What Can You Do to Help a Bereaved Child?

Everybody’s experience of grief is unique. Children and young people learn to cope with the illness or death in theirillustration of adult and child walking away  own way.

It may be helpful to consider the following when supporting a child you care for:

  • Provide opportunities for them to communicate and express feelings.
  • Support in understanding the reality of what has happened.
  • Provide timely information in language that is developmentally appropriate.
  • Reassure the child or young person that they are not to blame and that all feelings are okay.
  • Try to keep normal routines and continue to help nurture their emotional, physical and cognitive development.
  • Remain consistent and reliable.
  • Take time to talk about what has happened. Let the child or young person know that they can ask questions. You don’t have to know the answer to every question, but let them know that you will find out.
  • Find an enduring connection with the deceased through memory-making.

Confronting the nature of terminal illness with children can be very difficult, but in doing so it can prepare children and young people for the death of a loved one, so that it is not experienced as a sudden shock or they feel they are to blame.


Online Bereavement Support for Schools:   

Online Bereavement Support for Parents, Carers and Professionals:


Death Through Serious Illness


Sudden Death – Including Accidents, Suicide and Homicide


Supporting Bereaved children and young people with SEND


Supporting Bereaved Children and Young People in Other Languages


Gender Identity – A Guide for Parents

When Someone is Not Expected to Live:

For more information on how to talk to your child about a terminal illness please click here


Support for Parents and Carers Affected by Bereavement:

For adult bereavement counselling, please contact The Adult Bereavement Counselling Service at Hillingdon Mind on:  01895 271559 


Online Support for Adults Bereaved as Children: