FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Below is a list of
questions and responses that we commonly receive at the funeral home.
We will continue to include any new questions in this section that we
feel would be helpful to others.
If you have a question that has not been covered in this site we would like to hear from you. You may use the "Ask the Director" section of our site to forward your question or comments to us.
you would prefer to call us on the telephone, our staff would be
pleased to provide an answer to any funeral related matter you may
have. If we do not have the answer immediately, we will find it for you
and contact you the minute the information is in our hands.
|What do you do when a death occurs?|
|When a death occurs anywhere other than within a health care facility, the first task is to notify the authorities by dialing 9-1-1. The responding authorities will then guide your next actions. At some point, the responding authorities or the health care facility staff will ask which funeral home you want to have called.|
Most people are reluctant to telephone funeral homes and ask for the consumer information they have the right to expect. However, every funeral home is required by law to give you information, including price information over the telephone. Asking questions about services available, prices, and the availability of payment plans is a good way to help yourself choose a funeral home. If you encounter a firm that is hesitant or not helpful in response to your questions, you are encouraged to continue your search for service that will satisfy you.
Outlining the type of service you want or that your family has used in the past is a good way of evaluating the firm you have called. If the person you are talking to is a good listener, is free with information and is comfortable to talk to, then often you may find that they will be supportive of your needs. Do not hesitate to call several firms. There is rarely such haste required that you do not have time to carefully select a funeral home.
|How do you cope with anticipated death?|
|When a death is anticipated, there are a number of things you can do in advance to ease the stress. First, many people find it useful and gratifying to spend time with the person who is dying to ensure that their relationship is complete. It is a chance to make amends for past differences, tie up loose ends, and celebrate the life of the affected person. This may be done individually, or as a family or community group.|
Secondly, many practical preparations can be made, including review of wills and organ donation plans, as well as finding out the individual's wishes about burial or cremation. With time to plan, a funeral home can be carefully interviewed and selected and information can be gathered and discussed with the chosen funeral home and/or cemetery. (see also preplanning) Family and friends can also be contacted and assigned tasks such as letting others know and supporting the immediate family. Preparing for an anticipated death can be a powerful and often healing experience. Interacting with others may ease the pain, create support and ease the burdens. An anticipated death can be a time to deepen the relationships with the people we know and love.
|Why do you need a funeral home?|
|As a matter of law it is not necessary to use the services of a funeral home when a death occurs. It is legal for a family to handle all the details, transport the deceased and to obtain and process all of the legal documents themselves.|
However, for practical reasons almost no one wishes to do this without the assistance of a funeral home. The average family is not experienced in the intricacies of law, does not have the equipment and is too emotionally involved to be effective.
A funeral home like Mountain View has an experienced staff, the equipment needed to respectfully and sanitarily handle and transport human remains, and the expertise to efficiently obtain all of the necessary legal documents. In addition, their knowledge of the options available to the family will help ensure that the services are customized in ways that specifically meet the family's needs.
It is unrealistic to think that anyone can be an expert in a process that they do so infrequently. The staff of your funeral home is available to you and your family as a very valuable resource to explain options, alternatives, legalities and other details.
|Why Do You Need a Cemetery?|
|Throughout history, burial sites have provided a place for survivors to visit, to reflect, to remember, and to heal. The magnitude of a death, and the massive dislocation of relationships that occurs is too much for most people to absorb at one time. Periodic visits to a cemetery assist many survivors, over the months or years that it takes to adjust to a loss, to return to a life now lived without the person who has died.|
A cemetery also provides a link with history. How many people, perhaps even yourself, find a visit to a pioneer cemetery to be inspirational? Here lie our ancestors, the heroes of wars, the pioneers who developed our community, the friends and neighbors who helped us grow up, our teachers, and role models. There is no reason that a person's father or mother should not be just as important a memory and be worthy of as much reflection and gratitude as a president, a rock star, or any other very important person. It is only false modesty that obscures this fact.
