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His grandpa, his grandma ... one of your child's grandparents lost his life. "Will he come back grandpa? Where is Grandma?" Questions your child, while the whole family is in mourning. Talking about death is obviously not easy.
- Everyone is sad, your toddler does not understand what's going on.
Who disturbs it?
- Your child. He panics when he sees you crying and wants to console you.
- You. You are very affected by the news and embarrassed by your child's questions.
CASE BY CASE SOLUTION
He asks you questions
- To say to him of goal in blank: "He is dead, you will never see him again" would be too direct. Watch out for words.
- What has to be done. Do not feel guilty for not finding answers. Your explanations will undoubtedly depend on your beliefs. Do not forget that, so small, his imagination is rich and he takes your explanations literally. Some metaphors, however, can help him. In any case, do not dwell on it and, perhaps, refer it to its interrogation. At this age, your child wonders about death.
- What to say. "He does not live anymore, his heart does not beat anymore, some people think that we are leaving his body like a butterfly, that we are going to visit another world, and what do you think?"
Will he forget it?
- Your child will only keep a year or two of his grandparent's memory. But what he has transmitted to her will remain as an imprint in her heart, her story and that of your family.
- What has to be done. Make an album of souvenir photos. Evoke the moments spent together. Give him an object that belonged to his grandparent and that he will be happy to own. Some children's books about death can help. Read them together but check the age at which they are intended.
- What to say. "Your grandfather was sick, but he lived well, remember when you watched the stars with him?"