Whilst cremation has become the most common choice for Australians, with 70% of people choosing cremation over burial, the concept of a direct cremation is still a bit of a mystery.
Many players in the funeral industry push for higher sales and profits, meaning the low-cost option is something not pushed or advertised altogether.
And even then, some funeral homes will try and charge exorbitant prices, like when Trish was quoted over $7,000 for an unattended cremation.
At Bare, we know a direct cremation is an incredible funeral option for so many people. Keep reading to learn more and see how we break down common myths and misconceptions about direct cremation.
Myth #1: Direct cremation is only for people who can’t afford other options.
Direct cremation is clearly an incredible option for those who wouldn’t be able to pay for a funeral in other circumstances. Too often we’ve heard horror stories of people taking out loans to pay for funerals or being upsold into spending much more than they’re comfortable with.
But that doesn’t mean direct cremation is only for those people. It’s a great option for anyone who doesn’t want a large funeral, for those who want the time and space to hold a memorial at a later date and those who would rather spend their money on anything else.
At Bare, we have thousands of customers who’ve organised their own farewell through prepaying for a direct cremation. Many of them don’t want a traditional funeral for themselves, and a prepaid funeral not only allows them to dictate how their funeral goes, but also reduces the emotional and financial burden for loved ones.
Myth #2: You can’t hold a funeral or memorial service with a direct cremation.
People assume that you need to do everything at once or on the same day, such as having a viewing and service before cremation. But this definitely isn’t true.
A direct cremation gives you the space and time to plan a farewell for your loved one, without the extreme time pressure. By taking this time, you have more opportunities to grieve and spend time with your loved ones, without the added stress of planning a funeral or memorial.
Once your loved one’s ashes have been delivered back to you, our incredible team can help you plan a dignified and personalised memorial service that truly represents your loved one and the life they lived. And that service can happen days, weeks or months after receiving the ashes. It can be whatever you want it to be.
Myth #3: Direct cremation has a negative impact on the grieving process.
Many people believe that you need to hold a traditional funeral to help through the grief of losing your loved one, particularly with viewing the body to provide closure.
However, this has also proven to be incorrect. A recent scientific study “Cremation and Grief: Are Ways of Commemorating the Dead Related to Adjustment Over Time?” discovered that a direct cremation is in fact no way harmful to the grieving process. In fact, the type of funeral service didn’t have an impact on how much grief was experienced in the weeks and months after the loss.
Interestingly, the study found that people who viewed the body of their spouse prior to cremation or burial experienced increased levels of grief compared to those who did not. However, this was only relevant to those who had lost their spouse or significant other, and not anyone who said goodbye to a parent or other friend or family member.
Ultimately, the decision to hold a memorial or funeral will depend on what is best for you and your family. The most important thing is to make an informed decision that is based on your wishes and the wishes of your loved one. Some people find it important to have a final moment to say goodbye with a viewing and their loved one's coffin present, while others may prefer the flexibility to hold a memorial months after the passing.
At Bare we can assist you in planning for either, and if you’re unsure about what’s right for you and your family our team are only ever a phone call away.
Myth #4: A direct cremation doesn’t allow for any control or customisation.
This misconception couldn’t be further from the truth. The options are endless as a direct cremation simply removes the cremation of the body from the farewell.
Some of our customers have organised the most fitting and unique send offs for their loved ones, including:
- Sending ashes off in a fireworks display with Ashes to Ashes.
- Themed memorials - such as dressing all in their favourite colour or wearing a significant piece of clothing.
- Scattering at sea and replicating a viking send off.
- Backyard BBQ - everyone brings a plate.
- Hiring out the local RSL or community centre.
As part of doing things differently we believe that a traditional funeral service may not always be the right service for every family, and so we offer families the option of a memorial in addition to traditional funeral services.
If you need help in organising a direct cremation, a memorial or funeral service, we would be honoured to support you. To find out more, visit our Bare website here, or call 1800 071 176.