You might not agree with me but besides sex, death is the most taboo topic for parents.
Where’s the fun of discussing about death, you ask.
As far as I am concerned, there’s no such thing as off-limits. I will do my best to adequately address my child’s curiosity to find out about certain thing.
Avoiding taboo topics is not the way. You have to explain to them accordingly when the need arises.
Death included. Something different about death is when you learn more about it, the more you discover about how to live your life with purpose… become more compassionate and less calculative.
When I received the news of my wife’s grandmother’s passing last week, I knew this would be the rare opportunity for J and K to learn about death.
For the first time, J and K saw the face of a dead person. For the first time, they attended a funeral. For the first time, they learned about cremation. For the first time, they experienced first hand what chanting is about. For the first time, they saw human bones and ashes.
And also because of this, they get very much closer to my cousin’s children… for the first time.
You see there’s nothing taboo about death. It’s only a natural progression for human beings. And children should be exposed to it at the appropriate time… as early as possible… and learn to accept death as part of human life.
After the funeral, I asked what they feel about the whole thing. They said they were not scared except the part about burning the body (cremation).
I have to admit I am shocked to hear J and K could handle this “taboo” topic pretty well.
May your soul rest in peace, Ah Ma.
PS: For more parenting tips, check out my “The Nonconformist’s Guide to Parenting.”
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