Rus Articles Journal

“Mother, you will die?“ When in a family a grief: what to tell to the kid of

the Beginning

If in a family or among acquaintances someone died, at the child the world picture is broken. He though almost does not understand the events, sees that the event is very important for surrounding adults. Sensitive kids begin to be afraid of own death. Disturbing, difficult children`s questions demand simple clear answers. How to help the child? The famous psychologist Yulia Gippenreyter advises.

What to tell to children when in a family a grief?


“At the girlfriend the husband died. Her son is 3,5 years old. He constantly asks about the father. Say to it that the father at work in other country that there is no phone, but he very much misses and loves the kid. She thinks to tell the truth when to it there are years six. But whether it is correct to deceive?“

In my opinion, incorrectly. I think that in six years the child will not easier transfer tragic news, than to three years. At more age of reason its reaction will only worsen. It will have a bad experience that the father died, and he was deceived. Children very much take offense when they are deceived.

In society cultural traditions, myths, religious representations exist. For example, an explanation that the father now in the sky, will be apprehended by the child of three years with more adult, and even, belief that this is true.

- the Father looks, rejoices to your progress and loves you. whether

children at a funeral Can be present?

It is a question very difficult, and each family solves it independently. It seems to me that the child can give the chance to say goodbye. You should not include, probably, it in long procedures with mourning music, sobbings. It is not necessary to it. And just to allow to say goodbye to deceased.

At Lev Tolstoy in the story “the Childhood. Adolescence. Youth“ is an unforgettable scene of farewell of Nikolenki to mother.

“I got on a chair to consider her face. I looked and felt that some unclear, force majeure attracts my eyes to this lifeless person. I did not lower from it eyes, and the imagination drew to me the pictures blossoming life and happiness. I forgot that a dead body which lay predo me, and at which I senselessly looked how regarding, having nothing in common with my memoirs, there was it... For a while I fainted the existence and tested some high, neizjyasnimo - pleasant and sad pleasure. Remembering the impressions now, I find that only one this minute of self-forgetfulness was the real grief.

Ya did not cease to cry and it was sad, but it is ashamed for me to remember this grief because to it some ambitious feeling was always added: that desire to show that I am afflicted most, cares of action which I make on others, aimless curiosity... I despised myself for the fact that I have only no one feeling of sorrow, and tried to hide all others; from it washing grief it was not sincere and unnatural“.

the feeling Is important

that you said goodbye. And not simply - there was a person and is not present. Probably, many remember a photo which flew about the whole world: three-year-old John Kennedy Jr. salutes a coffin of the father. Experience of the importance of life and death of the person before any full understanding is so put. In other hard cases: divorce or a serious illness when the child is naturally included in experiences of a family, it is necessary to talk to it. Not to turn away and not to hide emotions. When adults instead speak:“ I was simply tired “, “ slept badly “, “ everything is normal“, at the child the feeling of alarm grows. He cannot be deceived.

Children endure

in a different way

sometimes can seem to Parents that children are insensible. Reported to the child about death of the grandfather, he speaks: and, clear, - also goes to play. Certainly, children understand withdrawal of the person from life absolutely differently, than adults. And the child is younger, the it is more in own way. It does not mean at all that they insensible, they cannot just capture value of this event. To them it is very sad that the grandfather was and now will never come. The word “never“ frightens them the same as us. It is natural that sometimes it reaches them in some other form. The child remembers the grandfather as to him with him it was good. Children perceive loss with an egocentric shade. Not so much it is a pity for the grandfather how many itself that it is impossible to sit on his knees more and to listen to fairy tales.

my grandfather died when I was six years old. He lived separately. I was reported about it by the cousin, six years, arrived with the parents too.

- And our grandfather died, - he told with a smile.

the smile puzzled Me with

, but did not surprise at all - my brother was the cheerful and careless child.

Children see that adults are busy with some unusual affairs, talk, preparations. There is something, strongly beyond usual life. It occupies them, to them it is curious though it is a little horrible. They begin to look around, are upset that someone cries, are interested in what now will be what is a funeral etc.

I Think, many parents have children`s memoirs of the first meetings with a heavy event and a grief. And you can make use of this experience to understand what occurs in soul of your child.

How to tell?

Everything depends on how to children it is a tax. It is necessary to tell, in my opinion, quietly, with very great respect for the left person and for event scale. And not simply: you do not cry, be not upset, everything will pass. The birth and death are greatest events. To you did not eat it - or did not eat candy, put on a warm scarf or did not put on. It is necessary to transfer with an adequate tonality. It is necessary to connect whenever possible consciousness of the child though it does not mean that it should try to convey all meaning of death which and adults is difficult for comprehending. It is important to devote it in the general experiences:

- you Know, mother very much loved the grandfather, now it is not with us, and we gather in memory of it today.

Mother, you will die?

Larisa (the son is 6 years old):

“And if the child is concerned by a death subject, he begins to understand that all will die, to be afraid of diseases, an old age? How to speak about it?“

Of course, it is terrible to be dug to the earth. It is absolutely correct reaction. Great religions began with fear of death, diseases and an old age. It is incorrect to close from the child this aspect of life, in my opinion. Children have to know that there are also troubles and sufferings. But they should not get not healing wounds on this soil. To help them to cope with new knowledge, to learn to transfer it - function of parents. Children like to play in terrible, they like to go on a side, want to feel fears and to learn to overcome them. They have to endure questions of death too, but this time it is better together with parents. Their quieter acceptance of thoughts of death also depends on a quiet explanation of the parent.

can find

remarkable examples of such talk with children In literature. There is a wish to give one of them (From G. L. Vygotskaya`s memoirs, to the author of memoirs then of of 5 - 6 years).

“This summer for me was saddened by

two different in scale, but equally distressing events. I remember, all were shocked by ridiculous tragic death of professor M. Basov and, apparently, therefore in the house spoke about death much. As a result of all this talk I understood inevitability of death, and it shook me. I was frightened, very oppressed, all it seemed to me fragile, unsteady. The father noticed my state and once, having waited when mother goes down to the grandmother, took me by hand and took to us upward, on a balcony. There he put me to itself(himself) on knees so that to see my person, embraced and asked:

- Tell what happened?

is the truth that all people die? - I asked and with hope looked at it. I so wanted that it dispelled my fear and told that it not so. The father sustained my look, stroked on the head and quietly told me:

- the Truth. But only people very old and very sick die. So you have nothing to be anxious. All this will be very much - very at a distant day, through many - there are a lot of years.

Telling to

it, he made uncertain gesture a hand in air, as if showing remoteness of this moment. It became quieter, but it was necessary to specify everything:

- And you? And mother?

He smiled to


- We too at a distant day will be old, and, see, we are healthy. So you be not anxious, go quietly to play. - Having lowered me from knees and having kissed, it softly pushed to a door: - Go to play to children.

At heart it became quiet again. I remember, held apart me from love to the father and gratitude. Believe, I so remember it as though it occurred just“.

Be continued.

From the book “to Parents. Book of questions and answers.
What to do that children wanted to study,
were able to be on friendly terms and grew independent“