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(25 Posts)
travelsafar Sat 10-Feb-18 08:02:42

My husband wants to pay for a low cost funeral for himself. This is just the cremation of his body with no service.His body would be taken by the funeral people to a crematorium anywhere they choose and his ashes bought back to me afterwards. He isnt religious and doesnt want a service, flowers or a wake.This is leaving me in a quandry.Because i know how he feels i know its a genuine want that he has thought through and researched. But what about me, his children from previous marrige, other people who know him. I am concerned of the fall out afterwards and how it will affect me too. Anyone else experienced one of these kind of funerals?? If i go first then obviously it wont be an issue, but if he does, it will worry me very much as i wouldn;t want to go against his wishes.

loopyloo Sat 10-Feb-18 08:13:05

Why don't you have a memorial gathering for him in a hall in a woodland setting and then dispose of his ashes as he has requested. Then perhaps go of to local pub for a meal. The humanist society might be able to help.

notnecessarilywiser Sat 10-Feb-18 08:16:54

I can understand his thinking about this, but also understand your viewpoint is slightly different. You could honour his wishes by holding a memorial supper/drinks/picnic/whatever to which friends and family could be invited. The format that would take could vary, but as long as you omitted any religious content it would provide the formal closure you're yearning for. And once his ashes have been returned to you, you could ask close family to accompany you to scatter them.

Perhaps you could encourage him to let a few key people know his wishes in advance so that it's generally known that you're complying with them when the time comes.

OldMeg Sat 10-Feb-18 08:22:17

That’s a good point about letting others know his wishes in advance. And I’m sure there will be many other good suggestions about how you and your family can mark his passing in your own way.

maryeliza54 Sat 10-Feb-18 08:26:20

I have a very robust position on funerals. They are for those left behind and people have no moral right to dictate how those left behind should mark his/her life. Funerals are part of the grieving process that the person who has died doesn’t have to go through for themselves. It’s very controlling to state your wishes in such a way without it being part of a wider discussion. In your position I’d do what I thought was right for the bereaved and completely ignore any arrangements he’s made. All I want for my funeral is that it comforts those that will need comforting.

BlueBelle Sat 10-Feb-18 08:28:28

I can see both sides but totally endorse your husband as his wishes need to be honoured and he obviously wants no expense or religious ceremony
I think the idea of a gathering to scatter his ashes perhaps a drink or meal afterwards in his memory is the ideal one
If you want an obituary in the local paper say no funeral as per husbands request (in better wording than that) then you won’t get a load of questions from friends and acquaintances
I hope you have a lot more years together it’s very important he should let his immediate family know his wishes as well just in case you do go first

jusnoneed Sat 10-Feb-18 08:34:07

I have told my OH that I am to be cremated with no service, he didn't believe you can choose that option (he still questions it) but it's the way I want it done. He told me to write it down so no one would wonder why, so it's in my will and also written on separate paper.
I always wonder why people who haven't had contact with someone for years pops along to their funeral. OH has gone to a couple peoples who he worked with years ago but hasn't seen or spoken too since.

tanith Sat 10-Feb-18 08:55:19

I have had this discussion with my family and cremation with no service then a family gathering to maybe scatter my ashes is what I would prefer and my children are fine to do that but OH has convinced me that as others have said the funeral is for those left behind and prefers a traditional service. I wasn't happy but can see his point of view and will now leave it to him if I go first but otherwise I will have things my way.

vampirequeen Sat 10-Feb-18 08:58:45

I've looked into this for myself. I understand that for a couple of hundred pounds extra you can have a say in where the cremation takes place and a few mins with the deceased before they take it to the ovens. That way you can say your last goodbyes without a formal service. They let you play music and someone could say something appropriate.

MissAdventure Sat 10-Feb-18 09:08:56

I quite fancy the idea of this kind of 'send off' for myself.
I don't want and can't afford thousands to spend on all the costs, and I can be remembered in a much cheaper way, I'm sure.

shysal Sat 10-Feb-18 09:12:50

I was about to start a new thread on the same subject, so will be interested in the way this goes. I have decided to request that the DDs organize a simple creation with no service. I would rather the cost of a big 'do' went into the inheritance pot for them instead. I am a non-believer so have no qualms. They could have a simple gathering in my favourite woods to scatter the ashes. However, one DD is a church-goer and may be upset with my decision. Her sister is in agreement but I haven't dared to bring it up with the other yet!
I am also wondering whether to pre-pay now or let them shop around when the time comes. The cost now is £1000-1,500, a huge saving on the 'whistles and bells' option. What will those of you making this choice do about payment?

shysal Sat 10-Feb-18 09:14:01

Cremation not creation! smile

petra Sat 10-Feb-18 09:15:11

My family won't even have a body as I have donated it.
But they can have it back after 3 yrs if they want.
I think I know what they will say when contacted after 3 yrs grin

vampirequeen Sat 10-Feb-18 09:17:59

I don't intend to die until I'm well over a hundred so not going to pay for it yet. After all by then we may be disposing of bodies in a totally different, environmentally friendly way. Maybe they'll turn me into fertiliser and use me to grow food for the living.

