How do i explain it to my son. am i explaining it right?

Desire - posted on 11/30/2009 ( 9 moms have responded )

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My grandfather passed away yesterday afternoon. After i got the news i sat on my couch bawling when my 2 year old brayden came up to me. He looked at me. wiped the tears away from my cheek and said "Owie?" I told him yes that mama's heart hurts. He asked me why. I proceeded to tell him Gpa Don ( my grandfather) died. He looked at me kinda funny. and i said. He's not here, He left to fly with the angels. And he said oh ok. Gave me a kiss and ran off to play.

I know that he does not fully comprehend whats going on and that he most likely wont remember. But am i explaining it right to him. and when he is older when there is another death how do i explain it to him then without scaring him?

9 Comments

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Lorie - posted on 12/04/2009

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I agree with Brandi Giles, no one could put it a better way.

I think you did just fine, there is only so much detail you can give a child without scaring him. I wouldn't worry about a death that hasn't happened yet and how ytou are going to explain it.

Jakala - posted on 12/03/2009

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You did just great, I am so sorry for your loss. You know your son and what he can understand you will know what to say when he is older and sometimes not saying anything but Mommy's heart hurts is enough even when they are older. God will give you the right thing to say at the right time, trust yourself.

[deleted account]

You did an amazing job at explaining it to him...an explanation that was age appropriate, and held your beliefs in them. I am so sorry for your lose that is never easy, I hope the best for you and your son. God bless you and be with you in this difficult time.

Zora - posted on 12/02/2009

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i think you did a wonderful job of explaining it.......just last year my husbands father passed away he and my son were very close and when my son asked where his grandpa was i told him that grandpa was in heaven with the angels and that he could talk to grandpa all of the time on a phone that i procceded to give him he is two and a half now and still has the phone and late at night i can here him talking to his grandpa with it

Sarah - posted on 12/02/2009

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I am a hospice nurse, and I also recently had to explain to my toddlers when my uncle passed away. I simply told them that Uncle Joe went to live with Jesus, and we wouldn't be able to see him here on earth anymore. I explained that we love him and miss him, so we are sad, but we will all give each other hugs when we feel bad adn soon we wont feel so bad anymore. Kids take it in at their own level. I have seen toddlers who completely get it, and others who are confused. just start out with a simple statement, and let him ask questions. Answer as honestly as you can. Telling him the truth in a simple way is never wrong. As you see from your own experience, children most often will tell you how much they want to know. Of course it helps if you yourself have an idea about what your beliefs are :-) You'd be surprised how many people don't really know how they as adults feel/believe about death and dying!

Beth - posted on 12/02/2009

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At two there may not be much more that you need to explain. Your explaination maybe good enough for now. As he gets older he may ask about your grandfather and your explaination can get more complex. There's no point in providing more information than he's seeking out on the topic of death or many other topics we have to grow into. If kids wonder, they ask and then you can tell him some more. Sorry about your news by the way. Hope things get better.

Valerie - posted on 12/01/2009

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i think you did a wonderful job...as he gets older he will have more questions and feelings and you will surely find more words...there are also chldre's books that might be helpful...ask the librarian...you might not be able to avoid him being scared over something..what he needs to know is that you are there for him through those scarey times...you will do great because you are so caring and compassionate!

Carolee - posted on 12/01/2009

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I think you handled it beautifully. I'm so sorry for your loss. It sounds like you have a wonderful, caring son. He won't understand the concept of death for a while, though. He will ask when he has questions, and just answer them the best way you can. For now, I think that he's flying with the angels is the best thing you can tell him.

Brandi - posted on 12/01/2009

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There is no right way or wrong way it just depends on your faith and beliefs. My brother passed away at 19 and we were very close. My oldest daughter was born 5 years after he passed. She knows that she has an uncle Billy and that he is in heaven with the angels. It is easier to explain death as your chid gets older. But in my opinion you explained it beautifully to him. If you have to deal with another death just take his age at the time into consideration and you can always associate the death with something he does understand to help him associate the two. Good luck and Sorry for your loss.

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