Helping children

Our Counsellor, Paula Dalton, explains what we can do to help a grieving child.
Helping children

Children grieve like adults grieve.

Children take their cues from the adults around them and how the adults are sharing their emotion. For example, if you take the time to discuss with children your thoughts and feelings, this will help them regulate their own emotions. If however, you decide to withdraw and keep your feelings from them, they will also do the same.

Children need information that is age appropriate to them regarding someone’s health or around death. Younger children may expect their loved one to return, not understanding their absence is permanent. It could be a series of conversations as it will take time for the information to be absorbed and understood. Withholding information as you believe it is for their own good, could have a detrimental effect.

Children have very powerful imaginations and will often imagine a scenario that could be deeply distressing to them, which may not be reflective of the true situation. If they later find out what has been kept from them, it can destroy the trust of that person. Story-telling and creative activities can be useful with children as they may talk as they are playing and the story can introduce the topic of death in a gentle way.

Please contact us if you need support with a grieving child on 0113 340 0111 or email support@yorksbtc.org.uk


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