Wednesday, June 12, 2024
MicroBlog Mondays Parenting Adventures

#MicroblogMondays – A Conversation on Death

"Why do people die?" That's the question Kanna asks every day now.

I told him that when people get old they die. Since these conversations happen during his bedtime I did not want to go to the root of the problem.

His next question was, "Then my Grandpa will die too?" He adores his Grandpa, I can very well understand why Kanna is concerned about his Grandpa.  I answered, "We all will die when we get very old, and yeah, your Grandpa too one day."

He was more concerned. "You will die too?" was his next question. I replied, "Yes." 
"But I don't want you die, ever!"

"You don't worry. I am not going to die now. I have to get old for that." All I wanted was to make him go to sleep and put an end to the conversation which if went on will turn into a sleepless night.

"But Amma, when you and Acha(Dad) die, I won't have parents. I will be all alone then." He was really upset by then. I can understand how heartbreaking it is to think that one day he is going to be in this world without his parents.

"You know, it is going to take a long time for all those to happen. You will be a big boy like Acha by that time. You will have a lot more friends and family of your own. You are not going to be alone. Now get to sleep, we will talk about this later."

He was kind of okay with that response. He paused for a moment and then hugged me and told, "But Amma, I don't want you to die even when you are old!"

"Okay then, I won't." 

I haven’t talked about death with Kanna before this. My father passed way when Kanna was one-year-old. He has no idea such a person existed. He is going to be surprised when he learns that I too had a father.

I am not sure if he is big enough to understand about death. He had a book called “It’s okay to be sad” in which death was mentioned. Whenever I read that to him, I skillfully avoided divulging the details.

How do you explain about death to kids? At what age should we start talking about the ugly truths of the world with kids?

PS: After this Kanna has accepted that his mom will die one day. His only concern now is that his mom will die before dad because I’m 50 days older than my husband. 🙂

Linking up with Microblog Mondays at Stirrup Queens.

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Vinitha

An IT Professional, an author, an accidental blogger, a lover of words and a recent self-care addict. I love stringing words together, which I lovingly call a poem. You can read my affair with words at Void Thoughts(http://thevoidthoughts.com) and Reflections..(https://www.vinithadileep.com)

0 thoughts on “#MicroblogMondays – A Conversation on Death

  1. Its a common question. They generally ask when they have seen death of someone close or in a movie. It is okay to explain to them to the level they can understand. I think you are doing good. As he grows up, he will understand it more anyways.

    1. I am not sure where he got the idea of death from. He appears to be all concerned about it now. Everyday he repeats the question. It is like he wants to know when I am going to die so that he can keep the things in order before that. 🙂
      I hope my explanation was good. Then again, I was curious about death all through my childhood days. Don’t remember asking so many questions though. 🙂

  2. Very curious question and I must say you handled well.
    I am still scared of death. I can’t imagine the day my parents will be no more. It’s too hard a fact for me to understand. I want to die before seeing my loved ones leaving me 🙁

    1. I was and am still curious about death. I believe that there more to the story other than heaven and hell. But I don’t want to tell him the stories I imagine in my head and confuse him even more.☺ And of course, I can’t bear the sadness death brings. It is all confusing for me too.

  3. Talking about death with a small child is tough. But it is important to answer all the queries because that will give them some information, comfort, and understanding. Though a child understanding about death will change as he grows. You handled the situation well!

    1. I want to have a lengthy discussion about death with Kanna soon. He brings up these topics during his bedtime and I just try to push the matter away after few minutes of talking. What you said is true, Shilpa.

  4. When my mom passed away Belle was one month away from two. She remembered Grandma but not clearly. My father started keeping company with another woman and that woman (R) shifted into the place she had for Grandma.

    That being said she asked what happened to my mommy once out of the blue, and I couldn’t stop the tears. I explained that Grandma went on her next adventure and it was so amazing that she couldn’t come and tell us about it even though she missed us all.

    1. I understand, it must have been tough for you. I avoid telling about my father for the same reason. That is a nice way of explaining. Kanna is very emotional and he gets attached to everyone so quickly. Explaining death to him is difficult because he is looking for loopholes to keep the people he loves alive forever. 🙂

  5. Vinitha,
    I have tried explaing death to my 6 year old daughter in a way i think she would understand. YEt she still comes up with questions. She was around when my father passed away recently and could not understand where a lifeless body would go to.All that story of the person having gone to heaven etc.. didnt seem to convince her. She still cant understand how a 6 ft body could practically travel all the way up 🙂

  6. Yes, the follow up questions are harder than the first one. 🙂 That’s why I didn’t explain it all the way. One day soon, I will do it though! 🙂

  7. Lots of kids talk about death. My twins have talked so much about it that it’s dinner time conversation!! But I guess kids do not fully absorb the concept of ‘going away for ever’, and that’s okay. You handled it pretty well there.

  8. I agree, it is indeed difficult to explain these things to a child. It’s funny, as a teacher I find it easier to answer complex questions posed by high school children that simple ones full of innocence. Simplifying things is a lot more difficult!

    1. Very true, Vidya. But as a teacher you might be coming across tons of questions on a day from different kids. At all age kids questions must be answered to their satisfaction, right? 🙂

  9. Such a moving post. I can identify as I have had similar conversation with my daughter!
    Kids don’t want their parents to die. touchy subject.

    I guess we have to address them in the best way we can. they will learn many things soon…

    1. Yes, their understanding level differs from age to age. To find out the comfortable level is the difficult task upon the parent, I guess. 🙂

  10. well even though we can say our earth needs a balance and all death is a big mystery and whether old or not we don’t want our loved ones to leave us right?your kid love every one that is so nice to know god bless 🙂

    1. Yea, to tell him about how the world works is a nerve racking task. He just won’t accept it. 🙂 True he loves his dear ones a lot more than I realized. Welcome to my bog, Sherin. 🙂

  11. We slowly approached death. At first you could only die by being hit by a car. Then it was when you turned 100. Then it was if you didn’t eat. It took a long time before they were ready to hear about cancer and other illnesses, accidents, etc.

  12. I remember not understanding death at all. My parents never talked about it, I learnt about it from movies and thought after death, you stay with God, which was like the best thing ever. I guess slowly as I grew and attained some maturity, I understood it myself.

  13. I have jittery nights, when I think of this ugly truth, that my parents too would die someday, making me an Orphan. Whom will I talk to, when I have problems in life. Who will console me? All these questions pop up.
    It is definitely a difficult topic for me to even think as of now.

  14. My dad died when my daughter was 3 and since she had been very close to him, she had a rough time of it. For the longest time she was afraid of the dark. I bought a book at the time that explained it all to her. It handled the subject matter very well.

What do you think? Please share! :)

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