Should you delay the funeral service after a death?

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Covid-19 has us asking this a lot.

Many want the big service and due to restrictions, people decide to delay it. But given that a funeral is the only culturally accepted and sanctioned event to kick off the grieving process, I think it’s important to do something shortly after the person dies. But what do you do?

Check state restrictions. Usually, an outdoor gathering is acceptable in most places provided guidelines are followed. For example, in the state of North Carolina for my father’s funeral, we were allowed to have 25 outside. We maintained physical distancing and wore masks even outdoors.

There are virtual options, too and many funeral homes offer this option. So ask.

Had we delayed my Dad’s service, when would we have had it? What kind of service would we have three months or six months later? The truth is we don’t know. It didn’t feel right to delay it indefinitely.

You can always have a celebration of life later. But that initial event to memorialize the death of someone you love right after it happens is important even if it’s a family picnic.

Published by

Anne Moss Rogers

I am an emotionally naked TEDx speaker, and author of the Book, Diary of a Broken Mind. I raised two boys, Richard and Charles, and lost my youngest son, Charles to substance use disorder and suicide June 5, 2015. I help people foster a culture of connection to prevent suicide, reduce substance misuse and find life after loss. My motivational, training and workshop topics include suicide prevention, addiction, mental illness, and grief. As talented and funny as Charles was, letting other people know they matter was his greatest gift. And now the legacy I try and carry forward in my son's memory. Professional Speaker Website. Trained in ASIST and trainer for the evidence-based 4-hour training for everyone called safeTALK.

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