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Explaining Death to a Child

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When explaining death to a child, it’s often best to be honest and  direct about what’s happened. Don’t confuse them with analogies that may be hard for them to understand. Be supportive and open to questions as  they grow and mature.


Video Transcript

Explaining Death to a Child 

How do you explain death to a child?

First, find a time and place when you're both comfortable and relaxed.

When they're very young you should keep it very simple. Tell them the person has died and won't be coming back. If you embrace religion you could describe heaven.

Don't say Grandma has gone to sleep or passed away because that will confuse them.

The child may think death is reversible and might keep asking when that person is coming back -so be patient.

As kids get older, the grieving process becomes more complicated. Keep an eye on them and provide them with all the support they need and be open to their questions.

Once they're six or older they can grasp that death is permanent, that when someone dies... it really is the end. There is no replay.

But explain that, as much as we may miss a loved  one, death is a natural part of life.

And is nothing to be feared.

Categorized under: grief

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