Helping Children Cope With Grief


What to Expect With Kids Ages 4-7

Kids this age may still see death as reversible. They may draw inaccurate conclusions that they caused the death — something called “magical thinking.” They tend to ask a lot of concrete questions: “How did he die?” “What will happen to him now?”

  • Possible expressions of grief: Nightmares, regression to earlier behaviors, changes in sleeping and eating, violent play, attempting to take on the role of the person who died.
  • How you can help: Encourage expression of the child’s feelings through physical outlets as well as symbolic play (drawing and stories) and talking about the person who died.