Explaining cremation to children and youngsters

Explaining cremation to children and youngsters
01 March 2021, by Kristina Kennedy-Aguero

Explaining cremation to children can be a challenging task. Here are a few guidelines to make it easier for you and the youngster.

Prepare your child to understand about death

Death is not an easy subject to talk about. However the sooner your child begins to understand that death is a natural and inevitable event the more easily they will accept it.
Often a child's first experience with death is that of a pet. Allow them to observe and even touch the body. Explain to them that the animal they loved is no longer within the inert corpse. The body itself does not breath, move, sense, or feel. Allow them to mourn for their pet and express their emotions over the loss.
These experiences can help your child to deal better with the death of a person. They will already understand that the person is not still in their body and this makes explaining cremation to children easier.

Explaining Cremation to children of different ages

With very small children you can explain that some people choose  burial in the ground when they die, while others prefer to have their bodies burned to ashes. Keep your explication simple and allow your child to ask questions if he wishes. Do not use analogies or metaphors that could confuse them.
Older children may show interest in the actual process of cremation. You can explain this to them in a clear, calm, and simple way. Youngsters are naturally curious and understanding the way the body is handled can actually be reassuring to them.

After the cremation

After you receive the ashes, your child may well want to see or feel them. For adults, this can be hard, but it can really help in explaining cremation to children and helping them to understand death.
You may wish to let your child assist in choosing a beautiful urn in which to keep the ashes. This is a great opportunity to talk about the deceased, who they were, and what they liked.
A child can hold a small miniature urn  in their hands which can be comforting to them. Alternatively, a tealight urn where you can light a candle to remember someone special can help.
If you plan to scatter the ashes let your child help choose a special place and the perfect scatter tube.

Memorial Teddy bear

Our keepsake memorial teddy bear is a lovely way to bring comfort to a child. You can put a small amount of ashes into his special internal pouch. Cuddling this lovely teddy and stroking his soft fur can be a calming and grounding experience for children. They will often express their true feelings to teddy and this can help them to cope with their loss.