With the pandemic process, children started to encounter the concept of death more frequently. Emphasizing that death from children should not be hidden, experts recommend that the child be introduced by a trusted relative as the end of life.
Expert Clinical Psychologist Ayşe Şahin from Üsküdar University NPİSTANBUL Brain Hospital discussed how the concept of death, which is more common with the pandemic process, should be explained to children and shared her advice on this issue with families.
One should be careful while explaining the concept of death
Specialist Clinical Psychologist Ayşe Şahin stated that children hear the concept of death more than any other period of their lives, in this period when the whole world is going through a very difficult process, and that most of them encounter the daily number of deaths and statistical data of deaths on televisions where news, series and movies are watched almost every day at home reminded me.
Stating that this exposure process is not only through the media, Ayşe Şahin said, “Like us, our children witnessed their relatives, neighbors and people they knew well died. "It is very difficult to tell even an adult about the death of a relative, but our children should be approached more carefully while conveying this situation."
People with whom they are close should give the news
Noting that when families lose a relative, they can avoid telling their children about this situation or that they do not want their children to be upset or affected negatively by good intentions, Ayşe Şahin stated that some families do not tell the child the situation and leave the process to the child's perceptions. Ayşe Şahin said, “In such a period, it is very important to communicate with the child and to express his curiosity in a simple language that he / she can understand. "When giving information about death, the child is in a place where he feels safe, and this news is given by people (such as parents) whom he trusts and feels close to will make the child more comfortable."
Sleeping, being sick, going away should not be used instead of death.
Truth about death sözcüEmphasizing the importance of choosing a person, Ayşe Şahin suggested that concepts such as "dying" and "dead" should be used without hesitation and said, "Otherwise, expressions such as 'sleeping', 'being sick', 'going away' cause the child to experience confusion will be. The child, who learns about death as a different sleep state, may be worried about sleeping or the relative's sleep ”.
Death is the end of life
Specialist Clinical Psychologist Ayşe Şahin stated that especially in children under 11-12 years of age, the abstract thinking system has not yet fully developed, and therefore, while giving information about death, talking about concrete situations will facilitate the child's perception.
Stating that change can be described as a natural process first, Ayşe Şahin said: “Many living things are in a state of change in nature, you used to be a baby, you were very young, you could not walk and talk, but now you have grown up and you can do all of these, I used to be just like you, then I grew up. and matured Other creatures in nature are like that, a tree looks different in spring and another in winter, changing every season. The butterfly first transforms from caterpillar to cocoon, from cocoon to butterfly. To live means to grow and change. Death is the end of life. "Plants die, animals die, people die…" will contribute to the child's thinking that change is a natural process. "
Share the cause of death
Stating that children may think that one of their own thoughts or behaviors will cause their death, Ayşe Şahin emphasized that it would be beneficial to explain the causes of deaths (such as accidents, diseases) to children and the cause of death of their relatives. For example, a statement such as 'God took him with him' for the deceased may cause the child to be angry with or afraid of Allah ”.
Don't try to protect them from difficult feelings
Stating that children learn to cope with negative emotions by observing adults, Expert Clinical Psychologist Ayşe Şahin made the following recommendations: “Do not try to protect them from difficult emotions. "Help children understand and express their emotions so that they develop methods of coping with difficult situations in their lives."