No one likes to think about death, but it’s an inevitable part of life. And when death does occur, it often falls on the shoulders of family members to make funeral arrangements. This can be a distressing and emotional time, made even more challenging if you have difficult family members.
The one thing that generally cannot be disputed is the day of the funeral since it is scheduled just after the date of the death. However, in the absence of any hard-fast funeral rule, everything from selecting a funeral home and the cost of a funeral, to choosing between funeral caskets can be a source of contention.
If you find yourself in this situation, here are a few tips on how to deal with difficult family members when arranging a funeral:
1. Keep communication open.
This is important for any situation, but especially when emotions are running high. Try to avoid arguments by maintaining an open line of communication. This doesn’t mean you have to agree on everything, but it will help to keep the peace.
2. Be respectful.
Even if family members are being difficult, it’s important to be respectful. This can be a painful time for everyone involved, so try to show understanding and patience.
3. Make sure everyone is on the same page.
Everyone must be on the same page when it comes to funeral arrangements. This can help to avoid any misunderstandings or disagreements. To do this, you may need to have a family meeting to go over all of the details.
4. Be firm.
If there are certain things you feel strongly about, don’t be afraid to stand your ground. After all, this is your loved one’s funeral and you should have a say in how it’s handled.
5. Seek outside help.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t hesitate to seek outside assistance. Sometimes it’s helpful to have an impartial third party to help facilitate communication and resolve conflicts.
Coping with Grief, Not Grievances
Unfortunately, these situations are quite common. Hence the reason why funeral pre-planning is often recommended; the decedent’s final wishes are carried out on their terms and their kin will not have to make decisions concerning funeral services.
The most important thing to remember is that during this time, your focus should be to celebrate the life of your loved one. Our funeral directors at Star of David Memorial Chapels on Long Island, New York, have experienced funeral planning discrepancies between family members and can work with all involved to agree on how to say your final goodbyes. Please get in touch with us at 631-454-9600.