How do I prepare my family for my end of life?

Prepare for End of Life

For many people, the first thing that comes to mind when running across an article like this is that you have no intention of dying anytime soon. We agree! But, and it’s a big but, as much as you don’t want to think about it, you don’t want to wait until it’s absolutely necessary to make sure that your family has everything they need when the unthinkable happens.


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We do get it; preparing your family for your end of life can be difficult and emotional. However, it is important to ensure that your loved ones will have the support they need when the time comes. That means you need to make sure they have access to the emotional, legal, and financial resources they need so they can get on with grieving.

Regardless of your age or personal situation, you can help your family prepare by taking a few simple steps.

  1. Have an open and honest conversation.
    The first step in preparing your family is to have an open and honest conversation about your wishes and desires for the end of your life. This can be a difficult conversation to have. However, it is important to discuss your values, beliefs, and medical treatments or interventions you may or may not want.
  2. Create a living will or advance directive.
    A living will or advance directive is a legal document that outlines your medical treatment preferences and end-of-life wishes. This document provides guidance to your family and healthcare providers to ensure that your wishes are respected.
  3. Choose a healthcare proxy.
    A healthcare proxy is someone who can make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so. Choose someone you trust and who understands your wishes and desires. To give your loved ones the legal authority to ensure your wishes are taken into consideration, create a healthcare power of attorney.
  4. Consider hospice or palliative care.
    Hospice or palliative care can provide comfort and support to you and your family during the end of life. These services can also provide emotional and spiritual support to your family members. If you haven’t discussed your feelings about hospice or palliative care with your family, making the decision if it’s necessary can be extremely difficult.
  5. Create a plan for your funeral or memorial service.
    Creating a plan for your funeral or memorial service can help alleviate some of the stress and uncertainty for your family after you pass away.

Get Started

Preparing your family for your end of life is a process, and you don’t need to do it all at once. It is critical though that you have ongoing conversations with your loved ones about your wishes and desires. Getting started might be hard, but once you do, you will likely find that your family is grateful for having the opportunity to talk with you about such an important topic.

Funeralwise specializes in helping people prepare for what’s to come. We have a network of advisors who can help you take the first steps. Our funeral planning tools are free, as is a consultation with an advisor. Let us know if you’d like to talk, and we’ll make our experts available at a time that is convenient for you.

We suggest that you take our brief survey by clicking on the link above. It will help you start thinking in the right direction. When you finish the survey, we’ll send you lots of free resources to help you take the first steps. If you have any questions, just let us know by emailing

Related Resources

>>Talking About Your Funeral Plan

>>Are you Taking the Right Approach to Funeral Planning

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