Taking the time to talk 

Imagine that, some time in the far future, you are watching your funeral from the afterlife. You note that a pleasingly large number of your friends, neighbours and colleagues have come along to your final farewell, along with your extended family. Then you gaze at the body in the open casket and realise with horror that you’ve been dressed in that outfit that you never wore because it was so unflattering and only kept because it cost so much.

You might think, “If only I had talked to my family about what I want for my funeral”.

It’s not always easy to think about, let alone talk about your own death. But if you take the time to consider how you would like to be fare-welled and talk about it with your family, then you could save your family some stress when the time comes. Instead of having to make decisions about coffin finishes and song sheets, your family can focus on supporting each other in their bereavement.

If you have prepaid for your funeral then it makes even more sense to consider how you might want that money spent.

Some things to think about are:
  • Funeral service or memorial?
    • In a chapel, the family home, a favourite place in the outdoors?
    • What outfit do you want to be dressed in? 
    • Do you have particular songs that should be played or sung before, during or after the ceremony?
    • Who would you like to speak at the ceremony, and are there any particular stories about you that you’d like them to include?
    • Do you have photos or mementos that you would like to be displayed at the funeral?
  • Would you prefer to be buried or cremated? If you choose cremation, do you have a specific wish about what to do with your ashes?
  • Conventional or eco-friendly casket - or shroud?
  • If you will have a headstone, what would you like inscribed on it?
If you don’t know where to start, you can view our information about funerals.