Tips for Helping Children Through Grief

Children can have difficulty processing emotions, but there are ways that you can help in times of grief. These tips can help you help them. Everyone has different ways of coping with grief , and children are no exception.

Elementary School-Aged Children (Typically 7 to 10 Years Old)

Children of this age can present unique challenges when dealing with grief, as they are often developed enough to understand the concept of death but do not yet accept it. Elementary school-aged children may also have nightmares or trouble sleeping. They may experience increased anxiety and fear, not want to go to school, have difficulty with paying attention or begin acting out in class or at home when they did not have problems before. Children of this age may also start to ask a lot of questions about death, some of which may be morbid.

How to help: Be patient and answer all the questions a child has about death. Help them find ways to remember the person they have lost fondly. For example, if a grandparent made them a baby blanket, it can be helpful to give it to them and remind them that it was made with love. Let them know they were and still are deeply loved by the person who has passed and that you are always there for them to talk about feelings.

More on each age group: