How to Handle a Major Event That Is Coming Up

If the death happens right around a holiday it’s unrealistic to expect that you’re really going to be able to have a happy celebration. You might be able to find moments of happiness, but chances are everyone is going to be preoccupied with the loss of the person who has died and you shouldn’t try to hide or force your child to hide her grief. That said, you should still acknowledge important occasions, such as a child’s birthday or graduation, because ignoring them could also be painful.

If the person who has died is close, the whole year is going to be a year of “firsts” without that person, so celebrations like the first Thanksgiving, birthday, Christmas or Hanukkah without that person are going to be hard. Do what you can to maintain traditions as much as possible, but know, once again, that you and your child will likely experience moments of joy along with some sorrow.