No. This is actually quite common among those who are actively dying. Seeing dead loved ones or other unseen beings in the room oftentimes has a calming effect on the dying person in my experience. Generally, the dying person makes comment on seeing someone not for validation, but rather to inform. I once walked into a patient’s room late one evening as he sat in bed staring out at a darkened window lost in thought. When I asked what he was looking at, he responded that he was just watching his life go by in the window. “Like on a train” he said. He appeared totally at peace with his visions. Many families shared their own stories of their loved one seeing dead family members and asked how they should respond. My advice would be to try and engage them with who they are seeing and how they feel about seeing them. There is no need to challenge or remind them that those people have already passed, every patient I met acknowledged that they already knew this. There is also no need to respond as one would with a child’s imaginary friend, in other words the dying person does not expect you to see or engage with whatever it is that they are seeing. Like I said before, the visions of dead loved ones appears to bring them comfort. My own father saw faces in the windows of his bedroom, and when my mother went to close the blinds, my father responded with “Why? They’ll be coming inside soon enough.” In addition to seeing things, dying persons are also known to give other clues to their impending death. Clues that too many dismiss as just confused gibberish. The theme of preparing for an imminent journey, to leave this world, in my experience, was very common. I was with one elderly gentleman, a retired trucker I later found out, who insisted on ‘backing the hell up out of here, I’m late, I’m late!”, and then died later that morning. Several of my patients have asked me if they were packed, or where they had put their tickets. Their mode of travel may have differed, but they all seemed to be preoccupied with an urgent sense of leaving to go somewhere. One interesting woman, who had spent her life as a bush pilot in Alaska, kept repeating “when the skies clear”. Take note then with your loved one as you spend time with them. Look for those clues they may be using to alert you as their time draws nearer.
This is another interesting read on this subject of death and dying…and please watch this TEDx event video where Dr Kerr, a hospice doctor, shares video interviews of his dying patients talking about the dreams and visions they have of seeing dead people and the comfort it brings.