Archive for planning a funeral

Life at a funeral home-Can’t we all just get along??

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on July 8, 2018 by thefuneralbizz

Can’t we all just get along?

Apparently not. It is extremely frustrating to deal with families who do not get along. Or when there are certain family members who create problems or drama.

I know that death seems to bring out the worst in people but shouldn’t it be the other way around? And can’t you just put aside your differences for a few minutes so you can say good bye to your loved one?

Here’s the thing, I don’t care about your family issues. I don’t care who did what to who or who said what to who, we just really don’t care. Please do not drag us, try to drag us, into your issues. Our job is to give your loved one a proper funeral. We will work very hard to do so, even when you are giving us a hard time. It’s our job and we take it very seriously. So, for one, we don’t have time to get involved in your family drama and two we dont want to.

Work out your differences PRIOR to coming in for the visitation or even better, before making arrangements. Please don’t call us and tell us your life story and all the reasons why so and so should not be allowed to come to the funeral home. I’ve mentioned this in past posts.. we are not a bar and we do not have bouncers! The funeral home is a public building and if someone wants to come in to pay their respects and do so respectfully, then they may do so! If for some chance anyone starts yelling and fighting then we will call the police and let them handle it. I personally feel it’s disrespectful and immature to cause a problem, yell, or fight at a funeral! Don’t show up just to piss someone off. Why? If you know you are not welcome, don’t come. It’s as simple as that. Yeah yeah yeah, I know… why shouldn’t you be able to come and see your loved one. Well, to be honest, you should!! You should be mature enough to be able to do without causing a fight! It should go both ways, if you are at the funeral home and someone shows up who you dislike, you should just keep your mouth shut, avoid that person and refrain from any interaction with them. It’s really that simple. No one is asking you to sit with them, no one is asking you to talk to them, so don’t!

Be the bigger person. Put aside your differences for just a few minutes and be respectful!!

Do not ask us to let you come at a different time! Do not ask us to let you come in and not tell the person who made arrangements! The person who made the arrangements is the person in charge. We have to have a person who is in “charge” in case of questions, etc.. the person who made the arrangements is also usually the person who is paying for the funeral. How would you like it if you made arrangements and paid $5000-7000 and someone asked us to go behind your back? I bet you’d be pretty pissed off if you found out and you would also hold the funeral home responsible! Do not ask us to change times because you feel you should have that time alone with the deceased. The times are set by the person who made the arrangements and paid for by the same person so if you want to come in 2 hours early because you don’t want to be there when everyone else is and the person who made the arrangements agrees that you can visit at anytime you want, you will have to pay for that time! And really do not ask us to re arrange everything! Once arrangements have been made, we immediately start scheduling things. Cemetery times get set, Mass times, clergy gets scheduled, limo/hearse gets scheduled. Paperwork gets started, obituaries get submitted, funeral home staff get scheduled, etc.. it’s a pain in the ass to reschedule anything!

The reason i bring this topic up is because we recently had a family where one side did not like/get along with the other side. One side said they had no problem whatsoever with the other side being there. They said it was this man’s funeral and they would be respectful and they had no issues. Well, the other side claimed that if they did show up during the hours that were set that there would be all kinds of fighting and yelling. We told them that the other side said they were more than welcome but they weren’t having any part of that and insisted we let them come after the other side was done with their visitation. Well the problem is that their viewing time was until 9pm. My boss said no. They could come earlier before the visitation (the other side of family did say they could come outside of their hours if they wished to but they would have to pay for their own time). Nope, they did not want to come earlier. The viewing was set for 12pm-9pm. They said it was too early for them and it has to be after. Again, my boss said No! You can come in before and pay for the time you are here or you’ll have to just come during regular hours and be an adult around the other side of your family who said they did not care! They threw a fit. Saying WE were keeping them from their loved one, WE were keeping them from grieving properly. They then said they would pay us for a few hours the following day. We explained to them that it was not possible because the funeral/burial was the next day. Everything was already scheduled and paid for by the person who made arrangements! They wanted us to call the person who made arrangements and tell them that they would be having a separate viewing and that the funeral and burial would take place the next day!!! My boss finally just told them we were no longer involved and if they wanted to see their loved one they would need to work it amongst themselves. That he did not care about their family problems and to not contact us again about this. If they wanted to really see their loved one, they would behave appropriately and come for viewing when it was scheduled! Needless to say, they were not happy about this and it turns out they just never showed up. Which I guess is a good thing since they knew they could not behave! It’s sad really.. And what’s even more sad is that they blamed us, the funeral home from keeping them from “grieving properly”, when in fact it is themselves who are to blame!

