CAN A PARENT HELP?
by Katrina Hayday Wester
As a parent
you have probably experienced death; however for your teenager this
might be a new experience. How do you discuss this with them? How
do you help them? Here are some tips as well as signs to look for.
1. It’s their grief. Let them deal with it in their own way
providing they are not being destructive.
2. They had a unique relationship with the person who died. Do not
try to assume that you understand all their feelings
3. Allow them to express themselves.
YOUR CHILD MAY EXPERIENCE
* Difficulty sleeping
* Fear that they will lose other loved ones.
* Difficulty paying attention
* Mood swings
TO EXPECT (IT’S OKAY)
* Crying, feeling sad or feeling depressed.
* Having fun, laughing and having a good time.
* Forgiving yourself for horrible things you did or said.
* Talking about the deceased and reliving funny stories or events.
Keeping the memory alive is a good thing.
* Using drugs or alcohol to deal with feelings
* Doing reckless things such as having sex or driving fast
* Ignoring feelings, or hiding them from other people to appear tough
* Stopping doing things they enjoy
Sources: Compassionate Friends (http://www.compassionatefriends.org)
and KidsHealth.org. (http://www.kidshealth.org