funerals and pallbearers

Why Planning Your Funeral Is Considerate

This December marks the six year anniversary of my husband’s death.

death and dying with loved ones
We all know it’s eventual. Think of your loved ones too

As the date approaches, I am reminded of the bittersweet experience my family shared that day. Doug fought valiantly against his cancer for nearly 12 years.

While we were sad to see him go, we were happy he no longer suffered.

The day of his funeral was filled with various emotions. Fortunately, stress was one sentiment none of use experienced that day or the week leading up to the service. You see, Doug planned his own funeral years in advance.

For many people, planning a funeral for a loved one is extremely difficult. Family members are filled with grief, sadness and a burning desire to fulfil their loved one’s last wishes.

If you don’t know what those wishes are, the experience is even more stressful.


Making Life Easy

Our first meeting with the funeral director was very different than most.

Instead of answering the funeral director’s questions about wishes and decisions, he told us what was going to be done. Instead of being filled with guilt over whether or not we were doing the right thing, we experienced a rush of relief.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if your spouse felt the same way when you passed? Fortunately, you can make sure he or she does feel that way.


Pre-Planning Your Funeral

Check with your local funeral home about pre-planning your funeral.

Have The Last Word - Write Your Own Obituary
It’s actually a great idea
Have The Last Word – Write Your Own Obituary

While everyone will have a different method of planning, here is a general checklist to consult:

  • List contact information for people in case of medical emergency or death.
  • Write your obituary (or list information you would like included such as significant dates, names of family members, organization memberships, employment history, etc.).
  • Note where you want your obituary to appear (local newspapers, online forums, etc.).
  • If you haven’t already done so, consider purchasing a cemetery lot.
    • Make sure there are adjacent lots for your spouse and any other family members.
  • Choose a casket or cremation urn.
  • Design your headstone (or at least make note of style and wording preference).
  • Decide on which type of service you would like: religious, military, non-denominational, or fraternal.
  • List preferences regarding pallbearers, speakers, music selections, flowers, scriptures readings, etc.
  • Select an organization to benefit from memorial donations.
  • Consider prepaying for your funeral service (especially if you don’t have life insurance).
  • Designate a power of attorney.
  • Prepare a living will with specifications for end-of-life care.
  • If you haven’t already done so, write a will and leave it in a safe yet obvious location.

Death isn’t something that comes up in everyday conversation.

Most of us don’t like being reminded of the fact that we are mere mortals. While some may think otherwise, pre-planning your funeral isn’t morbid at all.

In fact, it is a very loving gesture you can gift to your spouse and children.


Speak Your Mind, With Your Opinion

Nice to see you made it this far so here’s what you can do next:

  • What’s your thoughts on planning your own funeral?
  • Do you think your own obituary would be different if you wrote it yourself?
  • Click one of the Share buttons – your friends can then read this article too.

And thanks for reading too – Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Plan Your Own Funeral - Be Considerate of Your Loved Ones 1

Brenda works for a Clearwater probate lawyer, providing information about wills and estate planning services.

Brenda – who has written posts on GeekandJock.

5 thoughts on “Plan Your Own Funeral – Be Considerate of Your Loved Ones”
  1. This experience was also an eye opening one for my children. When they read the obituary my husband had drafted, they learned new things about their dad. I’m so glad they had that one last change to hear him brag about himself!

    Shortly after my husband’s death, all my children planned their own funerals too. For them, it WAS common sense to plan it while they were healthy. In fact, just like their resume or will, they update their funeral plan as major life events happen.

    1. Oh wow, Brenda. That’s an amazing story.
      Do you think your kids had an easier time with coping with their fathers’ passing as a result of hearing his prepared words? I’m interested in how this might have actually helped in the mourning process.

  2. A thought-provoking piece on a subject that we hide so often so that it’s almost Taboo, not wishing to upset our loved ones or think about too much ourselves. I wonder if we are more likely to plan our own funeral knowing that it’s coming sooner rather than later (as in if a person knows they only have 3 months to live)… Would it be considered morbid or just plain old common-sense to plan in advance when we are healthy? It’s hard to think about the future – about death – whether your own or someone else’s…

  3. This is one of those whispered subjects, isn’t it?
    Thank you Brenda for this. I’ve never really thought much about planning my own funeral but I can definitely see the advantages, once you’ve pointed them out. Especially the obituary – that’s gotta be a total crack-up when it’s read out lol

    1. For sure, LovingEyes. I wonder if that’s a kind of avoidance?
      But I do agree with you on the obituary part. I’ve actually got some draft notes for my own – and it’s a very enlightnening experience to go through the process of writing your own too. Opens the eyes!
      Have you started doing yours?

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