Along the same lines, the obit. When their are issues within the family and we get calls about who should be included in it or not included in it. Again, we take our direction from the person who is making the arrangements aka the informant. We have NO CLUE if names are being left out! We do not know how many children, siblings, grandchildren, great grandchildren, cousins, aunts, or uncle’s this person may have and we certainly do not know the names of any if them! So during arrangements the informant is asked for names for the obit. Those are the names we list. When you call the funeral home and ask US why wasn’t so and so listed, how the Hell would I know? Or when you call and say to take someone’s name out. Well, I’m not going to do that because you are not the informant. Also, when the person who was excluded from the obit calls madder then Hell because they were not included, I’m not going to add your name unless I am given the ok by the informant! Again, this is a family issue!! Take it up with your family!

So, please, either put aside your differences just for a few minutes, be the bigger person, be respectful when attending a visitation and or funeral, take care of your family problems outside of the funeral home, and do not involve the funeral home in your family drama!

Happy Summer!!


Life working at a funeral home – SO BUSY

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 20, 2017 by thefuneralbizz

First off, I got a new tablet and I haven’t mastered this keyboard yet and so there will be a lot of spelling errors…my apologies!

Secondly, I have not posted in a long time…I have a lot to write about, but of course its mainly about how truly awful people are. So yes, this post will once again be me venting and bitching! sorry, but this is why I started this blog, to vent my frustrations!! So let’s begin the bitch fest!

I’ve about had it with people, had with the way people feel its ok to speak to others so rudely. How everyone is so quick to pass the blame or take out their bad day in people they have never met before. How people have become so demanding! Its not only those planning a funeral either, it can be a simple phone call asking a question, but just gotta be a smartass or rude, or don’t like the answer… Especially if your calling for pricing. You called and asked me to give you a price. I give you that price and you don’t like it. You have the option of saying a few things. You can simply sand Thank You and end the call. You can ask for differnt prices of other options, you can say ok, that’s out of my price range but thank you for your time…. I don’t see the need for any rude remarks. I don’t see any need for anyone to start bitching about how “I” charge way too much just to rip people off, etc. You don’t like the price, that’s fine, just say thanks good bye! 

