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Talking with children about Fred Rogers’ death
You know your child best. It’s up to you to judge how much or how little your child needs to be told – or if your child needs to know at all.
Find out what your child knows, has heard, or imagines. Some children may ask, “Who killed him?” Killings are so prominent in the news that they may naturally become linked to any death.
Ask how your child feels about it. Being able to share our feelings – to say “I’m sad” – or “I’m mad” – helps us know that others feel that way and that our feelings are natural and normal.
Start simply. You may want to say something like, “He was very ill and had to have an operation. The doctors worked very hard to help him, and they did everything they could, but they couldn’t help him.” (If you say only, “He was sick and died,” children may worry that you or they might die, too, when you’re “sick” – with the flu or a cold.)
Children will ask if they want more information. It’s okay to say, “I don’t know.”
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Source: Ultra Facts