Your child may feel grief when he or she loses a beloved person, pet, or thing. It is also natural to feel grief when a valued way of life is lost, such as a home, a parent's job, or good health. Your child also may grieve for a loved one who is sick and dying. And children often feel the pain of loss before a big move or a divorce.
The ways children express grief are usually different from the way adults express it. Children are not always able to use words to say what they feel. Instead, they often express their feelings through behaviour. Even children who can talk about their feelings may not always be able to express the many, sometimes conflicting, emotions they have.
Grief is different for each child. There is no "normal" or "expected" period of time for grieving. Some children adjust to loss within a couple of months. Others may take 2 years or longer, especially if their lives were changed a lot or if the loss was sudden and shocking.
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Current as of: April 3, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
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