They say you need to nurture a child into the human being you want them to be. You let them explore things that are unusual for them so they can learn. They need to discover new emotions, so they need to understand what it feels like. From then, they can learn and adapt to their further journey, the real world. That is when they start to ask things about certain events or things. And when you give your child a necklace for ashes, they will be delighted because it is a present they want.
They will brag about and tell all the people in the house about what you have given, but they don't know why you are giving it to them. Children have a literal and straightforward mindset compared to kids who are on the bridge of turning into adolescence. That is why they are also critical and very dangerous when they are not guided when they need to be.
As parents, we want the best for our children. We want to build their confidence in handling things on their own. We also wish them that they already know how to control their emotions at a young age and resolve it when they feel down or angry. But when a child encounters his first grief and heartbreak, we can't tell them to stop crying or stop feeling pain just because we don't want them to feel poorly hurt.
We can't stop natural things from happening. No matter how much time we spend nurturing our children on how they will handle every situation, there will always be that moment when they don't know what to do and would want to run back in our arms for protection and comfort. As parents, it is natural for us to give them the comfort and love that they need. But we need to make them understand as well every situation they have encountered.
They need to understand the emotions that they let out when they are happy, sad or angry to learn. They can be more likely to be intuitive when they are uncertain about what to feel. It is natural for the kids to ask what to think about a particular event or if they don't feel anything. Children are naturally curious. But in dealing with their first loss and heartbreak, it can be a very ordeal.
They might ask you so many questions about what happened and where the person will go, and so on. They are hurt, but at the same time, they are curious about things. They are exploring their feelings and the world at the same time. That is why you need to tell them the truth about what happened and the possible feelings or emotions they will feel in the next few days.
As parents, we have that feeling that our children do not need to be informed about the loss and what happened to our loved ones. We used words that would stop them from questioning because we didn't want them to feel even more hurt after explaining what happened. But it would help if you told them the truth about losing a loved one.
If your child is already old enough to understand things, they have to know the truth and why they feel sad or lonely. In that way, they would know in future how they will handle the pain. Do not be afraid of questions. They ask about it because they want to learn and understand the emotion they need to pour out. You would not want your child to be someone who does not have any reactions at all.
You don't need to stop them from crying because they miss the person. But let them cry and understand the feeling of missing a person or a loved one. That is the only way they can let out all their emotions, like what some adults do. Doing it allows them to learn about their feelings and not be shy about showing what they feel.
If they are confused about what they feel and keep asking about the person, you explain it to them. Make them understand that losing a loved one is the most devastating part of being human. But it would help if you let them know that hurt is a natural feeling, and they don't need to hide or be shy or show it.
When they no longer understand everything you have explained to them, you can tell them that there is no need to pressure themselves to understand things quickly. There is always a suitable time for everything, and if they are not used to what they feel right now, they can feel used to it in the future.
If pain consumes them, you can hug them to make them feel comforted and less anxious about things. You can talk to them about their aspirations and dreams to divert their thinking to different things.
As parents, we want the best for our children, especially in controlling their emotions. But we can't stop them from getting hurt on the things we can't even control. What we can do is be there for them and be the person they can run to whenever they can no longer bear the pain.