Talk about how you want to be remembered

It can make the difference of a lifetime

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Have the Talk

The Funeral and Memorial Information Council (FAMIC) created Have the Talk of a Lifetime to help families have important conversations about the things that matter most to them and how a person’s life story can be remembered and honored in a meaningful way.

Memorialization is so much more than it used to be. Today it can reflect a person’s life story, values, interests and experiences. Meaningful memorialization can be transformative, healing and comforting. Have the Talk of a Lifetime offers families practical advice and tools to help them have conversations about the things that matter most and how they hope to be remembered when they die and for generations to come.

Why Have the Talk of a Lifetime?

Have the Talk of a Lifetime is designed to help families talk about what matters most in their lives and how loved ones have made a difference. These discussions can give families important insights they can use to remember and honor the lives of their loved ones.

Why is having the Talk important?

Deep down, most of us want to know that we, in some way, made a difference in this world. Having the Talk of a Lifetime can make the difference of a lifetime. It can help reacquaint us with our loved ones and help us get to know them in a new and different way. Sitting down with your loved ones to talk about their lives can be rich and satisfying. Learning about memorable events and people, places and favorite activities, values and lessons they have learned can help bring us closer to those we care about most. The talk helps us reaffirm to our loved ones how much they have impacted our life.

Who should Have the Talk?

You can have the talk of a lifetime with anyone you hold dear – your parents, children, grandparents, aunts and uncles, a spouse or a friend. It can happen anywhere you and your loved one are most comfortable – over a meal, at home, on a walk, at a family gathering or while playing a game. Your conversation can take place at any time, not just at the end of life.

How do I start the Talk?

Sometimes, using a visual prompt, such as a photo album, souvenir, or memento, can be a great way to start a conversation. Memorable places, such as the church where your loved one was married or a favorite park can also help someone begin to open up and share their story.

You could share a memory about a vacation you took together and will always remember, a piece of advice that you cherish, a song that reminds you of them or the reasons you will never forget them. You may wish to take notes during or after your conversation, or make an audio recording. You should choose whatever method seems most appropriate and comfortable given the setting of your conversation.

Some questions you could ask to start the talk are:

  • What is your proudest achievement?
  • What was the one piece of advice you received from your parents or grandparents that you never forgot?
  • Tell me about the most memorable summer you had growing up.
  • Tell me about your favorite teacher; what did you learn from him or her?
  • If you could spend a day doing anything you like, what would it be?
  • Who has been your greatest inspiration?

If you are planning in advance, your local funeral professional can help. Download our pre-planning preparation checklist, and search for a Talk of a Lifetime expert in your area.

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Search for a participating funeral professional to learn more about how to have your Talk of a Lifetime today.

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Preparation Checklist

The average person makes funeral arrangements only once or twice in their lifetime. It is natural to feel overwhelmed or perhaps have a fear of the unknown. This checklist will help you get started.

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About FAMIC

The Funeral and Memorial Information Council (FAMIC) is a membership organization comprised of organizations in nearly all areas of the death care industry.

Since 1991, FAMIC has been committed to making available to the public direct and open information regarding deathcare and memorialization from the leading associations of service providers and businesses. FAMIC recently launched Have the Talk of a Lifetime, a consumer education outreach effort to urge families to talk with loved ones about life, the things that matter most and how they want to be remembered when they die.

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