7 Funeral Etiquette Tips You Need to Know

By: Danny Amoruccio
Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Death has been referred to as the last taboo: the one topic that many don't want to contemplate, much less discuss, more than any other. Funerals do occur, and how we behave and what we say before, during, and following them can either lessen or increase the grief of the mourners. Knowing funeral etiquette tips can help if you need to attend a service.

Helpful Funeral Etiquette Tips

At Willowbrook Cemetery, we have seen that people sometimes are unsure of the funeral etiquette to follow when attending a funeral. Here are a few funeral etiquette tips from our team:

1. Wear Appropriate Clothing

Checking with relatives can be a good bet because some families prefer black, while others prefer anything other than black. There are some universal guidelines for dress, such as conservative clothing with a higher neckline or lower hemlines. Men should wear appropriate footwear, shirts with ties, and no casual t-shirts. Unless otherwise specified, funerals are often thought of as formal events, so dress accordingly.

2. Pay Attention To Sentiments

It might be challenging to know what to say to the bereaved family that is suitable or inappropriate, but generally speaking, talking from the heart is preferable. Although everyone is going through a tough time, the one advice to keep in mind is not to avoid the family because doing so only makes things unpleasant and may be seen as impolite or distressing.

3. It’s Best Not To Bring Very Young Kids To A Funeral

Funerals are typically only attended by adults or older youngsters if it is suitable unless you are an immediate family member. Children are typically welcome at the wake (although it never hurts to check), but try to leave babies, toddlers, and anybody else who can't understand the solemn occasion at home.

4. Funeral Etiquette Tip: Consider Whether You Should Send Flowers

Flowers are lovely, but many people end up being stressed by them. Choose a more thoughtful gift instead of a generic bouquet that will fade in a few days, like a contribution to the recipient's favorite cause or a tree sapling in their honor. By doing this, you can show the bereaved family that you are there for them, and they will appreciate that you made an effort to pay them such a kind tribute.

5. Give Due Respect To Religion

Sometimes the deceased might have been an atheist or adhered to a faith other than your own. You are not required to practice this religion in a way that is uncomfortable for you. Still, you must always respect their rituals and celebrations by bowing your head whenever appropriate and paying attention quietly during prayers, among other things. This is one of the most important funeral etiquette tips.

6. Funeral Etiquette Tip: It’s Okay To Smile And Laugh

Funerals don't need to be depressing. Funerals are becoming less and less stigmatized and more and more accepted as occasions to celebrate life. Though there are moments when it's appropriate to remain solemn, humor can be effective.

It's nice to highlight the charm of the departed by sharing a story that makes you smile or chuckle. Naturally, you should maintain your sensitivity and awareness of your boundaries, particularly if you intend to speak during the ceremony. Run your narrative by a family member in advance, so you don't create a faux pas.

7. Pen A Handwritten Condolence Note

We frequently overlook the impact that a brief handwritten note may have in this day and age of emails and text messages. Finding cards that express what you feel when you're lost for words is excellent. Include a picture, a story, or a tale about the deceased to give it a personal touch.

Customized Funeral Services

We are one of the oldest cemeteries in Westport, CT, and our peaceful and well-planned property has become the ideal final resting place for many locals. We are here to help you with details about available spots, and our team can also show you around our cemetery so you can make your choice. We also offer cremation options; you can contact us for details about these.

For any more information on funeral etiquette tips or our cemetery grounds and burial plot options, please call Willowbrook Cemetery can help you pick a suitable final resting place for the departed soul at our serene cemetery. Please contact us via the form or number on this page.

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