Dying Matters: Why We Need To Be More Open About Death

British culture has often been considered to have a stiff upper lip when it comes to certain subjects.

Social boundaries around seemingly controversial conversations have changed in recent decades though; and now we talk more openly about sex, relationships, finance and political leanings.

One such area is death.

But is there a case for us being more open about death and dying?

Read on to find out why the answer is a resounding yes.

Dispelling myths

Death can be frightening for those of us watching it happen as well as for those who are dying.

Open and honest conversations can avoid any misconception about what it means to die.

If you have children in your family who may be experiencing the death of a loved one for the first time, then telling them the truth in a safe way can help their thought process.

Managing grief

Many people might actively avoid talking about death because of the emotional and upsetting feelings it brings about.

Grief needs to be worked through individually but a problem shared can be a problem halved.

Taking openly about death and the implications of it can help to manage the impending grief and in some cases, can also provide coping mechanisms for the feeling of loss after someone we love has passed.

We get to tell someone how we feel before they go

Sadly this isn’t always possible when death is sudden or unexpected, but how many times do you hear of someone dying and their loved ones lament how they never got to tell them they cared, or wishing they’d asked for that special recipe for something they used to make – little moments you can’t get back can be embraced when we talk about dying in an open and sensitive way.

Planning a funeral or celebration of life

This one is ever more popular.

Planning the way in which a life is celebrated or acknowledged is incredibly personal – some may opt for a traditional low key service for immediate family, but others may want those left behind to find some joy in remembering all the good times.

Talking openly about death gives this freedom to agree the way life is remembered, you might insist everyone wears your favourite colour to your funeral or the music to be your most memorable songs chosen with your family – there are no rules here.

Talking openly about death can be hard, the sadness will always be there, but when people can vocalise how they feel or share certain requests on how they would like to die, it can help to take away the pressure of a difficult time in everyone’s lives.



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