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Shloshim - The 30-day Mourning Period

Shloshim - The 30-day Mourning Period


Between Shiva and Shloshim

Even though the Shiva (first seven days of mourning) has ended, one is considered a mourner for twelve months for a parent, and until the Shloshim (the thirtieth day from burial) for other relatives. During these twenty-three days, the intensity of mourning is reduced. However, some restrictions continue to remain in effect. One should consult a competent rabbi for complete guidance in all of these matters.

Notable restrictions that are lifted:

  1. Mourners are no longer confined to the Shiva home.

  2. One may change out of the clothing worn during Shiva.

  3. One may greet others with customary greetings (“Hello," "How are you," etc.), but others should not greet him in this manner. If they do, he may respond in kind.

  4. One may sit on regular chairs.

  5. One may wear leather shoes.

  6. One may return to work and engage in business.

  7. One may use cosmetics, lotions, oils, perfumes, makeup, and wear jewelry.

  8. One may study Torah.

  9. One may resume marital relations.

  10. One may attend a Brit Milah (circumcision of a child), Pidyon Haben (redemption of the firstborn son), Bar Mitzva, T'noim (engagement), and a Siyum (celebration upon completion of a tractate of Mishna or Talmud), but one should not remain for the meal.

Restrictions that carry over:

  1. One may not wear new, freshly laundered, or ironed clothing. In the case of great need, one may have the clothing worn by someone else for a few moments and then they are permitted to him. This does not apply to shirts, underwear, and socks or stockings, which may be changed as required.

  2. One may still not take a luxurious bath or shower during this period.

  3. If one became dirty or sweaty, he may shower in the usual manner; however, he should do it as quickly as possible.

  4. One may not take a haircut, shave, or cut one's nails. (A woman preparing for the Mikvah may do all her usual preparations.)

  5. One may not listen to music or attend a concert, nor go on pleasure trips and tours. This also includes attending social events such as dinners, parties, and so on. One who is mourning his parents may not do so for the entire year.

  6. One may go into a wedding hall to wish a close relative or friend "Mazal Tov," before the meal is served and while no music is being played. Consult a competent rabbi for guidance.

  7. One should avoid activities that are not in the spirit of mourning. For example, one may not buy a new home, nor redecorate, renovate, or purchase new furniture, and so on, unless one will suffer great financial loss if it is delayed past the Shloshim.

  8. One may not marry during the Shloshim. Nowadays, when preparations for the wedding begin months in advance, and postponing the wedding will result in great financial loss, some permit it during the Shloshim, but not during Shiva. Consult a competent rabbi for complete guidance.

  9. If one's profession is such that he must attend festive events for his income (musician, photographer, caterer, etc.), he may attend them. Some relatives and friends rely on this leniency after Shiva and act as a "waiter" by serving a few dishes so that they may attend a wedding of a relative or close friend. This should only be done when one's lack of attendance will cause the celebrants great pain. In general, consult a competent rabbi for guidance.

The Thirtieth Day

The Shloshim is the thirtieth day from burial. When mourning all relatives except one's parents, the mourning period concludes following the morning service on this day. When mourning parents, the mourning continues for a full twelve months, until the first Yartzeit.

Traditionally, families gather on the eve of the Shloshim to share support, recite prayers and Psalms, and to give charity in the merit of the deceased. Many will also make a Siyum, celebrating the completion of the Mishnayot studied to merit the soul of the deceased, as well as a meal.

When Shloshim is Not Thirty Days

Sometimes Shloshim can be less than thirty days. This happens when a Jewish holiday occurs during Shiva and thus annuls the remaining days of Shiva mourning. One then calculates the Shloshim day as follows:

Passover and Shavuot: Fifteen days after the holiday ends.

Sukkot: Eight days after the holiday ends.

Rosh Hashana: Between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur one observes those days as one does between Shiva and Shloshim, then Yom Kippur annuls the remaining part of Shloshim.

Yom Kippur: Between Yom Kippur and Sukkot one observes those days as one does between Shiva and Shloshim, then Sukkot annuls the remaining part of Shloshim.

Also, if a Jewish holiday occurs between Shiva and Shloshim, it annuls the remaining days of Shloshim, and one conducts himself as if Shloshim is complete.

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Anonymous October 19, 2017

When is shloshim if someone passed away on the 2nd day of Sukkot? Funeral was during chol hamoed, shiva was after Sukkot. Reply

Simcha Bart October 24, 2017
in response to Anonymous:

Shloshim is the thirtieth day from the burial as in the article above. This is because the Shiva did not begin before the Holiday.

