CHILDLINE ADVICE: There is not a right way or a wrong way to deal with grief
Our region, and the whole of the UK, has seen an unprecedented outpouring of grief in the last few days over the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
But the levels of grief around the community and the country, across the media and internet cannot have gone unnoticed by children and young people across the North East, and may cause those who have lost a loved one, however recently, to find themselves struggling with anxiety or sadness at this time.
Losing a friend, relative or loved one can be heart-breaking at any age, but when you’re a child, it can be much harder to process feelings of grief and loss.
Some children may wonder if what they are feeling about loss is right or wrong, and some may not understand the complex emotions that they are experiencing.
At a time of national mourning, many young people will find themselves feeling anxious, and we have support available for children struggling with anxiety at our Childline website, which is available around the clock to young people who need it.
It’s important to remind children that it's okay to feel however they feel.
And talking to a trusted adult, to a teacher, to a friend or to one of our counsellors about their feelings can really help.
If they aren’t ready to talk to someone, the Childline website has an online Art Box tool, where they can write a letter or draw something to encapsulate their feelings, then either keep or destroy it to let go of those feelings.
Children can also use our moderated message boards to share their feelings with other young people and to find out how others are faring with similar issues.
If you’re a parent or carer of a child who has lost someone, let them know you are there for them, whenever they need.
If they’d rather speak to Childline, we’re always available on 0800 1111, and online at www.childline.org.uk
There is also advice for adults on how to help support young people's mental health during the difficult times they may face.
Everyone has their own way to deal with loss and grief, but it’s important to remember there’s no right or wrong way to feel.