Charleygirl Sat 10-Feb-18 09:21:56

Costs of funerals go up every year so I have paid for mine in advance and the cost will not change.

I am not religious so I also would want to by pass a church service and go straight to the crematorium. This was a conversation I had this week when we were having a meal out- it ended up in laughter.

Grandma70s Sat 10-Feb-18 17:22:56

As I said on another thread, my father left his body to medical research, so there was no funeral. We had a big family lunch. It worked very well and seemed very fitting. We are not a religious family, so a service would have been inappropriate. We left it to the university doing the research to dispose of ashes, though they offered to return them to us eventually.

Oh, I see Petra has said something similar.

I don’t want a funeral and have told my children so. I don’t think they will go against that, because we all feel much the same way about these things. I will donate my body if I get round to it.u

M0nica Sat 10-Feb-18 17:59:17

Funeral plans are for the living, once someone is dead their purpose is over.

My family know I want a family-only funeral, a wicker coffin, no flowers and a woodland burial and I feel content that that will happen, but once I die they can do what they like because I will know nothing about it. They may choose an 'East end' funeral with a hearse, mahogany coffin with lots of brass and huge floral tributes saying 'Mum'. As long as they support my plans while I am alive that is all that really matters.

hildajenniJ Sat 10-Feb-18 18:08:29

I've made my wishes clear to my DD who I assume will organise my funeral. Simple service in Church or at the Crematorium, cremation, and my ashes scattered into flowing water.
I was at my cousin's funeral a couple of years ago. We sat at the Crematorium, listened to some of his favourite music, and then the committal. It all lasted about 10-15 minutes. His children had organised a wake at his favourite pub, with food, live music and good company, just as he had wanted. It was quite surreal at the Crematorium but a really fitting send off.

judypark Sat 10-Feb-18 18:50:33

Word of caution, donating your body to medical science is easy but the acceptance rate is very low.
Basically if you have not died of something rare or had an unusual syndrome they will not consider you.
Travelsafar, I would respect your husbands wishes and so should his children.

Farmor15 Sat 10-Feb-18 19:11:37

Donating body to medical school is definitely the cheapest option. Both my parents and my aunt did this and all were accepted. Medical schools use them to teach students anatomy- they’re not normally used for research.
There may be other places to donate which only want people with unusual conditions, as Judypark said.
The body needs to be complete, so no organ donation or amputations. My mother had lost an eye due to cancer, and had a glass one. She was very keen to donate her body, as husband and sister had done, so she used to tell me “don’t tell them about the eye” , as she was afraid they wouldn’t take her if they knew. We used to speculate about the medical student who discovered that one eye was glass!

loopyloo Sat 10-Feb-18 19:19:28

I have heard that you can take the body straight to the crematorium without using an undertaker at all. Not sure how true that is but the staff at crematoria are usually very helpful. The crem forms have to be filled in by 2 doctors, not sure how you would arrange this.

Alima Sat 10-Feb-18 19:26:54

Maybe you could have a gathering of his friends and family at a later date to celebrate his life and scatter his ashes travelsafar? (I want the same sort of cremation-only service as your DH after giving this a lot of thought. Unless I pop off in the very near future DH will go sooner than me, according to his diagnosis. Apart from my DDs and DGC I have no family who would be able to come to my funeral. I have lost several dear friends in the last few months. The thought of my two DDs grieving alone in a near empty crematorium fills me with horror. Far better for them to remember me in some way and scatter my ashes. I now have to sell the idea to them).

MamaCaz Sat 10-Feb-18 20:16:12

DH and I have discussed this possibility recently and both of us would like to do the same ourselves when the time comes. I don't imagine our sons will have a problem with the idea (so far we have only had the opportunity to mention it to one of them), and they can still have a gathering to scatter our ashes if they wish, so I don't think we would be depriving them of anything.

PamelaJ1 Sat 10-Feb-18 20:17:06

Two threads on funerals at the moment.
I went to my Sister in laws on Thursday. Very fitting service for her, she had planned it herself and the celebrant was the one from her church.
I am not religious so mine would be very different. In fact like others on here I would be quite happy to make the journey on my own. However my family may feel differently so I will give them, in fact I already have, a few of my views but also give them the freedom to do what they like.
My mum and dad never wanted to talk about death so when the time came I feel it was more difficult for my mum. She didn’t really know what he wanted so decisions were more difficult. I think it would give comfort to know you were doing what your loved one wanted. Anything that makes a very sad time easier surely has to be good?
He didn’t specify where he wanted his ashes to go so he is still in the cupboard! She feels that just scattering him anywhere would be like throwing him away.
Please - those of you who want to leave your body for medical research be aware that they may not want it. So have a contingency plan!

Morgana Sat 10-Feb-18 20:20:26

For me funerals are all about celebrating the life of the deceased. I have been to some lovely services in the crematorium where friends and family are given the opportunity to say something or to put a flower on the coffin. Obviously if it is for someone still young then it will be a much sadder occasion.