An additional reason we need cemeteries is that in our modern society it would be irresponsible to bury human remains or even cremated remains in property not dedicated to that purpose. Very few of us stay in one residence for very long, in time the property will surely be sold to another. Imagine how difficult it would be to sell or buy property where human remains were buried. In fact, to bury non-cremated human remains in other than a dedicated cemetery is a violation of Washington State Statutes.
|Should children attend the funeral service?|
|Children grieve just as adults do. Any child old enough to love and form relationships is old enough to grieve. Children's grief is often demonstrated in ways we don't understand. They may become moody, cranky, withdrawn, or exhibit other changed behavior patterns. When a death occurs, children need to be surrounded by feelings of warmth, acceptance and understanding. This may be a tall order for adults who are experiencing their own grief. Caring adults can guide children through this time when the child is experiencing feelings and has no words to identify them. This time can be a growing experience for the child, teaching them about love and relationships.|
The first task is to create an atmosphere is which the child's thoughts, fears and wishes are recognized. This means that they be allowed to participate in any of the arrangements, ceremonies, and gatherings they are comfortable with. Explain what is happening and why it is happening at a level they can understand. A child may not be able to speak at a funeral for a loved one, but can benefit greatly from drawing a picture or writing a letter to be put in the casket or displayed at the service. Be aware of short attention spans - and that they may need to leave a service or gathering before the adults are ready. Many families provide a non-family attendant to care for children in this event.
The key is to allow participation, not enforce it. Forcing participation can be harmful. Children instinctively have a good sense of how involved they need to be. They should be listened to - carefully.
Mountain View has a trained bereavement counselor who is available to answer any questions you might have. Their lending library also has good material on this and other grief related topics.
|What is a Traditional Funeral Service?|
|There is a wide range of services, from simple to elaborate, that can be considered traditional services, but one thing they all share is a recognition that throughout time societies have demonstrated over and over again that acknowledging the death of a community member is essential to the future adjustment of the family, friends and the community.|
A traditional funeral service is the type of service that a particular family, ethnic or religious group has established as being most compatible with its beliefs and traditions.
In most of these groups a traditional funeral service includes several common elements. A gathering of the family and community is held at a church or funeral home, most often with the casketed body present. The casket may be open or closed. There is a defined order of service. The service is often followed by burial but in some traditions may be followed by cremation.
In terms of function the service is normally organized by custom, tradition or religious law to provide a structure for the mourning and grief process, and is purposeful in speaking of the death and loss. The traditional service is time limited to provide a pattern for survivors to follow during adjustment to the loss, but is also flexible to meet the individual needs and patterns of the survivors. Traditional services are group centered, inviting the participation of all members of the community of the deceased.
At Mountain View Funeral Home we have the trained staff and beautiful facilites to help you plan exactly the traditional service you want.
|What are the costs of traditional services?|
|Funeral homes charge a basic fee which covers the common services everyone who uses the funeral home will need. Some of the services included in this basic fee are the staff for the removal of the remains from the place of death to the funeral home, use of the basic facilities of the funeral home, and staff services for a basic arrangement conference.|
In addition to the common services, a family may choose optional services such as embalming, dressing and cosmetology or items like certified death certificates, newspaper obituary notices, flowers, and printed materials. The use of the funeral home chapel, and/or visitation rooms, and the use of automotive equipment are also considered optional services as is a casket or other container for the remains. The family may also choose to have a reception following the service, or other merchandise or services that are generally optional.
It is very difficult to accurately estimate the cost of a funeral as there is no standard with which to compare costs, however some basic guide lines may be useful. The national average for a full traditional funeral is approximately $5500 to $7000, with the Tacoma area average to be more likely about $5800. Mountain View's average full traditional funeral is $4,500.00. A recent survey indicated that the basic services of a funeral home in the Tacoma area will range from $400 to $3265 with our basic service charge at $985.00. Caskets are likely to range from $24,995 for a copper or bronze casket to under $400 for a cloth covered casket. The casket price range at Mountain View is $8,315.00 to $305.00. The average casket purchase is in the $1400 to $2500 range.
|What is a memorial service?|
|Today there are many ways to organize and conduct celebrations which acknowledge that a life has been lived and that a death has occurred. Memorial services and receptions are often chosen as a simplification of a traditional service. Most of the time the phrase 'memorial' service means the body will not be present at the service. Some personalized formats used include: a service in a funeral chapel without the casket present; a service or party at a workplace, favorite park, or camping spot; a sports event, dinner, art show, or other event that is reflective of the life of the deceased and dedicated to the person who has lived. Other options include an open house at home, a retirement center, or at a favorite gathering place with a special social group.|
Pictures of the deceased, memorabilia from his or her life, hobby items or mementos may be brought to the place of gathering as a way of focusing on the person being remembered. At these gatherings family members, friends or a clergy person may present a program of reminiscence at which members of the community or social groups exchange favorite stories of the deceased and reflect on the contributions made by that person. The important thing is that the event acknowledges the mourning process, the death, and the loss that follows. It should also encourage the expression of feelings and speak directly about the individual life that has been lived.
