For a child, losing a loved one can impact him or her in significant ways. Death is not just the loss of a person’s physical presence; it may change a child’s sense of security, identity and create a re-evaluation of their goals. A number of factors can impact how a child adapts for the short and long term. Children are at the highest risk for adjustment problems during the first year after a loss. Depending on a child’s age, there are some predictable ways that they will respond to death. Methods of helping young people to cope include telling them the truth, assuring them that they are not to blame, and encouraging them to talk and ask questions.
To read an informative article by Robin F. Goodman, Ph.D., go to: Children and Grief: What They Know, How They Feel, How to Help