My son is 4yrs old, how do I explain that his grandfather has passed away?

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Well, My grandfather passed away September 4th, 2009...my daughter was extremely close to him. So, I broke out in tears everytime I explained it to her. I told her that bap (which is what we all called him) went to heaven with great-grandma & that he was really sick, but that it was ok because he was watching over us & making sure that nothing bad was going to happen to us. At first she wanted to go to the airport, get on a plane, & fly to heaven to see him...which made me bawl my eyes out. Just recently she asked me when bap was coming home...I told her that he wasnt coming home, he had been really sick & he went to heaven with God & great grandma. She asked me how he got there & I told her that when you go to heaven, you get wings, so God gave him wings & he flew to heaven, but that he could see us & was watching over us & she was very satisfied with that answer. I am 18 weeks pregnant now & at 10 weeks we lost one of the twins...so when i told her the baby went to heaven, she said with grandma & bap? So it did help her understand a bit more. I hope this helps! Good luck hun!

Marcella - posted on 01/01/2010

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My father died in Feb and I told my 5 year old he's in Heaven. I told her we will see him again one day because everybody has to go to heaven sooner or later, but you usually don't go to heaven until you are old or very sick.

[deleted account]

I haven't been in this position but I try to let my daughter know what death is. Like if she saw a dead fish or a dead animal. I let her know that it's no longer living. I think she understood. I know it's no comparison to your son's grandfather but I think as long as you try to explain death to your kid, and that person etc. isn't coming back, they might be able to understand better...

Katie - posted on 07/26/2009

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So sorry to hear of your loss. My mother in law just passed away in january, This death was comletely unexpected. I have a four year old daughter, and we were all really close. I just told her she went to heaven with the angels. We visit her resting place often and remember her in our home. It has been so hard on the whole family. I wish you all the best as you go through this difficult time.

Stacey-Marie - posted on 01/23/2009

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Being honest is the best way. If he was ill say so and that the angel in heaven needed to take him to heaven to fix him - or something like that.



If they were close then allow her to ask questions and talk about him, remember the good times they had together or good and funny things about him in general.



Our daughter found her nan and grandad's dog's death hard to deal with - she was very close to her and she took the death like the dog had been a human, it is so sad to watch. The school our daughter goes to also lent us books on children and grief to help us help her understand.

Anjela - posted on 01/22/2009

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Sorry to here that it is never easy. You cold tell him that he as gone to live with the angels in the sky and you could get him a ballon so he can send it to him.

Renee - posted on 01/21/2009

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Thank you everyone for your advise. I did tell him the truth and he didn't really get it, but at the same time he's not asking about him. Which might be a good thing not to sure.

Cara - posted on 01/21/2009

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I'm thankful that I haven't had to cross this bridge just yet but I just thought I would mention that I have seen in the library, books that cover this kind've thing. I agree with the other posts though, try to be as honest as possible...and good luck.

Jackie - posted on 01/18/2009

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My grandmother just recently passed away and he was close to her. it is hard to explain this to a young child. The very first thing is to realize what his comprehension level is. Usually not much depth. I explained to my son about heaven because that is what i believe. But just that when someone does pass on, they do go somewhere, they just don't stop. He doesn't quite grasp it completly but every time we do speak of her i think he gets it a little more each time. Don't lie. I know there are books that teach this topic to young kids but I don't know of any to reccommend. I think that is a good idea too. Just keep it breif, and at his level. My son surprised me. He helped me explain it to him, by asking his own questions. Your a mother, mothers are good at winging things and ending out on top.

Jodi - posted on 01/18/2009

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When my sons grandfather died we were completely honest with him as well. I think that is the best way to go. We told him that grandpa had a sickness called cancer in his lungs from smoking cigarettes for a long time and that the cancern made him so sick that he lungs started to not work anymore. Then we said that he died and Jesus sent an angel to come get him from earth to bring him to heaven so that he wouldn't be sick anymore because everyone in heaven is healthy and happy. We also told him that grandpa can watch him from heaven and we can still talk to him and if we really need him then he puts extra love (like gas for cars) in our hearts to help us get through it. TO make less scary we made sure to tell him too that we will be going to heaven and that you are not afraid to go there because of what a wonder place it will be. Good luck!

Jacquelyn - posted on 01/14/2009

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my dad passed away last year and it was so difficult for my daughter to understand. She still talks about him and asks questions. We were just very honest. He had gone into surgery for open heart surgery and never came out. We told her that he had a sick heart and now he is in Heaven. She doesn't really understand what Heaven is, but she gets that it's a good place. We talk a lot about him and I have been telling her that as long as we remember him we him alive in our hearts. It makes me sad to think she that she won't remember much of him. She is now very worried that everyone else is going to die. I keep reassuring her that I am still young and healthy and although I can't promise that nothing will happen to me, chances are I will be here a long time.

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