Receptions, where coffee and cookies or more elaborate food is provided, may follow memorial services or traditional services, or may be the principal form of the remembrance service. Receptions give the family and friends an opportunity to support each other in their loss, to renew relationship bonds and to formalize new relationships which no longer include the active participation of the deceased.
There are no absolute standards for memorial services or receptions. Your imagination is the limiting resource. An experienced funeral director will be willing to help you explore the alternatives which are best for your family. If, in interviewing a funeral director you do not experience the willingness to be flexible and an eagerness to listen to your needs, think about interviewing other firms to find someone more open to working with you and your ideas.
|Are there alternatives to traditional funeral services?|
|Many years ago there were only a few socially acceptable ways to organize and conduct funeral services. Today there are many recognized ways to organize and conduct celebrations which acknowledge that a life has been lived and that a death has occurred.|
Some funeral homes have Celebration of Life spaces or reception rooms available for your use. Other personalized formats that are commonly used include a service or party at a workplace, favorite park, or camping spot, or an open house at home or at a favorite gathering place. Or, a personalized format might be at a sports event, a dinner, an art show, or other event that is reflective of the life of the deceased and dedicated to the person who has lived.
At these gatherings, family members or friends may present a program of reminiscence, where members of the community or social groups exchange favorite stories of the deceased and reflect on the contributions made by the person. An important facet of any of these alternative service events is to acknowledge the mourning process, and acknowledge the death and the loss that follows. It is also important to encourage the expressions of feelings, and speak directly about the individual life that has been lived.
There are no absolute standards for an alternative service. Your imagination is the limiting resource. An experienced funeral director will be willing to help you explore the alternatives which are best for your family. When interviewing a funeral director, if you do not sense a willingness to be flexible and an eagerness to listen to your needs, think about interviewing other firms to find someone more open to working with you and your ideas.
|What are the costs of alternatives to traditional services?|
|Some families chose to design their own ceremony or remembrance service. Working with an experienced and open funeral director there is no limitation on the type of service that may be designed. The important thing is that the ceremonies chosen, whether simple or complex, should be meaningful and fulfilling for the survivors and friends of the deceased. There is no right or wrong, just meaningful or not meaningful.|
Funeral homes charge a basic fee which covers the common services everyone who uses the funeral home will require. Some of these services include the staff necessary for the removal of the remains from the place of death to the funeral home, use of the basic facilities of the funeral home, and staff services for an arrangement conference.
Some examples of alternative services are a memorial party or gathering held in a Celebration of Life Center or favorite spot with potluck or catered food, music, and a time of reminiscence and sharing; or perhaps a picnic or backyard gathering at which the guests are invited to share stories of the deceased, pictures, and favorite activities.
The cremation or immediate burial of the remains without service may cost between $875 - $2,184.
|What is the process of cremation?|
|Cremation is a process of preparing the body for its ultimate disposition and memorialization. Cremation is no way limits the family's choices regarding viewing or funeral services, rather it is a choice of final disposition of the body following whatever services the family may choose as important and meaningful to them.|
In the crematory retort, high temperature flames of approximately 1600 to 2000 degrees Fahrenheit are used to reduce the body to bone particles and fragments. These fragments are then carefully swept out of the crematory retort and at this time any metal parts from the cremation container or a metal medical prosthesis are removed. The bone fragments are then normally reduced mechanically to a volume of about 200 cubic inches, weighing about six to eight pounds and with a texture similar to very coarse sand.
After cremation, the cremated remains are placed in an urn or other receptacle of sufficient size until final disposition of the remains can take place. The ultimate disposition may be earth burial, entombment, interment in a columbarium niche (KAHL-um-BARE-ee-um), or scattering, or even some combination of the above since cremated remains can be split into more than one container.
|Can I have funeral services if I choose cremation?|
|Cremation in no way limits the family's choices regarding viewing or funeral services, rather it is the choice of final disposition of the body, just like burial is a choice, which follows whatever services the family may choose as important and meaningful to them.|
Cremation may follow a traditional service in the funeral home chapel or in your own church with visitation and viewing of the deceased in the casket. This may be followed by a graveside service after which the deceased will be taken to the crematory or the services may conclude at the church or funeral home chapel. Another option is to have a memorial service in the funeral home chapel, your church, a lodge hall or other suitable area. The body is usually not present at a memorial service, but the cremated remains may or may not be. In this situation, there may or may not be visitation and viewing of the deceased at the funeral home sometime before the service. Other options may include no formal funeral or memorial service, but rather a gathering of friends and family and a time of sharing and remembering. Sometimes, the family may choose to have no gathering at all.
