Remembering Mom on Mother’s Day – What’s a Grieving Child to Do?

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REBLOG of Pamela Gabbay’s Post

Mother’s Day For many, this is a special day to celebrate their mom. Some might buy their mom flowers; others might make her breakfast in bed or take her to brunch. What about children and teens that have had a mom die? What about them? They are surrounded by images of Mother’s Day at every turn.  Just about every store they go to has an advertisement about Mother’s Day. There are also plenty of TV ads. When you’re grieving the death of your mom, these reminders can be quite painful.

How can you help the grieving children and teens in your life on this Mother’s Day? The first thing that I’d do is to ask them what they would like to do to remember their mom on Mother’s Day. You might be surprised by the answer. Often well-meaning adults assume that they know what their kids want. I’ve found that adults are sometimes surprised when they ask a grieving child about their wishes. For example, they might want to do something in remembrance that has never occurred to you. If you ask them for their input and they don’t know what they’d like to do, but they would like to do something, here are some suggestions.

  • Make or buy mom’s favorite snack. Enjoy it together on Mother’s Day.
  • Purchase a special “mom” candle and light it on important days, including Mother’s Day. Allow the kids to pick out the candle. If you have more than one child, allow each of them to choose their own candle, if possible.
  • Listen to music. Consider playing some of mom’s favorite songs and dancing to them.
  • Take flowers to the cemetery. Allow the children to pick out the flowers. If you have more than one child, allow all of them to have a voice in which flowers are purchased. Ask them why they chose the flowers that they chose.
  • Invite them to make their mom a Mother’s Day card. After they’ve made the card, ask them what they’d like to do with it. Ideas: keep it somewhere special in their room, display it somewhere special in the house, or take it to the cemetery.
  • Write messages on balloons are then release the balloons. You can purchase balloons that are eco-friendly. Have colored markers on hand to allow them to write words or draw pictures on their balloons. Ask the kids where they would like to release the balloons.

You might have noticed a recurring theme to all of these suggestions; to ask the kids what they would like to do. Some children might not want to do anything at all, and that needs to be honored. Just like adults, children and teens have their own grief road to travel and this road is different for everyone. Even within the same family, some kids might want to do something to remember mom, while a brother or sister might not want to do anything at that point in time. And that is o.k.

Again, asking the children for their input is key. Having support and understanding from others is one of the primary ways that kids are able to cope and heal. Giving kids a chance to remember their mom in their own way on Mother’s Day can go a long way in that healing process.

Originally posted here.