Tips For Funeral Planning When Two Key Family Members Disagree


The death of a loved one brings with it lots of varied emotions. When conflicts over funeral planning arise, the situation becomes worse. How do you go through the funeral process without the added emotional baggage of conflict?

In other words, how do you ensure that such conflicts among family members are resolved speedily?

Advance Planning

It helps a lot when your loved one planned their funeral in advance. In such a case, you should respect the wishes of the dead, even if you don't agree with them.

Even then, conflict may still occur, There may be some issues on which the deceased was silent such as the names to be included in the obituary, the songs to be played or the names of the pall-bearers.

Honor Family Traditions

If no wish was expressed, discuss the matter privately with immediate family members. If you can't agree, consider doing what the family has always done. If the family has always cremated their dead, then choosing cremation may be more acceptable to the other party.

Legal Rights

You may choose to go the legal way. Find out who has the legal rights to make decisions on the deceased person's funeral. In Washington, for example, the spouse has a greater say, followed by adult children, then surviving parents.

So you can let the law take its course but that can leave other family members embittered and the family divided. For the sake of family unity, consensus may be a better option.

Understand Grief

People grieve differently and grief may cause people to behave abnormally. So take time to understand your family members. What appears to be a huge mountain may end up being a mere mole hill.

Make it about the Deceased

Remember you are planning the deceased person's funeral, not your own. Remembering this will keep you from imposing your ideas and will. Consider what the deceased would have loved. Consider spending your budget on unique items, such as headstones or custom grave plaques, that reflect the deceased's point of view. This is much better than arguing over the floral arrangement.

Now to the specifics:

The Memorial Service

The memorial service doesn't have to be one way or the other. You can have both a private viewing and a celebration of life function. Make sure the timings are not in conflict. Other family members and friends can attend the type of memorial they want or even both.


Share responsibilities with the other party. Don't take on too much. Compare notes often and ask for help if need be. Try as much as possible to get everyone on board.


Let everyone have the opportunity to speak. Let them turn it down if they don't want to. Allow them to express themselves in their own way.

The death of a loved one is already stressful as it is. You want the funeral planning to be as stress-free as possible. You will be able to grieve peacefully and heal faster. For more information, contact companies like An Thiel Monuments.