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Student Services

Student Services

Barbara Casteen, Director

4204 Okeechobee Road
Fort Pierce, Fl. 34947

Phone: (772) 429-4510
Fax: (772) 429-4528

Monday - Friday
8:00 am to 4:30 pm

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Grief and Loss

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If you are concerned about discussing death with your children, you’re not alone. Many of us hesitate to talk about death, particularly with youngsters. But death is an inescapable fact of life. We must deal with it and so must our children; if we are to help them, we must let them know it’s okay to talk about it.

By talking to our children about death, we may discover what they know and do not know - if they have misconceptions, fears, or worries. We can then help them by providing needed information, comfort, and understanding. Talk does not solve all problems, but without talk we are even more limited in our ability to help.

What we say about death to our children, or when we say it, will depend on their ages and experiences. It will also depend on our own experiences, beliefs, feelings, and the situations we find ourselves in, for each situation we face is somewhat different. Some discussions about death may be stimulated by a news report or a television program and take place in a relatively unemotional atmosphere; other talks may result from a family crisis and be charged with emotions.

As with any sensitive subject, we must seek a delicate balance that encourages children to communicate - a balance that lies somewhere between avoidance and confrontation, a balance that isn’t easy to achieve. It involves:

  • trying to be sensitive to their desire to communicate when they’re ready
  • trying not to put up barriers that may inhibit their attempts to communicate
  • offering them honest explanations when we are obviously upset
  • listening to and accepting their feelings
  • not putting off their questions by telling them they are too young
  • trying to find brief and simple answers that are appropriate to their questions; answers that they can understand and that do not overwhelm them with too many words.

Perhaps most difficult of all, it involves examining our own feelings and beliefs so that we can talk to them as naturally as possible when the opportunities arise.

Please review the following information. These resources provide some general information which may be helpful—information which may be adapted to meet individual needs. 

Resources

SEDNET

Talking To Children About Death

Developmental Ages & Stages of Grief

Helping Children Grieve

Application & Consent for Youth Counseling Services through Treasure Coast Hospice

Our Counselors

Any student who would like to speak to a school counselor please call St. Lucie Public Schools at 429-4560