Should Your Child Attend the Funeral?

By: Tom Gallagher
Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Parents want to protect their child from the harsh realities of life for as long as they can. They’re most reluctant to discuss death and funerals, fearing they might scare their kids. Experts and bereavement counselors believe there’s no reason to deny them. Most people believe it’s inappropriate to bring people under the age of 12 to funerals but this is mostly because they cause disruption. These facts will help you make the right decision:

1. Children understand death

Many believe death is a too vague and traumatizing aspect of life and children are incapable of understanding it. Experts disagree on the matter. With the right guidance, they are able to understand death and process the sudden loss in a healthy manner.

2. Funeral can help the healing process

Kids feel grief and loss just as intensely as adults. Attending a funeral helps them process this pain and say their goodbyes. Parents should have a discussion with their kids to determine if they’re ready.

3. Too Young

Some children are too young and can cause a lot of disruption. It’s important to respect the feelings of the grieving family. They might not welcome young kids who are liable to create trouble.

4. You can ask

Some are old enough to make a choice. For example, if your son or daughter is over 8 to 10 years old, explain what happened and ask them. Many kids choose to attend funerals while others prefer to stay at home. It’s a good idea to respect their decision instead of trying to force your choices on them.

Before taking them to the ceremony, explain etiquette and make sure they understand how to be respectful.

If you want to know more about funerals or want to plan one, don’t hesitate to call us at Thomas M. Gallagher Funeral Home for more information.

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