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Talking to Kids about Death

by Julia Rajtar, M.A.P.S., BCC


A 4-year-old boy kept asking his parents when grandpa was returning to play with him.  Every day, the boy was playing outside the house, and grandpa would show his face at the window, and they would play a game of peek-a-boo.  After grandpa’s death, the little boy daily looks toward the window, waiting and watching, even after his parents have explained grandpa will not be at the window ever again.


A mom told her 6-year-old daughter “don’t be sad grandma is gone.  She’s in heaven now and is no longer in pain.”  Though this is true, is it ok for the child to be sad now that someone meaningful in their life is no longer physically present?


An adult caring for three school aged children expressed being a little more lax with the children’s routine after their dad died.  Mom said she had more than enough to deal with after losing her husband, trying to take care of the house and the family, much less grieve herself. She felt it was a little easier on her to give some slack to her 3 children ages 7, 10 and 12 rather than maintain their routines, at least for a little while.  It was her way of showing some extra  compassion to her children and while trying to take care of herself.  How important are routines for children after a loved one dies?


When you meet with a Bakken-Young Funeral Director (Brian, Jodie or Matt) you will benefit from a free booklet Talking to Kids about Death: A Guide for Grownups. This brief resource includes tips for conversations as well as tools as you navigate the waves of grief in yourself and your children.  Some of the topics include: How to talk to Children, Caregiving, Children’s Grief Reactions, among others.


This resource is one more way Bakken-Young Funeral & Cremation Services continues to support you and your family after a death.  It is an invaluable tool for anyone caregiving for children or teens.



Bakken-Young…LIVING, LOVING, Remembering

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