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Child and Adolescent Grief Counseling Program Article on Helping Children Grieve

Remember children need guidance during grief and bereavement.  Hearing your voice and seeing your concern are big in their recovery

Children need help grieving.  Please also review our child and adolescent grief counseling program

Children need help grieving. Please also review our child and adolescent grief counseling program

Please also review our Child and Adolescent Grief Counseling Program

The article, Grieving children need your “I’m sorry,” too, by Jennifer Bannan states

“Last February, my 6-year-old son lost his father to cancer. His stepbrother, 12, and stepsister, 16, lost an amazingly present and enthusiastic stepdad.

And though I know their losses are as great, if not greater than mine, it took me until the evening of the memorial service one month after Brian’s death, around a bonfire with Brian’s high school friends who had traveled hours to be with us, to realize something. Very few adults had offered my children condolences.

The older children still have a father who is very much in their lives, with whom they live half the week. And yet, it is likely, I realized that night at the fire, that the older ones had received more grief offerings than the littlest, for whom Brian was the only father. The reason? Maybe it’s because people want to believe that the youngest aren’t aware of what’s going on. Or maybe it just makes adults uncomfortable to face fresh youth with the admission that tragedy happens.

The kinds of things people said to Cypress, after they hugged me long and hard, expressed their anger and sadness, held me and searched my tearful eyes, went along these lines: “Hey, buddy, how’s kindergarten going? Are you learning to read? Into any sports?”

And, feeling as relieved as they probably did to have gotten through the reflection of grief, I would look upon this beautiful boy, this vital version of Brian, and revel in him, and never once think to say, “He’s so sad his dad is gone.”

Instead, I might say something like, “You should have seen how quickly he put together that Lego set!” or “He’s really getting good at the guitar.”

I failed to give anyone a clue or a cue, until that too-late night at the fire.

Looking into those flames, I remembered that when Brian was dying he had said, referring to the many turns my life had taken, to our short seven years together, “For you, this is just another chapter.” I would smack him on the arm, remind him of his standing as the love of my life.”

To read the entire article, please click here

Please also review our Child and Adolescent Grief Counseling Program

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