11 Hilarious Misconceptions About The Funeral Industry


If I had a nickel for every time someone assumed something hilariously awful about the funeral profession, I’d be swimming in a pool of money with a top shelf margarita in my hand.

Ok, maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration. But, it’s no secret that a career in the funeral profession is very different from most others. But does it mean that the people who follow their path into the funeral profession are blood sucking, evil, creepy vampires who only come out at night? Not at all! In fact, funeral directors are some of the most loving, caring people in this world.

After surfing Twitter and Instagram for a little while, I came across some posts that were SO bad, they were good. And to shine light on a situation that is actually getting better everyday, here are the 11 most hilarious misconceptions about funeral profession I found while surfing the web:

1. And making a living off of typing on a computer all day isn’t weird?

2. Who knew, funeral directors have brains AND hearts, strange isn’t it?

3. If we did, that would be pretty funny though. Thanks for our new office joke.

4. One of our own is going to go out on Twitter and make us look creepy like that!?

5. Did someone not tell her that all pens that come from funeral homes are made of actual dead bodies?

6. And you are Tweeting with the grammar of a 5-year-old, “bro.”

7. OH MY GOSH, he works at a funeral…. home? Is he like the grim reaper or something?

8. Hmmm, what could we possibly be burning? Probably cute puppies and babies, because we’re evil like that.

9. You just scored MAJOR points with your funeral director. All we can say is thank you.

10. Oh yea, we forgot. We’re supposed to be depressed all the time because it’s not like we’re normal human beings or anything. Our bad.

Who does that? Well, people who want to save money and make sure their last wishes are carried out. Weird, isn’t it?

11. Is there a rulebook anywhere that says funeral professionals don’t dance? Because as you can see, we can get down.


It’s time to create an authentic picture of the funeral profession…

But what does that look like? There’s so much stigma surrounding our profession that it might feel like an uphill battle even getting people interested in knowing their local funeral directors. But it’s an important, productive idea that might change a lot about the way we look at and handle death. So what kinds of steps should we be taking? Here are a few ideas:

1. Join the death cafe movement. Get people talking about death and surrounding topics with a laid-back Q&A style (with food and drinks, of course).

2. Start a blog (or vlog). Take notes from Caleb Wilde or Caitlin Doughty who have made a name for themselves (and for the funeral profession) through witty humor and sometimes painfully authentic truths about the funeral industry.

3. Let your personality shine through social media. Sure, your funeral home might have a Yelp! page or a Facebook business page, but does it have a fan page? Setting up a place where your community can connect with your funeral home, and where you can let your quirky, authentic self shine through, can build a lot of trust and communication between you and your families.

4. Get involved with your community outside of the funeral profession. There are plenty of funeral homes who are doing awesome things for the community that have nothing to do with death and dying. Get your name out there as an organization with plenty of heart behind it and you’ll win the hearts and minds of people throughout your community.

What other hilarious (yet terrifying) misconceptions have you seen floating around the web these days? Share them with us in the comments below!

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  1. Rose

    My husband is a funeral director and professional embalmer for 42 years. We met in a bar! He’s the funniest,most compassionate person I know. But to save strangers from going, “EEeewwwe” when asked what he does for a living, he tells them that he’s a meter reader for the gas company. My neighbor, a retired high school math teacher, so presumably educated, actually asked me if our funeral home was haunted. When Jim and I started dating, One of my co-workers asked how I could let him touch me. Another mental giant. Jim is such a regular guy. He loves to tinker on motorcycles, metal detects, reads history books (ask him about WWII), loves comedy and our rescued dogs. And me. I treasure him.

  2. Rilee Chastain

    Rose, thanks for the comment! Your husband sounds like a wonderful funeral director!

  3. Gina

    The girl at the gas station noticed my jacket one day (which has the name of the funeral home that I work at on it) and she asked me with a disgusted look on her face “So you just think about death and dying all day long?” I just looked at my daughter and said “It’s time to go now, Wednesday.” The clerk obviously didn’t get the reference, probably because funeral professionals have no sense of humor – why would one of them tell a joke? Haha

  4. Bill

    I’ve been in funeral service for 42 years and it has been such a rewarding career. It’s not really a career, it’s a lifestyle. I only have a few more years before I can retire, but we really don’t retire do we?

    One thing that really gets me is people telling me about their personal experience of seeing a body sit up in a casket at a funeral home, sometime during their life, and how it cleared the room and scared everybody to death. As I’ve said, I’ve been doing this for 42 years and I have yet to see a body sit up in a casket or on the table or even in the back of the hearse while on a first call. I’ve gotten so tired of hearing this bunch of bull, because people really believe this happens and they expect you to believe their made up story. And people think funeral directors are weird and strange in some sort of way.

  5. Greg

    Well speaking for my self. I had doubts if i really wanted to be a funeral director.
    Then 1 day we get a death call from a family that there mother had passed at home.
    We go and get the woman and take her to the local hospital to be pronounced [ that’s a law here in Georgia. ] even if they have a D.N.R. it takes a Dr. to pronounce them dead then sign a death certificate. The woman was in her late 50’s early 60’s and was a full blooded Cherokee. She died from crosses of the liver and had a bright yellow color to her body [ that’s what drinking for most of your life will do to the body. ] I asked to assist with her embalming do to being a half breed Cherokee myself. well it took about 1 maybe 2 hour’s [ manly because i was new at it ] then we put her in a dress the family got for her honoring her Cherokee ancestors. Now before we started anything when we went to the house to pick her up there were family and friends that did not want to shake our hands because we touch dead body’s for a living. well she was laid out in a White Batesville Cherokee rose casket. we ask the family to wait till we got her ready for viewing. then when we allowed them to come in….whoa they screamed fell out on the floor trying to clime in to the casket. and we thought we did a horrible job. Then the father of the lady that we worked on [ he was the senior tribal elder ] came up to us and wanted to kiss our hand’s. The same hand’s that other family members would not shake. well we stopped him and i spoke some Cherokee to him and the family. and they ask if i could attend the Traditional Cherokee funeral ? I told him he had to ask my boss. And of course he said yea. Well when we walked out of that room and closed the door’s to allow privet time for the family it was then i knew this was the job i wanted. We took some very painful times and allowed the family to see a beautiful Cherokee lady. Not a yellow looking woman. so there last memory’s of that lady to her father brothers sister husband children grandchildren was who they were blessed with before the drinking.