One Grandpa in Heaven...

Erica - posted on 03/30/2012 ( 7 moms have responded )

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Ok, My husband's father passed away in 1999 before I met him. He was a senior in High school, I was a freshmen. My dad is still living and very much a part of our lives.



The other day we were going over where my 2 year old lives (State, City, Street, etc..) and I asked her my full name and daddy's full name. When we got to the grandparents she realized there were two on my side and only one on my husbands. Now we've talked about his dad before infact my daughter snuck a 5x7 pic into her room and set it up against her mirror. We haven't commented on it but I catch her singing to the picture from time to time. But she asked me where he was. I said he was in heaven with a few other people we've lost recently. She said "oh, ok..." I asked her if she had any more questions and she wanted to know if she'll ever meet him. I said some day but he is always watching over us. She asked me how she can talk to him. I told her if she wispers he can hear her anywhere.



Today at the grocery store she asked if she could send him a card. Totally lost for the right answer I said ok... She drew in the card and envelope and being my little helper with the mail she knew I needed to address and stamp. I told her I would have to look up the address.



I need guidance, I've lost great grandparents and one grandparent (I was 7 and only met him once or twice) I don't know the right answer my husband is handling this well and doesn't seem to know what direction. He just keeps tellling her he'll tell her anything she wants to know. I know this is long but I don't want to screw this one up....

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Valerie - posted on 04/02/2012

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I think you are handling it right. We have the same situation at my house. My husband lost his father when he was 12. We have just explained that he is in heaven which is in the sky and even though they can't see him or hear him he is watching and listening. I would explain to her that you can't send the card to heaven but he knows she loves him. I personally believe it is best for a child to understand that when they are in heaven they are gone so that there are no expectations of seeing them or hearing from them or disappointments when they don't. My kids understand it well and have been to grandpa's grave. They also think that any pet we have lost is with grandpa keeping him company. which I think really helps them understand the concept of passing away. I hope this helps.

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Valerie - posted on 04/03/2012

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I would just leave it alone for now. If she comes across it and asks about it then you can sit her down and explain to her that you can't mail it to heaven but he knows she wrote it. They understand alot more than we give them credit for. I wouldn't worry about overloading her she might not quite comprehend the aspect of death but she will get the gist of it and understand that they are gone and not coming back. My daughter is 10 and she isn't sad about her grandpa being gone we explained to her that his heart got sick and he went to heaven when daddy was 12, she was around the same age as your daughter when she asked about him. (They also have a great grandpa on my side but not their dad's side which we approached the same way) We also took her to his grave. as she gets older she will understand more and you can go more into depth as she asks more questions. Just let her ask questions and give her answers when it comes to this subject there is really no "censoring it for her age" as it is the same no matter how old you are so just answer them the best you can she may get more questions after hearing an answer but that is good. If she is asking questions she is understanding and trying to understand better. I know my oldest 2 kids understood the aspect better than I thought they would. They know that they can only "see" them in pictures and they wont get to meet them or hear from them until they are old and go to heaven themselves. Sometimes they ask question like "what did he like to do? Where did he work?" etc and we tell them. We also say things like "If your grandpa was still here he would be so proud of you, he is probably looking down from heaven right now smiling because he is so proud" etc...So there are no expectations or disappointments. Haven't crossed that bridge with my youngest yet as he is only 22 mths but we will explain it to him the same way when he asks.

Erica - posted on 04/03/2012

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She has forgotten about the card. It's still sitting where we keep the outgoing mail, I'm not sure if I should bring it up again or just let it go. I don't want her thinking in the back of her mind that I mailed it but I also don't want to overload her with something she can't understand. I'm glad she's asking about him. But I don't want to get her hopes up either.

Erica - posted on 03/31/2012

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I thought about that... We went out there the other day so she could see it. she wispered she loved him and kissed the head stone. I just worry this is too much for a 3 year old to handle.

Amy - posted on 03/31/2012

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Is he buried? Could you leave it at his grave, even if you've moved away can you mail it to someone near the cemetery who would leave it next to his headstone?

Erica - posted on 03/31/2012

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We are working getting them in a church but we aren't to the point where we pray before dinner or go to church every sunday. We just didn't know what else to tell her. She's a very bright almost 3 year old...

Amy - posted on 03/31/2012

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Since you are talking about Heaven I'm assuming you are somewhat religious. Maybe take the letter to a church. Either that I would explain that you can't mail it to heaven but explain that he's watching over her and he sees the card without having put it in the mail.

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