(BPT) – We plan ahead for the things in life we look forward to – the birth of a baby, weddings, vacations and holidays. It doesn’t come as naturally to plan for our funeral. It’s easier to avoid the conversation altogether. But, by discussing your personal wishes for your final arrangements, you can protect your loved ones from having to make difficult decisions in a time of immense grief, and potentially ease their financial obligations.
None of us wants to be a burden on those we love. Yet conversations around funeral planning can be tough. Some families find it more natural to discuss the details of their final wishes after the death of a friend or colleague. Others look for specific milestones, like birthdays or retirement. And some families don’t want to have the discussion at all, preferring to write their wishes down. (Just don’t forget to tell your loved ones where to find the document!)
Starting the conversation can be challenging, whether you’re talking about your funeral or asking a loved one how they want to be memorialized. Perhaps watch a movie with a funeral scene or even just schedule a casual conversation after dinner. Here are a few suggestions for kicking off the discussion:
- Do you want to be buried or cremated?
- Have I ever told you my favorite scripture?
- If you could write your own eulogy, what would you say?
- Would you prefer a traditional funeral or more contemporary celebration of life?
If you’re still unsure how to broach the subject, The Insider’s Guide to Funeral & Cremation Planning is a great resource. Following along with the free guide will help you and your loved ones understand the steps of advance funeral planning. Or you can download Imagine, a free booklet that will help you design the one-of-a-kind service you’d like to have.
Remember that almost any funeral or cremation can be planned in advance, including the venue, catering, mementos and cemetery property, but you might be surprised at all there is to consider. A memorial service is unlike any other event, and, by some estimates, your loved ones could have up to 200 decisions to make in a short timeframe, during the darkest hours of their lives. The most memorable services are planned thoughtfully, with personalized touches that reflect the individual and bring comfort to those in attendance. A Dignity Memorial funeral director can help you navigate your options and develop a plan for a truly personalized event.
Talking openly about the memorial you envision – and encouraging your loved ones to do the same – removes the guesswork from the planning process, and the focus can stay on honoring a unique life lived and celebrating the moments you and your loved ones cherish.
For more information, visit DignityMemorial.com.