I can't deal with this anymore. As soon as I feel that I'm starting to move on from Jules passing my 3 yr old brings it up. He was there when we put him down. After, we walked to the car and my son got upset because Jules wasn't coming with us. I explained to him that Jules was old and sick. I said that we need to take him to the doctor where Jules will go to sleep. We'll leave him there and when he wakes up he'll go to the Rainbow Bridge where he won't be sick anymore and he'll run around with other old doggies and play games. My son got happy about that and got over it. Or so I thought. Basically every week for the past 2 months my son brings it up in some way. He thinks Jules's passing is temporary. My son says things like, "when Jules is done at the rainbow bridge he'll come back" and "when he's done being sick we have to go get him". He still talks about him as if he's still here to other people. Tonight during bath time he asked why the doctor put a hole in Jules. He was referring to the needle. Every time my son brings it up I just try to say "ok honey" and change the topic. Then I go in another room and cry. Ugh, I don't know what else to say or do. I don't want to discuss it with him because I don't want him to get upset. But it's so hard on me when he keeps bringing it up! I really don't know what to do about it anymore.
Although I haven't used any books with kids after a pet died, I know there are some. Maybe you can find one to read that will help him understand what happened although you will have to be prepared to read it many times. Little kids don't understand what has happened and it's not unusual for little ones to talk about it way longer than you'd think. You've probably looked online for how to talk to your child about Jules' death, but if not, here's an article to start with.
When a Pet Dies
Oh man, no advice but much sympathy. Kimber's not having a great day, and I'm teary. Gentle hugs to you.
My Grandson, Hayden, was 3 when Noah passed. He loved that dog, and Noah loved him. When Hayden came over a couple days after Noah passed, he was confused as his buddy wasn't here. I explained to him that Noah went to doggie heaven and I could see that his 3 year old mind was trying to process this. He asked if we could go get him from doggie heaven. I told him no, once a dog goes to doggie heaven, they have to stay. For the next week he told everyone about Noah going to doggie heaven, and how he couldn't come back.
Even at that young age I believe a child can understand the concept of the loss of a dog.
I believe in telling kids the truth about death. Not in a brutal way, but just be honest.
Kids are tougher than we think, they can handle it. I think it's better in the long run just to tell them the pet was sick and he died.
When my sister died, we had to explain it to our niece who wasn't much older than your boy. We just told her she went to heaven and when she asked when she was coming home we just told her she wasn't but she is happy where she is. My niece got over her pretty fast. She was sad at first but being that young they get passed it pretty fast.
It is a hard thing to do, but I really do think it's best to just come out and explain it.
I've read that much of that article should also be followed when a human family member dies, usually a grandparent. that children should be allowed to go to the funeral, if they want, and even view the internment. After reading that I take pains to follow those suggestions as much as I can just with the other pets. Namely, viewing the body and being at the burial. It seems to help. If you did not bury Jules maybe you could still have a little ceremony with some of his things. His collar and blanket and favourite toys?
Nothing to add as my kids were old enough to understand when we lost Scully, but I think you’ve been given good advice here. Just wanted to send some additional ((HUGS)) as this can’t be easy.
Cookie (Jamrah’s Legally Blonde) 6/4/2015
Sassy (Jamrah’s Blonde Ambition) 6/4/2015
Chloe (HIT HC Windsong’s Femme Fatale, UDX, OM2) 6/7/2009
Scully (Coventry's Truth Is Out There, UD, RN) 4/4/1996 - 6/30/2011
Our foster Jolie (UCh Windsong’s Genuine Risk, CDX, WC) 5/26/1999 - 3/2/2014
and Mulder (Coventry’s I Want to Believe, UD, VER, WC, RN) 5/26/1999 - 4/20/2015
No advice here but a lot of sympathy. It's always tough to balance protecting your child and letting them experience sorrow.
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