, – Death is a difficult topic to discuss with children other than sex. Children usually only know going far, not going away forever and why death must exist.
Stanford Children’s Health says children deal with death differently from adults. Preschoolers have a hard time understanding that death is not temporary, instead children between the ages of 5 and 9 begin to experience the same sadness that adults do.
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Helping Children Understand Their Emotions
Death and grief are natural parts of the human experience, and sooner or later children experience them as a process toward maturity. When a young child loses a loved one, parents often find it difficult to explain the concept of death and help the child through the sad time.
The following are things that parents need to do to their children when telling sad news.
Tell the child honestly, no lies. Don’t use the term when Grandma is sleeping long. Avoiding it only delays the maturation process that the child should experience at that moment.
Children tend to think concretely, not abstractly, so when parents “refine” the term death it can only get confused.
- Give Opportunities for Children to Ask
Often parents delay the questions asked by children on the grounds that the child has not yet understood the topic. In fact, the sooner parents provide answers, the easier it is for children to understand about death.
The answer given must also be in accordance with the child’s age, so that the explanation or answer from the parent can connect with the child’s understanding.
- Emotional Complications of Children
Grief is a complex process, so it can come with a variety of thoughts, emotions and behaviors. Parents may expect their child to feel sad, angry, confused, or even guilty about the loss, but in fact the child behaves differently.
It should be noted by parents that the expression of sadness can also be different in children. Children may not cry, but there are changes in their behavior, sleep patterns, diet, and activities at school.
This change should be realized by parents and with children through this sad period. If parents want to know how to deal with changes in children’s behavior during the development stage, ask them directly .
Doctors and psychologists who are experts in their fields will try to provide the best solutions for parents. To do this, simply download the application via Google Play or the App Store. Through the Contact Doctor feature, parents can choose to chat via Video / Voice Call or Chat anytime and anywhere .
One of the weaknesses of parents when dealing with changes in children’s behavior is boredom. Well, here parents are asked to be extra patient. Grief is a long process, so parents should slowly go through the steps and processes.
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Inviting children to talk about their feelings and experiences is the best way so that children can get through this grief period. By discussing children’s feelings, this will indirectly build children’s skills to understand their feelings and problems.
Discussing, chatting, will help children cope with loss events in their lives in the future. As explained above, loss is a maturing process, parents cannot keep children away from sad experiences. However, helping children get through these moments and understand their emotions will help them to become stronger individuals.
Stanford Children’s Health. Retrieved 2019. Helping Your Children Cope With Death.
Huffpost. Accessed in 2019. How to Talk to Your Kids About Death and Grief.