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How To Turn Down Headstone Suggestions From Family Members

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After a loved one has passed away, you may have to take on a wide variety of responsibilities that you would never choose for yourself. When that includes planning the funeral and burial of the loved one, you may then have to handle such delicate things as turning down suggestions about what to include on the headstone. When a family member makes a well-meaning request that you cannot honor, here are some ways that you can sensitively turn them down.

Cushion the Blow with Suggestions of Your Own

When you tell someone that you won't be honoring their headstone suggestions, you may worry that the funeral could then be awkward when you talk to that person. You can help make the situation a little easier for both of you by suggesting that they express their requests in other ways. For example, an aunt who wants the deceased's role as a nephew to be stated on the tombstone may be comforted by the opportunity to deliver a eulogy at the funeral. During the eulogy, the person can talk about what a good nephew the person was and be comforted in that way.

Create an Alternate Solution

If you like the person's suggestion but don't want to use it in the exact way that they suggest, let them know that you have decided on an alternate way of honoring the idea. For example, if the person has suggested that you describe in-depth details about someone's time in the military on the headstone, you may simply give the details of the type of service and time served. You may offer a thorough explanation of why you chose a simpler alternative, but you don't have to do so. Simply stating what you did should be enough.

Be Matter-of-Fact with Insistent People

Sometimes family members may give you a difficult time, and they may not want to take no for an answer. Emotions can run high in the aftermath of a death. Stand your ground and trust the decisions that you made for your loved one. For example, if someone wants to corner you or give you the third degree over why you made the decisions that you did, you can walk away after reiterating that your choices are final.

Finally, keep in mind that you shouldn't feel guilty about making the best decisions you can for a deceased loved one. If you have been placed in charge of choices for the headstone, trust yourself to make the right decisions. Beyond gently turning them down, you don't owe anyone anything when it comes to justifications for your choices during this time. Simply make the most thoughtful decisions you can for the headstone and trust that it will then best represent your loved one. Keep these ideas in mind as you discuss your options with a professional such as Maurice Moore Memorials