Choosing what happens to your body or that of a loved one after you or he/she passes on is an important, personal decision. Cremation is increasingly becoming a preferred option for Americans with slightly more than 40% of Americans using this particular option. Whether you’re life planning or have recently lost a loved one, you should explore the personal and practical benefits of cremation and considerations your family will need to make.
There are a myriad of reasons a person may prefer cremation over burial. First, we’ll discuss the more practical side: cost, flexibility, and family members who live in different states or countries.
The Cost of Cremation
It’s difficult to think about finances following a loss, but cost is an important factor to consider when choosing burial or cremation. Even if your loved one set aside money for final arrangements, the bills add up quickly during memorial planning.
Cremation Allows Flexibility in Memorial Planning
A major downside of the traditional burial is that it must occur soon after the passing. Services must be planned within days, meaning out-of-town family must scramble to travel. This chaos can lead to:
• Expensive plane tickets
• Overnight road trips
• Taking your kids out of school
• Taking time off work
• Paying for hotel stays
This kind of emotional, physical, and financial stress only adds to an already devastating situation. It can be overwhelming to handle all at once, especially when your priority should be grieving with your family.
Cremation removes the strict time constraints. It typically occurs soon after a person has passed and the cremated remains are given to a designated family member. Afterward, the loved ones are free to take their time to plan meaningful memorials everyone can attend.
There is also important flexibility with regards to laying your loved one’s cremated remains to rest. Some families decide to scatter the cremated remains in special locations. Other families may purchase multiple urns so multiple members may keep their loved one near. Some families may even choose to incorporate a loved one’s remains into a permanent memorial.
There May be Personal Considerations for Cremation
Final arrangements are incredibly personal. For some, it’s an extension of religious beliefs and people often put much thought into their wishes. It’s important to try to understand the more intimate reasons a person may choose cremation. It might be spiritual or even a discomfort with burial.
Coping with Personal Objections to Cremation
Despite their best efforts, some loved ones will struggle with the idea of cremation. It’s necessary for everyone to show each other compassion and understanding, even amid disagreements.