Simcha Bart for Reply

Carol Berkson Wilmette July 15, 2017

Is it proper to give away clothing of the decease to someone you know? Reply

Menachem Posner May 3, 2017

Note that when someone mourns a parent, most restrictions last for 12 months, not just 30 days.

Your boyfriend should indeed avoid enjoyable group activities like parties, shows etc. for the duration of his mourning period.

It is also not proper to send gifts to mourners.

That said, he can spend time with you in a low-key setting. Reply

Anonymous May 3, 2017
in response to Menachem Posner:

Thank you for responding.

What is a low-key setting?

He told me that he cannot see me till the shloshim are over, once they are over, where can I spend time with him that would be deemed "low-key"? Reply

avi far rockaway October 22, 2017
in response to Anonymous:

This is a bit late, but there is no restriction on seeing one's boyfriend during shloshim. Reply

Anonymous April 27, 2017

One of my boyfriend's parents passed away. The shiva ended and the 30 days began. He told me that he was not able to see me or go out with me or his friends until the 30 days are over. Is this true?

Additionally, my family wanted to send his family a present for mother's day but the holiday falls during the 30 days, does that me we cannot send them the gift? Reply

Anonymous Fair Lawn, NY April 14, 2017

The shiva for my mother ended the morning before Pesach began. Does this mean that Shloshim is cancelled, only being the few hours before Pesach? Reply

Simcha Bart for April 14, 2017
in response to Anonymous:

I am sorry to hear about your loss. You are correct, there is no Shloshim after Passover concludes. Reply

Eliezer Zalmanov for October 26, 2016

To Anonymous in Tamarac, FL So sorry for your loss. Yes, the "shloshim" for your father will be 8 days after the holiday. Reply

Anonymous Tamarac, FL October 16, 2016

My father's funeral was today erev Sukkot. Can I participate in Shloshim 8 days after simchat torah? Reply

Simcha Bart for June 15, 2016

I am sorry to hear about your loss. If any major festival occurs during Shloshim, after the Shiva was completed - the rest of the Sheloshim is canceled, as stated at the end of the article above. The festivals that would cancel the Shloshim in such an instance are Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Passover, and Shavuot.


Anonymous June 14, 2016

need help determining date of shloshim My brother-in-law was buried on Monday, May 23, 2016. On what date would shloshim fall? Does the fact that Shavuot was 2 days ago affect the date? Thank you. Reply

Naaz charania March 16, 2016

I feel one should mourn for a sister's death for at least 40 days. I do not feel like going to parties. It has been 2 weeks. Reply

Simcha Bart Los Angeles September 27, 2015

Shloshim Prayers During the Shloshim period, we recite the mourner's Kaddish. On the actual thirtieth day, the article mentions Psalms and other prayers determined by community or family custom. Reply

Leila Rosemberg California September 18, 2015

Which prayers do we say during Shloshim? Reply

Shaul Wolf May 19, 2015

Re: There is no prohibition against swimming during the year of mourning. Reply

Simon bonsmon May 18, 2015

I know you are not allowed to go to the beach however are you allowed to go swimming pool. Between the 30 days and the year Reply

john jamaica December 3, 2013

what are the names in english and yiddish of sheloshim Reply

Anonymous June 18, 2012

shloshim When can one start to play bridge after death of a parent? Reply

Anonymous Kfar Saba, Israel December 13, 2011

Hanuka and Shloshim Please reply both Ashkenazi and Sfardi customs. Does Hannuka stop the 30? My sister (BBHM) died on 1 Kislev in the morning and was beried the next day. When do we go to the cemetary? When does the 30 end? Reply

Anonymous Brooklyn, N.Y. U.S. November 23, 2011

After Sholoshim Am I allowed to watch television shows which are not musical as well as the radio? Am thinking of dramatic and news shows. My mother passed away on 12 Days in Heshvan. Will Kaddish end on 11 Days in Heshvan, 11 months later?
Thank you in advance for answering these questions and for providing this service. Reply

sergio Iligan city, philippines February 16, 2011

marrying after death of mother Is it ok to get married one or two months after the death of a parent?

Please send me what bad or is it good to marry in this situation? Reply

Menachem Posner for Montreal, QC February 8, 2011

You may dispose of/sell your late mother's property. Please see The First Twelve Months for details of what you may not do during the final 11-month period of mourning. Reply

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