You know what they say: You only die once (YODO) — so you might as well do it right. Or so the thinking goes in the “death wellness movement.”
A growing number of services in the dollars-for-death business are shifting the focus from funerals and services to designer death experiences.
The death business is killing it
It sounds creepy, but there’s a thriving cottage industry around dying. Death doulas — who, like birth doulas, support patients — operate in at least 6 states.
Death Cafes across the country let people gather over tea and cake to talk candidly about dying. A number of companies help elderly people produce “legacy videos” before they pass.
There’s even a death festival of sorts in San Francisco, Reimagine End of Life, that offers spiritual and scientific programming to end taboos related to death.
But can everyone afford a designer death?
Dying isn’t always cheap. The average American funeral costs about $9k, and although death doulas’ fees vary, some packages could set families back a few thousand dollars a week.
Other death services like legacy videos can cost as much as $7k, pushing premium postmortems out of reach for many.
But even if not everyone can afford the white-glove dying experience, the death wellness movement wants to shift culture to provide support and positivity to all people in their final days.