If you hear the words ‘life insurance’ particularly if you’re a parent, what thoughts and feelings does it give you?
If you feel a mild discomfort to the pit of your stomach the chances are your brain is naturally suppressing any thoughts of death so quickly that they don’t even surface.
It’s not your fault. Psychologists call it ‘Terror Management Theory’ which is a basic conflict that comes from the desire to live, but realising that death is inevitable.
And to back up this theory, according to research from Sheffield University, most parents who don’t have life insurance are potentially avoiding it because they can’t deal with thoughts of their own death.
“…23% of families would be unable to cover the mortgage or rent within one month of the death of a parent.”
In fact according to the survey of 2000 parents, 44% have never discussed the financial implications of death with their partner.
Unfortunately this aversion of thinking about our own death, contradicts our most important parental instinct: to protect our children.
It’s estimated that only 47% of British parents have life insurance in place.
But according to the survey, 23% of families would be unable to cover the mortgage or rent within one month of the death of a parent.
The research also revealed that 60% would need additional government benefits within four weeks of their partner’s death.
Nearly a quarter (23%) of parents say they don’t have life insurance because they wouldn’t personally benefit.
And 36% have little or no understanding of how life insurance works.
Speak to someone who’s lost a loved one unexpectedly and they’ll tell you that loss of the family home, loss of friends and neighbors, loss of lifestyle, loss of educational prospects are all very real risks that many families are exposed to every day without realising it.
So the financial impact of death runs much deeper than many people would even like to start to think about…
How can parent’s look at life insurance differently?
The same survey found that nearly a third (31%) of uninsured parents would be more likely to take up a life insurance policy if it was renamed ‘love insurance’ meaning any payout being a gift of ‘love’ rather than a payout in the event of a parent losing their life.
This affective re-positioning of life insurance could help people overcome their conscious and unconscious barriers that prevent them from protecting their families.
Reframing life insurance in this way could ensure more children are protected against the financial burden of losing their home, friends, lifestyle and educational prospects in the event of a parent’s death.
“…nearly a third of uninsured parents would be more likely to take up a life insurance policy if it was renamed ‘love insurance’”
Life insurance, which is often associated with tragedy, actually gives peace of mind to the living and allows parents to show their love during and after they’ve gone.
What are the costs?
A Term life insurance policy can be bought from as little as £5-£8 a month and a whole of life insurance policy from around £20 a month.
I’ve written before about these types of insurance and how they can help families, so feel free to take a look at some of my previous posts on the differences between Term Life Insurance and Whole Life Insurance.
What about not benefiting unless you die?
This needn’t be the case any more and it is possible to benefit without dying! If you were paying money into a policy each month you’re quite right to expect something back even if you don’t claim. And by something back I mean real tangible benefits.
I’ve shown you in previous articles that there is one way to benefit from life insurance without making a claim.
Some of the benefits offered by Vitality like free cinema ticket’s and big discounts on things like bikes, trainers and gym memberships could actually improve the quality of your life, bring your family closer together and help you live longer in the process!
What are your thoughts on life insurance?
Do you have life insurance? Do you recognise that feeling of ‘terror’ because of the uncomfortable feeling associated with life insurance?
I’d love to hear your thought’s. Please comment or send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org
Until next time.