Losing a child is such a tumultuous experience. In one moment, your entire world seems upside down. In a time that you may not exactly know how to cope yourself, it can be difficult to know how to walk any living children through the grieving process. Here are a few ideas that may help you reach out to them during this hardship.
1. Have your child draw a family portrait. They can include any "siblings still" by representing them in any way they choose.
2. If you haven't named your little one and that is something you'd like to do now, consider discussing potential names with any living children. Consider having them choose a middle name or collaborate with them on a first name.
3. Consider making a memorial at your home. It can be outside or inside. It can include the child's name, pictures, a statue, or a painting.
4. For a child who enjoys art, encourage them to write a poem, paint, or use any creative medium to express how they feel about their sibling still or the experience of losing their sibling.
5. Some can benefit from writing their feelings down. If this sounds like your child, invite them to write about their feelings on losing their sibling. You can even have them write a letter to their sibling still. They can place their writing at the burial site, a memorial spot, or a special place in their room.
6. For a child who may need prompting expressing emotions, ask them how they are doing and feeling. Click for a PDF worksheet that can help.
7. Set aside a special day each year to commemorate your little one. It can be the day of his/her passing, day of birth, or a day that had special significance in the life of your little one. You can visit the burial or memorial site and/or plan a special activity. it could be volunteering with your family in memory of your little one, doing a butterfly release. Some may benefit from having a special meal together.
8. Some sellers offer memorial items such as statues, necklaces, bracelets, and name plaques that can help memorialize your child. Search "miscarriage gift," "stillbirth gift," or "child loss" on websites such as Etsy and Amazon.
9. Make a decorative "quilt square" with the sibling still's name in the center. Use pieces of construction paper to decorate it like patches on a quilt. Make your own designs and use markers to personalize it.