Ask What Their Understanding Of The Situation Is This is an obvious question when you think about it, but it is very often overlooked in these days of the medicalization of dying and death. The more common situation is that someone is told what is wrong with them, and assumptions are made as to what this means. In particular, the assumption that the patient wants to be kept alive (sometimes at seemingly all costs) can often get in the way of what that person may actually want. As a relative or friend, you may be in a better position to simply ask ‘what do you understand is happening to you?’ When I asked that of a friend who was dying in 2014, she said she knew she was coming to the end, and she accepted that. But she wanted her body to get a move on – she was finding the slowly drawn out nature of her death to be quite a challenge. She was also quite clear she wanted a certain medication to be stopped, and another started. Finally, she told me she had said all that needed to be said, and that she was ready to go. This conversation helped me to be with her during this time. Be Willing To Accept What Is Happening To Them It can often be the case that family members are the ones who are most distressed about their loved one dying. Hence the ironic situation sometimes heard of when the one who is dying ends up comforting the one being left behind. It can really help a dying person if you are able to simply acknowledge anything they want to say, accepting it without denial. This means you will have to come to terms with it yourself, putting their needs ahead of yours. It’s not uncommon for those who are closest to the dying person to actively want them to die, so that their suffering is ended. I remember simply wanting my late husband to be out of pain, and free from a body that just was not working any longer. I knew it would be difficult for me without him, but when you love someone, you don’t want them to be suffering, even if it means it will be harder for you. Listen For The Metaphors Often a dying person will ‘give a message’ to a close loved one, in such a way that only that person can understand it. Iit is often a message demonstrating their understanding of what is happening. Because I had read lots of stories of this happening, I was very aware when Philip told me he wanted to watch what had been his favourite TV show, Countdown. By this time he had been in hospital for 6 weeks, and had been told there was nothing more that could be done. He was too ill to be moved, so we knew the end was coming soon. He said he wanted to watch Countdown, a popular British programme focusing on numbers and word games. Wanting to watch TV at all was very unusual as he hadn’t requested this for the whole of the previous weeks. But when I heard that he wanted to watch ‘Countdown’, I knew he was telling me that he was ‘counting down’. I found this to be very comforting – the fact that I knew he knew what was happening helped me to be calm for the next couple of days as he became weaker and weaker, less awake and unable to speak. This is a time for tenderness, open hearts and respect shown to all concerned; and it is made easier when we are able to talk honestly and openly about dying, about death and about grief. It is only when those topics are forbidden in some way, or that we are frightened of them, that problems arise. Naturally conversing in this way is part of a good end of life, and part of any plan that is made for that end. I go into this in much more depth in my book, Before I Go, inviting you to start conversations now about this subject, regardless of whether you are caring for someone who is dying or not. The more we become comfortable with this kind of conversation, the easier it will be to accept what is the one thing that will happen to us all. Learn More If you’d like to learn more, and get your End Of Life Plan completed (If you haven't already) check out the Before I Go Method here. Also, if you’d like to check out my book Before I Go, you can do so by clicking here.

3 Tips On Talking To Someone Who Is Dying

By Jane Duncan Rogers / January 26, 2023 /

How Do You Talk To Someone Who Is Dying? How on earth do we talk with someone who is dying? Selena was becoming more and more frail. It was clear that, though in good spirits, her body was nearing the end of her life. She kept having visits to hospital, and had recently had a…

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6 unusual ways to have a more enjoyable Christmas and festive season

By Jane Duncan Rogers / December 19, 2022 /

6 unusual ways to have a more enjoyable Christmas and festive season Traditionally, it is a time when, according to the media, life is good, filled with blessings, and enjoyment is had by all. But the actuality, as you well know, may be a little different, and for some people this time of year is…

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The Growing through Grief Podcast

The Growing Through Grief Podcast

By Jane Duncan Rogers / October 28, 2022 /

Diana Curtis We make a conscious effort to learn how to grieve a loved one. We are aware of the challenges we might be forced to face, the pain we must endure, and the growth we should seek. But what about our own transition? How prepared are we to talk about it? Jane Duncan Rogers…

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The Health In The Real World Podcast

The Health In The Real World Podcast

By Jane Duncan Rogers / October 6, 2022 /

Chris Janke Chris Janke has been a personal trainer and group fitness instructor since 2004. Welcome to Health in the Real World. Health in the Real World Podcast brings together personal trainers, doctors, motivational speakers, massage therapists, chiropractors, weight loss gurus and clients, acupuncturists, and inspirational and healthy people of all kinds. Jane Duncan Rogers…

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The Queen's Funeral, Excellent Planning

The Queen’s Funeral, Excellent Planning

By Jane Duncan Rogers / September 20, 2022 /

The Queen’s Last Message Huw Edwards on BBC TV was speaking about the Queen having approved everything that was happening yesterday with her funeral. Obviously, for such a huge occasion, planning is essential, and it has been in place for decades (known under the code name London Bridge). It impacts the armed forces, security, logistics,…

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Lessons From The Queens Death Plan

Lessons From The Queen’s Death Plan

By Jane Duncan Rogers / September 16, 2022 /

Learning From The Queen’s Death The lessons we can learn from our Queen’s death and apply to our own mini-realms of family, friends and property. During her reign, the Queen has given us examples of many kinds of things that remind us we are all human. Even in her final years, maybe not intentionally, she…

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Elizabeth II has died - what happens now

Elizabeth II has died – what happens now?

By Jane Duncan Rogers / September 10, 2022 /

A Plan Nobody Wanted But Was Always Necessary Queen Elizabeth has died – what happens now is something that has been known about for many, many years. The Queen’s funeral plans, nicknamed ‘London Bridge’ now comes into operation. This well-thought through plan will be followed by all those involved in managing the lead up to…

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Who should I have as executor of my will

Who should I have as executor of my will?

By Jane Duncan Rogers / August 31, 2022 /

Who should I have as the executor of my will? The answer to ‘who should I have as executor of my will?’ is often ‘someone in your family’.  But what if there isn’t an obvious person in your family to take on this role?  What do you do then?  In my book, Before I Go:…

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The Women On A Mission Podcast

The Women On A Mission Podcast

By Jane Duncan Rogers / August 24, 2022 /

Sue Revell  Sue Revell wants to make a difference in this world. With over 30 years of coaching and leadership experience, Sue is on a mission to encourage strong women around the world to think big and become the best versions of themselves.  Coaching internationally, Sue’s clients are primarily world changing women who want to…

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Have you ever had to play Sherlock Holmes

Finding Documents After Someone Dies

By Jane Duncan Rogers / May 18, 2022 /

Have you ever had to play Sherlock Holmes? Missing garden equipment, important documents, finding passwords, finding documents after someone dies can be a nightmare! It’s often a mystery trying to find these details after a loved one has passed. To celebrate Sherlock Holmes National Day on May 22nd, we’ll be discussing how End of Life…

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