Death is still a taboo subject amongst many Australians, and is understandably something people prefer to put to the back of their minds, rather than bring to the front of a conversation. Quite often, it’s not until we’re left without the choice that we talk about the death of us or someone else.
This is especially true when somebody in your family, a partner or a close friend has a long-term or terminal illness. It’s a tough time for all, and people often prefer to ignore the inevitable, as it’s painful and they don’t want to upset the dying. However, research has found that a third of seriously ill elderly people in hospital don’t receive the end-of-life care they want, because no one has spoken to them about their wishes.
It’s so important to live your life for “the now”, but it’s also important to plan for the future. Use this time to ensure your family knows about your end-of-life wishes. Talk about everything that matters to you – from the hospital care you do/don’t want to receive at the end of your life, to your choice between a burial and cremation, and even to the kind of theme or song you want to be played at your funeral.
Not only does this bring you the peace-of-mind that you’ll get to say goodbye in the way you want, but it also lessens the burden of decisions for your family. It’s difficult for families to make choices about their loved one’s funeral service, if no one has had the conversation and they’re unsure if they’re really honouring their wishes.
It’s natural to feel as though you’re protecting your family by ignoring the subject of death. Maybe your children brush off the conversation when you bring it up, or they’re notably uncomfortable with it. You and them may also feel as though you’re destroying hope if you accept that you’re going to die soon.
However, we have found that families that have already spoken about life after death are better equipped to handle the time when it does arrive. Your relatives understand what you want without having to guess, and have already begun to accept and talk about their feelings during this difficult time.
Another important way to prepare your family for your passing is to write a will, so there’s no confusion over who will inherit your estate and assets once you’re gone. If you don’t have a next of kin, consider choosing a person you trust to take on the responsibilities of your end-of-life care and funeral arrangements. Consider a prepaid funeral to take off the financial burden for your loved ones, and to rest in the knowledge that your money is being properly managed and taken care of.
We’re always here to talk. Affordable Cremations is a family-owned funeral business that is compassionate towards your wishes and those of your family. Contact us during any time of the day for more information about our services.