Writing a eulogy for your husband might be one of the hardest things you’ll ever do. In our experience, we’ve found that people in your situation often find it hard to know where to begin when writing a eulogy when you have a lifetime of love and experiences to capture.
How can you gather your words during this time of sadness to share how much he means to you?
How do you capture the highlights of the life you lived together in a short snapshot?
We know the thought of writing and delivering your husband’s eulogy may feel overwhelming right now. So that’s why we’ve put together this resource together—to help guide you through the eulogy writing process.
We’ll take you step-by-step through the process of writing a meaningful, heartfelt tribute to a husband who died that captures the life you shared together
If you’re keen to get started straightaway, download a copy of our Eulogy Workbook.
The workbook includes samples from eulogies that might inspire you and give you the framework for creating a memorable and moving funeral tribute to your husband.
How long should my tribute to my husband?
Eulogies for husbands, like all eulogies, are usually a lot shorter than most people think. They’re a short funeral tribute of that take between 3 and 5 minutes to read. This equals 2 or 3 A4 pages, or 600 to 750 words.
If several people are speaking at your husband’s funeral, then 3-5 minutes for a short eulogy is a good aim. If you’re the only people speaking (or one of the only ones) then it’s OK for the eulogy to be around 10 minutes. This equals 5 or 6 A4 pages.
Set a central theme for your husband’s eulogy
Deciding which memories to share out of the many you’ve gathered together can be really hard. When a person has been a big part of your life, and especially if you’ve spent many years together, deciding what to leave out can be really difficult.
However, we think that by choosing a central theme that best represents your husband, then the process of choosing the memories you wish to share will become much easier.
You could set your theme around:
- your husband as a family man (e.g. how he was always there for your kids, how he cared for his parents until their death, how he supported other relatives through troubled times)
- key moments in your relationship over the years (e.g. how you met, how you decided to get married, the arrival of kids, moving to a new city, state or country)
- how your relationship grew stronger with each challenge you dealt with (e.g. illness, death in the family, change in employment)
- his unique quirks (e.g. those unusual parts of his personality you mostly found endearing)
- regular activities he enjoyed and was known for enjoying (e.g. staunch football supporter, keen hiker, or woodworker).
If you don’t feel a strong pull to one set theme, talk about it with your family and his friends. See if common patterns or themes emerge from the memories they share.
A theme isn’t necessary for writing a eulogy from wife to husband, but it can be helpful to help you sift and sort your memories and choose the ones you want to share with the people who cared about your husband, too.
Gather biographical details
If you want to share biographical details as part of your eulogy—the when and where he was born, who his parents and siblings were, his work and education history, etc.—then write these details down and look up any information you don’t have at hand.
You can then think about and write down key moments in his life and how he enjoyed spending his time. This could be work highlights or travel adventures or anything like that you think of.
If these key moments relate to the theme of your eulogy, that’s great.
Writing the eulogy’s opening
In your opening, thank people for coming to his funeral or watching the live stream. If people have travelled a long way, you can acknowledge them, too. Acknowledge anyone else you’d like to as well. This might be another family member or close friends who has provided you with a lot of support recently or over the past few years.
Most people are most likely to know who you are, but there might be people from his past you haven’t met in-person before or who don’t know you very well. So, it can’t hurt to open with who you are and your relationship to your husband.
A eulogy opening is quite short. It only needs to be a paragraph or two.
You can return to the opening after you’ve finished writing the other parts.
Gather your favourite memories
If you’ve chosen a theme, filter the standout stories and memories against that theme.
It’s OK to use humour in a eulogy from a wife to a husband. People attending you husband’s funeral will no doubt enjoy listening to any humorous stories you share, so long as they’re warm stories and you’re not making fun of your husband. Humour goes a long way towards easing tension at a funeral.
Think about the people who will be at your husband’s funeral and the sorts of stories they’d love to hear about your husband.
With the stories you choose to share, focus on the ones with a positive sentiment. A funeral is not the time to surprise people with a shocking revelation. People always appreciate a eulogy delivered with kindness. It’s your story to tell and OK to be personal and honest but focus on the positives.
You might only need to choose a couple of significant memories for your husband’s eulogy that connect to your theme.
Say your final goodbye
Sticking with your overall theme, try and find a way to connect it to your final goodbye.
If you want, share a quote or a poem that captures how you feel.
You can either speak directly to your husband or to the people attending the funeral. It’s up to you.
If you’re struggling to write the conclusion, think of what comforting words your husband would say.
Practice delivering your husband’s eulogy
To help you feel confident about delivering your husband’s eulogy, practice reading it out aloud many times.
Time yourself to make sure it’s not too long or too short.
You don’t have to memorise the eulogy word-for-word, but the more familiar you are, the easier it will be to deliver.
After you’ve edited the eulogy and if you feel comfortable, share it with a close, supportive friend or family member. You don’t have to take their feedback on board—it’s your story to tell.
Plan to short breaks while delivering the eulogy. Deep breathing can help if you feel tears coming. Have a glass or bottle of water to sip from. It will give you the chance to pause for a moment while you take control of your emotions.
Make eye contact with your audience. They’ll be supporting you the whole time and their support will help you deliver the eulogy.
Print the eulogy with page numbers in case they get mixed up. It helps to print it out in a large font size so it’s easy to read. Try not to fold or roll the pages so they’ll sit nice and flat on the lectern.
If you’ve printed the eulogy, someone else can take over if you’re too overcome by emotion to continue. That way, you can still share your words even if you can’t speak them yourself.
We hope you found our tips helpful and inspire you to find the right words to capture how you much love your husband.
Download our Eulogy Workbook
To help you write a fitting eulogy that will remember your husband with love and warmth, download a copy of our Eulogy Workbook. It includes samples of the sort of things you could write in his eulogy.