U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Grief and Mourning
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 02-06-2018, 01:54 PM
 
5,970 posts, read 2,790,293 times
Reputation: 3919

Advertisements

The process of embalming seems kind of "barbaric". I'm thinking when the time comes we will have a closed casket for mom. Cheaper too.


What say you?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-06-2018, 04:20 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
16,851 posts, read 51,316,975 times
Reputation: 27696
Embalming is not more "barbaric" than any major operation on a living person. It is something that most people are unfamiliar with, and not a process that they like to think about, as the squeamish factor is high in many folks. I have a friend who leaves the room any time I cut a whole chicken into parts for cooking.

Embalming serves a purpose if the family may take some time to gather, and they want to say personal goodbyes or have a final viewing. Labeling it "barbaric" is not helpful. Admitting your own squeamishness towards the idea is fine.

Many religions are strict about only allowing a short period between death and burial, removing any need for embalming:
Jewish custom is 24 hours. Timeline for Jewish Traditions in Death and Mourning
Islam is also 24 hours The Muslim Funeral - Dignity Memorial

A summary of various common customs is here: Customs and Protocols on Death, Dying and Funerals

IIRC, at the other end of the spectrum, some Buddhist sects extend out the time between time of death and disposition of the remains to as much as a week without embalming. The whole concept of bardo and stages after death can get complex, much too complex to discuss here. In some cases the body is then dismembered and fed to vultures, or placed where animals can get to it, which is a type of affirmation of detachment, and a gifting. .

This only has a cursory overview of Buddhist death rituals: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhist_funeral

The bottom line is that there are many different ways that humans deal with the bodies of dead humans. You'll generally be most comfortable with the way that is common in the culture or religion you grew up with.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2018, 07:42 AM
 
12,425 posts, read 14,553,508 times
Reputation: 14122
Quote:
Originally Posted by westcoastforme View Post
The process of embalming seems kind of "barbaric". I'm thinking when the time comes we will have a closed casket for mom. Cheaper too.


What say you?
I wouldn't want the last time someone sees me to be when I'm lying there dead...but then, I wouldn't want a funeral either.
I've checked it out and where I live the cheapest route to go is cremation.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2018, 07:52 AM
 
Location: Kansas
19,189 posts, read 14,062,995 times
Reputation: 18141
I never understood why they did this is the first place. Seems to contradict "RIP". That was not Grandpa and Grandma. I favor either cremation and/or graveside services as closure for loved ones. I would make the choice that would give me peace unless the individual had specific demands as to how they wanted to close out.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2018, 09:32 AM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
39,046 posts, read 37,675,762 times
Reputation: 73661
We recently had a closed casket for my mom. But she had gotten unexpectedly ill and had a horrible time in the hospital. I did not want that to be the last time my father saw her.

The last few funerals I went to, the deceased did not even look like themselves, so the viewing was an even more disappointing and sad experience.

The other factor, for me, is that, around here at least, the closing of the casket during the funeral is a very dramatic and sometimes traumatic moment for family members, especially if they do that thing where they close a curtain to give privacy, but you can still hear them sobbing as the casket lid is lowered.

It's a VERY personal preference. Some people may need that moment of closure. I did not want it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2018, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Virginia
3,462 posts, read 1,642,859 times
Reputation: 9263
Quote:
Originally Posted by westcoastforme View Post
The process of embalming seems kind of "barbaric". I'm thinking when the time comes we will have a closed casket for mom. Cheaper too.


What say you?
Actually, you can still have an open casket without embalming. My sister passed away a little over a month ago and was cremated. However, before the cremation, my nieces and nephew got to spend a little personal time with her, and she had not been embalmed. My youngest niece said she looked fine (she was worried beforehand) and quite peaceful. It was about 5 days after her death as well.

For myself, as fast as the funeral home can get me into a plain box and drop me into the grave site I already bought beside my late husband's, the better it will be. I don't expect it will be within the required 24 hours unless I die in the hospital, but I can always hope. I'm prearranging everything to be that way.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2018, 01:12 PM
 
5,970 posts, read 2,790,293 times
Reputation: 3919
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bungalove View Post
Actually, you can still have an open casket without embalming. My sister passed away a little over a month ago and was cremated. However, before the cremation, my nieces and nephew got to spend a little personal time with her, and she had not been embalmed. My youngest niece said she looked fine (she was worried beforehand) and quite peaceful. It was about 5 days after her death as well.

For myself, as fast as the funeral home can get me into a plain box and drop me into the grave site I already bought beside my late husband's, the better it will be. I don't expect it will be within the required 24 hours unless I die in the hospital, but I can always hope. I'm prearranging everything to be that way.
Ah interesting. I still don't know if I want to see mom like that
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-11-2018, 01:44 PM
Status: "Even better than okay" (set 9 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
51,225 posts, read 50,499,962 times
Reputation: 60110
My friend's mom died a few weeks ago, at 87, of cancer that was diagnosed about four months earlier.

Her mother specifically said she did not want people looking at her dead body. Instead, she told her daughter to invite people over to raise a glass in her memory and talk about the good times. She did want a Catholic memorial service.

So my friend had her mother cremated, had the urn up on a table with flowers and pictures in the church, and had a nice funeral service at which she gave a eulogy, and when she talked about the things her mother taught her, she mimicked her mom's Cuban accent and sounded just like her. It brought laughs as well as tears to the service.

After the funeral service everyone was invited over to the daughter's house for a brunch. Food was provided by her neighbors, who all chipped in to take care of that. The brunch was particularly for the ladies who lived in the same senior residence building where her mom had lived. Then at 5 p.m., she had a happy hour that lasted into the night. Her mother loved to dance--was still dancing last summer at a family barbecue and in fact on New Year's Eve had her daughter wheel her into the community room party and asked her friends to gather round her wheelchair and dance with her on her last New Year's Eve. So, there was music, including Tom Jones, her favorite.

The mother liked a glass of Scotch, so we all had a little glass of Scotch and toasted her memory. It was a good time and the happiest funeral I've ever attended.

My brother also did not want an open casket. He wanted to be buried in his favorite sweatshirt and a pair of jeans, because he was never a suit guy. My mother and niece honored his wishes, and we had a closed casket with a nice photo of him on top.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-11-2018, 05:05 PM
 
Location: Houston
20,990 posts, read 10,622,648 times
Reputation: 8215
My Dad has an open casket. He was unrecognizable. If not for a scar on his wrist I would have thought there was a mix up.

I think if the funeral is not local go closed.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-11-2018, 05:36 PM
 
Location: East Coast
2,878 posts, read 4,389,285 times
Reputation: 4180
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
My friend's mom died a few weeks ago, at 87, of cancer that was diagnosed about four months earlier.

Her mother specifically said she did not want people looking at her dead body. Instead, she told her daughter to invite people over to raise a glass in her memory and talk about the good times. She did want a Catholic memorial service.
This sounds like the very best kind of funeral...I'd be happy in the afterlife to have a send-off like this. Guess I'd better make sure my kids know my wishes.

(BTW, tried to rep you, but got the "have to spread some reputation around" message. Yada yada yada.)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Grief and Mourning
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top