Understanding of Death: Teens



  • Understands that death is final
  • Concern that his/her thoughts, words, behaviors caused the death
  • Thinks about life milestones without their loved one (graduation, marriage, etc.)
  • High death awareness. Concerns that other loved ones will die
  • May sense own impending death
  • Need to be in control of feelings. Emotional displays are weakness.
  • Internal conflict with need to be independent but feeling dependent and in need of support

How to help:

  • Allow regressive behavior and provide comfort
  • Expect emotional reactions and mood swings and be patient and gentle
  • Encourage healthy and creative outlets drawing, reading, art, music, etc.
  • Find peer support. Support relationships with understanding adult mentors
  • Communicate openly and answer questions honestly. Be available to talk and listen to their concerns.
  • Share your grief
  • Give them choices in the mourning process
  • Watch for high risk behaviors


If you are looking to support a grieving child, have questions or concerns, we are available to help. Please call us at the office at (231) 947-6453 or by email at GoodGrief@MyMichaelsPlace.net and talk with one of our grief support staff.


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