When talking to children about loss, honesty is the best policy.
Learning about death instead of being sheltered from it is important learning process in the life of a child
Please also review our Child Grief Counseling Certification
The article, Honesty, plain language are key to explaining death and grief to kids, by BRANDIE WEIKLE states,
“No one here gets out alive.
Perhaps a few astronauts and billionaire pioneers will depart to redder pastures on Mars. But for the rest of us, our time on earth will come to a more conventional end.
Yet we don’t like talking about death. For most of us, it’s a sad and squirmy topic that we skirt around with phrases like “passed away” or “passed on.” And we get especially freaked when we’ve got to talk to our kids about a grandparent’s failing health, a dying pet or a sad event in the news, like the Humboldt Broncos tragedy.
But Kathy Kortes-Miller, author of a new book called Talking About Death Won’t Kill You, says we’ve got to be much more clear in the way we broach subjects of death, dying and grief with our kids. That’s because surrounding the topic with euphemism and hushed tones is not only confusing for children, it only makes them more afraid.
“Children aren’t born being fearful about dying and death. They learn that from us,” says Kortes-Miller, a leading expert on end of life care, a Lakehead University professor and mom of two from Thunder Bay.
“By not communicating to children and answering the questions that they might have about dying and death in an honest and straightforward manner, we’re giving them a message that it’s scary, and that it’s something that shouldn’t be talked about.”
She says it’s best to find ways to explain the concept of death before your family is facing the loss of a loved one, and that those conversations can happen in age-appropriate ways.
Since little kids are often curious about the dead bugs or birds they come across, those situations present good early opportunities to establish the permanence of death, Kortes-Miller says.”
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Please also review the Child Grief Counseling Certification