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Funeral Pre-Planning Myth – My Family Knows What I Want

bigstock-Religion-death-and-dolor--f-24592586In my last blog post on the series Dispelling Myths About Funeral Preplanning, I discussed two more myths about funeral preplanning; that being the costs involved and misconceptions about cremation. In this blog post, we’ll address this myth: my family knows what I want………………..

I have heard this many times and more often than not, the family does not know what you want – either because you have not told them or the funeral directions are recorded in the will.

Sometimes funeral directions are included in the will. Unfortunately the will is generally read after the funeral. One family I know of had cremated their father as none of them recalled him talking about his preference. When they read the will, the funeral directions indicated that he wanted to be buried. What a shock for this family! At another funeral, two brothers were fist fighting at the cemetery – both adamant that dad wanted to be buried in the ground and the other brother equally adamant that dad had told him he wanted to be entombed in a crypt. This is not a good day for anyone.

The point to all of this is to let your family know what type of funeral service you would prefer. One lady I worked with had waited 4 years for her family to make some time to go with her to the funeral home and complete her funeral preplanning wishes. Finally she called me and asked if I would come over to her home and discuss the choices and options with funeral preplanning. I was delighted to do this. In the end she felt very proud of herself that she had her wishes finally recorded and on file with the funeral home. Furthermore, she asked me if I would make 4 copies of her file and mail it to each of her children. I was pleased to do this for her as well. A few months later I saw this lady again and asked her how things went with her family. Well she nearly double over with delight recounting how her family had not wanted to discuss this with her, yet when the envelopes came in the mail, their curiosity overtook them and they all opened the envelopes. They all called her and said how relieved they were that now that they knew what she wanted done. This was a huge sense of relief for her.

There is a Chinese proverb that says: The faded ink is better than the forgotten memory.

It is better to write down your funeral preferences outside of the will. This can be accomplished very easily. You can make an appointment with the funeral home of your choice and have the funeral director outline the choices they offer in funeral preplanning.  As discussed in my last blog post, your personal information will be recorded on file, a decision can be made with respect to cremation or burial and the third area of discussion would be the choice of merchandise. For cremation this can include a cremation container, or a rental/ceremonial casket, or a purchased casket, an urn, or an urn vault. For burial this will include a purchased casket and a vault.

Personalizing a funeral is perhaps the most interesting way to celebrate your unique life.  Your preferences for the type of service, the music, reading, photos, or flowers to be included will be noted on file. The type of reception if desired will also be recorded. Some people even draft out their eulogy and death notice!  These preferences are not carved in stone. It is a great beginning to at least have some of the decisions made ahead of time – this is the loving gift to your family.

To assist you further, the Ontario Board of Funeral Service has a guide to funeral planning. To obtain this guide, contact www.funeralboard.com or info@funeralboard.com.  This is a fantastic start. The next step is to contact your local funeral home and make an appointment to speak with a licensed Funeral Director. Depending on your questions, you will need about 45 minutes to go over the options and make your selections.

This leaves the funeral preplanning entirely up to you. With a little bit of your time, you have the opportunity to leave a loving legacy for your family and loved ones – as your legacy matters.

I’d love your feedback.  And, don’t forget I offer commentluv here on my site. This is a great opportunity to leave a link back to your own blog too!

Until next time,



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