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.