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  1. #11
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    SpecialPatrolGroup is offline T-rex is cranky until she gets her coffee.
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    Quote Originally Posted by teenie View Post
    My dad died when DS was 5. We were truthful with him that Pa was old and sick and his body was ready to stop working. We are Christians so DS already knew about heaven. We bought a beautiful book about heaven which he found comforting. DD was only 2 but we talk about my dad most days (he's been gone for nearly 3 years) so a memory has been made for her. It was tough at the time but we found honesty worked and we just allowed him to grieve in his own way.
    See we are not Christians and we don't believe in heaven so while it would be a great comfort, I just can't tell her something we don't believe ourselves.

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    We've had older family members die. We don't live in the same city as them so I guess it's made it somewhat easier.

    I hope what I say comes across the right way. I lost my brother when he was 32 so that colours immensely how I see the passing of an older relative.

    For us, it's very sad but it's also a time to think about what a wonderful life they had and how lucky we were to share it with them for so long. We always do something to honour them like plant a tree. But I go through photos of the relative and tell funny stories.

    As for what happens to the body after they die, I've told DD1 that the body goes back into the earth and if she asks about heaven I tell her some people believe in that but we don't. I tell her that honestly I don't know.

  3. #13
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    I know it's not the same, but when our dog died DD was 4, we told her she was too sick for the vet to fix so she went to be a fairy in the sky.

    We loosely follow the Catholic religion, so that was kind of saying she went to heaven. I'm not sure how I would explain it without those beliefs, makes it a bit harder. Maybe explain that grandma is sick and she is too sick for the doctors to make her better.

    Kids are far more resilient then we give them credit for, my DD told me "nan nan will die soon, she's really old & everyone dies". Nan nan is DH's nanna and is 94.

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    I think it's best to be honest. I find children don't like it when people are in pain. So if the time comes (and I really hope it doesn't for some time), you could say that Grandma/ Nan has no pain anymore and has gone to a better place. You could try telling her though that she is always around and your DD can talk to her any time. We are Christian so our DD knows about heaven etc and knows my grandparents and cousin are up there.

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  5. #15
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    SpecialPatrolGroup is offline T-rex is cranky until she gets her coffee.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonja View Post
    We've had older family members die. We don't live in the same city as them so I guess it's made it somewhat easier.

    I hope what I say comes across the right way. I lost my brother when he was 32 so that colours immensely how I see the passing of an older relative.

    For us, it's very sad but it's also a time to think about what a wonderful life they had and how lucky we were to share it with them for so long. We always do something to honour them like plant a tree. But I go through photos of the relative and tell funny stories.

    As for what happens to the body after they die, I've told DD1 that the body goes back into the earth and if she asks about heaven I tell her some people believe in that but we don't. I tell her that honestly I don't know.
    I was just expressing the same thing to Dh this evening about an older person dying as opposed to the loss of a young life. I have lost many extended family members, young and old and also both of my parents but I have never had a child to guide through it. I feel like it is a really important thing to experience and feel the grief and I want her to know it is normal and not something to fear or turn your back on. I just don't want to f@ck up this part of the circle of life for her.

    I also really like what you said about returning to the earth. Thanks so much.


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    Quote Originally Posted by SpecialPatrolGroup View Post
    I was just expressing the same thing to Dh this evening about an older person dying as opposed to the loss of a young life. I have lost many extended family members, young and old and also both of my parents but I have never had a child to guide through it. I feel like it is a really important thing to experience and feel the grief and I want her to know it is normal and not something to fear or turn your back on. I just don't want to f@ck up this part of the circle of life for her.

    I also really like what you said about returning to the earth. Thanks so much.


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    If you're honest and gentle with her you won't f@ck it up. My kids know I don't have all the answers and accept that. I try my best to explain things but I honestly don't know what happens when we die so that's what I tell them.

    Sorry your MIL is ill. How are you and your DH coping? I dread my DH's parents dying.

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    Sorry to hear about your MIL, it sounds like a very difficult time for your family.

    What you are already telling your DD is great- being honest and letting her know that grief and feeling sad is normal when a loved one dies. Even if you are not religious you could use words, symbols or rituals that suit your family to express grief and remembering MIL.
    A garden, a special keepsake, and just letting her see yours n DH's grief too is important.

    There is a great organisation called Bereavement Care Centre (google it) that specialises in grief counselling and website has lots of great info re: grief and children.

  8. #18
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    SpecialPatrolGroup is offline T-rex is cranky until she gets her coffee.
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    Thanks everyone. Mil is not an easy person and there is a long history of difficult relations between them. Dh is ok at the moment but had a little bit of a panic attack the other night, which is unusual for him. I am ok, just waiting ti see what will happen and worried for dh and dd.

    She really needs 2 heart valves replaced and won't live without them but her lungs aren't good, she has chronic kidney disease, experienced a massive bowel bleed yesterday morning, likely from diverticulitis, she is now on life support with a suspected infection of unknown origin. Even if they can address the infection, I just can't see how they can get her strong enough for open heart surgery, presuming she doesn't succumb to another bowel bleed or pneumonia or just her heart in coming days.

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    We are going through this at the moment. DS who is 3 lost his beloved Gran last month. He talks about her most days and we let him. He has also become quite cuddly which is fine by us. You might find the following link helpful.

    http://cyh.com/HealthTopics/HealthTo...np=141&id=1662

    We have also planted a small garden to remember Mum. We mostly planted cornflowers which is the flower emblem for MND.

  10. #20
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    SpecialPatrolGroup is offline T-rex is cranky until she gets her coffee.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Truffle View Post
    We are going through this at the moment. DS who is 3 lost his beloved Gran last month. He talks about her most days and we let him. He has also become quite cuddly which is fine by us. You might find the following link helpful.

    http://cyh.com/HealthTopics/HealthTo...np=141&id=1662

    We have also planted a small garden to remember Mum. We mostly planted cornflowers which is the flower emblem for MND.
    Sorry for your loss Truffle. Thanks for the link.


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