Earlier this week, we met with a wills and trusts attorney. Years ago we talked about getting a will set-up but ultimately decided against doing it because well, we didn’t have any kids. We thought, if something terrible happens we’re each others beneficiary so we should be set? Right?
With the little one on the way, having a will in place started to seem more and more important. We got a referral from a friend and set-up a meeting. We decided that if nothing else we need to figure out who will take little Junior (we just made up a nickname for the meeting so we didn’t have to keep calling the baby “it” or “baby”) in the event of a tragedy.
Some of you might have stopped ready by this point and I get it, I totally, completely know why. It’s because none of us want to think about this stuff. It is terrible to even have the subject come up much less PLAN FOR TERRIBLE STUFF HAPPENING. It’s way, WAY easier to deny that these issues even need to be addressed. I mean, unless you’re elderly we all want to hope and pray that we’ll never have to deal with this stuff and that we’ll all just live long healthy lives.
That IS the goal after all.
Even just writing this post makes me cringe a bit. Ugh. Must continue…
During the meeting with the attorney I swear I must’ve had a pained expression painted on my face. No one wants to hear: “When you die…”, “When your husband/wife dies…”, “If both of you die at the same time…”, “If you can’t make decisions for yourself anymore…”, “If Junior is the only one living…”. Ack. Terrible, terrible phrases.
Cringe-Worthy Meeting with a Wills and Trusts Attorney…
After the meeting, Aaron said the conversation didn’t bother him but it bothered me. I just don’t like even thinking about that stuff or those possibilities, and really it all just makes me sad.
As sad as it makes to consider any horribleness happening I do also know how vitally important it is to have my wishes known, to know what Aaron’s are, and to have a plan in place if we aren’t around to care for our little one. I know that if I weren’t around (or able) to make decisions I wouldn’t want the burden to be left on our family members to sort out in probate court. Having a will in place and a people designated to execute the plan you set in place is extremely important.
Really, it’s the responsible thing to do.
The wills and trusts attorney told us to put people in charge who we trust. People who know what we want so we don’t feel like we have to dictate every single little thing about how things should go. Of course, it is recommended to state the big things like if you have philosophical medical choices but other than that trust that the people you trust will carry out your wishes.
Something else I found out that I didn’t know about is that same-sex couples can (despite individual state laws) set-up documents so that they are given very similar rights to those that heterosexual married couples have.Things like, letting the partner make the medical decisions in the event of an emergency and excluding the parents. I thought that was interesting and relevant information to know and probably makes setting up a will that much more important for same-sex couples.
Another thing, something as seemingly simple as if you would like to be an organ and tissue donor (even if it is noted on your driver’s license) needs to be talked about because it can cause controversy in families.
So, while the conversation is cringe-worthy and while none of us really wants to “go there”. I would like to encourage you to at the very least talk to your loved ones about what you would like to happen the event that you pass unexpectedly or in the event that you can’t make decisions for yourself anymore.
No one wants to think about this stuff so it gets pushed under the rug for another day but it’s really important to think about. My advice, go there, have the conversation, set up the plan, and be done with it.
Do you have a will and/or trust in place? Did you go through an attorney or an online source? How do you get over the cringe factor of talking about this topic with your loved ones? Have you been in a situation where a person didn’t have a will and/or trust in place and you had to deal with the aftermath? I’d love to hear your experience.