Children dealing with the loss of a family member, friend, or pet may find it difficult to articulate their feelings to adults. To them, death may be an incomprehensible concept. They may not be able to grasp the permanence of this kind of loss prior to attaining some level of maturity. This makes words of comfort possibly ineffective, specifically to a child who doesn’t fully understand the situation just yet.
This is where sympathy gifts for kids can significantly help. These remembrance or comfort gifts, which may come in the form of a book, a toy, or a piece of wearable jewelry, can communicate an adult’s sympathy in visible, tangible ways.
Not only do these sympathy gifts provide a momentary distraction, some can even help children channel their feelings into worthwhile activities such as reading and making art.
A Few Sympathy Gift Suggestions for a Child in Grief
Whether a child is going through the painful loss of a parent or sibling or the lost companionship of a pet, these sympathy gifts can help you channel your love and comfort in perceptible ways.
Certain books can serve as an eye-opener to children, especially on the confusing subjects of death and loss. A good book suggestion would be one that subtly takes on the themes of love, family, death, and hope.
- Huggable Toy/Pillow
Teddy bears, small pillows, and even stuffed dolls may be given as sympathy gifts to kids. Stuffed animals or plush pillows are easily a source of comfort to children, especially when they need something to hug or to play with.
A journal can provide a safe and private space for children or teens to write their feelings down. The act of writing or even sketching can be therapeutic, even more so for children who cannot verbally express what they feel.
- Sympathy jewelry
Some children may appreciate wearing a piece of jewelry that represents the person or pet they have lost. A few of these sympathy gift examples include pendants, bracelets, and necklaces.
- Art materials
To encourage children to express their feelings through art, you may gift them with art materials such as a sketching pad, kid-friendly acrylic paints, paint brushes, pastels, colored pens, and pencils. This sympathy gift may even encourage kids to pursue art as a serious hobby or career later in life.
How Do Kids Process Grief Differently?
Too often, a child may process his or her grief in stages, and for an extended period of time. Since they may not fully understand what has happened, or why, they may express their emotions in varied ways. They may withdraw into themselves, develop certain fears – such as losing another parent or sibling, or become more aggressive than usual.
Child experts and psychologists recommend answering children’s questions about death in a simple yet direct manner. Adults also need to listen to children and allow them to express their grief in their own way.
Helping a Child Cope through Death or any Loss
The experience of loss and grief can be a challenge for adults and children, alike. Children may express grief in different ways than adults do, but this doesn’t mean that they are not in mourning. Losing a parent or a sibling may impact children in less visible ways, but the feelings of confusion and loss can leave a lasting effect on their psyche for years to come.
By giving them a well-thought-out sympathy gift, you are essentially telling them that they are important. This gesture is helpful during a confusing time when their feelings may not always be prioritized or validated.
The Comfort Company offers a variety of sympathy gifts, including items for children dealing with loss or grief. To view our selections, check out our sympathy gifts for kids here.