Explaining the funeral process to young people can be difficult, especially if this is their first experience with a death either within the family or within a close circle of friends. It is important that you are there to answer questions that your children may have at this time and that information is given in a simple way to help them understand what is going on.
What you will need to explain will depend to some extent on what they already know. It is okay to ask them what they know and then you can build on things from there. When talking about death itself it can be better to try to avoid using phrases such as ‘sleeping’ or ‘passed away’ as they can be confusing to younger people. Keep explanations honest and simple if you can.
If your child is attending the funeral it can also be useful to explain the process beforehand, so they know what to expect. Within this it may be helpful to talk to them about what the purpose of a funeral is too. For example you could explain how it is a time to think about and celebrate the life of the person or a special time to say goodbye to them. Talking about how it is okay to show emotions during the service can also be useful and make them feel more comfortable when the funeral takes place.
Joseph C Roberts are an independent, family funeral director who work throughout West and North Yorkshire. Our fully trained team of staff are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help families with each step of the funeral process at a time which suits them best. For more information about the services we offer please get in touch by calling 01423 887824.