Death is a sensitive subject that many people try to avoid talking about as much as possible. A death in the family is a trying and painful time for adults and it is even more so for children. Kids who aren’t aware of the concept and finality of passing away often feel confused and unsure of how to process their grief.
As a parent and their emotional support during this serious and sensitive moment, it is our job to guide them. Here are some tips to help you explain and talk about death in a way that children can understand and comprehend:
Tip 1: Be Truthful
Many adults use euphemisms such as “they’re just sleeping” or “they’re in a better place” as a way to explain the death of a loved one. If at first, this makes the topic easier to handle, it will only lead to a lot of confusion as the days go by. Telling children the truth about a loved one’s passing will help explain your emotions and it will allow them to mourn as well.
Never hide behind “kind” words to protect a child’s innocence. Death is a part of life and it should be explained to them properly.
Tip 2: Answer Their Questions
Children are naturally inquisitive and will ask a lot of questions about death when it is explained to them. Be patient and answer their questions. Do not ignore them and tell them to keep quiet. Death is a complicated subject and if their questions go unanswered they will feel alone and ignored, leaving a lot of room for anger and other negative emotions to build up within them.
Tip 3: Keep The Memories Alive
Display Memorial ornaments in the house to keep the memory of the loved one alive. Talk to your kids and tell them that although the person is no longer physically with the family, their memories will live on. Telling anecdotes and stories about that person’s life will provide a lot of comfort for those who are grieving.
Having a few memorial ornaments as remembrances also helps younger children remember how their loved ones look like, which will help with their memory as they grow up.
Tip 4: Do Not Get Mad At Their Reaction To The News
People, even children process the news and their grief in different ways; some children might cry others might not. The best thing to do is to accept their reaction. Scolding them for not reacting the way adults think is appropriate should be avoided at all cost. Kids are still new to the concept of death and their immediate response will vary. As the adult, it is our job to understand them, not to berate them.
Throughout the emotional and traumatizing experience, children should be reassured that they are loved and supported. Family members, not just parents should acknowledge that children are also grieving and deserve just as much love and receive all the comfort while they are still processing the loss of their loved one.
Memorial ornaments can be a perfect way to honor loved ones who have passed on. Remember Me Gifts has a good line of products to help you pay tribute to our dearly departed.