Helping a Child Through Grief

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If you know a child who has lost someone that they love, even a pet, it can be tough to see them struggling with grief. Like adults, children go through a mourning process that can take time. For family members, it can feel like a daunting task to help them, which is why it can be a great idea to learn a bit about the process and how you can offer your help. To do this, funeral homes in Dale City, VA have a few suggestions.

It can be tempting to speak to the child about your own experiences with grief. Some children welcome this and can benefit from hearing your experiences, but not all of them do. You do not want to overwhelm a child, so the best thing you can do is listen attentively. Try not to comment or judge what the child says so that they feel comfortable speaking to you. It is also important not to force a child to speak. Everyone is a bit different, so it might take some children more time to bring themselves to express themselves and this is completely normal.

A child who is grieving might display mood swings. It can be frightening for some people to see this, but they are part of the process. Bouts of crying can be followed by tantrums and hyperactivity. This happens in adults, too, but it is more disconcerting when you see it in a child. Of course, if the mood swings are very violent or they do not resolve themselves in a few days, you may want to consider speaking with a children’s counselor.

Children can sometimes be afraid of speaking about the person they have lost because they do not want to make the adults upset. You can help them by speaking about the person yourself. This can make them much more comfortable to bring up the person and to speak about what they are feeling. It may not seem like a huge thing, but it can actually help a child to face the grief and heal more quickly.

Allow a child to have choices. Not all children want to be part of the funerary arrangements, while some do. By allowing a child to decide whether or not to attend the memorial or funeral, you are letting them know that their feelings and experiences matter. Forcing a child to attend a service can be detrimental to the grieving process, so keep that in mind.

If you are concerned about a child going through a mourning process, you need to be there ready to listen to them. This may not happen immediately but you have to put the child at ease that you will be there to help them the moment they want to express themselves. A Dale City, VA funeral home like Morrissett Funeral and Cremation Service can make this process a bit easier. Visit them at 6500 Iron Bridge Rd Richmond, VA 23234 or call (804) 275-7828 to ask for more information about helping a child through grief.

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