Dealing with the loss of a loved one is a traumatic event that can easily overshadow everything else in our lives. It can be incredibly draining, emotionally and physically, but it is something that we all need to face at some point. Children are also affected when losing a loved one, but they need even more care when it comes to getting through this very sad period. If the child is mature enough to have formed a relationship with the deceased, then they are old enough to feel the same waves of grief as all of us who have been there. This article looks at some ways to help children come to terms with the passing of a loved one.
After The Sad News
When a child has learned of the sad event, they will need some attention fairly quickly. We need to make sure that they are in a circle of warmth and understanding if they are to get through this initial period of acceptance. This is very difficult because we are experiencing similar feelings, but we need to do our best. The child will start to experience some form of emotional growth during this process, and that is one positive that we can take away from this experience.
Words Are Not Enough
Sometimes a simple hug is worth one thousand words, however well-meaning thy may be. The child may feel as if they are being ignored, especially when the adults seem to be pre-occupied in their own thoughts and activities. If the child is willing to help with some of the tasks, then encourage this desire as it will take their mind off the actual event for a little while. Adults have a better understanding of how to describe the way they feel, you can help your child by asking them about their own feelings.
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Helping Them To Understand
Children do not always understand the concept of death, and they can show signs of confusion regarding the passing of a loved one. Be on hand to answer any question, no matter how obscure they may seem. It is important to allow the child to find these answers instead of asking them to ‘just be quiet!’ Many children expect the loved one to return at some point in their lives, this is a natural human response. Another common reaction is when the child questions their own mortality and starts to worry about other friends and family members passing away. Reassure them that these events seldom happen and give them a big hug if they look upset.
Back To Some Form Of Normality
This can be a very difficult time, school friends are often less than sympathetic regarding other children’s emotions. Explain to your child that they are under no obligation to talk about the event, unless they are totally comfortable. You can also speak to the teachers and ask them to let you know if your child shows any signs of grieving or behaves erratically at school. You may also find it useful to speak to a counsellor about helping you and your child get back to normality.
The Road Ahead
Even though your child will eventually start to get over the loss, they will never forget the loved one or the way in which they died. Remind your child that they are loved very much and that the loved one will always be a part of who they are.
Today’s guest post is authored by Henry Bale. He is an undertaker by profession and provides affordable cremation in CT. Passing of a loved one is a disturbing occurrence he feels, and children especially can get scarred mentally. In this article, he has suggested some useful tips to help children deal with grief.