Parent & Guardian Information

Children who are old enough to love are old enough to grieve.

When a loved one dies, children may not have the words to express how they may be feeling. The death of a loved one brings heartbreak and devastation, they may feel a range of emotions including:

  • Angry
  • Guilty
  • Confused
  • Scared
  • Alone

To my parent/guardian, please...

Some of our bereavement group members have come up with a list of suggestions about how parents and carers can support their bereaved child. You may find some of these helpful.

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How should I explain death to my children?

Offer the facts in a simple, honest, straightforward, non-threatening, caring way. Talking to your child about the death of a loved one may be one of the hardest things you will ever do or have ever done.

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At what age should children attend a funeral?

One of the most frequently asked questions by parents, caregivers and people who support bereaved children and young people is, “Should I take my child to the funeral?”

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Should I let my child see their loved one?

Parents may be concerned that seeing a dead body may frighten and cause further harm – this is unlikely to be the case, especially if the children have been prepared for what to expect. Be open and honest with your children. Parents may not be aware that one of the most helpful things they can do for their children during this time is to give them choices.

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Discussing a loved one

Sometimes children think that they should not discuss loved ones who have died because it might make others sad.

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Other ways to remember.

Children and their parents, often worry that they will forget things about loved ones who have died but after a death there are many ways that children and families can remember loved ones.

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