Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Talking to kids about death

Is there a right way to do this? ugh
As you may remember....my mom's birthday was last week. Apparently this made my baby girl anxious. I was so hoping that she would not get my worry gene but I think she already has it. Ive tried to give her all the tools to deal with stuff like this but I guess it just comes natural. So she went to bed only to come into my room 10 mins later crying. Not just tears but belly shaking crying. I asked her what was wrong and she said she didnt know. Thats our famous answer around here. ugh Finally she told me that she was worried about grandma dying. Me, being the psycho that I am, starting thinking OMG she must 'see something' happening. I kept asking her why was she thinking stuff like that...she said it was because of my mom having a birthday and that means shes getting older. Old people die. OMG, at this point I am choking back the tears and trying not to cry. I can not deal with death myself. My dad died 2 weeks after my 17th birthday and I still have a hard time dealing with it.

What do I do? What do I say? I just held her and rocked her while fighting back my own tears and tried to keep my composure. Its hard being the adult sometimes. I told her to try and think of something else and have happy thoughts. We arent what I would call a really religous family but I volunteered to say a prayer. I just wanted to comfort her, to take away all the pain in the world and to let her be an innocent little child who only worried about how long she could play outside or what her snack would be if she ate all her dinner. Death is for adults. I just dont do death so this was a super hard parenting obstacle for me.

7 comments:

Lisha said...

Death and sex. Two topics I find hard to discuss. lol.

Discussing death in our family is a semi-religious topic. We are not super religious, but we do believe in God and teach our children about God. My son at 6 knows there is another place where your soul goes and that you no longer need your body. At 4 he started asking A LOT about death and we started to discuss it. Very difficult topic. You will say and help your children deal with it the way you know is best. Trust your instincts and go with it. :)

Ashley said...

Aw. Poor little girl. Maybe you should just have her try to spend more time with your mom. Maybe that would help? I dunno. I don't deal well with death either... Sorry.

Staci said...

I think you handled everything PEREFCTLY! I am not looking forward to these conversations.... We are not too religious over this way, I don't even know where I would begin! I think you holding her and comforting her was best. You made her feel LOVEd and you LISTENED! Good job mama! :)
PS Are you ready for LOST!!!??? I am looking forward to it tonight!

Mocha Dad said...

My son recites the prayer, "Now I Lay Me Dow to Sleep" before he goes to bed. This prayer sparks questions about death on a regular basis. It's difficult to explain such a heavy concept to a five-year-old.

Staci said...

Tag your it! Come check it out... if ya like!

Side note: did you dig LOST? I think it was the best so far this season! OMG I about died over Daniel!!!

~~Mel~~ said...

Aww poor M and poor you too!

It's hard to explain these things to kids...but I think you did a fantastic job.

Xazmin said...

This can be so difficult. I'm sorry you lost your dad at such a young age, and I'm sorry your little girl is struggling with worries about death.

I think everyone has to handle it the way they feel is right.

We are very religious, and believe in eternal families. This is a great comfort, and my children have seen the death of a couple family members they knew well. They were sad, but seemed to handle it well. I hope I'm helping them not worry about it too much.