How to Start a Conversation

90% of people say that talking with their loved ones about end-of-life care is important. Yet, 27% have actually done so. (Source: The Conversation Project National Survey 2013)

One conversation can make all the difference.

Bringing up the topic is the hardest part. Having this conversation when family members are younger and healthier allows everyone to focus on leaving a legacy rather than the loss of life. Every family handles sensitive topics uniquely, therefore this conversation will be unique to each family. When loss occurs, many families reflect back on memories from the pre-planning experience and it brings comfort reflecting on specific comments their loved one shared.

  • Plan a date to talk. Set a designated time and start the conversation with a statement that demonstrates how much you care for your parents’ interests and the well-being of the family. Begin with “I know this may be an uncomfortable topic, but would you be open to talking about your funeral service and the ways you want to be remembered? When the time comes, I want to know that we are carrying out a ceremony that you wanted.”
  • Discuss favorite traditions. Informally ask your parents about some of their favorite traditions and discuss how your family can continue these traditions for generations to come. Find a natural transition point to mention planning a memorial service that would honor them.
  • Talk about your own funeral wishes and ask your parents for theirs. Gently reminding your parents that funeral services are an essential part of the grieving process and that preplanning would give you the advantage of focusing on remembering them and grieving instead of an emphasis on the details of planning that will be required.


You talk about everything, but have you had the talk? It’s time to have the conversation on how you want to be remembered. Talk of a Lifetime helps you through this important conversation, about life and what matters most. Having discussions with your loved ones provides peace of mind when it’s time to commemorate a life. It can make the difference of a lifetime.

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