Grieving with Children

The grieving process can be especially difficult when a child or children are involved. If they are affected by the loss, they also experience struggles of coping and missing better times. However, if they are too young to remember the loved one, adults may still want to share their memory. Below are a few activities that can be done with children to share memories of the loved one.

Cooking with children

One popular way that people commonly bond is over food. Especially as the holidays draw near, people will be spending more time in the kitchen. If you are wondering how to establish a tradition with meaning, cooking with loved ones may be the answer. Consider taking the time to think about a loved one that has passed during this time for inspiration.

For example, consider making their favorite dish, one they used to make frequently or their own creation. However, if you do not have a recipe card, it doesn’t mean you can’t honor them. You could look up similar ideas online.  Also,  you could do a little family researching to see if anyone else knows the recipe. If another family member does, you could invite them to get involved in the festivities.

Not only would this make for memories for children but also introduces them to a skill and possible hobby. It is also a way to engage both younger and older children due to tasks that can interest all ages. This could help build further family traditions as you try to make it a common activity if it works well. Also, discussion about traditions the adult remembers from growing up could spark other ideas.

Guide Children with making Scrapbooks

The time during this activity should be spent discussing positive stories. A scrapbook can be helpful in recording memories that the children shared with the loved one. It can also be a resource for the family during difficult times.

A group scrapbook can be made if it happens to be easier as a group activity.  Similarly, if children are of different ages, you could guide them through creating a memory book for themselves. Adults can supervise if they have older children or be hands-on with younger ones. However, adults should not feel discouraged about getting involved in the activity as well. If children are old enough to do this mostly by themselves, adults can make one for themselves.

This could be beneficial by focusing on things the child experienced and encouraging their creativity. It could also be a tool for adults that have a loved one that children never met as well. Whether they may not remember, they could be involved with the “craft” part of the project. For example, you could ask them about where to place pictures or stickers so they feel involved in the project.

Engage children with activities

If you have memories of a place you used to visit with the loved one, consider taking your children there.  People do the same thing with old houses they used to live in. While you may no longer have access to the location, you could still drive by to reminisce. It can be nice for children to see different places and get more background about stories you share.

This idea could also be relevant to shared activities. For example, perhaps you have childhood memories of going fishing with your grandfather. Therefore, think about bonding with your children using this activity. It could be a great way to teach them more about who the loved one was and activities they enjoyed.

Everyone grieves differently, so these are only starting ideas to help you and your family through the grieving process. As time goes on, you will find other personal ways that work for you that will honor your loved one.