Should Children Attend the Funeral?

By: Les Fee
Wednesday, December 7, 2016

When a loss of a loved one occurs in the family and there are small children involved, a decision needs to be considered if you will be bringing them to attend the funeral service. Of course, there are many factors that need to be thought about and it is not a decision that is lightly considered by any means. As parents, we want to protect our children from grief and pain and keep them as happy as we possibly can.

 

Age is one of the most important factors that can help you to decide whether or not they should attend the funeral. If you have small children under the age of two it is not a pressing matter to have them there or not have them there. This is a difficult one to decide because we can look at it from two perspectives. They are still young enough that they do not understand what is going on and why they are there. They do, however, feel the emotion of the people they are surrounded by and of course this is an emotional service that could trigger them to cry.

 

On the other hand, if they do not come to the service they also do not understand why, whereas an older child may feel left out from the family service. If a young child tends to be active and hyper, keeping them home is a way to prevent any interruptions throughout the service and also allows you to be fully present.

 

When it comes to pre-school children who are beginning to develop their own personalities and emotions, it really depends on how the child is and how you think they will handle it. They still are not at the age where they understand the concept of death and this is a reason why they can attend. Although, it is important to talk to them and explain what is going on as a means to control their behavior during the service. There are ways in which you can narrow down the concept of death without going into specific detail, such as using an analogy that relates to nature and the cycle of life.

 

School age children are developing an understanding of death and what it means for a loved one to pass away. They may understand that their loved one is not coming back and their emotions will reflect how they are handling it. Having conversations about death, and what a funeral is for before bringing them to a funeral service will help to ease the confusion when they are there. Also, if you feel as if this may ignite fear or depression in a child, leaving them at home while you attend the funeral can allow them to grieve in a way that is healthy for their healing process.

 

If you have any other questions or would like to talk to our professionals here at, Fee & Sons Funeral Home & Crematorium, you can contact us here.

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