...still family-owned.

How to Talk to Your Children About Death and Grief


Death is a difficult topic for both children and adults to discuss. However, it is important that parents have open and honest conversations with their kids about death to help them understand this natural part of life. As a family-owned funeral home that has served the Brisbane community for generations, Alex Gow Funerals understand the challenges of discussing death with children and offers some guidance on approaching this sensitive subject.

Prepare Yourself

Take time to reflect on your own feelings about death before talking with your child. Processing your emotions will help you remain as calm and comforting as possible. It’s also good to think about what you want your child to understand from the conversation. Knowing your key messages in advance will help the discussion flow naturally.

Use Simple, Direct Language

Speak simply and directly about death without euphemisms. Children may be confused by phrases like “passed away” or “gone to sleep.” Explain that death means the person’s body has stopped working and they can no longer breathe, eat or play. Reassure them it is not their fault and that it happens to everyone eventually, even animals and plants.

Tailor the Conversation to Their Age

What you say will depend on your child’s age and developmental level. Young children may focus more on the physical aspects of death and need concrete examples, while older children can understand more complex concepts. Be available for multiple short conversations, as children’s understanding will grow over time.

Acknowledge Feelings

Validate any sadness, confusion or anger your child expresses. Let them know it’s normal to feel many different emotions when someone dies. Share some of your own feelings to help them recognize it’s okay to grieve in their own way. Remind them they did nothing wrong, and the death was not their fault.

Talk About Memories

Focusing on happy memories of time spent together can help children feel comforted. Share photos, stories, and inside jokes you all shared. You might suggest your child draw a picture or write a letter for the deceased to keep those memories alive. Preserving happy memories helps reinforce that life, joy and love remain even after death.


Promote Ongoing Discussion

Be available to answer any new questions that come up for your child, both now and later as they mature. Death may have new meanings for them as they grow and learn through experiences. Our funeral directors can also help guide discussions with children of appropriate ages, so they understand death better within a supportive, caring environment.


With patience and honesty, talking to children about death helps them face this challenging reality in a healthy way. By making yourself available whenever your child needs reassurance, you provide comfort and help them cope with grief. At Alex Gow Funerals, we’re here to support you through this process however we can, as you guide your children in understanding this natural part of life.

...still family-owned.


Head Office
463 Newman Rd
Geebung, QLD, 4034
Tel: (07) 3851 7800


Browns Plains

7-9 Grand Plaza Drive
Browns Plains, QLD, 4118
Tel: (07) 3800 7500



4/17 Middle St
(Cnr Waterloo St)
Cleveland, QLD, 4163
Tel: (07) 3821 4570


Deception Bay

31-35 Tallowwood Drive
Deception Bay, QLD, 4508
Tel: (07) 3888 3535




Selected Independent Funeral Homes

Privacy Policy