will get well soon, and don't discuss the illness.

Any special condolence should be directed to your girlfriend. Not granny.
by Harry Takeuchi rate this post as useful

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