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How can I help my teen cope with a loved one's death?

Teens are very close to many people in their life. Family members and friends are all beloved greatly. When a teen loses a loved one because of an unexpected accident, the teen will go through the grieving process. People who deal with the teen on a regular basis will need to help the teen as he or she moves through the grieving process.

What is the grieving process like for teens?

Each teen will grieve in a unique manner. There isn't any correct or incorrect way for the teen to grieve. Instead, you should support the teen with whatever method they feel necessary to grieve. This could include having a memorial for the deceased loved one or going through therapy to learn how to cope with feelings. In almost all cases, the teen will move through a series of feelings that includes anger, denial, acceptance and other feelings.

How long should I allow the teen to grieve?

There aren't any deadlines for dealing with the loss of a loved one. Some teens will cope with the death well right from the get-go. Other teens will take considerable time to grieve. Trying to rush the process along can cause more harm than good; however, you should also remember that you shouldn't let the teen fall into a never-ending depression about the death. This is a fine line that might require you to seek out professional assistance.

If you are helping your teen mourn the loss of an immediate family member, you might be going through the grief process yourself. If the decedent was your spouse or another close family member, seeking compensation for the death might help to reduce the financial strain so you can focus on yourself and your teen.

Source: The Dougy Center|, "How to help a grieving teen," accessed Jan. 20, 2017

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