Should I go and see my Dad
So my lovely dad passed away on xmas day after a 2 year battle with alzheimer’s disease. His funeral is this friday, my mum, brother and sister went to see him after he had passed away at his care home and said he looked peaceful.
He is now at the funeral directors, I’m unsure whether to see him, he was very skinny when he died. Will he be in a sheet or in a freezer?? If I go and see him it might upset me and if I don’t it might upset me. 😕Posted 6 years agowoody2000Subscriber
Go, I would say it’s better to be upset by seeing him than by not (if you see what I mean). It won’t be as bad as you think, the funeral directors are very good at making people look at peace.
Sorry for your loss, all the best (if there was a hug smiley, I’d use it)Posted 6 years agohelsMember
I wouldn’t. I was there when my dad died and nursed him all the week before, so had seen him recently anyway. The memories of him being sick do eventually fade.
Some of my relatives who hadn’t seen him for a while wanted to view the body. Bit weird if you ask me, but some say it helps to make it real for people and aids acceptance of death. It was all very real for me already.
Very personal decision, but I have never once wished I went to see the body. I think you would know if you wanted to, sounds to me like you don’t.Posted 6 years agoracefaceec90Member
sorry to hear about your father passing away 🙁 i did go and see my grandfather laid out at the funeral director’s after he died of a stroke (he’d had a few of them before).he did look peaceful compared to when he was suffering. i did take some comfort in that (but not much 🙁Posted 6 years agoPePPeRSubscriber
It is a personal thing, for me I had both my parents pass away within 2 years, I went to see my Mum and regretted it big time, with my Dad I was asked if I wanted to go and see him and I didn’t, the memory of my mum not looking right haunted me a lot!
I was much happier having the memories of him alive thanks.Posted 6 years agorocketmanMember
Sorry to hear about your sad loss you have my sincerest sympathies.
Would agree with the others I was with my Dad when he passed away and have never regretted not going to see him at the funeral directors.
I went to see one of my wife’s grandparents after she had died and her hand felt like a piece of cold chicken. It is the worst way to remember someone you once loved. It’s not them.Posted 6 years agocoffeekingMember
I saw my grandad after he died and I must say it was a problem for me. He looked so ill, weak and old – completely unlike how he was in life. I wish I hadn’t seen him and just left my goodbye’s to the funeral. I did appreciate the ability to give him a last hug, but just an hour after he died and he was stone cold to touch and it felt wrong somehow. But at the end of the day I think if it were my own parents I’d almost feel an obligation to MTFU and see them one last time. Not sure why.Posted 6 years agoskiMember
Again, sorry for your loss
and having seen his body at the hospital the following morning it haunts me a little
I too lost my Dad last year & it hauts me a little too, I got to see him 10 min after he passed away, kicking myself I did not get to see him earlier.
As woody2000 mentions, It won’t be as bad as you think.
Its up to you at the end of the day, everyone deals with it differently I find.Posted 6 years agoTandemJeremyMember
Its a very personal decision and there is no right answer. for me it would be yes unless I had my chance to say my goodbyes at the time.
The funeral directors will be very used to dealing with this situation and they should have a chapel of rest where the body can be laid out in a dignified manner and look at peace.
For some its the final piece they need to be at rest – to see their loved one peaceful and painfree. For others they prefer the memory of the person alive.
If yoo saw him at the time then perhpas not. If you didn’t see him at the time then perhpas do so. It might be a part of the grieving process that is useful for you. if you do go do not go alone – even if someone waits outside for you.
As I said – there is no right answer to this and everyone will react differently. Do what is right for you. Don’t be afraid of going however. A lot of peace of mind can come from thisPosted 6 years agoSandwichSubscriber
Go and see. Dead people look serene. I’ve found it’s a great help in the grieving process. Take a friend to drive you home after if need be.
He will be in his coffin (if you’re having one) and dressed in clothes your mum will have provided if that’s what was wanted. He’ll also have been made-up slightly to put some colour in his cheeks.
