Saying Goodbye: Talking to Kids About Death

How to Answer: "Am I Going to Die, Mommy?"

When a young child hears that someone died, it's natural for him to wonder whether he'll die too. When he asks, respond honestly but gently. You might say, "Everybody dies eventually, but most people live for a long, long time, and I'm sure you will too." Let him know that you'll do everything in your power to keep him safe and healthy. Your child may also start worrying about your well-being. If he does, say something like, "Honey, I plan to live a very long time -- until you're a grown-up with kids of your own."

Copyright © 2008. Used with permission from the April 2008 issue of Parents magazine.

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