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How do we speak to children about grief?

25th March 2017

I am passionate that we help children through grief and speak to children about grief in the best way possible. Sadly, the legacy of a culture which shut children away when someone died is still with us. Our experience shows that children need to be involved in age-appropriate ways, and they have a brilliant capacity to grieve and heal, as long as they are included. Each child is different, of course, but many conventions in our culture are simply manifestations of the old belief of keeping kids away during grief or funerals. Instead, we have often helped families find rich and meaningful ways for children to be included, from beautifully decorating the cardboard coffin lid, to writing tributes on sticky heart post-its to put on the coffin, to playing their Grandad’s favourite piece of music on a flute. We’ve heard a stunning poem written by a child for his dad’s funeral and we’ve seen strength and grace displayed by children amidst the healthy tears and sadness.

It’s not for us to say what must happen, but this article, written by a development director from a group which exists to help children who have lost parents and other family members, is full of rich advice about how we can use language more helpfully for children (and ourselves). This is a step-by-step guide to things that would be helpful to say and behaviour that would be helpful to demonstrate.  And its not just for those during loss; there is wisdom here about how we can help children in a preemptive way by how we talk about nature and how bodies stop working.

But this quote sums up the tone: ‘To help a child grieve, be honest, open and – most importantly – celebrate the person’s life.’



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6 months ago

Albany Funerals

This is a lovely article showing that the clergy are also adapting positively and creatively to this terrible situation. We need to change our rituals to stay safe but this doesn’t necessarily mean that they are any less healing. Those who are willing to accept some changes are able to continue to hold truly personal and meaningful funeral ceremonies. We are working with each family individually to find new ways of doing things to bring them comfort in their unique situation. It can be done ♥️

https://thetimes.co.uk/article/b41ddae2-96bb-11ea-97b5-8f15973668de/…
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7 months ago

Albany Funerals

#livinglight
For all those who have died during the pandemic ♥️
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7 months ago

Albany Funerals

Grief during coronavirus - lockdown is particularly tough when you're grieving. Being surrounded by family and friends is so vital when you've lost someone you love. Hopefully you are still able to stay connected to others in some way, If you are struggling - some telephone/video grief counselling might help. It's difficult to 'unload' dark feelings onto family and friends, particularly those who might also be grieving, but it does really help to talk.
https://www.griefchat.co.uk/
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7 months ago

Albany Funerals

7 months ago

Albany Funerals

My thoughts on funerals through coronavirus on NBC. We are often told that we only have once chance to say goodbye to and honour our loved ones.... I think we can look at this differently, and learn to hold rituals in other ways than we are used to, particularly during these times. They can still be healing. ... See MoreSee Less

7 months ago

Albany Funerals

‘That thing you’re feeling is called grief’...This is one of the wisest things I’ve heard in a while. Thank you Hugh
at GK Church for your kindness, and your comforting, and incredibly insightful words through such turbulent times. 🌈
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7 months ago

Albany Funerals

Another beautiful idea bringing people comfort when they cannot come together in their grief during the Covid pandemic. ♥️ ... See MoreSee Less

7 months ago

Albany Funerals
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