Planning a Funeral for Your Stillborn Baby
Planning a funeral for a stillborn baby is one of the hardest and most traumatic things a parent will have to go through. For many parents, though, a funeral can be the first step in healing and processing grief while also being a special moment for you to say goodbye to your baby. If your baby dies after 24 weeks of pregnancy, many states have a law where that body must e buried or cremated. It is the decision of the parent to hold a service before the burial or cremation.
We understand how delicate this situation can be and our staff will handle it with the utmost care and respect. Get in touch with us today to learn more about our cemetery services and pricing options.
Options for Funeral
When planning a funeral for a stillborn, it may be difficult to come to a decision on what to do. Here are some common options for a funeral if you need help.
- Arrangements can be made through the hospital. If you choose a hospital funeral, much of the paperwork and decision-making will be done for you which is helpful for those grieving. However, those options may be limited.
- Reach out to a funeral home. We partner with many great Long Island funeral homes if you are looking for one you can trust. Depending on the home, some offer a reduced fee for a stillborn.
- Lastly, you can work directly with us. Our staff can help you organize the funeral services and give you the proper burial options. Doing it all at one place makes it easy.
Whatever arrangements you choose is a very personal decision. And we at Mount Pleasant Cemetery will honor and respect your wishes and how you’d like it to happen. The only thing we want is to make you feel comfortable and welcome during this difficult time. Our staff is flexible when it comes to cemetery services and will work with you to make sure that everything is exactly how you want it.
About Stillborn Registration
Once the stillbirth is registered, which must happen within 6 weeks, the registrar will give you a certificate for burial or cremation. This form is allows for a permit for burial or cremation, which you can then pass onto the funeral director or hospital depending on who is making the arrangements. Only the parents named on the application form have the permission to apply for a stillborn birth certificate. Parents must show a valid I.D., like a driver’s license or passport when applying for the document.
The hospital and/or funeral director can help you with these forms. If you do decide to organize a service with Mount Pleasant Cemetery, we will also need these forms. Of course, it is very difficult to think about these practical aspects of a stillborn baby, but many parents value the official documents about their baby. It can become very important to have paperwork that acknowledges the birth and officially records their name. And it means future generations will be able to read about the baby, too. Giving closure to all those in the family and understanding that this was still a life.
When To Have The Funeral
In general, there is no specified legal time for the funeral arrangements and the determination is ultimately up to you. Many have the funeral within 2 to 3 weeks. This can change for some due to religious practices, so if that is the case with you please do not hesitate to mention it to our staff. But we cannot stress enough that you should not feel pressured into making a decision. Take your time to figure out what is best for you, your family, and your baby. You baby will be kept safe in the hospital mortuary or at the funeral home while you plan on the burial or cremation. This is a difficult time, so considering all options thoughtfully and with loved ones can help with the grief.
In many cases, the hospital may want to know if you’d like them to organize the funeral before you go home. This is standard procedure. Let them know you want to take your time if that is your plan and they should be understanding about it.