Understanding The Funeral Prearrangement Process

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A Funeral Service Is The Wrong Time To Bring Up These Topics

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When you attend funeral services, regardless of how well you knew the person being memorialized, your lone priority should be to support the person's surviving family members and convey your sympathy. It may occasionally be tempting to use the occasion to discuss other matters, and while some small talk or casual banter before and after the service might be acceptable if the family goes along with it, you shouldn't show up to the service with an agenda. Sometimes people attend a funeral with the intention of discussing the following — and highly inappropriate — topics, which is always a bad idea.

That The Person Owed You Money

It's certainly possible that someone who owes you money passes away before repaying you. And, in a sense, it might seem logical to show up to the funeral to discuss this matter with the person's surviving family members — after all, you might rationalize, the estate will soon be discussed and you want your situation to be known. Unfortunately, taking this approach is not appropriate for this setting. If you attend the funeral, focus on paying your respects. In the weeks after the event, you may think about contacting a family member to discuss your business.

That You're Related To The Family

There are cases in which a person has an extramarital affair that yields a child but keeps this news from his or her family. The child from the affair may learn that his or her parent has passed and wish to attend the funeral. Doing so is fine, as you're likely mourning the loss of your parent, but it's bad news to approach the surviving family members to share the news that you're related. This type of news is a shock on its own and could yield a less-than-favorable reaction during the stress of a funeral. If you wish to share this news, it's best kept for a later date.

That You Loved The Person

In some cases, you may have a longstanding affection toward someone who has passed away. Logically, you'll want to attend the funeral to pay your respects. But you definitely shouldn't share your secret with anyone, especially if the person was married. Even if the person never knew of your affection, blurting out this detail is inappropriate and can make for an extremely awkward moment at an event that is already stressful to many of those who are in attendance.