Why funerals matter

As attitudes to death and dying become more pragmatic, some people are beginning to question the need for a funeral. However, it’s worth noting that the ritual of a send off is an important part of the grieving process.

While it’s not uncommon to hear people comment, somewhat flippantly, “I’ll be dead anyway, who cares if I have a funeral,” the reality is that a lot of people care. Funerals give friends and loved ones of someone who has died the chance to celebrate their life and to reach out to those who need supporting through their grief or indeed, receive some much needed support themselves.

Importantly, a funeral is about saying goodbye. Whether it’s someone you’ve known for a long time or have only recently met, saw every day or haven’t been in touch with for a long time, the need for a recognised farewell is strong.  A funeral is not for the person who has died, it’s about them and as such, it’s a reflection of their lives, loves and achievements.

Many of us may even remember our parents and grandparents commenting that the funeral they had just attended was, ‘a great day out’. This was generally as it had given them the chance to catch up with friends and family they may not usually see and reminisce about the good times they had shared with the deceased.

The focus of a funeral should be about celebrating the life of the deceased, while recognising the impact their death will have on the lives of other. This acknowledgement is important to allow the grieving process to commence. Only by accepting what you have lost, are you truly able grieve and begin to move on with your life without that person. This is what a funeral enables you to do.

Even researchers and psychologists recognise the importance of a funeral in not only assisting the grieving process by giving an opportunity to say goodbye, but also in reinforcing the fact that the death has actually happened. Denial of a death is a common barrier to dealing with grief.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that a funeral or celebration of someone’s life doesn’t need to be formal or elaborate affair. While some faiths and religions have certain rites that are often adhered to, a simple gathering in a favourite spot, backyard barbeque or graveside service is all perfectly acceptable ways of celebrating a life. Making it personal by choosing your favourite music, reading or even joke and sharing it with the person who will be arranging your send off, will ensure your funeral really does matter.

One way to ensure that you get the funeral you want is to arrange it yourself and perhaps consider prepaying to secure your funeral at today’s prices and save your family the financial burden.

White Lady Funerals has helped many families to ensure the farewell for a loved one is a true reflection of who the person was and what they meant to others. Preplanning a funeral with White Lady means you can create your funeral to reflect your wishes and help take the burden away from those you love at a difficult time. To request more information, visit Whiteladyfunerals.com.au

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