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25

To directly answer your question: if the topic comes up a potentially good answer would be "well my father/husband passed away a long time ago". The "a long time ago" basically indicates that this is in the past and has no immediate bearing on the present. It also indicates that the case is closed and you don't want to discuss this further. Most people will ...


18

Great question. I can't answer what you should tell your child, as that is largely dependent on your beliefs, but can try and give you some pointers on how you could talk to your child. Whatever it is you belief, we found it helped us to talk to our son (5 at the time) in as simple and direct terms possible, and to not be overly emotional ourselves. Of ...


15

When all else fails, they can fall back on a version of Miss Manner's timeless response, "I'm sorry, that's just not possible." In this case, something along the lines of "I'm sorry, I don't want to talk about it," or "This subject is still painful for me, can we talk about something else?" might be useful. Don't expect everyone to have manners and not ...


14

I understand death of a parent can happen to any child, but is it right to pretend we don't know what's coming? Unless your kids are incredibly dense, they are going to figure it out sooner or later, and probably sooner. The only question is where are they going to get their information from. I was diagnosed with MS two years ago when my kids were 7, ...


10

From my experience with children, especially young children, the simpler is better. If I was in your situation, I would explain to the children that some people make bad decisions. I would explain that some bad decisions are worse than others (like throwing a toy in the house is “bad decision”, but choosing to hurt somebody else is a “very bad decision”). ...


10

I have no idea what any kind of "best" action could possibly be. What I would want to make sure of is that no matter what interaction I have with my kids about the death of their other parent I want to be clear what is happening inside me (and deal with that) from what is happening inside them (and help them deal with that). They are two different aspects of ...


9

As an adult you may be comfortable saying, "It's not something I like to talk about," but this will be a harder line for your children to say and stick to when pressed. You might suggest to them to say, "He had some health issues I don't really understand." This is the truth, as someone who commits suicide has serious mental health issues and no one can ...


9

I am not an expert, but would like to supply some resources that you might find helpful at the website of the American Association of Suicidology. It has: a Suicide Loss Survivors page with a lot of great resources on it. links to support groups in each State (not sure if you are in the States) a monthly newsletter (which may help you feel not so alone ...


9

Above all, be honest. Tell your children the basics Use matter-of-fact language Be open to their questions Use language that they'll understand I know this isn't easy, but it will help them prepare for the future if you help them understand as best you can. Children can be remarkably resilient, and the trust you build with them through honesty will be ...


8

What you should do? I don't have a scientifically proven answer - I just can tell you my experience, as we already have had many of such conversations (even at an earlier age). I think you should talk as open as possible (and necessary) about death to her and you should show her (if possible) that it makes no sense to be afraid of death as it is (partly) ...


8

To add to @Korneel's answer: After starting to understand death's permanence, our daughter became very worried about my wife and I dying. The most important things we've stressed to her about it is that: Nobody gets to choose when they die Despite that, we don't plan on dying anytime soon Even if we did, that they would still be cared for and loved by ...


8

I would definitely tell him in advance, to give him a chance to process the fact in time, and to say goodbye to the cat. Morah made a good point about leaving the sickness out of the explanation, that may be one strategy. However, my feeling is that telling that the cat just died, without any clear reason, may be equally frightening for the kid if he has a ...


8

In my opinion, "sealing the bedding with a strong polythene sheet" presents a significant risk of suffocation -- not SIDS, just plain asphyxiation. Most infant mattresses are deliberately covered with a mesh webbing underneath the cotton surface with the explicit purpose of allowing the baby to breathe even if it turns face-down during sleep. Try it for ...


7

Few studies have been done on this topic, and mostly the papers written on it have emphasized the destructive consequences of not telling children the whole truth promptly after death. Mostly those studies were done in the 60s and 70s, at a time when it was quite common not to tell children, and the damage done includes distorted mourning processes and ...


7

We adopted my son Michael out of foster care, which is a completely different situation, but also has a certain stigma attached. People want to know how he ended up in foster care. What we tell people is that is Michael's personal information to share or not share as he chooses, and that we will let him make that decision for himself when he is fully ...


