What To Do When A Family Member Isn't Welcome At A Funeral

While having a death in the family often brings loved ones closer together, there are some family situations that are a little bit more complex. In some cases, there may be a family member who is not welcome at the funeral. This can be a delicate situation to deal with in the midst of your grief, but there are a few things you can do to ensure the mental wellbeing of everyone in attendance.

Arrange For A Private Funeral

You don't have to advertise when or where the funeral is being held. In fact, some people choose to hold private funerals to ensure that those who are in attendance are welcome. If this solution seems best for your family, simply omit the funeral home details from the obituary. Your funeral home director can help you with contracting those people who are welcome, and he or she can also use discretion should unwelcome parties inquire about the services for your loved one.

Have A Removal Plan

Even with a private funeral, there is a chance that an unwelcome party may discover the location and time of the services. Having a removal plan in place in advance can help to prevent awkward encounters. Let the funeral home director know who is not welcome, and come up with a plan for removing these individuals should they show up. Your funeral home may be able to assign ushers or extra staff to ensure everyone walking into the funeral chapel is welcome.

Choose Invite.-Only Attendance

Guest lists may be something you only associate with nightclubs, but they can come in handy when you are trying to control the audience at your loved one's funeral. You can email invitations to those who are welcome, and include instructions that they must bring the invites with them to the funeral. Your funeral home director can then check the invitations against your expected guest list, and he or she can direct those without invitations to pay their respects online or by mail.

Contact The Authorities

In the event that an unwelcome family member does show up and starts a scene, you can contact the local authorities for assistance. Your local police department or sheriff's department can remove unruly guests, and they can also help to diffuse tense situations. This should be your last resort, but it is an option you can use if someone is being violent or disrespectful.

There are many reasons that a relative may not be welcome at a funeral. In some cases, it may be the loved one's former spouse, or it might be a family member who had a falling out with the rest of your family. Talk to a funeral home director, such as at SereniCare Funeral Home, about your concerns, and work together to ensure that the funeral service is held without incident.