How do I explain where my GodMother has gone to nearly 5yr old DD

(8 Posts)
themothershipcalling Fri 11-Jan-13 20:40:08

That's it really.

I've just been told that my GodMother dies unexpectedly this morning, my DD knew her quite well and was supposed to be visiting her with my Mother tomorrow. I don't know what to say that she can deal with at her age.

chipmonkey Fri 11-Jan-13 21:13:59

When dd died, we told ds4, who was 3, that dd's body had died, that her heart had stopped working but that her soul had gone to Heaven. That is pretty much what we believe ourselves though.
Sorry about your godmother xx

amazingmumof6 Fri 11-Jan-13 21:16:41

sorry to hear, very sad news sad

does she understand death as such?

you can't avoid her getting upset, as you yourself will be upset, so it's best to just say the simplest things and encourage her to ask questions.
I'm sure you'll find the right words, but you can also say that it is hard to explain - it's good for children to realize that we don't know everything....

if she's seen the Lion King she'll have a vague idea, I'd watch it with her anyway, it might be a good starting point for a conversation on a child's level of understanding.

now of course this is a very difficult subject even if you are religious and possibly even harder if you are not, so I'm not going to suggest anything for you to say either way.....
....but when I had a miscarriage 4 years ago we told the boys (then 7, 5, 4 and 3) that the baby was too ill so God decided to look after her in Heaven instead of letting her be born, as she would possibly be in a lot of pain and might die anyway.
we are Christians and truly believe this is what happened, the children understood and accepted our explanation.
we ended up talking a lot about where babies come from actually, but any questions they had about the operation (ERPC) or whether it hurt baby etc I answered as honestly as I could (no gory details of course).
some things I couldn't answer, so I told them I didn't know.

I don't know if this is any help, and again my sympathies to you and your family

themothershipcalling Fri 11-Jan-13 21:26:12

Thank you for the replies and especially to amazingmuff.

It's the first experience that she's aware of. We are not really religious however DD very into Churches and Heaven so have previously explained that is where my Dad is. It's just so sudden. She wasn't even ill. I can't get my head round it so have no idea what to say about why.

This story is what I used to explain death to my children when their sister died.

I'm very sorry for your loss.

themothershipcalling Fri 11-Jan-13 21:50:36

That is so lovely Missy.

amazingmumof6 Fri 11-Jan-13 22:22:56

yes Missy, that's lovely, I've heard it before.

OP - I wonder what your thoughts will be about taking DD to the funeral, again some people choose not to take young children, but since she knew your godmother well she might want to say goodbye...

sorry, if it's insensitive to bring this up, I'm only thinking that if she's as inquisitive as my boys, she'd probably want to know as much as possible.

themothershipcalling Fri 11-Jan-13 23:19:40

She is the same with questions - she's full of where things are from and how they are made at the moment so could be quite a conversation in the morning.

Although I agree generally with children at funerals I don't think I can take her. My Mother and Godmother were like sisters, she is obviously devastated and I think I need to be there for her without having to think about DD also I think it would upset DD to see her Nana so upset IYSWIM?

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