Losing a loved one brings about heartache you can never get used to. As difficult as it is for adults to manage grief, these times of loss can be particularly confusing for a young child. The emotions that come with the death of a friend or family member, attending a memorial service, and the subsequent time after can be a challenge for a parent or guardian to explain to a child and help them cope the right way. The team from Shipman Funeral Home & Crematory have offered a few pieces of advice to help you and your children handle a loss when that time comes.
3 Ways to Help Kids Handle Loss
1. Be Direct
Death is not easy to talk about even with the closest adult friends and talking to children about it can be especially intimidating. When explaining the situation to a child, use clear, easy to understand language to help them process. A loss brings complicated emotions, and a funeral or memorial service will often cause children to ask questions that may seem inappropriate or unexpected. When this happens, listen well and answer questions in a clear and concise way that won’t confuse them further.
2. Prepare Your Child
Before a memorial service, funeral, or burial give your child a thorough idea of what to expect. Going to a funeral for the first time elicits different feelings in everyone. The more you can prepare your child for what they will see and hear, the better chance they have of handling it well.
3. Find a Counselor
Visiting a certified grief counselor is a good step for anyone experiencing loss, but is often a particularly healthy step for children. Counselors are trained to know the right words to say in a traumatic situation and can offer words and comfort that those without training may not immediately think to provide. You can go with your child and experience the counseling together to better heal as a family unit.
If you are in need of further assistance helping your child handle a loss or need help planning a funeral or memorial service, get in touch with the compassionate team from Shipman Funeral Home & Crematory in Wagoner, OK. With years of serving the Eastern Oklahoma, Western Arkansas, and North Texas communities, the professionals from Shipman Funeral Home will ease the burdens of funeral preparation with their kind and compassionate service. Call their Wagoner location at (918) 485-9525 and their Muskogee location at (918) 683-1700 or visit their website to learn more about the services available to you and your family.