Supporting Grief and Loss in Children
Grief is an inevitable part of life. But that doesn’t make it easier to face it.
It gets exceptionally rough on children to come to terms with losses because they don’t know what to make of it.
These memories will keep bugging them their entire life if not handled properly.
If we deal with it in a healthy way, then it becomes personal growth. But, if not, then children can go in a downward spiral from where it is difficult to come back.
So here is how you can help them cope with the loss of a loved one and the sorrow that comes with it.
The more you deny it, the more the burden grows. If you keep postponing, then it will get that much harder.
Dealing with the grief process can only start when you acknowledge the need for it.
The loss seems like the end of the world, and every ounce of your body is trying to refute.
But you cannot run away from it all your life. At some point, you have to accept it.
When it comes to children, don’t hide it from them. Give them the truth, no matter how hurtful it is.
It is like ripping a band-aid. It will get excruciatingly painful with every passing moment for you and your child.
It is okay to take your time.
Your children may look normal on the outside. But inside, there is an entire storm tormenting them. And it is okay.
Every child has a different way of coping with it. But, one thing is constant, they need time to calm their emotions.
There is no need to get back to life the moment everything is over. Let them stay at home as long as they want. They need a while to process these complicated feelings.
Give them their space if they ask for it. It can be daunting to go back to the world. So, let them decide when they want to. It won’t happen in a day.
Things don’t have to be the way they were.
Your life is going to be different now. There is going to be a stark change from before.
So, don’t try to bring things back to normal, because it will never be the
same again. But that does not mean that you cannot find a new normal.
Things don’t have to be the same. Presently, you may feel that there is no way you can smile again. All you have to do is reach a point wherein you can do that. And it becomes your new constant.
The past is gone. It will live on as your memory. However, if you try to live in the past, it won’t work. You may feel that the past is happier and less painful. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make your present happier. You will make happy memories in the future, only if you allow it.