Life with children can be joyous and fulfilling, and alternately, stressful and demanding. Acute grief is often highly emotional and can disrupt your ability to function in the way you usually do. Losing someone you love can change your family dynamics. If these changes occur, it may make it more difficult to care for grieving children. Children thrive with protection and guidance. Some of your strength as a parent and/or caregiver comes from seeing your child happy and thriving. Grief can unsettle your confidence in how you parent or in your role as caretaker, however, you will regain your confidence as you adapt to the loss.
You might find that loss is also a way to learn things about yourself and your child and to strengthen your relationship with them. We want to help you lower the stress of parenting and caretaking your grieving child and also help you see ways you can enrich your relationship with them.
In this module and the next one we’ll discuss ways you can help your grieving child feel safe and how you can guide them in adapting to the loss. We’ll assist you in expanding your understanding of what your child needs and how you can be sure they receive support. We’ll also suggest ways to keep lines of communication open when your family is grieving. In addition, we provide information for you in how to attend to your own needs for emotional and social support.