Supporting Children Through Loss

Supporting Children Through Loss

Loss is difficult for all of us. When we lose someone that we love, it’s hard to understand, we feel a conflicting range of emotions, and it can be hard to just carry on with “normal” life. For children, it can be even harder which is why supporting children through loss as best you can is so important.

Touch wood and all of that, my two haven’t be touched by a bereavement yet. It is bound to happen at some point and as these things usually happen without notice we’ve had to talk between ourselves as parents about how we will handle such a situation.

Losing someone that you love is horrible, but at least as adults, we’re able to comprehend what has happened. For kids, the idea of someone never coming back can be hard to understand. Unfortunately, however, it’s an unavoidable thing. If you are lucky, your child’s first loss will happen when they are a little older and able to understand better, but there’s never going to be a good time. Here are some tips to help you help them at such a difficult time.

Supporting Children Through Loss: Use Simple Words

When talking about death, try not to overcomplicate things. You might have a lot of questions yourself, and you might spend time trying to understand what has happened, but your children don’t need these added burdens. Explain that someone has passed away and that you won’t be able to see them anymore. If you can, try to relate it to things that they do understand, perhaps something that they might have seen on TV, or the death of a family pet.

Talk About Your Own Feelings

Your child might never have experienced any emotions like these, or sadness on this level. They can find it confusing, and wonder if what they are feeling is right. Bottling up your own feelings, and hiding your sadness will only make things worse.

Don’t feel like you have to be strong for them. It’s actually more helpful to show them how you feel when supporting children through loss. Talk about how you grieve, and the things that you feel, rant if you need to. But also spend time remembering the person together. Talk about them, share stories and memories and make sure they know that this is ok. Death doesn’t have to mean that that person can’t still be a part of our lives. That’s how we are choosing to look at someone special passing on.

Talk About the Next Steps

Whether you want your child to attend the funeral is up to you. Your decision should be based on their age, how much they understand, and their own feelings about it. Either way, it’s a good idea to talk about the funeral, and what happens next. Tell them about headstones and funeral traditions. Explain what happens and what it means. Give them an idea of what different people believe, as well as your own beliefs, without forcing any upon them.

It’s also a good idea to talk about the wake (if this is something that your family is likely to do). Tell them that friends and family come together to share their memories and celebrate the life of the lost. Let them know that many people find this comforting, and it can be the start of feeling better. Tell them that it is ok to be happy and to laugh if they want to.

Answer Their Questions

Your child is bound to have a lot of questions. Be honest with them and answer what you can. If they ask something that you don’t know, or about something that you don’t believe, ask if they want to research together.

We’ve looked at supporting children through loss as a topic a fair bit and these are the important points that stand out to us too. Hopefully none of us will have to use any of these methods any time soon.

Travelling With a Disability

Travelling With a Disability

The weather is glorious this week and we are fast approaching the traditional summer holiday season. Travel can be stressful for anybody but it’s particularly difficult if you have a disability. When you’re at home, you’ve learned to deal with all of the challenges that come with your disability but if you’re travelling to another country, you don’t know if things are going to be accessible and whether people will be as accommodating as they are at home.

People don’t often realize that simple things they take for granted are difficult for people with a disability and that means that travelling with a disability can be tough, especially if you’re travelling solo. However, you shouldn’t let that stop you from seeing all of the places that you want to see because, with proper planning, you can still have an amazing trip. These are some of the best tips for travelling with a disability.

Research The Law Re Travelling With a Disability

In this country, it’s a legal requirement that anywhere that has toilet facilities must offer an accessible toilet for people with disabilities as well. Unfortunately, that isn’t going to be the case in every country that you visit. Most places in Europe will have the same laws but if you venture outside of Europe, there is always the chance that there won’t be any disabled toilet facilities and that can be a problem. That’s why it’s important that you do your research beforehand and see what the laws surrounding accessible toilets are so you know what the situation is likely to be.

The same goes for ramp access because in some countries, there may not be any rules or regulations in place. If that is the case, you might find that there isn’t good access to a lot of the tourist attractions that you want to visit and you’ll have to look into making other arrangements.

Get Good Insurance

Insurance is so important if you have a disability that can cause regular health issues. If you are in need of medical attention while you’re away, you don’t want to be stuck with a big bill at the end of it. Travel insurance with medical cover costs less than £10 for a week so it’s definitely worth getting. You should also look into mobility scooter insurance if you use one because you could find yourself in a difficult situation if you have a problem with your scooter. Insurance is relatively cheap but it can save you a lot of money if something goes wrong, so make sure that you always have cover when you travel.

Look For Support Groups

There are always disability groups that offer support to people and you should try to find some before you go. If you contact them, they will be able to give you a lot of advice on things like accessibility and give you tips on where to go and how to get around easily etc. These are great resources that you should take advantage of because they will make your travel experience so much easier.

Of course, travelling with a disability doesn’t always mean a physical disability or a physical disability that is “obvious”. There are many hidden disabilities to consider and thankfully many airports and venue are able to offer additional support. Check on this in advance.

Travelling with a disability can be tough but you shouldn’t let that stop you from doing the things that you want to do.

 

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