Conversation about death with young child

When I picked up the little one last Friday evening and played half an hour on the playground, we walked to the bus station.  She started to ask me “mommy, I am a little scared.”  “why?” “I don’t want to die.” “honey, you won’t die, who told you that you would die?”  “mommy, what will happen when someone dies?” “hmmm… he will go to another world.”  “mommy, are you going to die?”  Then my mind was running thousand miles a second, thinking what I should say.  I could not believe that her question came that early, actually it’s normal. I glanced at some title of article the other day about children over 4 years old will start realizing the fact of ‘death’ existing.  and my daughter is turning 5 in less than two weeks.

I regretted that why I didn’t read that article and got prepared, “I am not prepared to answer this question.” I talked to myself and heard myself speaking “well, first of all, mommy is not dying, mommy will be with you for a very very long time; second, when someone dies, he or she just goes to another world and live there.”  “are they going to come back?”  Oh mine, her thinking was very fast, much faster than I could get my answers together.  “hmmm, probably not.” “ok, then later I can go to the other world too?”  “yeah, then everyone will be together again.”  honestly, I wasn’t too proud of my answer, however, I didn’t trying to avoid the topic.  “but honey, no need to talk about death now ok.”

Before the bus came, she suddenly burst into tears, “mommy, I don’t want you to die…”  I got tingling feeling in my heart “honey, mommy is not going to die, not for a very long time, mommy will be with you. ok?”  at the same time, I though that I really needed to get myself ready for more similar questions to come.

What is your ideas of answering similar questions from your children? Please feel free to share with me and other readers.

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