Grief is an intense and complex emotion that can affect people of all ages. However, the way in which adults and children deal with grief can differ significantly. Understanding these differences can help both adults and children better cope with the grieving process and move forward in a healthy and healing way. To help, here are 5 Ways Children and Adults Grieve Differently.
Understanding of Death
The first significant difference between adults and children when dealing with grief is their understanding of death. Adults generally have a deeper understanding of death and have more experience with loss. They are more likely to have developed coping mechanisms and have a better understanding of the stages of grief. Children, on the other hand, may not fully understand the concept of death and may struggle to comprehend what has happened to their loved one.
Expression of Emotions
Another significant difference is the way in which adults and children express their emotions. Adults tend to be more reserved in their expression of grief and may feel the need to be strong for others. Children, on the other hand, may express their emotions more openly and may not have the same inhibitions as adults. They may cry, become angry, or act out in other ways to express their grief.
Adults and children also differ in their coping mechanisms when dealing with grief. Adults may turn to religion, therapy, or support groups to help them cope. Children, on the other hand, may turn to play or other forms of activity as a way of coping with their emotions. While these coping mechanisms may differ, they can both be effective ways of dealing with grief.
Perception of Time
Adults and children also differ in their perception of time when dealing with grief. Adults may feel like time is moving too slowly, and they may struggle to move forward. Children, on the other hand, may have a limited concept of time and may struggle to understand why their loved one isn’t coming back. They can also “bounce back” faster and move on more quickly. It’s essential to provide children with a sense of structure and routine during this time as well as letting them know there is no set time frame for grief.
Need for Support
Finally, both adults and children need support when dealing with grief. However, the type of support they need may differ. Adults may benefit most from therapy or support groups, while children may need those as well as more direct support from parents or other trusted adults in their lives. Providing them with the support they need can help to better navigate the grieving process and move forward in a healthy way.
Being aware of the differences in how we grieve, at any age, will create opportunities to support and help one another heal. Heaven’s Bell and the Ring To Remember Grief Journal are two resources that can help both adults and children communicate and navigate the grieving process together.
Heaven’s Bell is an inspiring story of friendship, grief, and what comes next. It can help children understand death and provide them with a sense of comfort during a challenging time. The Ring To Remember Grief Journal is a memory book and journal that provides a safe space to grieve. Through creative prompts and space to draw and capture memories about a loved one, it can help both adults and children express their emotions and develop healthy coping mechanisms.
Together, Heaven’s Bell and the Ring To Remember Grief Journal create a comforting journey to healing after the death of a loved one. Knowing the differences between how adults and children deal with grief can help everyone navigate this difficult time with more understanding, connection, and compassion.