6

The American Academy of Pediatrics has specific recommendations for infant bedding, with the goal of reducing instances of SIDS (a.k.a. "crib death" or "cot death"): Always place your baby on his or her back for every sleep time. Always use a firm sleep surface. Car seats and other sitting devices are not recommended for routine sleep. Keep soft objects or ...


5

all the guidance we got suggests that putting plastic wrapping anywhere near a mattress is a very bad idea. Like Chrys says, you do not get 'nerve gases' from mattresses, and in fact letting air get through a mattress is a much better idea. Babies should not have a pillow, but should be laid on the mattress, with one breathable blanket under them. This ...


5

I came across a TED talk about the psychology and motivation of terrorists: By leading the Americans in his audience at TEDxPSU step by step through the thought process, sociologist Sam Richards sets an extraordinary challenge: can they understand -- not approve of, but understand -- the motivations of an Iraqi insurgent? And by extension, can anyone ...


5

These conversations can be tough! Here are a few books on the subject: When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death (Dino Life Guides for Families) by Laurie Krasny Brown What Happens When Someone Dies?: A Child's Guide to Death and Funerals (Elf-Help Books for Kids) by Michaelene Mundy Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children ...


4

I actually got this questions from my 6-yo son couple of days ago. I told him that there can be a group of people who are extremely disagree with the government. They only way to change things that they see is to explode things, kill politicians and to scare people. Such members of such a group are called "terrorists".


4

I just wanted to share, I work in a hospital and one of my co-workers is a nursing student. This student was studying one day and randomly asked me what I think my daughters biggest fears are. I responded going to the dr. He replied ok so being in pain? Yep! I asked why? It's part of their curriculum and I asked him what it said about all ages, to which he ...


4

First of all, I am sorry for your loss. Even tho it was a while ago, that doesn't change the value of the loss. I am an analytical parent. I ask questions and try to figure out why my kid did whatever they did. Sure they tell me they were hollering at their sibling because they did X, but the underlying reason is sometimes much stronger but goes ...


3

My son just turned 5 and we've had a few not-so-close family members die (nothing as closely related as a great-grandmother) and some pets. My son first started mentioning "death" around age 3 1/2 or 4 probably and I was a little surprised at how much he understood about death in general (that it means that the person or animal has left and won't be ...


3

I have yet to be in this situation but my instinct would say keep the word sick out of it, for the reason you listed. As well, don't tell him you chose to have the cat put down, that is simply too scary for him. Instead simply say that sometimes living things, like animals and plants and people die. This means that we can't play with them anymore. Then let ...


3

I remember very well how I dealt with death when I was a child. At first there was terror, because I had serious misconceptions about death. I thought I would still be concious, but unable to move and I feared the boredom and helplessness about that. I can't remember that my parents ever talked to me about that. But now that I am a parent on my own, I wish ...


3

That is very tough. There are a large number of children books that deal with a wide range of parent illnesses, and the challenges both the parent and child will face. With children under 5, then I'd start with colorful story books. There are also a couple of Disney films that involve the death of one parent. The Little Mermaid (Ariel is raised by her ...


3

My take on it (for adults and children alike) goes something like this: Many people feel that they deserve a better life than they have, and most of the time they are correct. Most people also tend to split the world into "Us" vs "Them", because it makes the world much easier to understand. Most of the time they are wrong, and the differences they think ...


3

Personal experience, I told my son when he was 19, that his father had died 14 years ago, not in the car accident, as he'd grown up believing, but by committing suicide. At the age of 4 I thought the death of his father was enough to bear. I moved 250 miles away. On reflection I would do the same again. My son has a very limited and happy memory of his ...


3

If this is just about you being notified about extended family events, try (when you find out) saying something like: I didn't know that Uncle Eddie had died. I wish someone had told me at the time so I could have sent a card. Depending on the response this is getting, you could go on I know I'm far away, but not being told when things happen make ...


2

People think differently. For the most part, people around the world are able to get along with other people even though we have different opinions. Some people are not willing to even try to get along with other people. They refuse to accept the fact that others have those different opinions, and will stop at nothing to force those opinions onto others. ...



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