Talking about Death and Dying

Talking about Death and Dying discussed by MW Funeral Directors

Talking about death and dying is a really difficult conversation to have with your loved ones, however, it is a very important one. Our article talks about why it is so important, why people don’t, the things that need to be discussed and what can happen if you don’t talk about it.

Why is it so important talking about death and dying?

It’s a subject we all want to avoid talking about, however, it is such an important one. You probably know in your mind what you want to happen when you pass away but actually taking the time to talk about it often doesn’t happen and can cause upset and disagreements when you have passed. 

The first thing you should think and talk about is if you want to be cremated or buried. Some people find this really difficult to even think about but its better that you decide than your loved ones having to make the decision when you have passed away.

Some people prefer the thought of being buried with nature or maybe next to other family members and some people prefer the thought of cremation so their ashes can stay with their loved ones or be scattered in a place that they loved when they have passed. There really is no right or wrong decision and it is down to personal choice.

If you take the time to talk about this with your loved ones then it saves them a difficult decision when the time comes. There really is nothing worse than trying to cope with the passing of a loved one and having to make these sorts of decisions and worrying it may not have been what they wanted, so the easiest thing to do is talk about it and make your wishes known. 

If you decide you want to be buried then you can decide where your final resting place will be; weeks, months or years beforehand. You can choose and pay for your burial plot way before your time comes and it makes the decisions for your loved ones easier when you have passed. 

If you decide on a cremation then think and talk about where you would like that to be, again its another difficult decision you have to make if you haven’t spoken about this before. Talk to your loved ones if there is a special place that when the time is right for them that you would want your ashes to be scattered. 

Do you want a traditional funeral or more of a memorial service? Traditional funerals are normally held in a religious place by a minister, priest or celebrant before the burial or the cremation. Memorial services are less traditional and can be held in a non-religious location, normally taking place after the burial or cremation. 

Questions to ask yourself and talk about before you pass away:

Do you want flowers at your funeral or would you prefer people to make donations to a charity that is close to your heart instead?

Do you want a traditional service where the guests wear black or would you like people to wear bright colours, or your favourite colour to remember you?

Do you want funeral cars to take your loved ones to your service following you in the hearse and if so who would you want to travel in the cars?

Are there any songs, hymns, readings or poems you would like to be read during the service?

Is there anyone you want to do your eulogy at your service?

Is there anyone you would like to do any religious or non-religious readings at your funeral?

Do you want a wake after your service and do you have any ideas where you might like this to be?

Who would you want to be at your funeral?

All of these things are difficult to think and talk about but will make a huge difference to the people you leave behind if they know what you want or you have talked to them about the ideas you had for it.

If you haven’t made your wishes clear then this can cause upset and disagreements when you pass, making an already difficult and emotional time more difficult for your loved ones.

Put time aside to talk about passing away and your wishes when you die and then you can be satisfied you have done it and you don’t need to think, talk or worry about it again.

dyingWhy people don’t talk about death and dying?

It’s just not an easy thing to think and talk about so it is often a conversation that is avoided. You don’t want to think of yourself as not being here any more with your loved ones, you don’t want to think about leaving your loved ones behind and worrying about how they will cope without you. Most of us love living and love our lives so talking about the end of that really is difficult. Some people are OK with thinking and talking about when they pass but their loved ones don’t want to talk about it as in their minds if they don’t talk about it then it won’t happen.

We are conditioned to live not to die and often this is a reason for not talking about dying. They are thoughts far from our minds and something we would rather avoid than face up to that eventually we will all pass away.

Some people feel that if they talk about dying it could tempt fate and they could suddenly become unwell or have an accident. In reality, this is not the case, however, knowing this doesn’t stop you feeling this way. 

Busy lives can and do stop us from thinking or talking about dying. We can get swept up in the busyness of it all and the idea that it won’t ever happen to us or our loved ones. People often avoid it because they have too many other things to worry about, work, finances, children, parents and so on, so it is often thoughts and conversations that don’t happen and people think it can be talked about another day. 

What are the things that need to be discussed about dying?

Whether someone is unwell or just elderly and near the end of their life then it is a good thing to talk about what happens to their home, their belongings, their finances and their funeral arrangements when they pass. It is also a really good thing to talk about their life, their achievements, the good things and times you have shared and how much you love them so you both know you have shared your feelings and emotions together which is often a comfort when they pass. Even if either of these isn’t the case then we advise that these things are still talked about when you are alive. 

About MW Funeral Directors

MW Funeral Directors is an independent funeral director based in Bristol who provide funeral directing services to families in Bristol, South Gloucester and further afield.

We have over 25 years of experience in the funeral industry and understand the stress and emotion involved when preparing for a funeral. No matter what your faith or non-faith, we can be there to advise and support you through this emotional time. 

Our personal service begins as soon as we meet. One of our team will help and advise you on the certificates required and the authorities that should be informed. We can help book the church or crematorium, arrange transportation of the body into our care before burial or cremation, liaise with the cemetery or crematorium and conduct the funeral itself if that is what you want. We will give you advice and offer you suggestions of what you might like for your own or your loved one’s funeral to help you make it a personal and individual day.

As a small, independent Funeral Directors we are able to spend as much time with you as you need, we will be with you throughout the planning process and on the day of the funeral we will be dedicated to your family alone.

We are signatories of the Fair Funerals Pledge, committed to providing outstanding funeral care that is accessible for all.

We offer a funeral planning service which gives you the opportunity to plan your own funeral and enable you to talk about your wishes, death and dying with your loved ones before you pass. This removes some of the difficult decisions they will have and some of their funeral arrangements when you pass. 

Contact us on 0117 950 4100 and one of our professional, kind and compassionate team will be able to answer any questions you might have.