Should Children Attend a Funeral?
Although children don’t fully understand the concept of death, it is important to remember that they too are experiencing pain and undergoing their own grieving process, as well as you are. We tend to avoid talking about death with children because we believe we are protecting them from feeling hurt and sad. Every situation is different and the decision to bring your child to a funeral is one that should not be considered lightly. Here are some ways to decide what is best for your family and children:
Talking and expressing emotions to children: During the time of the death of a loved one you are experiencing a great deal of pain and grief. As adults we tend to try our hardest to stay strong around our children because we want to spare them pain, worrying, and sometimes stress. Every child is different and each situation is unique and expressing how you are feeling or allowing yourself to cry in front of your children can help them express themselves as well. Be open and honest with your child about the circumstances that are affecting you and create a bond to grieve together and support each other during this time.
The concept of death: Children realize that their loved one is gone and not around anymore, although what they may not understand is that they are never coming back. Using examples like flowers and trees, going through the cycle of life, living beautifully and then dying is a way to put death into the perspective of a child.
Talking about the funeral: Once you have gone through death itself and the death of your loved one you can begin to explain what a funeral is to your child and how heavy of a situation it will be for everyone. Tell them the time and place of the funeral and go over that a funeral is a time in which everyone is going to say their last goodbyes to your loved one.
Once you have had a discussion with you children about the death of your loved one and the funeral service you can decide if bringing them is a good idea. Depending on their reaction to everything you have spoken about and also including them in the decision by giving them the option to decide if they wold like to go or not, you can dictate what is best for them and the family. If you and your child have decided they will be attending the funeral, it is important to go over funeral etiquette and manners before attending.
If you have any other questions on this topic or would like to speak to the professionals at, Hurd Family Funerals, serving Peoria and Chillicothe Illinois, you can contact them here.
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