When we are assisting you in planning a funeral, there are SEVERAL questions that need to be asked. We aren’t doing it just to piss you off! I would say most of the questions that we ask come in the beginning of the arrangement. Those questions are the info we need for the death certificate. You know, those death certificate’s everyone thinks are gold and just have to have them now! Well, without the info we cannot get you any! We always explain before starting with the questions why we are asking, yet it never fails that we get asked, “….what are ais these for, and why are these questions necessary”? So we go back and explain again! Its as if we are wasting their time. Its irritating. Know what else is irritating…When you have a family come in and there are several family members and they all talk over you and get off track and the arrangement lasts for two hours! Then while we are trying to get questions answered and trying to do all the work so the family doesn’t have to.. We sometime step away into another office to make those calls especially if there are a lot of people in the arrangement office, because they can’t be quiet long enough for us to be on the phone. So while we are making phone calls on behalf of the family, the family is in the arrangement office, we usually leave them to pick out prayer cards or flowers other times we just say that we will be a few minutes. Well the other day, we had to call the cemetery and while on the phone, which was approximately 10 minutes, here comes one of the family members. My boss was on the phone in another office and I was in mine. The person who came walking into the office was one of the deceaseds sons. I said hello and he said, “where’s that guy that was meeting with us, we need to get this wrapped up and get a move on, we still need to pick out the flowers and my sisters don’t feel like sitting around here anymore”. REALLY?? That irritated me. You need to get this wrapped up and tired of sitting around here? Well, we could have told you to call the cemetery yourself, we could have told you to go get your own flowers, but no. That “guy” you were meeting with is the Funeral Director and he TOLD you that he was going to call the cemetery for you and he would be back in a few minutes, it make take a few… So I said to him that the DIRECTOR is on the phone with the cemetery getting YOU and your family the information you will need and he will be done once he gets that information for you, so you can go ahead and go back to the arrangement office and the director will be back once he finishes up. He simply just walked away. Its just bothersome that noone can just take into consideration that WE are actually helping you. If we didn’t do these things then it would be that we aren’t helping you enough! Also this particular family wanted a specific day for viewing and funeral, unfortunately we could not accommodate them for the days they wanted, we already had two other families there for visitation and funeral services. Believe me when I say we do not like telling anyone we cannot accommodate them for the dates they want. Well, they were not happy about it and asked why there was nothing we could do.. My boss explained to them the reason why and he apologized and discounted their funeral charges, but that was still not enough.. He just came out and told them that there was nothing he could do and if they needed to go to another funeral home then that’s what they should do and he wouldn’t charge them the transport fee. In the end they stayed with us but made it clear they were disappointed. Ok, so we are fully aware you are not happy about it, so are you going to keep bitching about it? So finally they were on their way, thank God. That same day we had another arrangement about an hour later, it was close to the end of the day and I had been running my ass off. Before the next arrangement came in, my boss was in the embalming room, I was working on all the funeral arrangements and answering the phones. The family who had just left called. It was one of the daughter’s of the deceased. She wanted to know if there was anything at all we could do to accommodate them for the day they wanted!! Were you not just here for almost two hours discussing this! No, I’m sorry, there is not one single thing we can do! On to the next arrangement, not as stressful as the other one but during that arrangement, someone is at the door. I answer it and it’s the other family! They have “things” they need to drop off…. I asked what they had and if there is a lot. They say, yes there is a lot, food, soda pop, snacks, pictures, and the deceaseds violin!! They have a stand for it and NEED to set it up! I told them they could bring it in, but could not set it up because there is a body in the chapel whose funeral is in the morning! They of course were not happy about this and said they HAD to set it up and can’t they just place it in back of the chapel? No, you cannot, there will be a family in there tomorrow along with their friends and family, I don’t think they will understand why your mothers violin is in their room! So, they said they had to bring in their food. I had to explain to them they were welcome to bring it in but we would have to put it all in the storage closet until after the other family leaves, again, not pleased with anything I was telling them! I told them I would leave the door unlocked for them so they could bring in their things. I’m pretty sure they expected me to help them and if I had not been so busy I may have, but at this point I was fed up with them. They even asked ifthere wasn’t another door closer they could use. Unfortunately there is not and I was given the “ugh, ok”. Because somehow its my fault. Maybe you just don’t need to bring in ALL that CRAP! On to day of visitation, big family, lots of kids! No one bothered to watch these screaming misbehaved children who thought it would be ok to color on the bathroom walls with their crayons! They were obviously bored being stuck at a funeral home all day because at one point they decided to make about 20 cups of coffee using all the cream and sugar and make a horrendous sticky mess and put the empty coffee pots back on the hot burners! First of all WHYwere they allowed to play with HOT coffee!! I just don’t get it!! They were also playing with something that had a lot of glitter because it was everywhere! I am always amazed by the lack of supervision! I don’t understand why no parent is watching what and where their kid is at and what they are doing!! Then for them to destroy our bathroom walls and not one person apologized or offered to pay for the cleaning cost.. This is one of the reasons why funeral costs are high and continue to rise, overhead! Who do you think has to pay for the cleaning and damages? Not that it happens that often where we actually have to repair or replace things, but it does happen, cleaning we must constantly do. 

I’ll stop here and stop the moaning and groaning, for now šŸ˜€

Funeral Home – Pay Your Bill!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on January 7, 2013 by thefuneralbizz

