Helping your child understand complex issues can be difficult for parents. Here’s how to explain some of the tougher aspects of the world to kids.
Death is by far one of the most difficult concepts for children to grasp. At an early age, it’s hard for kids to understand or be aware that life is finite and people eventually pass away. However, that doesn’t mean that children can be kept away from the concept of death. It’s possible that a child loses a grandparent or even a close family member. How do you help them to understand?
One of the options is to avoid the concept of death completely with an abstract explanation of where someone has gone and why they can’t visit them. This is useful for younger children who will find it impossible to understand the idea of death. For slightly older children, it’s important that they have something to grasp onto. If they have lost a brother or a sister childrens memorials can be useful because it gives them a place to visit and feel connected to that person in their life. Even if you are not religious, it’s advised that you do explain that the loved one is still around somehow and still a part of them.
Addiction is something that you definitely want to keep your children away from as much as possible. Issues with addiction are far more common than most people realise. Unfortunately, many will find that there is an issue like this in their family. You need to help your children understand addiction without going into some of the darker details. One way you can explain addiction is by telling children that the person likes whatever they are addicted to. You might need to say that sometimes that person isn’t always themselves but they still love them very much. You should also be aiming to get that individual the help and support they need. While addiction isn’t something that is fully understood by kids, it still impacts them if they see the worst effects.
Illness is just as difficult to explain to children as the concept of dying. You have to be prepared for the possibility that a grandparent or family friend develops a life-threatening illness or an issue that is terminal. If this is the case, then it’s worth explaining that they are ill but the doctors are working to make them better. If they do tragically pass away, then how you explain it is always going to depend on the age of your child.
Finally, it is worth looking at how to help children understand COVID, why it’s dangerous, and why they need to abide by new rules and social distancing measures. A lot of parents have found that the best way to cope with this is to treat it like a game. Make sure that the little ones follow the markets on the ground. As for not being able to see people, it’s important not to scare them and instead focus on the fact that they will see people missing from their life again soon.
This is a collaborative post.