Sorry for your loss.Posted 6 years agoDracSubscriber
It’s very much a personal thing people can only offer advice, the you’ll only regret it advice isn’t exactly true, When my Father in Law passed away and they needed someone to identify him my wife, her mother and sister couldn’t do it. So I said I’d go along being some what use to such things although that didn’t really make it any easier. The sister in law changed her mind and came with me, the funeral home then offered the same for the close family to visit to see him. My wife and her mother never went and don’t regret it one little bit. It’s personal choice if you want to remember him for seeing him alive then when you last seen him then go with that, if you feel comfortable seeing him at rest then go along but it may or may not help.
I’m sorry for you loss.Posted 6 years agobikebouyMember
Feel no obligation from family members to see or not to see your Father, this decision is purely yours alone.
Is this what your Father would have liked? (I mean to see him that way). Was he of the mind that memories are how he should be thought of or do you think he’d have liked you to pop on over and see him and say goodbye in that way?
I lost my Nephew just before Xmas and I couldn’t bring myself to see him laid out, he would have far preferred we all thought of him alive and bouncing full of energy and vitality, and that’s exactly how we saw him, though my Sister did see him in the Chapel Of Rest, she said she needed to say goodbye.
Terribly difficult.Posted 6 years agoCougarSubscriber
Genuinely sorry for your loss.
P.S and if I am being too subtle (doesn’t happen often) that is not your dad, it is his dead body.
When my gran died, I took the view that what was in the coffin wasn’t my gran, merely the empty shell that used to contain her. I paid my ‘last respects’ from a discreet distance.
20 years-ish on, I don’t regret that decision. If I didn’t know by then what she looked like by then it was a bit late to be finding out. Better to have the memories of her that I have rather than have my last memory to be what’s left of her lying dead in a box, regardless of how ‘serene’ she may be looking at the time.
That said, ultimately it’s a personal decision. Don’t let anyone tell you what you ‘should’ do, do what you think is right for you.Posted 6 years agomastiles_fanylionMember
My dad passed away 3 years ago today.
I saw him in the hospital the morning he died and again at the funeral directors. Mum died in June and the same thing – saw her straight after (when she looked beautifully peaceful) and again at the directors.
I am glad I did it because I wanted to be able to say goodbye, but they weren’t my mum or dad, no matter how much I wanted them to be.
For me, the one thing I hated was the smell of the embalming fluids used – there is a particular hand wash that smells (to me anyway) exactly the same and I can’t bear it in the slightest anymore.
But I would still do it again – as said above, it is only possible to really regret not doing it.
And sorry for your loss. 🙁Posted 6 years agorickmeisterSubscriber
Tails, sorry to hear your dad passed away… Like others I cant say what you should do… what we did when my dad died worked for us.
I was with my mum for the time he was in the hospice and saw him just after he died. He looked pretty peaceful and the hospice staff were brilliant. The funeral directors helped too, they took clothes we wanted him to be dressed in along with other bits and pieces like a photo of his dog, a lead and a squeeky toy.
We went to see him at the funeral directors and were glad we did. We didnt find it creepy, just the right thing for us to do. We have all our memories of the good times and I was pleased to be able to support my mum in her wishes as well…
RickPosted 6 years agokonagirlMember
Again, sorry for your loss. IME close family tend to visit the Chapel of Rest if they weren’t at the death and want an opportunity to have a few moments in private prior to the funeral, which can feel much more public. It is just an opportunity to say goodbye in private, and like others have said you are very aware you are speaking over a body but it is as symbolic as visiting a gravestone to have a private moment of remembrance. With the nature of your father’s illness, you may feel that you have been grieving his loss for the last 2 years. In which case, it may not be helpful.Posted 6 years agomeftyMember
When in the same position I choose not to, but have a slight regret I didn’t because I had not seen him for a couple of weeks (he was in a coma). When my mother died suddenly (car crash, but not nasty one in terms of physical damage), I did see her and it does not haunt me or influence my memory of her.
