Fathering | Dads: Plan for the day you’re not there

By Marc McCannOctober 5, 2013 

Planning for your own death is an emotional and challenging process. When my son asked me what would happen if say, my wife and I died in a car accident, I told him that he and his brothers would go live with their uncle and his family.

This is a decision Denise and I made years ago, and put into our will, which we had written with the guidance of a local lawyer. So we’ve done some planning to prepare for this prospect, but have we covered all our bases? Have I done everything I can as a father to prepare for this possibility?

Action ideas

•  Think about your passing away, whether in 50 years, or unexpectedly, tomorrow. This exercise is difficult for anyone to do. But consider this scenario and plan with this end in mind. What would this mean for your children & family emotionally, financially, educationally, etc.?

•  Have you created a will? If not, consider visiting a lawyer, so that when you do pass away, there is a clear plan regarding custody of your kids, and how your assets are best positioned to transfer to your children.

•  Do you have life insurance? The general goal would be to have coverage until your children are through college, so if you died, your children’s housing and education costs would be covered.

•  Imagine being in your children’s shoes. What would they want or need if you died unexpectedly? Consider writing them a letter expressing your love and pride in them, and offering words for strength. Perhaps better, or additionally, you could make a video expressing these things, and they could view it in this scenario.

The local fathering effort, in cooperation with the National Center for Fathering, provides bi-weekly Action Ideas to stimulate conversation between fathers and parents. For more information, or to join local conversations, contact David Eggebeen at e5x@psu.edu, Mick Trombley at mick@micktrombley.com, Robert Orndorff at rmo104@psu.edu, Chris Dufour at chrisdufour19@gmail.com, or Marc McCann at marc.mccann@arrow.com. See the Centre County Fathering website for resources and information at www.centrefathering.org.

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