There is no apt word to describe losing someone as special and as irreplaceable as mothers. And it becomes a whole different story when someone loses his or hers at a tender age; after all, kids have different ways of dealing with and expressing their grief. This is why in this article, we’re here to offer help by rounding up seven ways to help a grieving kid — from giving memorial gifts for loss of mother to seeking help from a professional.
Understand that kids have different ways of grieving. Children who are aged 6 to 12 are typically aware of the concept of “death is final and inevitable,” while those from 3 to 5 think that death can be reversed. Commonly, those in the younger age bracket show their grief through exhibiting irritable and aggrieved behavior. Those in the older age bracket, on the other hand, typically exhibit grief by detaching themselves from friends and other people. They may also think that they are to blame for their mother’s death.
Acknowledge that you are also grieving. As the old saying goes: You can’t help others if you can’t help yourself. So when helping a young one cope, ensure that you are in the right mindset and condition to do so. It also pays to have a strong support system — not only for the bereaved but for you as well.
Preserve their memories with their mother. There are different ways you can do this one — from giving personalized memorial gifts for loss of mother, displaying photos, making a memory box to writing letters or journals. In the process, doing this can also help them express their grief.
Respond to their questions with age-appropriate answers. Majority of children are vocal about their questions about death. When answering their questions, you have to respond with sincerity, clarity and earnestness. This is also a great way to introduce the concept of the afterlife. Experts claim that knowing such a concept is effective in easing their feelings of sadness.
Stick to their routines. While losing a loved one can be life-changing, it helps to give children some sense of familiarity by sticking to the routines that they are used to doing. This is a great way to help grieving kids cope and go on with their lives.
Shower them with extra TLC (segue practical help). Mourning for the loss of a mother is emotionally, mentally and physically taxing. This is why during these crucial moments, children all the more need to receive extra TLC. But apart from warm embraces and kind words, you can also help them with their grief by providing practical assistance — prepare food for them and look after their well-being.
Seek professional help. Children, especially those who are older, tend to use aggression as a coping mechanism for grief. If this happens, you shouldn’t hesitate about getting professional help. Experts like them are trained to assist youngsters navigate through their feelings. Apart from investing in memorial gifts for loss of mother and offering practical help, this is one way of showing your concern for a grieving kid.