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Let's Not Talk About That Now...

By Jennifer Kay

(Page 2 of 2)

How important is the location? Is convenience for visiting, beauty of the cemetery or being in or near the family plot the greatest priority? If a cemetery is located in a residential neighborhood, how will you feel as the neighborhood changes? Is this your second marriage and which spouse would you like to be buried with? Do you want to purchase extra plots for unmarried siblings or children and their families? These re just a few of the questions you need to consider.

What are my family’s values about funerals and cemeteries?

Often, I hear people saying things like “Just give me the cheapest funeral possible: I wont be here to know the difference.” While this may make economic sense to you, it frequently leaves those behind without a sense of closure. Funerals are a time for people (whether it is 2 or 200) to come together too say good-bye and honor the deceased. It is important for your family to have a dialogue and have everyone’s feelings considered. In addition, not everyone in a family has the same religious beliefs. These feelings need to be considered also. Usually most everyone’s needs can be respected if discussed in advance.

Remember that pre-arrangements are a blueprint for your wishes. While funeral or cemetery pre-need counselors can help you with these decisions they cannot anticipate all your family’s needs. Therefore these arrangements are flexible and can be changed. At the time of death, your funeral director will meet with a spokesperson for the family and review all the arrangements to make sure the family information is correct and current. At that time, adjustments will be made if needed. Before you choose a funeral director and cemetery, you might want to take the time to visit the facility and meet the staff who will be working with you.

Consider whether or not you have talked with your family about this important topic. While many people feel that their family can take care of this at the time of their death, they do their surviving family no service by leaving it till then! Like any other major purchase you would make, you should be an informed consumer and get the information in advance.


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