A study out today found that few Britons know about their partners' end-of-life wishes because we still find it difficult to talk about death.
We have more insight, however, when it comes to the dying thoughts, desires and regrets of famous people.
These are fascinating, not only in the way in which they are expressed, but also the degree to which they vary. While some people are eternal optimists ("I've had a hell of a lot of fun" - Errol Flynn), others look ahead to their legacy ("Fancy being remembered around the world for the invention of a mouse" - Walt Disney) and still more voice bitterness or regrets ("Every damn fool thing you do in this life you pay for" - Edith Piaf).
Come take a look at some of the fears, hopes and dreams of famous people on their deathbeds:
Photos: Rex Features