Going to a funeral for the first time can be a bit daunting. This is one time when you definitely want to get things right!
- The most important thing is to show up.
- Find out the dress code.
- Give a gift and a card.
- Sign the register.
- Don't be afraid to laugh.
- Don't be afraid to view the body if there is an open casket.
- Bring the children, but don't let them be a disturbance.
- Turn your cell phone off! There is perhaps nothing worse than having your phone ring
during a funeral.
- Don't skip the receiving line.
Worried about what to say? Lots of people feel like they don't know what to say or how to support someone going through a crisis. We've made a free video called Beyond Cliches & Platitudes to help!
After The Funeral
A lot of people get support immediately after a funeral, the divorce or the disaster. But great support is what happens in the weeks, months, and even years afterward. Here's a few tips about what to offer help with after a funeral to spur your creativity. Let the relationship, their needs and your skill set be your guide.
- Help with writing the obituary or thank you notes
- Go grocery shopping
- Run errands
- House cleaning & repairs
- Yard upkeep
- Driving kids to school or activities
- Offer to take the kids out to a movie
- Offer to walk the pet
- Help sort through the deceased belongings
- Help decorate for the holidays
- ANSWER the phone when they call
Ed Preston is the Founder of The Grief & Trauma Resource Center, an online directory created to provide more accurate information to the general public about grief and trauma. His own decades long journey with grief has lead him down many paths. He holds a degree in Cultural Anthropology, is a scholar of the Orphan Wisdom School, and a breath meditation teacher.