The last two C2H2 blogs have been focused on development and how grieving children may respond to death and some practical ways adults can support them. I thought it would be interesting to interview a few adults who have had a loved one die when they were young. So, for the next two blogs I will be sharing what they had to say...in their own words... "The main thing I remember is being told how to mourn. My grandfather died after a four year battle with cancer and even though we had plenty of time to say goodbye, it was still sad. My grandmother was of course exhausted from taking care of him and I guess pretty much out of tears by the time he died. She told us we weren't allowed to cry at her house, during the memorial service, anywhere. The ten cousins, to obey, tried to keep things light hearted then would get scolded by our grandmother for not being serious enough. It was very confusing. Kids need to be able to express themselves....guided and monitored, but we can't be told how to express ourselves or we will never feel comfortable or really know how to handle grief the next time it comes."
- Jennifer's grandfather died when she was 15 years old
"Parents should know its okay to talk about the person that died and share memories. Allow kids to talk about things when they are ready. Also, during different times of our lives will bring up different pieces of grief."
- Katie's brother died when she was 10 years old
"Recognize that a child may try to take on the role of the second parent and that the parent has to assure them that they can handle things and for the child to not worry about the adult things."
- Amy's father died when she was 9 years old
As adults walking alongside children who are grieving we strive to support them to the best of our ability. With God's presence, love and guidance He provides what we need. He is with us.