When selecting a funeral home or cemetery you may wish to base your selection on the willingness and the ability of the staff to explain your many options. This is particularly true when cremation has been selected, as some firms specialize in only very limited areas of the cremation process and will find it difficult to support you in meeting all of your needs.
|What do cremation services cost?|
|Funeral homes charge a basic fee which covers the common services everyone who uses the funeral home for cremation services will need. These services include the staff for the removal of the remains from the place of death to the funeral home, professional care of the unembalmed body, securing and recording the necessary legal form and permits, and staff services for a basic arrangement conferences. Charges for these services range from $795 to $1495. Mountain View's basic service fee is $940.00 The cremation process itself, which is normally included in the funeral home charges, will range from $105 to $650, our cremation fee is $232.00 Since a variety of services and merchandise may be included in the charges of different funeral homes be careful to be sure you are comparing like for like.|
Asking questions about cremation services available, prices and the availability of payment plans is a good way to help yourself choose someone to help you with cremation. Some important questions to ask are: How quickly can the funeral home respond to help you when the death occurs? What location will your loved one's body be held in until the cremation takes place? Can the funeral home help you arrange for viewing, visitation or a celebration of life service and where could they take place?
When selecting a funeral home or crematory you may wish to base your selection on the willingness and the ability of the staff to explain to you your many options. This is especially true when you have chosen cremation as some firms specialize in only very limited areas of the cremation process and will find it difficult to support you in all of your needs.
|What can I do with cremated remains?|
|Since cremation itself is considered the final disposition by the State of Washington, families are allowed many more options than with traditional burial. Although all cemeteries have areas for the interment of cremated remains in the grounds, in niche walls or scattering gardens, some families choose to take the cremated remains home or to scatter them in a "special place".|
Many families choose to divide the cremated remains and inter a portion in a cemetery as a permanent place for visiting and memorializing and yet scatter a portion in a "special place" or keep a portion at home in a memorial area. Other family members divide the cremated remains among several family members, each doing what they want with their portion of the cremated remains. The choices are yours.
If your choice is to scatter all or a portion of the cremated remains on land or over water, special care should be taken to obtain permission from the property owner or those who protect or preserve the area. Your funeral home should be able to provide you with information from the Department of Licensing about who to contact for permission.
|What are the costs of a cemetery?|
|In the Tacoma area a ground burial site for a casket may range from $330 to $1265.00. A single above ground entombment site in a mausoleum will cost anywhere from $1600 to $7088.00. Mountain View Memorial Park offers ground burial sites ranging from $335 to $1110. At Mountain View an above ground entombment site ranges from $2424 to $7088.00.|
Cremated remains placement sites may range from less than two hundred to several thousand dollars. At Mountain View they range from $67 to $7269. Each type of disposition will involve a service charge for opening and closing the grave and for maintaining all of the required records and perhaps an outer burial container for the placement of the casket or urn in the property.
Some types of burial property use a separate memorial of granite or bronze to identify the site. The cemetery will have regulations regarding the size and composition of these memorials and will quote exact prices. For the most part, you do not have to buy a memorial from the cemetery if you do not wish to.
Some types of cremated remains placement will require the purchase or provision of an urn. The type of urn may be determined by the property you purchase. The cemetery will be able to advise you.
The purchase price of cemetery property includes a contribution to the cemetery's endowment care fund. The endowment care fund is required by state law and is intended to ensure that there will always be money available for cemetery maintenance. The endowment care fund is invested and the interest income is used to pay for the maintenance of the cemetery. In addition many cemeteries require a contribution to the endowment care fund for memorials or monuments.
