Everyone needs to understand that making decisions about funeral services has a profound effect on those left behind to deal with their grief. What we would like to accomplish in this section is to bring your awareness to the point that you are truly thinking about the emotional needs of your family.
We all tend to minimize our self worth. We make the mistake sometimes of thinking, “If I make my funeral as quick and easy as possible, I have saved those left behind from their grief.” This is simply not true.
Grief is a process that must be experienced. Everyone will experience the grief process in some degree.
The stages of grief are:
Each person will experience one stage or another for longer periods of time than will someone else. Some will seem to skip a stage all together. The important point to remember is we all will experience our grief.
Finding out and thinking about what your family needs is the key to helping them through their grief in a healthy way. The funeral is a very important, sometimes the most important tool for you or your family to get a healthy start to their grief process.
Minimizing your self worth even with good intentions can sometimes lead to a family is not having the opportunity to express their grief and feelings.
Some of the statements we hear from people are:
“I don’t want anyone looking at me after I’m gone.”
“If they wanted to see me they should have come to see me when I was alive.”
“Dad didn’t want a funeral, he just wanted to be cremated and his ashes spread somewhere.”
These statements and intentions are fine if they take into consideration what your family needs. (If you will look at the statements above, the person’s intentions are clear). They are trying to make their death and passing as easy on their family as they think is possible. We all want to help our family in every way we can. Sometimes we see that a person’s wishes expressed like this can do not meet the family’s needs, and can make the death harder for them.