How Our Attitudes Toward Death are Changing | Doulagivers Institute
Over the last century, death has been medicalized and outsourced to the point that it has practically been removed from our lives. This removal of an inevitable part of our human existence has created unnecessary fear and avoidance around the topic of end-of-life for most people. But in recent years, our attitudes toward death have changed dramatically. People are increasingly viewing death not as a tragedy to be feared but as an inevitability to be accepted and embraced… and to be prepared for. Society’s attitudes towards the subject of death and how to deal with it are changing – and that’s great news for everyone!
One of the main drivers of this shift in attitude is the “Death Positive Movement”, which focuses on creating more open conversations around death and dying. It encourages people to think more deeply about mortality and come to terms with the fact that we all must die one day. The movement is made up of a range of organizations including end-of-life doulas, funeral directors, health care professionals, academics, activists, writers, and educators. All are committed to helping us feel less afraid of death and make peace with it.
The death positive movement is gaining traction in the United States and around the world. It encourages people to embrace death as part of life instead of avoiding it or ignoring it altogether. It seeks to create a safe space for conversations to occur about end-of-life issues such as funeral planning, hospice care, estate planning, and even grief counseling. By having these conversations openly, we can better understand our own mortality and come to terms with death in a healthier way. The awareness we gain by being cognizant of death helps shape our behavior in a way that supports the life experience we truly want for ourselves individually, as well as expand and enhance quality end of life care for all people.
By engaging in honest conversations about end-of-life issues, we have an opportunity to reflect on life itself and make better choices. Through this process, we can gain a greater understanding of how we want to spend our lives and how we want to be remembered after we die. Additionally, this allows us to learn how we can best plan for the end of life so that those we love most are not overwhelmed by healthcare, legal, or financial issues during this difficult time. Talking about death openly allows us to address issues we might not have considered before, make sure our affairs are in order, and explore the options that are available to us fully. The Death Positive Movement is essential to create an environment where everyone has access to information that can help them make informed decisions about how they want their lives (and deaths) handled.
In addition to conversing more openly about death, the Death Positive Movement also encourages people to educate themselves on hospice care services, or simply about how to have conversations with family members and close friends about their end of life wishes. Doulagivers Institute is proud to be a part of this movement, and works to create resources that help people plan ahead properly and have access to the highest quality end of life care services possible. Through facilitating thoughtful discussions around the end of life, we strive to help people confront their fears surrounding death while also understanding how best to prepare themselves (and those around them) for when the time comes.
“By replacing fear of the unknown with curiosity we open ourselves up to an infinite stream of possibility.” – Alan Watts
By being “death positive”, we can better accept our mortality while also honoring those who have passed away before us by engaging in these important conversations around end-of-life issues. Taking the time to educate ourselves on end-of-life topics helps ensure that we are prepared for whatever comes next—even when it might be hard to talk about at times. Taking ownership of our mortality allows us to make informed decisions regarding how we want to live out our lives before we die—and ultimately makes life a richer and more fulfilling experience overall.
Technology is also transforming the way we view and deal with death – specifically by introducing us to new ways of grieving online after someone dies. Through platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others people can memorialize lost loved ones in unique ways while also connecting with others who have experienced similar losses – allowing them to find solace in knowing they’re not alone during their time of mourning. This kind of connection helps bring comfort at times when grief may otherwise feel insurmountable and overwhelming – making it easier for people to cope with loss and move forward on their path to healing from it. Doulagivers Institute is working on ways to further utilize technological advancements to reshape the way we think about and experience death. By making free resources, training programs, and supportive communities accessible directly from the comfort of our homes, we can help make the end of life a better experience for patients and their families.
Having conversations about death can be difficult for many people; however, it is important because it helps us prepare for this inevitable event and gain the skills, knowledge, and support needed for it to go well. Furthermore, discussing death openly and honestly creates a more supportive environment for those who are grieving or facing terminal illness. This can help reduce feelings of isolation and provide comfort during a difficult time for so many people. Access to a community filled with connection, presence, and understanding is incredibly beneficial for those navigating an end-of-life journey. The Death Positive Movement is an important initiative that seeks to open up conversations about death in order to create a more accepting environment surrounding this natural process. By shifting our perspective on death we can learn how to live better lives and provide the support needed for those who are facing end-of-life. It’s time we all become more comfortable talking about death in order to better understand this 100% guaranteed part of life and learn how to take care of each other in our greatest time of need.
Additional FREE Resources
If you would like to learn the 3 Phases of End of Life Model of Care that we teach in our professional certification programs at Doulagivers Institute, as well as interventions to provide comfort and support to both patients and their families in each phase, you can register for the FREE Doulagivers 90-Minute Level 1 End of Life Doula Live Webinar Training Here
For more information about Death Doulas and Death Doula Trainings, download the FREE Doulagivers Death Doula Guide Here
If you or someone you know is currently grieving or dealing with the loss of a loved one, you can download the FREE Doulagivers Grief Guide Here
Need help understanding Forgiveness and how learning to forgive yourself and others is the key to unlocking an extraordinary life? Download the FREE Doulagivers Forgiveness Guide Here
To understand the importance of filling out your Advance Directive and how to protect your wishes at the end of life, get the FREE Doulagivers Advance Directive Workshop Here
To join the Death Positive Movement and become part of a growing global community centered on the values of kindness, compassion, and LOVE – join the FREE Doulagivers Family Caregiver Community on Facebook Here