Adolescent Concerns

Children and adolescents grieve in their own way according to their unique developmental timeline. It can be challenging for parents and adults to understand their children’s grief reactions and how to best support them. This discussion group will feature topics that relate to supporting children and teens in managing the big feelings of grief.

Adolescent Concerns

Postby dscowan » Thu Nov 13, 2014 1:03 pm

In the bereavement center we have found that teenagers facing grief are also experiencing the primary tasks of normal adolescence-which include establishing one’s self-identity, developing a social network and selecting a meaningful career path. Here are issues that may trouble a grieving adolescent as they re-create their world:
What if someone else in my family die Too?
Will I die the same way? When?
Did I do or say something that helped promote the death in any way?
How can I help with the pain of others in my family when my pain is overwhelming? Who will take care of me?
I laughed today…now I feel guilty. Does this mean I am bad and have no feelings?
How can I go to school and hold myself together?
I loved . Why am I so angry with him/her?
If we are going to die anyway, what’s the use of living?

Open the door to conversation and ask your teen to share his or her concerns.
Just listen.
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Re: Adolescent Concerns

Postby kincaid59 » Thu Apr 09, 2015 12:41 pm

Adolescence is a time of self discovery, finding out who you are and what your future holds for you. It can be a difficult time in itself, but when you add the loss of an important person, it can complicate things.
There can be so many more losses than just that loved one; loss of a confidant, mentor, sense of security, home, having to move to a new school district, loss of old friends from the old neighborhood and school, loss of a future with that person, and so on. Sometimes the death results in a new caregiver and having to find your place in your new home. Resulting feelings can be anger, isolation, lack of motivation and feeling misunderstood.
As all these emotions can be confusing, remember they are normal. Discovering your new normal and new routine can be the hard part. Seek trusted people who will listen. Find positive coping skills like, journaling, running, exercising, reading, music and staying involved with friends. Remain open and flexible to changes that present themselves, as life will never be exactly as it was prior to your loss. Most of all remain hopeful that all will work out. By learning how to keep your loved one alive in your heart and spirit you will heal and have a fulfilling life.
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Re: Adolescent Concerns

Postby d_butler » Mon Aug 24, 2015 3:31 pm

As the new school year approaches many teens might find it hard to get back into their normal routine. The first day of school might stir up memories they once shared with their deceased loved one. Many teens experience feelings of anger, guilt, withdrawal and a lack of interest in activities they previously enjoyed. Follow their lead when discussing the deceased. Invite them to share and validate their grief reactions and let them know that you are there to listen when they are ready to talk.
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Joined: Fri Jun 15, 2012 10:43 am

Re: Adolescent Concerns

Postby andygetz » Mon Nov 23, 2015 2:18 pm

The holidays are upon us and many families who have experienced a loss struggle with how to celebrate. Adolescents are stuck between being able to celebrate as children and being "too old" for that. Teens often want to retain the rituals of the family over the holidays season. Despite their grief they may want the familiar symbols, foods and patterns that existed prior to the loss. That may mean decorating the tree when all you really want to do is leave town and avoid the holidays altogether. Include your teen in conversation about how to spend the holiday season and decide together what parts of the holidays you would like to maintain and what you need to do differently. Do understand if they would like to spend time with friends. Take this as an opportunity to gauge how they are doing and what helps. Please comment if you have had decisions to make, with your teens, about the holidays.
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