Thursday, May 4, 2017

What Do Kids Understand About Death And Grief?


Grief is love not wanting to say good-bye, the risk of love is loss; the result of loss is grief Life consists of greetings and partings, beginnings and endings. Children and adolescents usually do not need an introduction to the greetings and beginnings of life, but the partings and endings are usually out of the ordinary, confusing, and painful.

Children and adolescents will need help understanding death and grief This help will come from parents, caregivers, family members, friends, teachers and other supportive caring adults. Adults providing support for a grieving child or adolescent should provide safe places for him or her to grieve. Youth need acceptance from adults of their unique grief journey in a nonjudgmental way. Sensitive and supporting adults will help kids understand that his or her grief is a journey and not a one-time or short duration event.

As adults help kids work through and understand grief there are some common questions asked by kids:

- Why Not Just Avoid Grief? We may think we want to avoid grief but really, it is the pain of the loss we want to avoid. Grief is the healing process that ultimately brings the child or adolescent comfort in his or her pain.
- What Is the Difference Between Grief and Mourning? Mourning is the external part of loss. It is the actions we take, the religious ceremony, rituals, and customs. Grief is the internal pain we feel.
- When Does Grief End? Grief is a process, not an event. We live in a society that places enormous pressure on kids and adults to get through the grief "move on" with his or her life. There is no timeline for grief death happens in time but the emotional aftermath last a lifetime. A child or adolescent will grieve as long as they need to.
- Are There Stages or Phases of Grief? There are five stages of grief- denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

Children do not experience or express their grief the same way adults do. Youth usually don't openly talk about how they are feeling, what they are thinking, or that a death in his or her life makes them feel different. Grief support groups can be extremely helpful for children and adolescents. Support groups provide the child or adolescent a safe place to talk and share their emotional distress with others who have experienced similar feeling.

When a child or adolescent experiences the pain of grief give them time and opportunities to talk, about his or her feelings and fears. Create opportunities for them to vent pent-up emotions of anger, sadness, guilt, and despair. Sharing our feelings can be one of the most effective ways to encourage kids to express their emotions, while listening carefully to understand what the child or adolescent is really saying.

What do we want children and adolescents to understand about death and grief? Death is a part of life and the grief attached to the loss of someone special is not a sign of weakness. Grief is a healthy and fitting response to a loss, a tribute to a loved one who has died.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/1382870

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