Keep in mind, that I have no conclusive facts about what I am about to say.  This is just my observations.


We live in a primarily Christian nation, meaning most of those we know are affiliated with some sort of  organized  religion.  Not everybody, but most.  But this is about the high cost of funerals.


Not just any funerals.


Last week I had to make the decision to put my beloved companion of over 18 years to sleep.  Only I knew it wasn't to sleep.  I made the decision to take his life.  It came with a lot of drama.  Days of crying, not wanting to let go. 


But that was my own selfishness.  Even though I knew he was totally deaf, I still talked to him.  And as the vet told me, even though I thought he could still see shadows, Murray was totally blind.  He was suffering, longer than I would have wanted to.  Selfish, I know, but it is hard to let go.


Now Murray was just a dog to most people, but not to me.  Eighteen plus years is a long time.  My one requirement was to bring him home.  I had him cremated.  It was $193.00 for the vet bill.  Just so you know, I live just below the poverty level according to the US Census.  It is that important to me to bring him home.


After the initial shock I looked into an appropriate receptacle to place his ashes.  Well it seems that I just didn't love that dog enough.  There is a price tag on keeping him with me.  Minimum of $50.00 to well over $300.00 for a suitable urn. 


It got me thinking.  In our capitalistic society we still place a dollar value on the lives and deaths of whom we love.  An expensive funeral equals a well loved relative.  Cheap, not so much.  How crass. 


Well, I loved this dog.  I finally found an antique wooden box on E-bay that will allow me the comfort of having him still with me.  $16.25 with shipping. 


What does that say about me?  I loved that dog.  I still love him.  I know he is not "In a better place" but I do know he is no longer suffering.  My reality is that I am not a wealthy person so I did the best I could .


I still don't understand why we, as a society, should pay such a high dollar value on the death of a loved one.  Why in a time of mourning are there those who are so willing to take advantage of our collective sorrow for a few extra dollars?

Views: 33

Comment by Janet Richter on April 18, 2011 at 1:00pm
You are correct.  Not everyone can afford an ipod but without a doubt each and every one of us will not make it out of here alive.  It is still wrong to capitalize on grief no matter how unsavory the task is.  Thank you for your comment.
Comment by Walter Maki on April 18, 2011 at 2:19pm
Yes it is very wrong to take advantage of those during a time of sorrow. Whether human or pet they all use the tactic of "I you really cared for them" as and opener to added expenses which is cruel. For my own person I want to be cremated with no fancy services or urns, I said just put me in a coffee can because don't matter to me because I'm dead and done.
Comment by BadHandshakers on April 18, 2011 at 6:18pm

It's.. it's why they invented religion in the first place. To make a couple of bucks, that's all, had they have known people would go right out crazy, and blow themselves up, or molest children in altars for it... they probably would've done it anyways, that shit went viral.


But to answer your question properly: No, the price tag on the box or whatever memorial you have for the diseased loved ones does not show for the amount of affection you have for that person, if anything, it shows how much you wanna' show others how you cared for that person, which in fact shows you didn't care about them all as much.

Comment by Gregor Basić on April 18, 2011 at 6:57pm

From where I come from, if you don't have money for a burial or cremation you do it yourself like in ye olde days, especially with pets.

I think people in USA are little bit spoiled in this respect, it's still completely normal in my country to bury or cremate pets yourself and it doesn't and it shouldn't cost you a dime.

Comment by Alayna on April 18, 2011 at 7:10pm boils down to capitalism, and the almighty dollar.  You loved your beloved dog VERY much, and just because you bought a cheaper box online instead of an expensive one, JUST mean you're not gullible!  Many ppl are, and those that work in death, take advantage of others vulnerabilities and sorrow when they can.  You showed them, you weren't going to play their game..and good for you.  I would have thought/done the same an owner of two little dogs, I've already "prepared" myself for their end and I know exactly how u feel about such a beloved companion...nope..not JUST A DOG.  A life.

It's now "illegal" to bury one's pet in their own backyards!  Or, in the woods for that matter...because, the town doesnt get any getbacks from your beloved pets death..tha'ts why. Grrrrr

Comment by Eli Baston on April 19, 2011 at 12:55am

I'm glad to see someone bring this topic up.  I personally see no reason that my family should have to spend large amounts of money to dispose of my body once I'm gone.  To me personally it is just disposing off a body. I don't need cerimony or rituals. I don't want need people to stand over my stone or mourn over my ashes.  If it was up to me once I pass they dispose of my body in the most economical way they can find. Then instead of a ceremony I would rather they have a gathering of my friends and family were people can tell stories and grieve togther.  I sincerely hope that my death wont have a large financial impact on my loved ones but unfortunetly it probably will.


Comment by Janet Richter on April 19, 2011 at 1:24am
I thank you all for your comments.  I know this has been personally a very difficult time for me and it has made me feel better to know there are kindred spirits out there who empathize.  There are those who believe that if there is no afterlife, we (atheist/agnostic) don't feel.  I feel the loss as much as any other person.  I just don't happen to believe in heaven, or hell for that matter.  What a thought, atheists are human.  I cry,  I bleed.  I am not un-human nor am I inhumane.  I just am.


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