FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What comes in a Familial gift?
The Familial gift includes copies of your typed letter, one for you and each child, as well as a digital copy. You can include photos, art and even artifacts to accompany your letter. Your Familial gift is presented in a gorgeous, keepsake box.
I’m planning on living a long time. Why should I write a Familial letter now?
Simply put, you never know what tomorrow will bring. At Familial, we believe in living life fully. Now is the time to pause and consider what’s most important.
How is Familial different from other family narrative services?
We each approach family connection with our own twist. A key difference is that Familial guides our clients throughout the personalized experience, from start to finish.
Would you travel to work with me?
We do travel to work in-person with clients who don’t live in the Bay Area. The process is shorter (with all sessions occurring within the visit) without being compromised. Travel costs would be additional.
Does meeting online or by phone compromise the project?
It’s not always possible to meet our clients in person. Fortunately, we feel extremely comfortable with the environment we create working with clients online or by phone.
I’m rather private. Can you make me more comfortable with the idea of doing this with Familial?
Part of the process is getting to know each other. After introducing ourselves by phone, we’ll meet in person or through video conferencing to talk about the process and address any concerns or questions you may have. We check in regularly to be sure our clients are comfortable and are enjoying the process.
Do you write the letter for me?
This is your story. It’s your voice and your words. The majority of our clients use the time between sessions to build their letter based on our customized questions. But some clients prefer to have Familial do the typing. Either way, throughout our collaboration, we’ll review the content to ensure it’s accurate and tells your story.
Do we have to meet four times over five weeks or can it be condensed or extended?
Our typical model consists of four sessions over five weeks. This pacing allows room for ideas to percolate as well as time to build the letter between sessions. That said, we can shorten that timeframe. Lengthening it, however, affects the momentum often necessitating an added session.
May I talk with a former client?
We’re happy to give you referrals. In fact, we encourage it in order to put you at ease and get you even more excited about working with us!
I’m buying a Familial gift for my sibling. Do you have something I can present to her?
Once you’ve purchased the gift, we’ll either send the gift card to you or mail it directly to your sibling, depending on your preference. We’ll then reach out to your sibling to introduce ourselves and begin the process.
I’d like to have my parent record a short message to accompany the letter. Is that possible?
We will gladly record your parent delivering a special message that we will then attach to the digital copy of the letter.
I want to buy this as a gift for my parent. How would I introduce the idea?
Here’s a reassuring thought: we’ve found that while adult children may be unsure as to how to bring up the idea of recording their parent’s stories, parents are happy to talk about their life experiences. Still, it’s a good idea to tell your parent why you want to capture these memories and thoughts and why now. If you explain why it’s important to you, the experience of recounting and capturing these stories and perspectives will be that much more meaningful for your parent and for you.
As a starting point, see if any of the points below resonate with you and then speak with your parent about your motivation for asking:
- You want a fuller picture of your parent - a better understanding of who they are and what’s important in their lives -- from their perspective and in their voice.
- You want to learn more about your grandparents and what life was like for your parent growing up.
- You want your children to be able to read in your parent’s words how your parent sees his grandchildren and children and what your parent wishes for each of you.
- Your parents have their finances and directives in order and this loving narrative would be a complement to those critical pieces.
- You want something tangible for your children and future generations to have as a link to your parent something that you can all hold in your hands and come back to time and again.