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Can I divide my loved one’s cremated remains?

Yes. In fact you have more options than ever. You may want to consider keepsake or mini urns or any of the options available in our Creative Cremation section.

What type of information do I need to have for my loved one who just passed away?

Having your loved one’s Social Security number, date of birth, city of birth, parents’ names and mother’s maiden name, highest level of education will make the process easier. It also helps to let the funeral home know as soon as possible whether burial or cremation will be chosen.

Can I have a cremation and still have a service?

Yes, absolutely! The great thing about cremation is that you can honor your loved one’s wishes and have cremation take place but still have a service for friends and family which we recommend because it helps in the grief process.

What are the most common options for me to consider after I receive my loved one’s cremated remains?

  1. Burial in a cemetery. This may be the best option for those who have a family burial plot and wish for all loved ones to be buried in the same place.
  2. Placement in a niche in a columbarium. A columbarium is a designated area for the placement of cremated remains, generally located at a cemetery.
  3. Creative placement. You may wish to consider the creative options and tributes available through Shared Sorrows’ preferred providers.
  4. Scatter the ashes. This may take place at a location that was special to your loved one and/or other family members. Please note that this may require special permission in some instances.

What are the different types of services to consider if I choose cremation?

There are several types of cremation services you could possibly choose from…

  1. Traditional services before cremation. This particular arrangement allows you to have a visitation with an open casket present if you wish. Most funeral homes have rental caskets for this purpose. A funeral service can be held at the funeral home or a local house of worship. Once the services are completed, the funeral home will take the decedent’s remains to the crematory rather than a cemetery. Some crematories allow family and/or friends to witness the cremation if desired.
  2. Visitation followed by cremation. This option provides a time for family and friends to gather to view the decedent and pay their respects before the cremation.
  3. Memorial service. This service can be held at a church, funeral home chapel or location of your choice. This service generally takes place after the cremation has occurred and with or without your loved one’s cremated remains present
  4. Basic cremation. Under this option, your loved one’s remains are taken directly to the crematory rather than being sent to the funeral home for embalming and viewing options. It is the most cost-effective option. A memorial service can follow the cremation if desired.
  5. Creative cremation. Through our association with cremation expert Michelle Cromer, Shared Sorrows provides a number of creative cremation concepts through which you can create a unique tribute.


What is an EternaPage™?

EternaPage™ is a free service provided by Shared Sorrows where family and friends can pay tribute to a deceased loved one. Unlike newspaper and many other online tributes, the EternaPage™ you create will remain on our site permanently and without cost.

Do you have someone available to help me if I need personal assistance?

Yes, we answer basic questions free through Live Chat (shown at the bottom of the home page and every other page on our site) or by email in the About Us section. We also have well-trained Funeral Planners available to assist you with all of your planning needs on a reasonable fee-basis.

I’m new to the site and need to make funeral arrangements. Where do I start?

We suggest you follow these steps:

  1. Time of Need Checklist: Start with our Time-of-Loss Checklist. This will help you organize, prioritize and hopefully delegate some of the responsibility to others.
  2. Planning: Use EternaPlan™ to create the funeral plan you want the funeral home and other service providers to follow.
  3. Cremation: If you are choosing—or considering cremation, you should visit our Cremation Concepts page for further information and options.
  4. Finances: If you want options for paying for a funeral, you will find those options here.
  5. Resources: Shared Sorrows provides you with a wealth of well-researched information to answer your questions and help you plan the perfect tribute.
  6. Memorialization. If you have completed the EternaPlan™ you will find that we have used the information you provided to assist you in preparing an EternaPage™, Notice of Passing, Funeral Notice, Eulogy, Obituary and other helpful documents.
  7. Final Checklist: Shared Sorrows has prepared a Post-Funeral Checklist to assist you in addressing all of the issues that arise after a loved one has passed away.

A lot of your services are free, so how do you make money?

We have a group of Preferred Providers who support our mission and purpose. These Providers pay the bills so we can provide the service! We encourage you to support them and to let them know that you appreciate the free services at

Is this site owned by a funeral home?

No, Shared Sorrows was created by a team with no ties to a funeral home or related businesses. Given the cost of funerals and the fact that at a time of need, it is difficult for a family to know if the providers they select are ethical (or not), our goal is to help consumers make wise choices at a difficult time.

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