When you are attending a funeral, there is no way to predict how you will emotionally respond during the service. However, it is important that you respect the wishes of the family. To better help you prepare for the service, here are some etiquette tips you should observe.
- Dress appropriately. Ideally, you should wear conservative clothing that is comfortable. If the family has made a special request, such as wear all-white, try to oblige the request.
- Express your sympathy. Before the service, send the family a message expressing your sympathy. If you were not close to the family, avoid calling or dropping by during this busy, difficult time. Send an email or snail mail letter.
- Follow cultural and religious practices. It is important that you respect the cultural and religious practices of the family. Use the Internet to research common practices so that you know what is expected of guests.
- Avoid taking small children, if possible. Small children might have trouble sitting through a funeral service. If you do take a small child, try to impart the importance of being quiet during the service to him or her.
- Focus on the positive. There is a possibility that you might not agree with how the service is conducted. However, it is your responsibility to respect the family's wishes. Stay focused on what is positive and not the negative.
- Arrive early. To avoid disturbing the service with a late entry, arrive at the location of the funeral about 5 to 10 minutes early.
- Sit in the right area. Remember that the first two rows of seating is for the family in most instances. If you are not family, respect this and sit in the rows after that.
- Leave your cell phone in the car. A ringing phone can not only be annoying, but seen as disrespectful. If you have to keep your phone on you, ensure that it is set to vibrate only.
- Avoid over-sharing. If you are invited to offer remembrances of the deceased during the service, respect the time limit set. You also need to keep your stories positive and appropriate.
Funeral services are more than just a chance to say goodbye to a loved one, but it is also a way to share memories of that person with everyone. To ensure that the service is respectful to the family and others who attend, it is important that you take certain considerations. For more information, contact a business such as Farone & Son Inc.