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Talking to Children About Traumatic Deaths

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Traumatic Deaths explained to Children

I wish I didn’t have to post this, but I know many parents are wondering how to handle telling their own children about Tori Stafford, the 8-year-old girl who was recently abducted now that the police confirm she will not be coming home.  Grief workers will be sent to Tori’s school to help her friends and classmates, but many other children in the community and across Canada will be deeply impacted by this news, and many parents don’t know how to be supportive to their own children.  I think the advice at The Children’s Trauma Academy will be helpful as parents and caregivers help children cope with this horrific event. Indeed, it is good information for any other type of traumatic death a child might face as well.

About Alyson

Alyson has been blogging parenting advice for over 15 years. She has been a panelist at BlogWest, Blissdom, #140NYC and more. Her content appears on sites across Canada and the US, but you can read all her own blog posts right here.

More about Alyson

2 Responses to “Talking to Children About Traumatic Deaths”

  1. Elizabeth

    Hi Alyson – the link to “The Children’s Trauma Academy” advice on how to discuss death has been removed. Do you know if there is an updated link anywhere? I am searching your site on how to talk to kids about death.
    A 6 year old girl at my daughters’ school died yesterday and I’m trying to figure out how to talk to them about it (my girls are 5 and 7). I would love it you could Tweet or discuss it on The Parenting Show on Monday. This particular girl had Brain Cancer and was diagnosed in October.
    Much thanks,

  2. Alyson Schafer

    Hello Elizabeth,
    Sorry to hear the sad news of your children’s friend passing away. I have a few resource for parents on line, and each of them also point to reference books for more. Try:
    Bereaved Families of Ontario – Toronto
    Mr Roger’s Neighbourhood – Family Communications{EE8B56D3-08CF-44E6-BEA7-3D2B31407AB4}
    The National Association of School Psychologist – (under crisis and safety articles)
    Lots of free quality information at each of these sites.


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