How Can I Explain The Concept of Death to my Children?
Explaining serious and heavy topics like death to children isn’t easy. Most parents want to avoid it as much as possible. Unfortunately, death is a part of life and everyone must face it in some form eventually. At Arbutus Funeral Service, we have some tips that can help you get through this conversation and ensure children understand it well.
1. Don’t Use Vague Terminology
Adults often use vague terms and descriptions to explain death, which does more harm than good. Instead of saying, ‘your granddad is going to sleep forever’ or ‘Aunt Mel has gone to heaven,’ take time to explain what death is and make sure they understand its permanence. Children have an amazing ability to understand even the most difficult concepts. Even pre-school children can sometimes comprehend what death means so try to skirt around the topic.
2. Get The Conversation Out of the Way
It is easier to explain death when there’s no emotional connection involved. You can explain the concept when a distant celebrity dies or a hero in a story passes away. Children are less emotionally invested and can handle the concept better under such circumstances. They will be able to understand and accept a family member’s passing if they’re already familiar with the concept.
3. Keep the Line of Conversation Open
Children are curious beings and they will have a lot of questions regarding death. Be patient and answer those questions to the best of your ability. This ensures your kids are comfortable with the topic and can gain a deeper understanding of the concept. It also helps children cope with death in a more emotionally-stable manner.
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