Chapter 1: An early and honest approach

Honesty is the best policy

I've been there
Galith remembers how her husband kept their children informed throughout his illness.(3:22)Video transcript
I've been there
Jean and Omo discuss the importance of talking to children about death.(3:22)Video transcript

Talking honestly and early on helps in many ways. It: 

  • Makes death a normal part of living so it doesn’t become a taboo subject.
  • Ensures children learn the facts from someone trusted and familiar.

  • Lessens the likelihood they’ll imagine scenarios that leave them more anxious and fearful.
    • Children who aren’t given information often worry more than those who do!

    • Left to their imaginations, they might think, for example, that they’re responsible for the illness or death.

  • Allows them to grieve with the important adults and children in their lives. When this happens, they:
    • Feel less alone or on the sidelines.
    • Can learn that their emotions and those of the people around them are healthy and natural.
  • Encourages open and honest conversations within the family.