There is no right or wrong decision, just remember that.Posted 6 years agoBigButSlimmerBlokeMember
When my grandad died I had the chance, but chose not to. He was big full of lifeguy and alzheimer’s took that away long before he died. I’m happy to have the memories i have of him, and don’t think seing him on a slab ould have helped.Posted 6 years ago
I don#’t regret it, so, in my opinion, it’s no, nbut i can only speak for me, it really is your choice.gravitysucksMember
Sorry for your loss mate.
There is no correct thing to do or traditions you should follow. Its a personal decision that you alone should make and to be honest I wouldn’t listen to others direct advice as every situation is different.
When did you last see your Father? If that memory is a pleasant one then you may wish to treasure that memory.
If on the other hand your final memory isn’t a particularly nice one then seeing your Father at peace may help you.
I will tell you the same thing I tell every family I deal with.
Do not think about it or try to make a decision. You have until a few hours before the funeral to see him so stop thinking about it.
If you wake up one morning over the next few days and feel the need to see him then go with that feeling. If you don’t get the urge then don’t go, but do not feel guilty about not going.
Speak to your funeral director. He is a professional and the person who will be able to offer you the advice and support you need. They will only want whats best for you.
Also remember that if you are aprehensive about seeing him then you can ask to spend time in the chapel of rest with the coffin sealed. That way you can have the private time to say your goodbyes before the funeral without the concern about a negative lasting impression.
Goodluck for Friday and my best wishes are with you and your family.Posted 6 years agoprojectMember
My dad was ill in a care home, got a call to visit his dr the next day, saw the dr who said your dad isnt well,(cancer) which i knew, so walked across to the home, which was opposite the surgery, he was like in a sleep, looked frailer than the day before, tried talking to him and he tried answering, mumbling etc, stayed for a while and said i will call back tomorrow.
Next morning got a call from the care home to say he had just died, while i was on the way there.
Got there, and he was lying on his bed, looked the same as the day before, got hold of his hand, and said hello, i couldnt believe he was dead.
Cried and the nurses walked in, said goodbye, walked out and hugged the care staff, cried again.
Day of his funeral, coffin back to my brothers house, he lay in the coffin in the front room, while we cried, chatted,passed coment on the woodwork of the coffin etc,etc(im a woodworker) and our family where undertakers.
If you cant face your dad face to face, just chat to the coffin and say goodbye, it does help.or it did for me.
Best wishes for the future and sorry for your bereavemnetPosted 6 years agohiggoMember
It’s not them.
I’ve only seen one dead relative, my Mother-in-law. I saw her about an hour before she died (cancer) and after she’d been laid to rest. The body really didn’t look to me like the woman I knew either in health or in her illness. The woman I knew was gone.
That’s just my experience though.Posted 6 years agoMarinMember
Sorry about your dad. My dad died 15 years ago and I went to see his body to accompany my mum as brother and sister did not want to go. It didn’t look like him in my mind and I found it very unpleasant and upsetting. He looked like a wax model of his former self.Posted 6 years ago
However in a strange way I’m glad I did as it was a chance to say goodbye to his body.mastiles_fanylionMember
We all go to the grave/headstone of deceased loved ones don’t we? I don’t actually think it is a great deal different (as long as you can cope with seeing the body which is slightly odd) – it is just showing respect at the loss of a loved one.
Yesterday I went down to the headstone where my dad’s ashes are buried with some flowers and to tidy it up a bit. Absolutely no reason to do so other than it is a space I have to show my continued respect for him.Posted 6 years agorichcMember
Entirely upto you, however from my experience I wouldn’t do it again, as the body is just a shell and I found it a little disturbing seeing the body when the person (soul/spirit/whatever) had gone, as they don’t look like the person you remember anymore.
Best sticking with the memory of when they were alive, rather than the image of the body IMHO.Posted 6 years agototalshellSubscriber
went to see our baby son every day in the funeral parlour the staff could nt have been better.. nor could the firm tbh. ( they did little Joe for free)Posted 6 years ago
we wanted to see our only son as much as possible and it was the right thing to do HOWEVER i would nt consider seeing my parents or siblings.. i will want to remember them alive and thats how they ll always be..
The topic ‘Should I go and see my Dad’ is closed to new replies.