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Grief Resources for Minors

Published: July 25, 2022

Suggested grief activities from Dougy Center for pre-writing children:

Drawing

Find a piece of paper and fold it in half. On one side, draw a picture of your family before the death. On the other side, draw a picture of your family after the death. 

Painting

Collect unique rocks and paint them in memory of your loved one who passed away. These can be placed in a memory garden or in a memory box. 

Read a Story with a Parent

There are many books on grief that parents and children can read together to help go through that process.

Suggested Activities for Post-Writing children

Write a letter

Write a letter to the loved one who has passed away, telling them what fun you had, how you feel, and what you wished you could have done. 

Ways to remember

Write or draw things that remind you of your loved one: 1 taste, 2 smells, 3 things you can taste, 4 sounds and 5 things you can see. 

Physical activity

For some children, it is easier to express emotions through physical activity. This could be by doing heavy exercise like jumping on the trampoline or helping with yard work. Others could benefit from trying rhythmic movement such as dancing or yoga. Another option would be to try a new type of exercise such as Tai Chi or swimming. 

Suggested Activities for Teens 

Listen to Grief Out Loud

The Dougy Center has a podcast called Grief Out Loud that has episodes which present a mix of personal stories, tips for supporting children, teens, and interviews with bereavement professionals. Some episodes suggested for teens are: Grieving the Death of a Best Friend as a Teen, What I Needed - Tips from a Grieving Teen, and Growing (Up) With Grief - One Teen's Story.

Joining a Grief Support Group

Being a teen who already has experience with funerals, big grief feelings and a deep understanding of the permanency of death, fitting in may feel impossible. Knowing other teenagers understand how they feel and are navigating a journey that looks like theirs can be really helpful. Whether this support group is local or online, it could be very beneficial for a teen to join. The National Alliance for Children's Grief offers a list of support groups in all states. To find one in Oregon, check out this resource

Books

Books like "Weird Is Normal When Teenagers Grieve" by Jenny Lee Wheeler, Heidi Horsley, Psy.D. (Foreword by), "The Grieving Teen: A Guide for Teenagers and Their Friends" by Helen Fitzgerald and "Grief Recovery for Teens: Letting Go of Painful Emotions with Body-Based Practices" by Coral Popowitz MSW, LGSW can help teenagers gain coping skills and language to help them navigate their grief journey. 

 
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