Gransnet forums


Has anyone ever been to......

(24 Posts)
Lazigirl Sat 19-Oct-19 10:22:44

A "Death Cafe"? Death is a fairly taboo subject in our culture, but I wondered if anyone had ever been to a "Death Cafe" or something similar and what the experience was like, and was it helpful?

I ask because I am interested in getting involved in something similar in my area.

Davida1968 Sat 19-Oct-19 10:25:28

Sadly I haven't seen one in our area, but my sibling went to one (in the Midlands) - said it was very good and that it was worthwhile going to it.

Fiachna50 Sat 19-Oct-19 10:27:15

Sounds like a fun day out.

EllanVannin Sat 19-Oct-19 10:52:49

Sounds like an Agatha Christie novel where tea/coffee is laced.

MissAdventure Sat 19-Oct-19 10:57:08

Can't say its top of my "to-do list".
I'm sure i'll manage to die anyway.

BradfordLass72 Sun 20-Oct-19 04:50:35

I wonder if they sell, "Fly Cemeteries" aka Eccles Cakes, in a Death Cafe?

I'm sure you can get black coffee and Hot Cross Buns.

I've heard Death Cafes are becoming popular simply because we do not feel easy about talking death. Maybe this will change things.

. If you want to smoke your coffin nails, go outside.

NanKate Sun 20-Oct-19 07:23:56

What is a Death Cafe ?

Barmeyoldbat Sun 20-Oct-19 07:53:06

Not been to one but I have seen one advertised in our library. My gd wanted to know when you die when do you get your angel wings? Maybe they can answer that question.

BlueBelle Sun 20-Oct-19 07:56:58

Never ever heard of one and can’t imagine what it is
Is it information about funerals and the like or is people sitting around discussing death over a cup of coffee?
How bizarre this world gets stranger day by day

Esspee Sun 20-Oct-19 07:57:35

Never heard of one. Would anyone care to enlighten those of us who haven't a clue what you are talking about?

Urmstongran Sun 20-Oct-19 08:02:49

I’ve heard of them too. I think the idea is for bereaved people to get together in a supportive space to enable them open up and discuss the deaths of loved ones.

Not for me, but I daresay some lonely people might find them helpful if they wish to talk. I’m more in line to think misery loves misery. Sorry.

MissAdventure Sun 20-Oct-19 10:45:40

I just looked it up.
According to its a place to drink tea and discuss death.

LondonGranny Sun 20-Oct-19 11:01:50

I have a friend who was involved in setting one up in Wales. She does cancer care. It's really about talking about something that's become taboo in modern society and leaves people adrift when the inevitable happens. It's the one thing that happens to everyone and yet there's a sort of collective denial about it.

Grannybags Sun 20-Oct-19 12:00:15

Can't say it would be anything I'd want to go to after the death of a loved one but each to his own

Lazigirl Sun 20-Oct-19 12:21:48

I'm not surprised that people are negative about this, particularly if suffering a bereavement.

I feel anxious about death, as many people do, but it got me thinking about how death has become sanitised in our culture, after attending a talk by Erica Buist. She began writing a book about death festivals in various countries, after being completely traumatised by the sudden death of a member of her family. She was so unprepared for the anxiety it caused.

Some recent research showed that we generally put up numerous defences to stave off thoughts of death, and generally see it as a problem for other people, but that it will not happen to us.

I wonder if we were more able, and it was easier to talk about death in everyday situations, it would help to lift our phobia and taboos around death?

The Guardian had an article on Death Cafes in 2014, "What on earth is a death cafe" if anyone interested.

grannyactivist Sun 20-Oct-19 12:59:43

As a Chaplain who delivers end of life care it is often my role to discuss death with people and I wholeheartedly support the 'death cafe' model.

Death is, for many people, a very worrying subject, but not one that is easily discussed. If it is brought into a conversation the most frequently reported response is that it is 'morbid' to even talk about it.

adjective: morbid
Characterized by an abnormal and unhealthy interest in disturbing and unpleasant subjects, especially death and disease.

So here we have a dictionary definition that seems to confirm death as a 'disturbing and unpleasant' subject. Death Cafes aim to normalise discussions around the subject; after all, death comes to everyone, so along with birth it is most definitely a 'normal' experience. The cafes are attended by some people who are facing bereavement or who are grieving, but primarily they are there to provide an opportunity to talk about death in general terms before it touches us personally.

watermeadow Sun 20-Oct-19 19:57:09

Japan has Cat Cafes where you can cuddle the resident cats. Obviously in a Death Cafe you cuddle dead people. That’s called necrophilia.

notanan2 Sun 20-Oct-19 20:05:47

Its not for the bereaved, although they would be welcome.

Its about normalising death, as it is as much part of life as birth.

There is one in my area. I havent been as I do not particularly avoid or fear the subject, so dont feel I need to, but it is popular

notanan2 Sun 20-Oct-19 20:06:44

There are cat cafes in England too.

The responses to this thread are why death cafes exist.

Lazigirl Mon 21-Oct-19 09:45:33

Thank you for your knowledgeable contribution grannyactivist. I've been met with the "morbid" response also, and many clearly just don't want to talk about it.

The fact as you say, is that it comes to us all, however hard we try to distract ourselves.

I just wish that by acknowledging and normalising discussions around death, it may remove some of the fear, and acknowledging the fragility of life may help us to live to the full.

notanan2 Mon 21-Oct-19 09:47:54

Well there clearly are many who DO want to talk about it as my local one is busy.

Those who think its "morbid" can stay away its not compulsary (although arguably they may be the ones who need it most!)

crazyH Mon 21-Oct-19 09:52:54

Looks like my bedroom is a death cafe for flies - found 3 dead flies on my window sill this morning.

petra Mon 21-Oct-19 10:00:44

I don't have a problem with talking about death. In fact me and my daughter often have 'dark sense of humour' conversations on the subject.

My lovely neighbour has a long running joke that if I don't hear that she's dead I'll soon know when her jug collection comes into the charity shop where I volunteer 😄

Fiachna50 Mon 21-Oct-19 10:06:05

Each to their own but not for me Im afraid. I know plenty about death having lost numerous family and many before they got anywhere near 40. Lost a few friends too. If it helps other folks fine. Ive had enough discussions about death, because Ive HAD to have them. Don't want to spend any spare time I have left talking about death if I don't need to.