Supporting bereaved children & their families in Kent

Holding On Letting Go

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Help & support for children and young people

This area is for children and young people. You will find advice on how to deal with your loss, links to good websites that might help you and more.

How to cope

Bereavement is a distressing but normal experience.

It is normal to feel sad when someone we love dies and that sadness can last for a long time. Most people find a way to cope with their sadness and move on with their life, but sometimes they may need some help.

You might find it helpful to talk to someone outside the family about how you are feeling, although sharing your feelings with other family members is also important.

You may have lots of different feelings and this is perfectly normal – there is no right or wrong way to grieve.

When someone close to you dies you might feel:

  • Sad – it’s OK to be sad and to let other people see that you are.
  • Angry – you might be angry about how the person died or just about the fact that they have left you
  • Guilty – remembering arguments or nasty things you may have said about them
  • Tired – being so sad takes a lot of energy and you may be finding it difficult to sleep
  • Lonely – you may feel that no-one else understands how you feel
  • Relieved – you may be glad that a loved one is no longer suffering or in pain

If you have any, all or none of these feelings that is OK – you may think that you will never feel better again, but in time you will find it less painful. The more you can talk to someone about how you are feeling the more helpful that will be.

Getting help

One of the most important things you can do when someone close to you dies is to find someone that you can talk to. This may be someone else in your family or a close friend. You may feel more comfortable speaking to someone at school, whether it’s your teacher, head of pastoral care or family liaison officer there should be someone who can help you. Many schools give “pass cards” to their students to allow them to leave the classroom if they are having a difficult time.

One of the comments we often hear is that “nobody understands how I feel” because a lot of the children and young people who we meet do not know anyone else who has experience the death of someone close to them. By attending a Holding On Letting Go bereavement support weekend, you will have the opportunity to talk about how you are feeling with other young people who do understand.

You can make a referral yourself by downloading the form on this page or asking an adult to make the referral for you.

Check out these websites