Tips for Communicating with a Child in Pediatric Hospice Care

When a loved one you care about is dying, it’s hard to talk with them. There’s so much you want to say to offer support and encouragement, but the words that come to mind never seem right. In our experience, this is especially true when that loved one is a child.
In our hearts, we feel that children aren’t supposed to die. Unfortunately, this does happen and, for the sake of the child, the reality of the situation needs to be faced. While talking with a child in pediatric hospice care will likely never be easy, you can make it a little easier with the following tips.

Don’t underestimate the child.

We often forget that children are capable of the most miraculous thought processes. They are able to understand so much more about the world than we realize. That’s why it’s important to speak with the child honestly about his or her condition. In the words of Dr. Alan D. Wolfelt, “Children have the capacity to understand more than we often give them credit for. Like adults, they deserve our respect and compassion and our honesty.”

Encourage communication.

Children can cope with what they know and how they feel with the people they feel comfortable around. So, make sure the child knows they can come to you to ask questions or voice their concerns or fears. Just be careful not to come on too strong. Just like any adult, children process information in their own time. Give the child the room and support to process what is happening to him or her in their own time.

Don’t forget the spiritual side of things.

Even if your family isn’t the “religious type,” it’s likely your child will have spiritually charged questions. It’s important not to make the child feel odd for that. Answer the child’s questions honestly and openly. Just don’t be afraid to call in a professional that may be able to help with touchier topics such as this.
At the end of the day, the goal is to help your child live and freely and fully as they can. So, contact the pediatric hospice care team in Las Vegas that’s known for its success in this area. Just call 702.380.8300 today.

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