|What if there is a problem with a cemetery or funeral home?|
|The first thing to be done when a cemetery or funeral home has not lived up to your expectations is to contact the offending firm. This may seem obvious but often we hesitate to express our displeasure directly. On the other hand, experience has shown that most disagreements with cemeteries and funeral homes stem from differing understandings of what was to be done and how it was to be done.|
Cemeterians and funeral directors make assumptions based on their experience and sometimes do not check to make sure that those assumptions are shared by the customer. This can happen in reverse, the customer knows how something is done based on their experience in another part of the country or with another firm, and it turns out that the firm they are dealing with does it another way. Because of the strong emotions surrounding a death, otherwise small differences between expectations and performance assume major proportions. If your contact with the firm does not yield satisfaction, a second level of conflict resolution is the relevant trade association. They may be able to arbitrate a solution when direct contact fails. In Washington State you may contact the Washington State Funeral Directors Association or The Washington Cemetery and Funeral Association. Consumer complaint organizations are The Washington State Attorney Generals' Consumer Affairs office, The Cemetery Consumer Service Council, and the Funeral Service Consumer Arbitration Program. You may also call the Washington State Board of Funeral Directors and Embalmers or the Washington State Cemetery Board. To receive a list of these resources and their respective phone numbers, please contact Mountain View Funeral Home and Memorial Park and a staff member will fulfill your request by return mail.
|How do I preplan emotional and financial protection for my family?|
|Emotional and financial protection for your family is an integral part of estate planning, and a major courtesy to survivors. Just as we prepare a will to spare our family the grief and disruption of being forced to decide how our assets and possessions should be divided, we can show the same consideration by making plans for the funeral and cemetery arrangements we think important. In the planning process you can research your options and make well thought out decisions.|
By selecting funeral services and cemetery property in advance and filing the plan with the funeral home or cemetery office several major courtesies are provided for your survivors. They will know for sure what your wishes are, as most people discuss the purchase and their planning with their family when it is complete. Your survivors will be bound, as a matter of state law, to follow your wishes unless extenuating circumstances prevent it. The funeral home or cemetery will then become your agent in ensuring that your plans are carried out. Finally, if you have set money aside to pay for the services, you will have saved your family from a financial burden. They will not be subject to emotional overspending on the worst day of their lives.
Pre-purchase is an absolute hedge against inflation. Most pre-financing arrangements made with funeral homes either guarantee the final expenses or make provisions for growth in the account and the cemetery property you already own cannot go up in price.
|Should I plan my own cremation?|
|Many people erroneously assume that by simply saying "I want to be cremated," that they have done all the preplanning that is necessary.|
The choice of cremation allows for many options and choices. For example, cremated remains may be buried in traditional burial sites, special cremation gardens, inurned in indoor or outdoor niches, scattered, taken home, or divided for memorialization in a combination of the above. When cremation is chosen it is very important to inform survivors of your wishes. There are sometimes differences of opinion among survivors as to the desirability of following through on the cremations.
By selecting cremation property and services in advance you will have had a chance to research your options and make a well thought out decision. In addition, preplanning provides several major courtesies for your survivors. They will know for sure what your wishes are as most people discuss their planning with their family when it is complete. Your survivors will be bound, as a matter of state law, to follow your wishes unless extenuating circumstances prevent it. The cemetery or funeral home then becomes your agent in ensuring that your wishes are carried out. Finally, if you have set money aside to pay for the services, you will have saved your family a major problem. They will neither be burdened by the expense nor will they overspend in the hurry and emotion of the circumstance.
Prepurchase of property for cremation is an absolute hedge against inflation. The cremation property you already own cannot go up in price.
|What are Funeral Trust?|
|Funeral trust accounts are established by Washington State Law and are supervised by a state agency to ensure their safety. When you establish a funeral trust account with a funeral home licensed to offer them, you may make an initial deposit in the full amount of the trust or you may make monthly installments for up to 10 years.|
Under law, at least 90% of the funds you deposit are placed in a trust account. The selling agency may retain 10% for direct selling expenses. These funds are invested in federally insured investments. Over time the interest income from the investments will increase the account to offset inflation. In fact, it is common for trust accounts to have excess funds which are returned to the survivors at the time the services are provided.
A major advantage in funeral trust accounts is that the interest earned is almost always above that paid on individual savings accounts, or the percentage increase applied to the face value of insurance policies. Thus, trust accounts grow much faster than either of the alternative funding methods.
Funeral firms arranging trust accounts will sit down with you, estimate the funds needed to provide the services you desire, and help you establish an account to provide those funds. They will also place your plan on file so that you may change it at any time.
|What about Insurance & Savings Accounts?|
|There are several ways to prefinance funeral services - funeral trust accounts, funeral insurance or individual savings accounts. Each method has some advantages and some drawbacks. This topic will discuss funeral insurance and individual savings accounts.|
Individual savings accounts have not proven to be generally satisfactory methods of prefunding funeral services. First, they earn relatively small rates of return and thus may not keep up with inflation. Secondly, they are subject to diversion to other uses when family emergencies arise or when an expensive purchase is desired. There are, however, times when they are entirely appropriate. Funeral insurance is another viable method of prefunding funeral services. Insurance has the advantage of providing immediate coverage from the date of the purchase, subject to severe limitations if the insured is in poor health at the time. This early coverage may be offset by slow growth on the face value of insurance policies and an inability to keep up with inflationary pressures.
