Whether you speak to a parent, spouse, or close relative, talking about funeral preplanning can be challenging. While the timing never seems to be right, discussing the particulars of funeral arrangements in advance provides emotional and practical preparation for when someone passes away. Here is some guidance on reviewing the benefits and beginning the conversation.

The Benefits of Funeral Preplanning

Whether it’s you or a loved one, one of the main advantages of making plans is having a say on how you want to be remembered. Funeral preplanning provides clear details on whether you want a private memorial or a service with a graveside gathering. From the music selection and list of life achievements to the speaker who gives the eulogy, you’re in complete control of creating a funeral that follows your wishes.

Another benefit of funeral preplanning is that it relieves family members from taking on the costs of paying for the service. Most plans are structured so that payments are affordable and can be made in installments. There are also several prepayment plans that include all the funeral features you want. Not having to worry about the expenses after a loved one passes away offers some peace of mind to surviving relatives.

How to Start the Conversation

funeral preplanningApproach the topic with a gentle question, such as, “What are your thoughts about funeral preplanning?” Give your loved one time to consider their answer. Their response might run the gamut from confusion to anger and sadness. Based on their emotional state, ask about the motivation behind what they’re feeling. Listen without judgment. It may be necessary to put the topic on the shelf for another day.

If they’re receptive to talking about it, discuss the benefits listed above. Emphasize how preplanning provides the opportunity to be in charge of how they want to be remembered. Ask about the possibility of meeting with a funeral home director who can discuss prepayment options. Seeing available choices may help reduce the reluctance to move forward and make plans. Throughout the conversation, offer to be there every step of the way. If you’re planning your own funeral, seek support as needed.


Discussing funeral plans is probably one of the hardest talks to have. The compassionate and experienced staff at Shirley Brothers Mortuaries & Crematory specializes in helping families navigate the emotional process. Based in Indianapolis, IN, the family-owned funeral home’s humble beginnings go back to 1898. You can count on clear and concise information on funeral preplanning services. To learn more, call (317) 897-9606 to speak to a professional, and go online for additional guidance.