I understand fully well that most of us do not have bank accounts overflowing with money. BUT….if you want a funeral for your loved one and you want things that cost alot than be prepared to PAY FOR IT! We are NOT trying to push the most expensive casket or vault…etc. we would rather you NOT order the high priced items because we want you to be able to pay your bill!!
Don’t say you will pay your bill if you cannot! There have been several families who have ‘promised’ they will “send a check” asap! But we never get it. The funeral home i work at is very very generous in waiting for payment…we make exceptions ALL the time. When someone has stopped paying us or have only paid so much and then we hear nothing we send out statements. Sometimes people forget…especially when something like a death occurs. So we send out a reminder but we do this usually a few months later…not 2 weeks later..not a month later but typically 2 months later. If we dont hear from the family within a month then we start sending the past due notices however, in our notices it states to contact us to make payment arrangements OR to send what you can and write down (in the space provided) when we can expect another payment and how much. We are offering you the option to send whatever you can!!! I dont care if it is $5 just send it. So it amazes me out of all these past due notices i send out…i rarely hear from anyone. I just dont get it…even if you just call and say….hey i cant really afford to pay anything until next month or even 6 months from now….just freakin call!! I hate the fact that people take advantage of the fact that since we are a funeral home we ‘have’ to be sympathetic and how dare we insist you actually pay your bill! There are funeral homes that will not even begin embalming until the family has come in ans paid or at least put a certain amount down… i dont think that most people realize that from the moment the funeral home recieves a call for us to pick up the body that the charges begin. It costs us money to make a removal. Wether we use a removal company (they need to be paid) or an employee who…also needs to be paid! Then if we get verbal permission to start embalming…well…that costs money too. So for the most part by the time the family even arrives to make arrangements they already have a bill at approximately $1000.00 give or take… why shouldnt we be paid for our services?!? If for some reason someone has died who has no family and there is an attorney or someone appointed as a trust or even if there is noone in charge and the State takes charge..
Guess who gets paid FIRST? the funeral home! By law…thw funeral home gets paid first. Now this may vary by state….im not sure. If you know you cannot afford what you want than you have to pick what you can afford…people worry WAY TOO MUCH of what others think. You know what i say to those who think that just because you didnt purchase the best casket or you are only having a few hours of viewing or even a direct cremation with NO services…i say “Piss on them”! They arent the ones forkun out the bucks to pay for it! Funerals are expensive…no doubt about it.. choose ONLY what you can afford! And the luncheon is NOT the most important part of a funeral! Having food at the funeral home should NOT even be a thought in your head…thinking that YOU..the one who just lost someone…needs to feed those who are coming to pay their respects. Screw them…let them bring YOU something to eat to your home so when you get home you do not have to cook after having to do so much…! Funeral homes do NOT like it when there is alot of food…you have just lost someone…you just paid ALOT of money…and then during visitation instead of being in the chapel .. where you should be .. you are in the lounge along with everyone else eating. It just doesnt make sense…if you need a break…LEAVE to go eat…get some air!!!
….and about those damn death certificates….RELAX…. we have to get the doctor to sign it…sometimes just finding what doctor is going to sign it is a pain the ass and can take a whole day…which is more frustrating to me than it is to me!! Then once we do find that doctor we have to find out when HE/SHE is available to sign it…doctors are not always so easy to catch..or they are in their office and seeing patients all day so we have to drop it off and then WE have to wait for the office to call us to let us know that its ready
Then we have to go get it. It could be around the block or 45 minutes away (with or without traffic). Then…we have to file it at the appropriate clerks office…!! So that whole process can take a day or it can take 3 days..we just had one that took a freakin week! I was furious! That was just uncalled for and it was the fault of the facility where the patient died. Also…doctors office staff are not always the nicest people to deal with. And for those pending d/c’s..once again…the funeral home has NO CONTROL over how fast the d/c gets amended!!!!!!!! It is a waiting game. Im tired of people getting bitchy with me because theu are waiting on an amended d/c! Call your State and complain to them!

Tip of the Day 1/30/2012

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on January 31, 2012 by thefuneralbizz

Tip of the Day for January 30, 2012

If you are going to beĀ planning a funeral for a loved one and you are calling funeral homes to get pricing and you ask about State Assistance , please do not decide to beĀ an asshole when I “TRY” to explain to you how it works, what YOU have to do and how much they will pay toward a burial or cremation! I am NOT the State! I ONLY work for the funeral home and have NO input nor do I make up the rules applied by the State! I am only the messenger.Ā  You want to bitch about the State not paying more…..than call them. If you think it is “going out of your way” to haul your butt to the nearest State Aid office and just “cannot believe” that ‘you have’ to physically go there, than DON’T! And NO, I/we cannot go for you!!!! No, you cannot come and ‘just pick up the paperwork’ now! It doesn’t work that way…. you MUST decide on the funeral home you are for sure going to beĀ using. You must make all of your funeral selections BEFORE going to the State Aid office! When we advise you to go ASAP please do so. Just because grandma or grandpa already has a Social Worker does NOT mean that you do not have to go or that they will receive more money toward the funeral cost. It doesn’t work that way! Oh and if you have a life insurance policy…..your not eligible for State Aid….I mean really….!?!

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