Also, be aware that some agents selling funeral like insurance are not connected with funeral service firms. While they may have a lot of information about funeral services, they do not have the facilities nor the obligation to provide those services at the time of need. Therefore they may not have as much of an investment in your long-term satisfaction. It is important to make sure you know who you are dealing with when prefinancing funeral services. If you would like, we would be glad to mail you a booklet put out by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners titled "Life Insurance Buyer's Guide."
|How can I help someone in their grief?|
|Someone you know may be experiencing grief - perhaps the loss of a loved one or perhaps another type of loss - and you want to help. The fear of making things worse may encourage you to do nothing. Yet you do not wish to appear uncaring. Remember that it is better to try to do something, inadequate as you may feel, than to do nothing at all.|
Don't attempt to soothe or stifle the emotions of the griever. Tears and anger are an important part of the healing process. Grief is not a sign of weakness. It is the result of a loss of a meaningful relationship and deserves the honor of the expression of emotion.
When supporting someone in their grief the most important thing is to simply listen. Since grief can be a very confusing process, expressions of logic are lost on the griever. The comment, "I don't know how you are feeling - but I care, " followed by a patient and attentive ear will seem like a major blessing to the grief-stricken. Be present, reveal your caring and listen.
Your desire is to assist your friend down the path of healing. They will find their own way down that path, but they need a helping hand, an assurance that they are not entirely alone on their journey. It does not matter that you do not understand the details, your presence is enough. Risk a visit, it need not be long. The mourner may need time to be alone but will surely appreciate the effort you made to visit.
Do some act of kindness. There are always ways to help. Run errands, answer the phone, prepare meals, mow the lawn, care for the children, shop for groceries, meet incoming planes, provide lodging for out of town relatives. The smallest good deed is better than the grandest good intention.
Mountain View has a full time bereavement counselor on staff who is available to answer further questions on how you might help someone in their grief. Please feel free to call.
|How can I express my sympathy?|
|Traditionally, expressing your sympathy at a time of death has meant attending the funeral and sending flowers. Today there are also many additional ways to express sympathy.|
People attending the service may share wonderful memories of the deceased or may leave written stories for the family as they leave the service. Teenagers will attend a peer's funeral in T-shirts with their friend's name on them. On an infant's grave, we may now find a plastic wind-driven pinwheel or a stuffed animal. We are much more versatile than we used to be. This is not to say that the time honored floral tributes are not welcome. A totally flowerless funeral or memorial service is often felt to be lacking. However, consider sending a potted plant or similar shrub that can be planted in memory of the deceased.
Sincerity is a great conveyer of sympathy. Establish eye contact and say the things that come to your mind, even if they seem awkward or trivial. Mourners are seldom offended by honest expressions of support, no matter how inexpertly conveyed. A simple "I'm sorry" can mean a lot.
A personal letter to the next of kin expressing your feeling about the deceased or your wish to support the survivors will be better received that the most elaborate purchased tribute. Donations to a favorite charity may seem appropriate, however, family wishes should first be explored. Simply sending a contribution to your favorite charity may not seem to be much of an expression of sympathy to others.
Whatever you do, be honest and sincere in your actions and you will not have failed to communicate your care and concern. Think of your role as being the one who "Walks with" the person who is in pain. There are few expressions of sympathy more meaningful than giving of yourself.
|How else can I help my family members or friend after a death?|
|Many people have difficulty adjusting to the death of a significant other. While few experience disabling grief requiring clinical assistance, many experience symptoms they wish to share with others or simply want explained.|
Further, a death disrupts many parts of the relationship between people. And not only the relationships which focused on the deceased. Oftentimes, relationships between surviving parents and children, or between siblings must be re-adjusted.
In addition, the survivors often are faced with tasks and concerns the deceased used to handle, or from which they were protected. Now these tasks and concerns must be learned and dealt with.
Fortunately, there are a great many resources in our community available to assist us in these adjustments and learning processes. Mountain View has a full time bereavement counselor on staff. He can talk with you and help connect you with the appropriate resources in the community. He also runs ongoing bereavement support groups. There is also a complete lending library which he can help you utilize.