Children at Funerals: When they should attend?

child boy crying funeral

It’s often a cause of debate within families when somebody passes away – should the children be allowed to attend?  It can be a very difficult decision, and there is no right or wrong answer. However, while some parents wish to shield their children from the grief of a funeral, others argue that if they are shut out of the public mourning and celebration, children will not be able to continue the natural grieving process.

Of course there are many factors involved in the decision making process, such as:

Bereavement is a personal matter and everyone deals with losing a loved one differently. The most important thing is that children understand what is happening, and what the purpose of a funeral is. If they really want to attend then make sure they know what to expect if it is their first funeral.

How young is too young?

Most people would agree that any child over the age of 12 can, and should, attend a funeral of a relative or family friend. But youngsters are aware of death at a much younger age, and also need to grieve if they lose someone close to them like a parent or auntie or uncle.

Every family situation is different so the final decision is up to you. For example, you might think a four year old shouldn’t witness a funeral or see adults emotional, especially as they may not even remember it. However, if their parent has passed away and their siblings attend the funeral, they may feel excluded from the family and this could have an impact for a long time.

If you decide a young child should stay at home, then you could always film the funeral service for them to watch when they are older.

Permission to grieve

It’s important to give children permission to grieve and show their emotions, and a funeral can act as this permission and make them realise the reality of the situation. Children don’t often see adults cry, but it lets them know it’s OK to show emotion and get upset. While it can be distressing to see close family members in pain, it can sometimes help them develop an emotional understanding.

If you’re still not sure whether it’s a good idea to allow your children to attend a funeral, ask for some advice from a bereavement charity. If you think the funeral will be inappropriate, you can invite children to get involved in other ways such as scattering the ashes.


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Funeral Director fees

The price quoted contains the Funeral Director fees for a simple funeral. This includes:

  • Funeral Director fees for meetings, paperwork and running the funeral
  • Collection of the deceased and care prior to funeral
  • Hearse or appropriate vehicle for transport to the funeral
  • Basic coffin

The Funeral Director fees quoted do not include third party costs (often called disbursements). The Funeral Director will guide you through your options. These costs are:

  • Cremation or burial fees
  • Medical certificate for cremation
  • Clergy or officiant fee for conducting the ceremony

In addition to the disbursements you may want to discuss optional costs with your Funeral Director - these could include:

  • Funeral flowers
  • Memorial (venue hire, catering etc)
  • Memorial headstone
  • Orders of service

What is a Direct Cremation?

A Direct Cremation is an alternative to the traditional funeral. This involves the cremation of the deceased without a funeral service. A Direct Cremation is generally the most economic option because costs of the coffin, preparation of the body, funeral service and expensive transportation are not included. However, many people choose Direct Cremations for reasons other than expense, for example:

  • - Wanting to have a memorial at a different time to the cremation
  • - Expressed desire from the deceased to not have a ceremony
  • - Individuals with relatives who face big physical or geographical challenges in coming together for a ceremony

The prices quoted for Direct Cremations include:

  • All charges, meetings and paperwork for the cremation
  • Collection of deceased and care prior to cremation
  • A simple coffin and urn for the ashes
  • Cremation fees and delivery of ashes to the family

Why is this price Estimated?

We work hard to ensure the Funeral Director Fees we display are accurate and up to date. However, unlike with our partners, we cannot guarantee this price is correct today.


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