“Why is he lying in that box? Why are they going to put him in the ground (or burn him)? If he’s gone to God, why are you so sad?’ In the grief, commotion and exhaustion that surrounds dying and its aftermath, a child’s questions about death are seldom properly answered.”
– John Roger & Peter McWilliams (1991, p. 189)
Answering a child’s questions about death can be a difficult process, especially since parents may be equally insecure about the subject themselves. Making matters worse, children – who are not nearly as dumb as adults often pretend they are – have a knack for asking all the difficult questions relating to all the difficult subjects. Hopefully, this information will make it a little easier to answer the difficult questions that children commonly ask. You might want to read through some of these ahead of time, so that you’re prepared when a child asks something along these lines.
General questions children may have about death
- When children ask: What happens when you die?
- When children ask: Does it hurt to die?
Questions about death that kids may ask after the loss of a loved one
- When children ask: When will the hurt go away?
- When children ask: Does the deceased miss me?
- When children ask: Where’s Daddy? or When is Mom coming back
* If your little one asked a question that isn’t listed here, let us know what it is so that we can add it to this list to help other parents in the future.
See also . . .
- Talking to kids about death
- How to explain death to a child
- Discussing death with children
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