Supporting a grieving child on Father's Day
Bereaved children and teenagers often find Father's Day to be a very difficult time of year.
The following are some ways you can help your child cope with grief on Father's Day, and help them remember dad in the process. Please remember that these are just suggestions, and you should do what feels right for your family and treat yourself with kindness. There is no right or wrong way to remember a dad on Father's Day.
Talk to your children about Father's Day as a family. Plan with them, ask them what they would like to do, and bring them into the decision-making process. If you have old traditions, you might want to continue them or do something new. Include everyone's wishes as much as possible, but don't put too much pressure on yourself.
It may be helpful to take some time to remember their dad. You could:
- Play his favourite music, eat his favourite food, or do something that you always enjoyed doing together.
- You can look at photos of dad and share the memories you have of him.
- Remember dad by making a card or drawing a picture. If you would like, you can write a message in the card and put it in a memory box.
- Consider taking a walk for some quiet time.
Your child may want to recognise other important people who have supported them, such as a grandad, brother, or uncle. Some children may want to appreciate their mum on Father’s Day.
Feel free to share what you are feeling with close family and friends and encourage your children to do the same - don’t hide your grief. Make sure you take time out if you need it. Avoid social media if posts about Father's Day become too upsetting. By talking about your grief with friends and family, you can make it less overwhelming. They can offer good listening ears or perhaps help in other, more practical ways.
On Father's Day, remind children that it is okay to have fun, laugh, and enjoy life.
Please contact us if you need support for your grieving child or young person: firstname.lastname@example.org.