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Are there any good books to help explain death to a young child?
Q: I just lost my mum and can't find any books that talk about a child's loss of their Nana. My daughter is 27 months and I don't know how to explain it to her. She is an only child. I have asked people at the funeral home, our minister, and at school and have been told there are no books for her age level.
A: First, let me offer my sympathy to you. In today’s world, you are young to have lost your mother. But it is never easy at any age. The people you consulted are probably correct in saying there are no books on death written for your daughter’s age level. If you had asked me, I would have had to say the same thing. But, you didn’t ask the person who is probably more knowledgeable than the rest of us: the librarian in the children’s section of your public library. Chances are she will know of an appropriate book. Certainly there are several beautiful ones written for slightly older children, many of which approach death by depicting the death of a beloved pet.

What we tell children of any age about death will be influenced by the family’s religious beliefs, so it is good that you discussed it with your minister. It is never easy, and one discussion won’t take care of questions for all time. Finally, I would suggest that you show pictures of your mother to your daughter from time to time and help keep her memory alive.