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I have a question regarding talking about deceased people and yourself at the same time.

"My deceased husband and I have been close friends with the Jones ever since we met."

I'm not sure if this makes sense, since in this case, I'm still alive but the husband isn't. Which tense should I use if I insist on grouping myself and the husband together and am still friends with the Jones?

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    I'd say "My husband & I became close friends with the Joneses when we first met, & they still are my close friends". Not the best sentence, I agree, but clear enough to be understood. This allows inclusion of late husband & current reality of his being deceased. – user264 May 21 '13 at 2:48
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    This is a bit awkward no matter how you say it. Of course, if you do not believe that friendships die when people do, you can let the sentence stand as is. Problem solved. :) – BobRodes Jun 30 '13 at 15:11
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    If that's uncomfortable, one could say something like "My late husband and I have been lifelong friends with the Joneses ever since we met," thereby strengthening the implication that friendships end when people die. If that's still uncomfortable, one could spell it all out. – BobRodes Jun 30 '13 at 15:18
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Given that your husband is dead (in the sentence), it is unlikely that his friendship with the Joneses is ongoing. Since have been is the present perfect continuous tense, the original sentence makes some sense- but it is not ideal.

As suggested in a comment, "my deceased husband and I became close friends with the Joneses when we first met" makes more sense and does not imply that you are no longer friends with the Joneses due to your husband's death.

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    What it does not do, however, even with the added "and they still are my close friends," is specifically state that the husband's friendship continued up to the point of his demise. To fully make the point, one would have to say "My late husband and I became friends with the Joneses when we first met, the friendship lasted throughout my husband's lifetime, and they and I remain friends to this day." IMHO that's a lot of trouble to go to to avoid implying that the late husband's demise ended his relationship with the Joneses. – BobRodes Jun 30 '13 at 15:12
  • @BobRodes Agreed- at that point you might want to just keep it simple and explicit, rather than go for an eloquent (albeit correct) statement. – batpigandme Oct 6 '14 at 16:03
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It will sound awkward, not to sound disrespectful. But might I suggest a sentence you could possibly use ? I'm replacing 'deceased' with 'late' :

"My late husband and I have been close friends with the Jones ever since we met."

or you could use subtle ways sentences like :

"We have been close friends with the Jones since we met them, back when I was with my husband."

But this could also be interpreted as : "You have legally separated from your husband".
This is the problem with one of the sentences provided as a comment :

"My husband & I became close friends with the Joneses when we first met, & they still are my close friends"

However, this can be used if the listener has an idea that your husband has passed on. (which in case you'll not need to specify about your husband's current state, again, not to be disrespectful).

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